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SgtToothpaste

Some thoughts on stealth ships..

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Stealth systems, or some kind of "silent running" mode, are often depicted in sifi as a kind of tactical art form. For example, in Elite Dangerous, dog fighting while in Silent Running to throw off your opponent's targeting requires a carefully control of heat levels. Meanwhile, in Space Engineers you can build a stealth ship simply by painting it to blend in with the skybox or an asteroid. In The Expanse, stealth ships are covered in an advanced, sensor-resistant composite material. Either way, effective stealth requires skilled engineering and piloting to achieve. 

 

Why not combine all of these aspects in Dual so that stealth is very difficult to achieve (so it is not OP,) but very powerful as a strategic asset.

In my mind there are two kinds of stealth: 

Active - protects from active detection, I.e. bouncing a sensor beam off of your ship.

Passive - protects from passive detection, I.e. emissions by your ship that could be detected.

 

Materials

I envision stealth-enhancing hull coatings or plates being lightweight, delicate, and extremely difficult to manufacture. They would also, to fit the balance I am describing, not be very effective. 

Stealth materials would do two major things:

First, they would partially absorb active scans, reducing your sensor signature.

Second, they would reduce the amount of heat radiated into space by your hull.

 

Camouflage

Simply painting your ship to blend into a given environment. Perhaps some kind of adaptive coating could be possible, that changes to blend in with different surroundings as needed. Also, fewer windows.

Reduces chance of visual detection at extreme close range.

 

Hull design

Designing a ship's hull to have as small a profile and conceal it's drive plume as much as possible. Placement of thrusters and radiators to minimize unnecessary emissions.

Makes the ship a smaller target and thus a smaller blip on sensors.

Reduces thermal signature and reduces the angle you must thrust at relative to a target to avoid detection.

 

These are just a few basic concepts to make stealth possible but challenging: an art form for sneaky pilots. 

 

Thoughts?

 

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Sounds good. I feel that the power intake should also be account for, type of power generation and other things, depending on the mechanic you are trying for. As such, active stealth might need to take advanced armor design, which would also require active power intake. As well, passive might just require good hull design. As for piloting, I think it might be something that's important as well, as if you don't pilot good, you might cause something to act in effectively, but I don't see that as a concern.

 

If we take a look at this on a large scale however, active stealth might need to only be allowed with smaller ships, to reduce the possibility of a large scale cloak that has enough firepower to kill a faction base or as such.

 

Good job and it has a lot of ideas.

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I'd like to have a device that emits a radio signal that throws off radar detection, or at least reduces its accuracy, but doesn't necessarily visually cloak my ship.

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Sounds good. I feel that the power intake should also be account for, type of power generation and other things, depending on the mechanic you are trying for. As such, active stealth might need to take advanced armor design, which would also require active power intake. As well, passive might just require good hull design. As for piloting, I think it might be something that's important as well, as if you don't pilot good, you might cause something to act in effectively, but I don't see that as a concern.

 

If we take a look at this on a large scale however, active stealth might need to only be allowed with smaller ships, to reduce the possibility of a large scale cloak that has enough firepower to kill a faction base or as such.

 

Good job and it has a lot of ideas.

Yeah by active stealth I dont mean a cloaking device. Large ships would be innately harder to conceal do to their larger profile and higher power output. I think it would balance itself in a way, making only small, specialized ships effective at stealth.

Another balancing factor would be the cost of producing stealth tech. There would just be no reason of building a massive stealth ship when those materials could be put to better use on much more effective, smaller stealth recons.

 

I'd like to have a device that emits a radio signal that throws off radar detection, or at least reduces its accuracy, but doesn't necessarily visually cloak my ship.

Do you mean some kind of ECM that jams sensors? I think that is a great idea, but will probably be used more for throwing off targeting than basic detection. I mean, if an ECM burst is powerful enough to swamp your sensors, it is powerful enough to get an idea of where it is coming from.

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I would also add in angles and surfaces of design as a part of stealth. No hard angles or too much curvature would throw of radar signals at least, similar to the stealth bomber design.

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Yeah by active stealth I dont mean a cloaking device. Large ships would be innately harder to conceal do to their larger profile and higher power output. I think it would balance itself in a way, making only small, specialized ships effective at stealth.

Another balancing factor would be the cost of producing stealth tech. There would just be no reason of building a massive stealth ship when those materials could be put to better use on much more effective, smaller stealth recons.

 

Do you mean some kind of ECM that jams sensors? I think that is a great idea, but will probably be used more for throwing off targeting than basic detection. I mean, if an ECM burst is powerful enough to swamp your sensors, it is powerful enough to get an idea of where it is coming from.

Really, the possibilities are really endless. One idea would be the conception of spies. If you had a stealth ship that was really well designed, you could infiltrate behind enemy lines and scout. You might not even be able to have weapons because they emit a signature that can be tracked. As well, radars, depending on their power might be able to detect a disturbance.

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Really, the possibilities are really endless. One idea would be the conception of spies. If you had a stealth ship that was really well designed, you could infiltrate behind enemy lines and scout. You might not even be able to have weapons because they emit a signature that can be tracked. As well, radars, depending on their power might be able to detect a disturbance.

I am a big fan of the idea of espionage. It would be very interesting to fly into enemy space and tech-mine their equipment, if you are good enough to get in undetected. That is part of why I imagine stealth hull plating being very poor as armor: if you get caught you dont have much survivability.

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I am a big fan of the idea of espionage. It would be very interesting to fly into enemy space and tech-mine their equipment, if you are good enough to get in undetected. That is part of why I imagine stealth hull plating being very poor as armor: if you get caught you dont have much survivability.

As well, what if there was stealth disruption. Like an almost emp wave type of weapon that would specifically take down stealth teck. You could only use it once every hour or two and your limited to one per ship. As well, make it an expensive item.

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As well, what if there was stealth disruption. Like an almost emp wave type of weapon that would specifically take down stealth teck. You could only use it once every hour or two and your limited to one per ship. As well, make it an expensive item.

Interesting idea, but i don't see how ECM could take down things like a sensor-absorbing hull or insulated engines. Most "stealth tech" is passive, at least in theory, so i don't see it being susceptible to electronic warfare.

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Do you mean some kind of ECM that jams sensors? I think that is a great idea, but will probably be used more for throwing off targeting than basic detection. I mean, if an ECM burst is powerful enough to swamp your sensors, it is powerful enough to get an idea of where it is coming from.

 

That's what I mean, just something one could throw on in the middle of a fight to survive a little longer.

 

 

I am a big fan of the idea of espionage. It would be very interesting to fly into enemy space and tech-mine their equipment, if you are good enough to get in undetected. That is part of why I imagine stealth hull plating being very poor as armor: if you get caught you dont have much survivability.

 

I like this trade off. I think there should be an armor/shield (thinking in Eve terms here) reduction for using stealth.

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Interesting idea, but i don't see how ECM could take down things like a sensor-absorbing hull or insulated engines. Most "stealth tech" is passive, at least in theory, so i don't see it being susceptible to electronic warfare.

Well, let's assume you need some active stealth system in order to pass by large ships or enemy bases. If there were something that could disrupt the stealth process, it'd need to follow some mechanics similar to what I mentioned.

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Well, let's assume you need some active stealth system in order to pass by large ships or enemy bases. If there were something that could disrupt the stealth process, it'd need to follow some mechanics similar to what I mentioned.

When I used "active stealth" in my original post I meant tech meant to counter active detection, not necessarily being an active system itself. I think we might be using the term differently, sorry for confusion.

What kind of active stealth systems are you envisioning?

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When I used "active stealth" in my original post I meant tech meant to counter active detection, not necessarily being an active system itself. I think we might be using the term differently, sorry for confusion.

What kind of active stealth systems are you envisioning?

We're pretty much on the same page. I'm envisioning comoflouge armor that requires power, possible to lower its magnetic or electronic signiture. As well, something to counteract its heat signiture, as that is a very relevant detection method.

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I don't have a lot of input on this topic. just that if implemented right this could be an amazing game addition. Cant help but thinking of the Normandy from the mass effect series with you guys talking about hiding heat and electromagnetic signatures

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Perhaps an active camo module for stationary objects that makes them blend in to their environment, allowing things like secret bases and sneak attacks. I also really like the idea of passive camo for different purposes like coatings for hiding thermal emissions, hull designs that scatter radar signals, etc.

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I'd like to have a device that emits a radio signal that throws off radar detection, or at least reduces its accuracy, but doesn't necessarily visually cloak my ship.

 

Or which simulate drive emissions which fool the opponents sensors into thinking there are multiple ships.  Only works at long range since they clearly don't look visually like ships.

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I think what some people are discussing is a sort of 'white noise' unit. it would send out signals that wipe out incoming radar or lidar so they might see you, if they get that close, but their ships targeting would be next to worthless.Oh...and I personally am against real time cloaks. Even in show like ST, they were made and used by military ships, not ships private individuals owned, under normal circumstances.

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Personally, I would like to see a cloaking device that makes you "invisible". The device would bend light around on your ship making the impression of being invisible. However this would not be a close range device because (1) you can still see outlines and (2) it would take up a lot of power that could be detected if someone flew to close. Additionally because a device like this takes a lot of power it can not be placed on smaller craft. I would say apt he max size for a stealth ship would be a destroyer class ship. They are large enough to house a crew but small enough that they can not take on other large frigates or capital ships head on. This technology would be extremely expensive so the majority of people probably wouldn't have this. But it would be neat to combine it with some of the plating that others have spoke of.

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reading through this im noticing two different types of stealth tech being talked about. We have Visual Stealth designed to keep you from being seen by the nkaed eve, and electronic stealth designed to keep you from being seen by radar and sensors.

I believe that the two should be seperate in a sense, for instance if you build a ship that has a cloaking device, then the ability to be seen on scanners for things like power use, engine plumes, and radio trx etc should be seperated. Likewise if your ship is masked for sensor stealth to where sensors on other ships not operated by you or your clan can not detect you, or it is more difficult to detect you, then it should be seperated from the visual side of it.

 

I am also a fan of covert ops, so maybe make it possible to mask from both, but make it very very expensive. Real life for instance, the B-2 Spirit stealth bomber which costs nearly 3.2 billion vs a normal bomber like the B-52 costing 36 million. In game make the modules extremely expensive and there still needs to be an advanced equally expensive way to counter it.

 

Long story short i believe that Covert ops setups are a valuable part of the game as long as they are implemented well, personally i think they should be hard to get and even harder to afford.

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reading through this im noticing two different types of stealth tech being talked about. We have Visual Stealth designed to keep you from being seen by the nkaed eve, and electronic stealth designed to keep you from being seen by radar and sensors.

I believe that the two should be seperate in a sense, for instance if you build a ship that has a cloaking device, then the ability to be seen on scanners for things like power use, engine plumes, and radio trx etc should be seperated. Likewise if your ship is masked for sensor stealth to where sensors on other ships not operated by you or your clan can not detect you, or it is more difficult to detect you, then it should be seperated from the visual side of it.

 

I am also a fan of covert ops, so maybe make it possible to mask from both, but make it very very expensive. Real life for instance, the B-2 Spirit stealth bomber which costs nearly 3.2 billion vs a normal bomber like the B-52 costing 36 million. In game make the modules extremely expensive and there still needs to be an advanced equally expensive way to counter it.

 

Long story short i believe that Covert ops setups are a valuable part of the game as long as they are implemented well, personally i think they should be hard to get and even harder to afford.

 

I agree that there are two different types of stealth tech being discussed. However, here is another idea to contemplate. Due to the theory that many visual stealth tech will consume a lot of power. This in turn will cause specific scans to pick up on massive amounts of power being used. Additionally, let's say that modules that reduced your ping on that specific radar do not help reduce anything during this mode of stealth. So when a visual stealth tech is used you can not hide some things where as when it is not in use you are able to hide things but are unable to hide the ship itself.

 

Please forgive me if I literally just reworded what you said.

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reading through this im noticing two different types of stealth tech being talked about. We have Visual Stealth designed to keep you from being seen by the nkaed eve, and electronic stealth designed to keep you from being seen by radar and sensors.

I believe that the two should be seperate in a sense, for instance if you build a ship that has a cloaking device, then the ability to be seen on scanners for things like power use, engine plumes, and radio trx etc should be seperated. Likewise if your ship is masked for sensor stealth to where sensors on other ships not operated by you or your clan can not detect you, or it is more difficult to detect you, then it should be seperated from the visual side of it.

 

I am also a fan of covert ops, so maybe make it possible to mask from both, but make it very very expensive. Real life for instance, the B-2 Spirit stealth bomber which costs nearly 3.2 billion vs a normal bomber like the B-52 costing 36 million. In game make the modules extremely expensive and there still needs to be an advanced equally expensive way to counter it.

 

Long story short i believe that Covert ops setups are a valuable part of the game as long as they are implemented well, personally i think they should be hard to get and even harder to afford.

I would even take it a step farther, with countering stealth have something like optical motion sensors to pick up ships that arent visually cloaked, but with a fall off in effectivness with increased range.

 

for ships that are visually cloaked, as you said build scanners, probes and radars that will pick up the energy or other things like x-rays, heat signitures etc...

 

Just like in history with armor and weapons, they always balance eachother out, whatever has the edge today, someone will figure out a counter to it tomorrow.

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I would even take it a step farther, with countering stealth have something like optical motion sensors to pick up ships that arent visually cloaked, but with a fall off in effectivness with increased range.

 

for ships that are visually cloaked, as you said build scanners, probes and radars that will pick up the energy or other things like x-rays, heat signitures etc...

 

Just like in history with armor and weapons, they always balance eachother out, whatever has the edge today, someone will figure out a counter to it tomorrow.

i think of the stealth system of the mass effect system on the normandy. it had perfect sensor stealth....but look out your window and you see it

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