Evacuation Capacities

Have a question? Ask here, and a member of the staff will do their best to answer it for you!
Post Reply
User avatar
Petty Officer 2nd Class
Petty Officer 2nd Class
Posts: 143
Joined: Mon Nov 25, 2013 9:19 pm

Evacuation Capacities

Post by Emily » Sun Apr 17, 2016 4:43 am

Hey Guys and Gals,

This is mostly a question for the Director of Resources, but I was wondering why the evacuation limit for some starships is so high? Take a class like the Vesta, for example. It looks like it has a 660 crew compliment, but it can be expanded to 7,500 in an emergency. I know that a lot of the time the free space in the ship isn't always an issue, because of cargo bays and things like that, but how can the life support systems of the ship handle that many more occupants?

I've seen this done other places before, ACTD's Galaxy-class specs, for example. They list a crew compliment of 1,200ish, but their max is 12,000. I was just browsing through the specs and that caught my attention. :)

Chief Petty Officer
Chief Petty Officer
Posts: 240
Joined: Sun Aug 04, 2013 2:15 am

Re: Evacuation Capacities

Post by Treymiar » Sun Apr 17, 2016 10:44 am

I would suspicion that history probably set a precedent. Consider how many doughboys that civilian ships transported across the Atlantic in WWI. Consider how many Japanese troops Tanaka snatched out from under the noses of the Americans at Guadalcanal during WWII using little destroyers. In the day and age where fusion batteries can power life support for generations (which appears to be the crux of your question), my own opinion is that it is no stretch to accommodate many thousands. Starships can warp space and unleash massive energy bolts. A grid of air scrubbers would be a tiny load in comparison to that. Heck, in our 21st century, there are supposedly high tech 'clean buildings' that cycle and replace 100% of the air volume every two minutes.

In our How many sailors do current aircraft carriers support? How many moreso could a larger starship that has greater deck space. This issue came up a while back. Someone quoted 'canon' deck space on a starship and I calculated that thousands of evacuees would, if you divvied up deck space uniformly, have 300 square feet per person. This parallels a comparison to a debate years ago about world overpopulation. I don't have sources to quote, but someone pointed out that at the time, every human on the planet could fit into Alaska and have 1000 square feet to himself.

For some reason, and I don't know why, the rule of thumb of evac numbers being ten times normal crew compliment seems to be appealing. I would happily balk at anything less than that. This wouldn't apply to tiny ships, of course, or those of very specialized space allocation. But a Galaxy Class? Wasn't there an "alternate timeline" episode where Enterprise had 6,000 aboard? I can't imagine starship designers being wimpy-gimpy-stingy with the design of life support infrastructure, especially when spaceships can become stranded far distant. In the site specs, I've set Harby's evac at somewhere around 4000, which seems rather conservative for a ship her size. If she really was intended to succeed the Galaxy, then it could easily be double that.

{edit} Interesting that you should mention this. Harby is embarking on an evacuation mission in which the pleasure cruise ship New Fhloston Paradise will comfortably evacuate many thousands. (Yes, I'm a 5th-E fan.) Cruise ships in space... It's perfect.


"Sometimes, people become enemies because they don't understand each other.
Other times, they become enemies because they do."

Post Reply

Return to “Questions for PF Staff”