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2016-06-12 Science & Engineering Meeting

From Transformers: Lost and Found

Science & Engineering Meeting
Date 2016/06/12
Location Lost Light - Science and Medical - Perceptor's lab
Participants Brainstorm, Bulkhead, Hoist, Gearstrip, Nautica, Perceptor, Wheeljack
Summary The ship's Engineers and Scientists convene to discuss the issues presently plaguing the engine. SMOL makes an appearance.

A neat and orderly lab, Perceptor's Lab is everything one might expect from the resident ship genius. (One of them, anyway.) Experiments are neatly labeled running from xenobiology through metallurgy. An isolation room has been built into the lab for experiments that require it.


Science and medical generally sees the engineers in their respective labs and workshops, separated by reinforced walls and copious soundproofing. Today, they had been called to the section lead's laboratory. The issue on the table? The curious case of their ship's engines.

Perceptor had sent out the memo for the alotted time quite a while before the meeting, there was nothing left to do now but wait for the engineers to arrive.

Brainstorm is here. The weapons developer doesn't so much as announce himself as simply let himself in. Were someone to do this to his workshop, he might get a bit annoyed, but this isn't a weapons lab, and it's not like it's the first time he's opened the door for himself (ahmecough).

He walks in with a cheerful "Hey Percy!" and a bright look on his face, which still shows signs of his recent meeting with the floor in the form of a series of scratches running down the side of his helm and face, and disapearing under his faceplate. The faceplate itself has been repaired, however. The rest he'll get to later, when he has time to drop by the medibay properly.

Nautica's arrival is heralded first by the synthesized barking noises that suggest SMOL is tagging along for the ride. Indeed, when she does make it in, the little platform is bouncing around her feet, nearly tripping. Indeed, she almost ends up face-down on Percy's desk, managing to half-dance over the enthusiastic SMOL and find a safe spot. "Sorry!" she offers ruefully. "He just didn't want to be left in the engineering room alone."

Gearstrip whirrs into the lab in her alt mode, humming cheerfully through mid-air on little boosts of her antigrav thrust shortly after Nautica like a small blue floating tugboat catching up with her wake.

Hoist almost forgot there was a meeting. After all the crazy antics they went through to save Transit from a death of infernal sunlight even the maintenance engineer had taken a few cycles off before going back planetside. Fortunately he had the forethought to set an alarm on his datapad before taking a charge cycle and it woke him up just in time to hustle down to Perceptor's lab. Hoist lets out a vent of relief when he trundles through the door. "I do believe I should of set that reminder alert a few minutes sooner."

Bulkhead is......still not supposed to be out of the medibay, oops! But Wheeljack is out for the count and he knows his friend wanted to be here, so he's snuck out. For the second time in as many days. At least his headache is much more managable. Bulk is the last to arrive, coming in shortly after Hoist, and he acts like it's tooootally fine for him to be walking around by adding to the other green bot's statement with, "Heh, ya ain't the only one, Hoist! Guess I shoulda been more careful." For those who don't know his past, it might be really weird that he's in an engineering meeting. Which is probably everyone who's assembled here, beyond Gearstrip and Nautica, who wouldn't have known his antics in the war. Oh well.

Perceptor has taken the courtesy to set out several stools around a cleared lab bench, attempted formality. "It is alright, Nautica. Thank you for clearing the time to meet." It's directed more to the room as a whole, he's glad to have them all there and in one piece. There's a moment of perplexion aimed toward Bulkhead before he dismisses it with a shake of the head. So long as the mech makes himself useful there will be no complaints here. "Take a seat if you wish. Who has yet to be informed as to the status of our engines?"

That barking is probably the only thing that keeps Brainstorm from poking at any of Perceptor's projects, drawing his attention to the door instead as Nautica comes through it "Hey! Glad you could make it!" Hoist and Gearstrip get an aknowleding glance, Bulkhead, a slightly perplexed one, but only briefly, as Perceptor gets the ball rolling. Brainstorm himself doesn't say anything simply leaning against a nearby table, scanning whatever project might be set out on it. He himself has been aware of the problem since Divisun.

Nautica remains silent, glancing around to see the answers to Perceptor's query; she's well-informed on the state of the engines, after all, perhaps moreso than anyone else in the room.

Flipping down out of her alt mode to hit the floor on her feet, Gearstrip pulls her goggles off her eyes to rest on the crown of her helm with a snap. "When you say status does that mean there's more news?"

"Oh dear," Hoist murmurs as he shifts a bit to keep from tripping over SMOL as it bounces about. Then turns his attention a bit as he hears Bulkhead coming in behind him. Hah, somehow not surprised the big bot wouldn't let having his bell rung stop him from keeping up with things. "Good to see you up and about again too, mate." He claims a chair for himself, makes a vage twirling motion of one hand. "I know they've been being confoundingly quirky lately. Moreso than usual. But I tend to leave them to the ones that know them better." He's busy making sure the -rest- of the ship doesn't fall apart around them.

Oh there are. Quite a few mechs here. More than he expected, anyway. Bulkhead looks a little sheepish as he takes a seat next to Hoist. "Thanks. It's nice ta be out an' about again." He's noticed the perplexed looks and is not surprised. And in fact, out of sheer habit, plays into them. "What's goin' on with the engines? Somethin' we can fix, I hope." He has absolutely been keeping up on this news, and he already knows what's going on. But he's the stupid one, he's got to ask. And he also has a datapad he's pulled out of his subpsace, stylus posed to take notes he can pass back to Jackie. Bulk is very thorough, he wants a refresher.

"With any luck, there should be," Perceptor's first answer is to Gearstrip, then to Bulkhead he summarizes, "The engines have been dropping in output for several jumps, the cause is presently... Theory, at best, alotting for whatever information has been gleaned more recently." He looks to Nautica, "If you would be amenable to sharing your findings, perhaps six heads will be better than one."

"Every time we approach a colony" Brainstorm adds to Perceptor's explination, pulling himself away from the table to lean in a bit towards the group, index finger raised as he speaks "And just them, not regular refuel-resuply stops" he glances towards Nautica, as if awaiting for her to confirm his words.

"News? Yes. Good news?" Nautica trails off, perhaps making her answer clear. Bulkhead's question, however, seems to switch her into lecture mode. "As they said, every time we've gone to a colony, the engines have been losing efficiency. A little bit at a time, but it's definitely progressing. I've improved everything as much as I can, and all the diagnostics show we should be running at better than optimal efficiency, but the engines still are losing power. I've spent months trying to figure out why, and finally came up with a new way to test it. The findings... aren't good." That's a highly technical term, of course.

Gearstrip lifts her arms to hook them behind her neck, lips pursing faintly as her eye skims between the scientists and engineers in the room. "Okay," she says. She leans against one of the stools rather than sitting on it, taking up a position of a slight figure leaning on the seat of a giant. "That's what you figured out with the shuttle bay?"

Hoist interlaces his digits together thoughtfully. "Now what kind of phenomenon could be occuring only in the vicinity of cybertronian colonized worlds? And if it's caused by proximity to such, why does the decrease not disappear once we depart one?"

Bulkhead is leaning forward at this update, tilting his helm while he listens. "Is it possible this has something to do with the Titans we've found? Could their energy, the energy of the space bridges they hold inside them, possibly be creating problems with our engines?" It's the only thing he can imagine that these colonies have in common, and again, his voice is distant as he shuffles through the possibilities in his helm. "What exactly are your findings, Nautica? If you don't mind."

Perceptor tips his head, listening intent to Nautica. He remains silent, the others have drummed up plenty of questions for the quantum mechanic. It certainly doesn't sound like her engine experiment went well, though whatever information she found through the process can only help.

"I was thinking Titans too" Brainstorm nods at Bulkhead's suggestion "But, as surprising as it may be to all of you, I'm not the one with the data. Shocker, I know. But, obviously, Nautica is!" he doesn't sound the least disapointed. In fact, his voice, and the look he gives his friend are both encouragin. Take it away! The're all curious to hear what she's found.

Nautica turns and nods to Gearstrip. "Yes. I came up with a new way to analyze the engines from the extradimensional side of the process, and I found two things," the engineer explains, fidgeting with her wrench as she tries to avoid pacing. It's impolite to pace while explaining things! "First, every time we approach a colony, something starts draining power from our engines /on the extradimensional side/. But second..."

Nautica frowns, and then sticks the wrench back on her belt, as if realizing she's fidgeting. "Second, the drain isn't due to anything tapping our engine system specifically, or any sabotage of the Lost Light's systems. I used the last parts of the Forged Hope -- the Camien ship we rebuilt the Light's systems from -- to set up a second, closed engine system down in the shuttle bay. Not anything that would jump on its own, but just to send energy through the quantum lattice the same way. And that, completely disconnected from any of the Lost Light's systems, showed the same power drain." She pauses, bending down to pick up SMOL, just to get him out from underfoot. Cradling the little platform, she adds, "The Titans -- or something tied to them -- was my theory as to a cause as well, but I haven't come up with a way to prove or disprove that yet."

Folding her arms over her chest, Gearstrip frowns as she lifts her chin. "So it's not targeted to us. Maybe they like, suck up energy whenever our Cybertronian tech comes close because they're trying to pull in enough energon to make new hot spots?" Expert in neither physics nor religion, she kind of ... throws that one out there. "I mean-- I have no idea," she adds earnestly.

Hoist mmhmms, nodding along with Nautica's explaination. "Even without proving or disproving it yet, that is likely the most possible connection we have at this point. A Titan is about the only detail the colony worlds all share that could possibly lead to the same occurances happening."

"What have you tried? In the case that this is caused by the Titans." Bulkhead is leaning on the countertop now, absolutely riveted by Nautica's words. "Perhaps we should work on designing something that can detect where these energy drains are originating. Then we can work out if it's caused by the Titans themselves of something else on these colonies."

"Not even a titan" Brainstorm adds "Two of the colonies just had parts, and at least one of them was nearly dead. What do we even know about titans? It would probably help if we compiled all of our data. It would have been great if I had an actuall chance to get a proper look at one while not under fire" here he sounds a bit annoyed. He's been trying since Caminus, but something always got in the way. Caimens, DJD, giant spiders...

There's a clatter from the doorway as Wheeljack stumbles his way inside. Not from his wounds any more, those are reduced mostly to scuffs along his leg, though the right still looks worse off than the left, but because he was apparently rushing his way here. The clatter at the doorway is largely from him catching himself against it. "Sorry I'm late!" he gasps as he makes his way in. "Medical... things." He waves a hand through the air as if to encompass the past few days of time in the medibay and recovering. "What'd I miss? Titans?"

"Even detecting that the extradimensional drain /exists/ required coming up with an entire new field of quantum theory," Nautica notes. This might explain why it's taken so long to confirm things. "Right now, the drain is so weak that it's extremely difficult to try and discern any sort of source; I'd need to refine the techniques more, or we'll need to come up with another way to analyze the drain."

"You mentioned a possible way to guage the drain and ascertain what is causing it, though I recall the scarcity of materials for constructing such a device being an issue." Perceptor frowns, raising a hand in a not-wave at Wheeljack.

Hoist shifts to rest his chin on his hands folded in front of him, hmming again to himself. "Sounds like the main course of action for now would be to continue your testing research while doing what we can to make sure the engines keep functioning without being crippled by the power losses."

"If you need my help, just ask!" Brainstorm offers cheerfully, though his expression then shifts to a thoughtful one, and then again cheerful as another idea comes "You know, I might just be able to get the Velocitronians to let me take a closer look at their titan. They love me here!"

Wheeljack returns Perceptor's unenthusiastic wave with a sheepish one of his own as he steps into the room, and goes to take up a place next to Bulkhead. "Could say the same to you," he says quietly to Bulkhead. "Just was getting checked out." That explained, he picks up the dropped datapad to hand off to Bulkhead again. That done, he turns his attention to the conversation, listening attentively and doing his best to catch up on the topics under discussion. Without the cliffnotes of what the other scientists have already discussed and decided on, he's going to give himself a little more time to listen in and catch up.

Bulk slowly settles back down; Wheeljack has a point. At least the latter was officially released from the medibay, while Bulkhead himself is...well. His head injury hasn't quite moved into 'okay' status yet. And as the meeting goes on (sorry Jackie) he kind of leans against his friend. The pain has returned, and after trying to escape to dig holes with Beachcomber, he's not in the best shape. He takes notes as well as he can on the datapad he's brought, though. Just keep talking everybody. He'll record it.

"That's my current plan," Nautica replies to Hoist. "But if anyone has any new ideas on /how/ we can trace the drain, I'm open to suggestions. Maybe there's an angle I haven't considered yet."

"Uh." Hoist unclasps his hands to rub one against the back of his helm. "Quantum mechanics aren't something I am very well versed in I'm afraid. But if you need any more equipment built, or fine-tuned, I could certainly assist with such." He's more comfortable sticking to helping in the ways he actually knows what he's doing. He looks at Perceptor and Brainstorm, whom likely have a better grasp on what Nautica is talking about doing.

"See if you can take Knock Out with you to access the Titan, Brainstorm." Other than that, it sounds like a solid course of action. The more information they can gather, the better. "The ship is capable of recieving items through subspace transferrance." Perceptor taps his fingers on a lab bench, looking down to the floor. "If we were to stop something mid-orbital jump, it could serve as a way to observe the problem."

"If you have records from your work on that quantum theory, I could give them a look over," Wheeljack offers, echoing Brainstorm's offer of assistance. "Though it's hardly my specialty. I'll wait until then, though. Wouldn't want to give you the quantum equivalent of 'have you tried turning it off and back on again.'" He probably won't get it fully, since most of his work is concerned with four dimensions at most. "If we need any new types of particle detectors- ion, alpha, tachyon even," he jokes, "I could probably get something running."

"Knock Out?" Brainstorm sounds almost insulted by the suggestion "I don't think I need to bother him. I mean, I know he was the champion and everything, but they like flyers pretty well too" he rolls his shoulders, and the long fins attached to them "I'm sure I'll be fine" he and Knock Out have had something of a rivalry going on, mad doctor vs mad scientist. He's not exactly too keen on asking for his help if it's not life or death. But on to the next topic "That could work, though that uses only a fraction of a fraction of quantumn power! There's no guarantee there will be a drain we can observe! It's not even exactly the same thing. We're not even sure when the drain happens. Although, I could modify the scanner I hooked up to the engines to pinpoint the exact moment of the drain in relations to our jump for the next colony."

"Of course, I'll share my notes with anyone who'd like them." And oh, has Nautica kept /copious/ notes, almost terrifying in the level of detail. After all, she /did/ invent a whole new sub-field of quantum theory just to detect the energy leak. She's got an entire graduate level textbook worth of detailed notes and theory.

Hoist doesn't really have anything helpful to add at this point, so he's just nodding his head a bit as he listens.

There's a small nod to Brainstorm. Whatever he feels will get him access to the Titan. "Then modify it." It comes out a bit sharper than Perceptor might've intended it to be, coupled with a small frown. "We shall await your notes, Nautica. You're all free to return to your work."

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