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Sci-Fi Starship Schematic
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Entertainment & The Arts
I am a science fiction author. My latest novel, "Braking Day" concerns a "generation ship" taking 135 years to reach its destination. My agent would like an "starship schematic" of the vessel for use in pitching the novel to publishers.
What's your vision?
I need an "starship schematic" of the (extremely large) spaceship described in the excerpt from my novel that will appear below. So long as the general structure of the vessel follows the basic description everything else you do is entirely up to you. I would just like the finished product to look stylish and visually impressive. The sleeker you can make the finished product (within the parameters given) the happier I will be! And feel free to play around with the proportions/ratios if the result is more visually appealing. Here is the excerpt: 'Queasy stomach or not, it was a sight Ravi never got tired of. The hubs: the long, hollow cylinder around which each one of the ship’s enormous habitat wheels made their slow turns.... the habitat wheels had to spin in order to make gravity. And in order to keep the ship even halfway balanced, each wheel span in the opposite direction from its neighbors. Because of that, none of the wheels was directly connected to any of the others. The only thing they had in common was that the center of each wheel - the hub - rotated around the same axle. The ship’s axle, like axles everywhere, Ravi supposed, was just a tube running through the center of the wheels. It was the sheer scale of the thing that made it breathtaking. This was a tube over 200 meters across on the inside and more than five kilometers long. It was the largest open space on the ship bar none – and the only way to get from one wheel to another that didn’t involve a spacesuit.... ....In idle moments, Ravi sometimes wondered how you would explain all this to someone from the distant past.... ....After way too much consideration, Ravi had finally settled on fat-tired bicycle wheels as a way of making sense of it all.... a fat-tired bicycle wheel was .... just a tire and spokes with a hub at the center.... the ship’s habitats were nothing more than giant, four-spoked bicycle wheels, roughly 1,000 meters across. But in these wheels, people lived inside the tires, which, in this case, were roughly 300 meters deep and the same size wide, and took nearly two-and-a-half minutes to make a complete rotation. The hub of each wheel, each punctured by four spoke openings with their attendant elevators and handholds, was rotating on the same axle separated by 500 meters or so of axle wall. There were eight wheels in all... named alphabetically from stem to stern with Australia at the front/top and Hungary at the back/bottom.... "First is Australia, Second is Bermuda, Third is Canada, Fourth is Denmark, Fifth is Ecuador, Sixth is Fiji, Seventh is Ghana and Eighth but not Least is Hungary!" .... Of course, a bicycle wheel only covered the hubs and the living spaces.... Forward of the hubs, beyond Australia, the axle narrowed down to what looked like a dead-end bulkhead. On the other side of that bulkhead, though, and a couple of hundred meters farther forward, was the shield.... The shield was round and looked like a, well, shield, albeit one that was a couple of kilometers across. The stern, though, was...different. Past Hungary, the rear end of the axle was obscured by a complicated mass of loading bays, and airlocks, and vacuum-rated elevators, all allowing access to the ship’s spine. And how could anyone hope to depict 15 kilometers of ice-rimed gantry, festooned with sensors and fuel tanks and storage pods and lifeboats, the whole thing threaded through with elevator shafts and piping and bits of infrastructure, to someone who had never seen such things? But if you could somehow manage it, you were home free, description-wise. All that was left then, was the drive, which, like the shield, was easy to describe. The three-kilometer flare at the aft end of the spine was smooth, and simple-looking, and geometrically appealing: a vast cone, cross-sectioned like a curvaceous “V” or slimmed down “U,” take your pick.... Once, during an extra-vehicular, his tongue loosened by sheer boredom, Ravi had been foolish enough to share these made-up challenges with Ansimov. Vladimir’s response had been predictably dusty. “... a bicycle wheel is just stupid. It’s totally the wrong shape. If you’ve gotta go there, go with,” he’d struggled to find the word, “automobile wheels. At least you’d be closer.”'
The name of the spaceship is the "ISV-1 Archimedes." Any of the approaches taken in the attached images is acceptable in principle. Be aware, I have no copyright to these images, so don't use them directly! At present, I like the style of "Starship Schematic 1" best, but I recognize there might not be enough information to make that work. If you want to give it a go, however, each habitat wheel is subdivided into 30 decks, with a "basement" (closest to the outside of the wheel) filled with infrastructure (water, air, power etc.). It's quite possible the schematic will appear in the published novel. If so, I will be more than happy to give credit to the artist!
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