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Why jeopardize the ore refinery?

 
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joberg
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2017 8:58 am    Post subject: Why jeopardize the ore refinery? Reply with quote

I always had a nagging feeling about the whole idea, by Weyland-Yutani to dispatch the closest ship (as far as we know) to investigate that "distress signal".
If you look at the Nostromo and its use, you'll have to question a few things:

1: The ship is not a recon ship, nor is necessarily capable of landing in any type of atmosphere. Heck, during the landing, some major breakdowns occur and has to be fixed by the engineers on board(tugs are not made for that type of landing...unless, as imagined before, it's not a tug).

What if these breakdowns were not fixable? Then what Confused To send a search party would take years (yeah, I know: the freezers are in the ship, so cryo-sleep is possible for the crew).

Let's say that, while the search party discovers the Derelict, the engineers cannot fix the ship's mechanical problems. What are now, the scenario available to the crew (Dallas more particularly)?

Crew is returning with Kane infected by the Alien, Dallas has to make a few decisions: first, save Kane as we see in the movie. It means that the Alien is loose in a disabled ship (is Ripley, or any crew member, capable of killing it before search party arrives?)

Second, put Kane in cryo-sleep not knowing if he'll survive with that "thing" on his face (then, search party will wake him up and deal with the ensuing problem). Again, I'm imagining search party ship is on the planet and has to wake-up Nostromo crew in order to evac them to the second ship (what to do with Kane and the fact that he might not be transportable).

So, it's either back to Kane being treated on Nostromo, or being transported to search ship... and chaos ensuing either way.
Also (just a thought) what about that search party? Same as Nostromo kinda crew or armed to the teeth crew? (Thinking of it now, they could've combined Alien + Aliens in one movie!)

2: While all of those scenario are happening, is the Nostromo going to be fixed, in the mean time, by the new crew? The refinery is still on an orbit around the planet...but how was that orbit calculated in the first place?
With, I'm sure, the assurance that Nostromo would be back sooner, rather than later.
And if we examine the latter part of that equation, what are the risk of the entire refinery loosing orbit and entering the atmosphere, thus destroying the entire thing in the re-entry.

It is entirely possible that when the search party arrives, the refinery has already re-entered the planet's atmosphere and is a total loss!

Did Weyland-Yutani calculated all of the risks involved? It doesn't seems like it...

Many options available for you Alien specialists Wink My thoughts might be all over the place and I'm sure there's a reasonable explanation to all of this drivel. Confused Wink
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Starrigger
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2017 2:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

speculation... Hmmm

Let's look at point #1 a little:

OK, Wikipedia's definition of tugboat:

A tug (tugboat) is a boat or ship that maneuvers vessels by pushing or towing them. Tugs move vessels that either should not move by themselves, such as ships in a crowded harbor or a narrow canal, or those that could not move by themselves, such as barges, disabled ships, log rafts, or oil platforms. Tugboats are powerful for their size and strongly built, and some are ocean-going. Some tugboats serve as icebreakers or salvage boats. Early tugboats had steam engines, but today most have diesel engines. Many tugboats have firefighting monitors, allowing them to assist in firefighting, especially in harbors.

For a tugboat the Nostromo seemed a little frail in some area's (while clearly it has landing capabilities, it can't handle a low mass, low atmosphere planetoid?) If the thing was only meant to land in emergencies why all the landing specific equipment?

If the Nostromo was intended to be the propulsion for an otherwise stationary object wouldn't a pusher arrangement work better?

If any haven't read this, we all should:

Nostromo design discussion

Clearly the majority of what we see on film is intended to build suspense to move a ghost story along, and to touch our emotions. But like many ghost stories it struggles when the lights are turned on.

That being said.

    1 - the ship is old, and by the looks of it, probably not well maintained (Seals are damaged and dust from the landing and storm is allowed to enter critical systems, causing malfunctions.)
    2 - Things are usually designed to acceptable use specs, meaning if you take your grandma's Cadillac off-road, you are going to break things...


etc...
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FenGiddel
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2017 3:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

joberg:

I wonder if the particulates in the atmosphere (the ones we see as the trio hike to the derelict) might have factored into the engine problems ("dust in the intakes").

RE: the Company risking the refinery cargo & its CTV, not sure how much to read into that, but I guess that goes into the old argument about how much the Co. knew about what was there. They probably knew the signal was a warning, though. But I think you could argue the "risk" factor either way, but in a way, I like the idea that "yes", they were wily enough and willing to risk the ship & cargo to get the "prize".

And I like the idea of "what happens if the ship can't be fixed"? They "haven't reached the Outer Rim yet", so it doesn't sound like help is handy. (Unless someone can come from Sevastopol Station!). So I guess they'd be back to the freezers if the "plug-n-play" components didn't fix the problem.

I went back to the novelization for some nuggets:

[Dallas and crew are considering if the repairs Parker & Brett made will hold up long enough to get off the planet...]

If they couldn't break gravity on the primary drive, Dallas knew, they'd have to cut in the hyper to get them out. But a second or two of hyperdrive would throw them completely out of this system. [which would cost them air and other resources as they backtracked to search for the refinery...] Dallas thought of the gigantic floating factory, tried to imagine how long it would take for them to pay for it on their various modest salaries." (Alien, by Alan Dean Foster, p153-4)

And if the primary drive failed and they didn't go to hyper, I guess the landing skids on Cobb's drawing here, might've helped had they been on Nostromo? Smile




Starrigger:

Like you, I don't buy the Nostromo towing the refinery, but it works as a plot device. The Nostromo's sheer size makes me wonder if she wouldn't also carry cargo for the mining colonies or other installations her voyages take her to. Seems to go to her being originally built for one thing but refitted as another, since a specialized towing vehicle would not need to be so big nor enter atmo.

I also attribute the finicky engine problems to her age.

Great idea to revisit the creators' ideas on the ship.

Nice speculation and proofs on this, guys!
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joberg
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2017 6:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not bad at all guys Wink Liked the "idea" that the Nostromo was pulling/guiding the refinery...than again, in space you don't need to be powerful to pull (initial inertia will do for sure).
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Tennessee
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2017 7:31 pm    Post subject: Re: Why jeopardize the ore refinery? Reply with quote

WY was mostly concerned about getting an alien specimen; to the point of letting the crew be killed if need be. Deliberately transporting such a creature to an inhabited world, especially Earth is highly illegal. Making it look like the creature boarding the ship was an accident would look less suspicious before a governmental body investigating the incident.

Detouring a passing ship would not only look less suspicious than sending out a separate science vessel, it would also cost far less to the Company to not have to pay another crew of people, fuel, and any other resources.

As for anything happening to the tugboat as far as repairs or anything else that would prevent it from bringing the payload to Earth, it would be just a simple matter of sending out another ship to see the payload home.

So, weighing all this, the alien seemed like a more valuable asset to the Company than the refinery's contents. They can get more oil at Thedus or anywhere else, but finding a species that holds potential for a new line of discovery, experimenting and products is way more rare and more valuable.
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joberg
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 7:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, I can understand W-Y strategic thinking about new life=new products, new weapons, etc...So while the Alien is staying with Ash in the Nostromo, waiting for the search party...are they going to play cards together? We know that the Alien is not going to harm an Android; will Ash conduct experiments on it?
All kind of silly questions of course and a lot of conjectures Wink
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Tennessee
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 1:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

joberg wrote:
Yes, I can understand W-Y strategic thinking about new life=new products, new weapons, etc...So while the Alien is staying with Ash in the Nostromo, waiting for the search party...are they going to play cards together? We know that the Alien is not going to harm an Android; will Ash conduct experiments on it?
All kind of silly questions of course and a lot of conjectures Wink
Ash would find some way of occupying time, like David and Walter had on their missions. He may try some experimenting on the alien, depending on how cooperative it is.

In the novelization of Alien, after his head was knocked off and rewired, he suggested that the crew should try communicating with it. (If you ask me, I think he was just trying to make it easier for them to be killed.) Ripley asked Ash if he had tried and he gave a cryptic reply.

In Alien: Covenant, David tries to earn the trust of a neomorph. In that film's novelization, David gets the neomorph to mimic some of his actions. Maybe Ash might do the same with the Nostromo's alien.
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Starrigger
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 30, 2017 10:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

More speculation...

I have a question that may have already been asked and answered elsewhere...

I unfortunately do not have a copy readily available to check myself, but in the movie, do we ever see them re-docked with the refinery?

The reason I ask is because in the scene with the body floating by, there is no refinery in view, it would have been pretty obvious if it was.. And at the end when Ripley escapes and the Narcissus flies off to the aft... no refinery, she should have flown under (or worse, INTO) the refinery it has all those globes under it, but all we see is the structure of the underside of the "wing"

Question... Is it possible the refinery survived? ( does it come up in the later movies?, it has been ages since I saw one of those...)
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Tennessee
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 01, 2017 10:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Starrigger wrote:
More speculation...

I have a question that may have already been asked and answered elsewhere...

I unfortunately do not have a copy readily available to check myself, but in the movie, do we ever see them re-docked with the refinery?

The reason I ask is because in the scene with the body floating by, there is no refinery in view, it would have been pretty obvious if it was.. And at the end when Ripley escapes and the Narcissus flies off to the aft... no refinery, she should have flown under (or worse, INTO) the refinery it has all those globes under it, but all we see is the structure of the underside of the "wing"

Question... Is it possible the refinery survived? ( does it come up in the later movies?, it has been ages since I saw one of those...)

We do not actually see the Nostromo hook up with the refinery; we just see what's going on on the bridge and in Engineering and then the whole package on its way back to Earth.

Keep in mind that when we see Kane's body floating by, the refinery could be obscured by that part of the ship itself. Probably from that POV, the refinery would be too far "up and offsides" to be seen, so that when the shuttle is launched, it has a clear shot at escape.

As for the survival of the refinery, I would say no. According to the novelization of Alien, the last explosion was the refinery going up. That aside, as tiny as the Nostromo was, it was a powerful ship. If it could pull that refinery 39 light years in 10 months, its fuel source should be powerful enough to greatly destroy, if not vaporize, the refinery.
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Starrigger
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 01, 2017 11:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I guess I am just going to have to take it as continuity issue because of this structure:



those tubes match up with the main engines on the Nostromo, and that are connected straight across, they would have almost compleatly blocked that end of the trench... Oh well.
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Tennessee
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 01, 2017 2:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Starrigger wrote:
those tubes match up with the main engines on the Nostromo, and that are connected straight across, they would have almost compleatly blocked that end of the trench... Oh well.

From a technical standpoint, Alien is not a perfect film.
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Last edited by Tennessee on Sun Jul 02, 2017 9:27 am; edited 1 time in total
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joberg
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 01, 2017 7:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep, we forgot that we could've seen the under belly of the refinery when Kane was ejected from the lock Confused
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Tennessee
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 02, 2017 8:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

joberg wrote:
Yep, we forgot that we could've seen the under belly of the refinery when Kane was ejected from the lock Confused
Yup. Smile

Down and to the left.


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