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Thread: ancient power

  1. #1

    Default ancient power

    One thing I noticed about the Ancients is their power inefficiency. Almost all Ancient technologies use up huge snouts of power and I can only think of one exception, the satellite weapon that took out the hive. Even Earth scientists were able to make the Ancient EMP device more efficient. Even the Guo'uld seem to be better when it comes to power usage.

    What are your thoughts?

  2. #2
    Lieutenant Colonel Rise Of The Phoenix's Avatar
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    Default Re: ancient power

    Quote Originally Posted by stanlemon View Post
    One thing I noticed about the Ancients is their power inefficiency. Almost all Ancient technologies use up huge snouts of power and I can only think of one exception, the satellite weapon that took out the hive. Even Earth scientists were able to make the Ancient EMP device more efficient. Even the Guo'uld seem to be better when it comes to power usage.

    What are your thoughts?
    What are you actually basing this off of, the fact that it requires a ZPM to lift the city off of the ground?
    That's one thing, we also don't have a clue about what processes are going on inside of the city.
    The city also has to raise and maintain one of if not the most powerful shields on the show, whilst operating other pieces of technology.

    We don't know what powers an Aurora class ship, we only know that they can be upgraded by a ZPM or have their hyperdrive modded with supposedly no additional power source to become an intergalactic ship.

    Puddle jumpers can both fly, reduce their inertia easily without anything close to a ZPM, use a neural interface to be piloted, cloak/shield themselves and fire drones, all from a small ship.
    The Chair inside of Atlantis was able to fire a number of drones, after being on for hours before actually firing a single weapon, so it's main drain on the Mark 2 Naquada generators wasn't from firing weapons, but actually being turned on and controlling multiple functions.
    As you said the satellites the Ancients had around their home solar system were capable of being powered off of a simple mark 1 naquada generator and with a small amount of power compared to other weapons on the show and they were capable of easily destroying a whole Hive ship.

  3. #3

    Default Re: ancient power

    What you say is true, but the Ancients had massive amounts of power at their disposal. You're right about the puddle jumpers and I'll admit that I didn't think of that, but that is one of the few times that is the case. Like I said before, Zalinka was able to make an Ancient device more power efficient with the EMP device. The Guo'uld teltak is only about double the size of a jumper and it can use hyperspace travel, cloak, and I think even shields. You think with the Ancients being far more advanced that they would be able to be far more energy efficient than they are, but perhaps with the massive amount of power generation they had, they weren't concerned.

  4. #4
    Lieutenant Colonel Rise Of The Phoenix's Avatar
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    Default Re: ancient power

    Quote Originally Posted by stanlemon View Post
    What you say is true, but the Ancients had massive amounts of power at their disposal.
    The fact that the Ancients had massively powerful energy devices at hand doesn't prove they didn't have efficient devices, you mentioned the satellite yourself, it can cut a Hive in half, with less power than is required to fire drones.
    Other devices haven't been proven to be any less efficient than their alien counterparts.

    You're right about the puddle jumpers and I'll admit that I didn't think of that, but that is one of the few times that is the case. Like I said before, Zalinka was able to make an Ancient device more power efficient with the EMP device.
    If you're talking about Childhood's End it was Mckay and all he said was that he was able to boost the coverage by 50% without much of a power increase, that doesn't mean he made it more efficient, it's too ambiguous a statement to say exactly what he did.
    It's certainly not proof that he made the device more efficient.

    The Guo'uld teltak is only about double the size of a jumper and it can use hyperspace travel, cloak, and I think even shields.
    A Teltak is quite a bit larger than a Puddle Jumper, certainly more than double the size of one, considering we've seen a Teltak close to a gate and a Puddle Jumper can actually fit through one.
    A Teltak doesn't have weapons and can't launch firepower capable of taking out a Ha'Tak, while making it's shields look like they weren't even there.
    The Ancients designed the Jumpers to use the gates or fit inside of a ship, not have their own standalone Hyperdrives, given that Ancient Knowledge can make a Teltak capable of reaching an intergalactic location (othala), from the same power source and only a shot of a Zat I think it's safe to say the Ancients could make an intergalactic ship of a similar size to a Teltak.

    You think with the Ancients being far more advanced that they would be able to be far more energy efficient than they are, but perhaps with the massive amount of power generation they had, they weren't concerned.
    At some point in their history they wouldn't have had massively powerful energy devices like ZPMs, but given that they were searching for more powerful energy sources like Arcturus I think it's safe to say they wouldn't necessarily squander what power they had.
    You have no proof that the Ancients weren't energy efficient.

    Like I said before they can power one of the strongest and most enduring shields on the show, for potentially more than a week under heavy strain, when a 304 can't even withstand a few minutes of the same kind of attack (I'm talking about The Siege Part 3), we have no idea what their Aurora's were powered off of before using ZPMs, so can't compare there.
    Even with operating an uber powered shield on Atlantis, which we can't raise with any current Naquada generators it can hold back a fleets firepower for weeks, can be left on holding back an ocean for thousands of years and cover an area the size of manhatten.


    What about Destiny, it uses a fraction of a star's power, can hold up under the stresses of descending into the corona, with a small portion of such energy, can do intergalactic distances on pretty tiny amounts of power compared to what scientists have theorized we'd require to make a warp drive work, last time I checked it was more than a single star's worth of energy.

    TBH I don't see what you're basing this assumption of ineffeciency or lack of the correct amount of efficiency for their level of tech is based off of.

  5. #5

    Default Re: ancient power

    My hat to you. You made a lot of excellent points.

    I still hold my view that their Achilles heal is power inefficiency, but not as bad as I thought. My personal thought on this is that while Destiny is very effective at the use of the massive amounts of power it can capture, I still think that once the Ancients came up with ZPM technology they became less concerned with making their power consumption efficient. My thoughts are that, with all the power that the ZPMs grant, and that they could make all they want, they didn't feel too concerned about how to channel that power in the most effective way.

    You mentioned the Arcturas device, but let me say this. If you could think of an infinite energy source, wouldn't you try to get it even if you already had access to large energy generating capabilities?

    Lastly, think about the Wraith hive. When they figured out how to effectively use a ZPM to power their ship, it became almost unstoppable. Granted when the Tria was powered by a ZPM it could go almost the speed of light. My thoughts on that are that they managed to fully put all the ZPMs power into the engines with no waste after a great deal of modification to both the engines to stand that much output and to make it so power efficiency was as great as they could make it.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: ancient power

    Now there's your point - the WRAITH have extremely inefficient use of power. End of. Nothing really to suggest that Atlantis has the same problems. Worth also remembering, the power needed to maintain artificial gravity and inertial damping during flight for a city-sized ship will colossal.

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    Default Re: ancient power

    Quote Originally Posted by stanlemon View Post
    I still hold my view that their Achilles heal is power inefficiency, but not as bad as I thought. My personal thought on this is that while Destiny is very effective at the use of the massive amounts of power it can capture, I still think that once the Ancients came up with ZPM technology they became less concerned with making their power consumption efficient. My thoughts are that, with all the power that the ZPMs grant, and that they could make all they want, they didn't feel too concerned about how to channel that power in the most effective way.
    One point of conjecture that I had was that Atlantis's reduced power efficiency (e.g., requiring a ZPM plus an additional power supply to lift itself into space) is that Atlantis's systems had to be made less efficient in order to handle the immense power output of its ZPMs. Under this conjecture, something the Satellite weapon, which was designed to run on a weak power source like a Naquada Reactor, would work just fine with its intended power source, but would vanish in a flash of light if you tried plugging in a ZPM.

    It is also worth noting that, if you pump enough current through a superconductor, it stops being a superconductor, which might have some influence on the efficiency of high-consumption systems.
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: ancient power

    Quote Originally Posted by stanlemon View Post
    My hat to you. You made a lot of excellent points.

    I still hold my view that their Achilles heal is power inefficiency, but not as bad as I thought. My personal thought on this is that while Destiny is very effective at the use of the massive amounts of power it can capture, I still think that once the Ancients came up with ZPM technology they became less concerned with making their power consumption efficient. My thoughts are that, with all the power that the ZPMs grant, and that they could make all they want, they didn't feel too concerned about how to channel that power in the most effective way.

    You mentioned the Arcturas device, but let me say this. If you could think of an infinite energy source, wouldn't you try to get it even if you already had access to large energy generating capabilities?

    Lastly, think about the Wraith hive. When they figured out how to effectively use a ZPM to power their ship, it became almost unstoppable. Granted when the Tria was powered by a ZPM it could go almost the speed of light. My thoughts on that are that they managed to fully put all the ZPMs power into the engines with no waste after a great deal of modification to both the engines to stand that much output and to make it so power efficiency was as great as they could make it.
    Thanks, I understand that we're all entitled to our own opinions, but do you have any actual examples of inefficient Ancient technology?

  9. #9
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    Default Re: ancient power

    Quote Originally Posted by stanlemon View Post
    One thing I noticed about the Ancients is their power inefficiency. Almost all Ancient technologies use up huge snouts of power and I can only think of one exception, the satellite weapon that took out the hive.
    Or the entire city of Atlantis, being run from a single ZPM? Sounds pretty efficient to me. There's a difference between the maximum output of a power storage/generating device and the minimum. So, for example, a ZPM could probably power a Jumper as well as the city of Atlantis. Doesn't mean the Jumper is inefficient, just not pulling much power.

    It's also worth thinking about the difference between "production" levels of equipment and lab condition fine-tuning. Take a car. Most are sold with "average" settings in their modern engine controllers/computers. Similarly, most can therefore be retuned by specialists to be even more economical or, more likely, deliver more power (torque, acceration, etc). Does that mean the average public car sold is inefficient or simply covering the lowest common denominator across a number of requirements for a mass audience?

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