Ship Bridge

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A Ship Bridge is the control location for a vessel.

Description (Specifications)[edit]

The bridge (often designated as the main bridge or prime bridge) is an enclosed space on a ship from which the captain and officers direct operations. Bigcraft and starships require a bridge for control of the drives and electronics and for navigation, though smallcraft may instead be designed with a computer and a cockpit. Some Warships may have auxiliary bridges to replace the prime bridge in the event of battle damage.

The bridge is generally adjacent to the ship's primary computer.

The size of the bridge varies depending on the size of the vessel and can range from a large ergonomic open deck with multiple crew positions to a cramped minimalist compartment crammed into a tiny hull.

Image Repository[edit]

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Starship and Bigcraft Bridges[edit]

The bridge of a starship or bigcraft occupies 2% of the vessels volume, with a minimum volume of approximately 270m³. This volume is taken up by various crew workstations, deck and access space, and stand-alone consoles housing control panels and displays.

  • The bridge of a vessel normally contains two or more Acceleration Couches as part of its construction.
  • The bridge can be sealed off in the event of an emergency.

Smallcraft Bridges[edit]

A smallcraft requires either a bridge or a cockpit with a computer: if a bridge is installed, a computer is unnecessary, though many designs will include them. A smallcraft bridge occupies 20% of the volume of the vessel, with a minimum volume of approximately 55m³. This volume is taken up by various crew workstations, deck and access space, and stand-alone consoles housing control panels and displays.

Cockpits[edit]

A smallcraft may lack a bridge. The crew compartment of such vessels is referred to as the cockpit.

Computer Control Standards[edit]

Computer Controls: In almost all cases where the ship's computer can control a given ship function (gravity, doors, etc.), orders fed in at the central bridge computer take precedence over those fed in at local controls. Only if the computer is inoperative will a computer override be ineffective.[1] Some ships have been known to be built with a different system set-up, but this arrangement is commonplace on most vessels within Charted Space. [2]

History & Background (Dossier)[edit]

A separate admiral's bridge may be provided in flagships, where the admiral can exercise strategic control over his fleet without interfering with the Captain's tactical command of the vessel. This may be referred to as a Command Bridge.

Old Vilani bridge designs put the captain and other command staff on a raised balcony or walkway over the workstations; the Solomani layout generally puts the captain in the center.

Scout ship bridges are notoriously cramped and smelly.

  • Belter vessels, frequently converted from decommissioned Scout ships, are even more so.

Some commercial vessels, particularly liners, pride themselves on the elegance and style of their command stations.

Detachable Bridge[edit]

On some designs of smaller vessel (generally less than 6,000 Tons displacement) the bridge can be ejected from the ship in an emergency to become a lifeboat for the command crew. Generally, such a design includes up to two weeks of life support and battery power, while emergency thrusters give it basic maneuvering capabilities.

References & Contributors (Sources)[edit]

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This article was copied or excerpted from the following copyrighted sources and used under license from Far Future Enterprises or by permission of the author.

  1. Jordan Weisman. "Book 2." Adventure Class Ships Volume 1 (1982): 6.
  2. An unpublished factoid written by Maksim-Smelchak