Monday, 16 December 2019

Star Trek Generations - Ignoring the Laws of Physics

Star Trek Generations, one of my absolute favourite Star Trek movies (along with First Contact and The Wrath of Kahn) whilst very enjoyable, has some huge issues with how it portrays events occurring vs how the events would actually occur.

Whilst I don't intend to completely dissect the movie for inaccuracies, I did pick up on a specific scene which just has so much nonsense going on, I felt that it deserved comment.

The scene which I will look at is where Dr Soran successfully launches a solar probe into the Veridian Star causing the fusion to break down within the star and therefore altering the course of the Nexus ribbon and allowing Dr Soran to re-enter the Nexus, and as with all movie analysis, we will need to make some approximate assumptions:
  1. The Veridian star is of a similar style to our own Sun.
  2. Veridian III, being breathable and habitable would be of a similar distance from the Veridian Star as the earth would be from the Sun. This isn't strictly important but will give some point of reference.

Issue 1.

Dr Soran successfully launches the probe, and then a few seconds later we hear a distant explosion and see the Veridian Star start to dim.

The probe appears to be chemical fuel propelled and would therefore have taken around six months to reach the star, not a few seconds.

So lets say that the small probe was fitted with a small "Warp" engine. Even at light speed, the probe would have taken around 8 minutes to reach the sun (with no relativity effects due to the probe being in a warp bubble etc.)

Issue 2.

The resulting shockwave from the Veridian star then reaches the planet shortly afterwards (a few minutes later).

Even a large shockwave resulting from an explosive action in space travels at around 8 miles per second or 28,800 miles per hour; significantly slower than 670,616,629 mph of light within the vacuum of space. The shockwave would have taken almost 24 hours to reach Veridian III.

So... we have broken the laws of Physics?

I guess when its a really good movie, things like the Laws of Physics just don't really matter.

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