Why ships bank in space

So ships banking in space has been bothering me for a while. This has likely been hashed before but I’ve been unable to find a reasonable SiFi explanation.

From what I have seen, ships in EVE slow down due to the influence of the warp core “dragging” on space. I’d like to propose a further explanation as to why ships bank and otherwise act like they are moving like aircraft. With aircraft the whole point of banking is to produce horizontal lift. In space there isn’t any “lift” so banking makes zero sense. Maybe there can be something else.

I think it has already been described that the warpcore manipulates space time around the ship causing “drag” which causes the ship to slow to a stop without thrust. Since acceleration is per second second if local space time were distorted such that time in the direction opposite of V was “faster” then we would observe a force in opposition to our V. Existing lore describes the core as a device which basically digs a hole into the quantum foam to essentially create a space where the speed of light / time is faster and we drag that through space. The problem here is relativity. Since there is no privileged reference frame what does stop mean? If we mean it to be in reference to the universe then we have a problem. If we take it to mean the boundary energy of the bubble matches the local curvature then it would be in relation to gravity IE planets, stars, space stations if sufficiently close. This would be much more acceptable as it does not imply there is a universal STOP velocity. I think this explanation could work. When the ship is moving in relation to the local space time the core would observe compression along that vector. Acceleration would be this squared so the harder you accelerate vs the diameter of the field would result in larger forces.

Anyway from that, lets address banking. Since the core can manipulate the field if we induce a distortion such that time is off axis from V we would essentially curve space such that we could curve the line projecting along V to be our desired turn. Thus thrust in one direction would result in off axis acceleration. This would be limited to the strength of the core vs the thrust of the drive. However now the core is acing basically as a 3d space time rudder. This would also explain why slapping an oversized AB kills your ability to turn. This would not even be that hard. Just shift the core off axis from the axis of thrust and bam you are turning. Just a few actuators to move the core around. This would explain why some ships appear to have drives that would result in a axis of thrust not passing through the center of gravity. If the core were offset then you would need offset thrust to compensate.

Anyway that’s my two cents on that. Ships banking in space.


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That makes perfect sense to me, I have often wondered about that as well. Can you explain why missiles and projectiles only fly a certain short distance in space, or even have a fall off distance, that one has had me scratching my head for 15 years.

Beyond that powered armour and shields have sufficient time to perfectly adjust to their trajectories and eliminate any damage. Missiles run out of fuel.
Now our camera drones automatically blank out all the personal sized countermessure weapons employed to do this so we can still see in a fight…

Ok. That’s purely in my head. Never stated by ccp. But there are plenty of good reasons for max ranges to exist. It could be the projectiles become unstable etc.

The banking one… well that’s more a poor graphics simulation. But one could logic it out and go it’s to avoid sudden shifts of direction causing the reactor exhausts/thrusters to back up and explode.

Here’s a quote I found, because It got me thinking of Star Trek, and how some ships bank on there too. This explanation makes sense to me

One theory I’ve heard, though it seems more conjecture than based in anything from the ST universe, indicated that banking the ship for a turn would decrease the power required by the inertial dampeners and artificial gravity in order to keep the crew unaffected by the turn. In other words, in a banked turn, much more of the inertial force is along the vertical axis, which would keep it in line with the gravity plating in the ship’s decks, requiring less effort from inertial dampeners.


Errr… Well that’s a good one.

I’ll be real, one of the big reasons I really dislike the new star wars movies is the parabolic space lasers. Also the whole “ohh warp drive is a weapon”. Wait, why did we build the death star, death star 2, Dr. Evil moon / star killer base, and or any other large gun when we could just strap a hyper drive to an asteroid? Seems like a waste. Anyway before I go on a rant, to the question of fall off distance.

So why do the things in eve have fall off distance?

For guns I’ve always read it as an issue with tracking / fuel then raw physics. It isn’t the projectiles slow down but more your guns cant effectively aim at that distance with all the motion and sensor resolution.

In addition, lasers and hybrid weapons dissipate. Lasers may look like a line but in reality no light is 100% collimated and will form a larger spot the further away you are. Lower energy density = easier to dissipate = less damage. Hybrid weapons involve plasma if I remember and that will disperse as well. I assume they use some crazy plasma physics to form some self sustaining plasma pulse kind of like a smoke ring. This actually should be possible. However, plasma is never 100% uniform and eventually collisions of the atoms in the plasma will result in failure of the field. This is exactly one of the problems with tokamak reactors. You sorta get little bunches of dense plasmsa that eventually cause the field to fail. These events can release so much energy that the reactor can be damaged. It is one reason why stellarators are being researched despite being much harder to build.

Rockets, torps, missiles, and what not run out of juce. They keep flying but have no ability to maneuver and I assume your ship can make the minor course correction to avoid the relatively slow moving object. As for banking, since I’ve never seen the model of the rocket in flight I can’t tell if it is banking or using traditional thrust. Both would result in a curved path but in the rocket case they front is not pointed towards the target but the center of the curve. However since the rocket isn’t rendered AFIK I can’t tell how it works.

Other modules fall into the same distance / dissipation thing. Signal strength reduces with the square of the radius. No antenna is going to form a perfect beam so there will always be loss at distance. Optimal range can be viewed as under this range the signal is stronger then needed to achieve the specified effect, over this range performance drops off.

Anyway I hope that answers those questions. I really wish Eve spent more time on the lore. It may not matter to some but I find a game with good lore adds a lot of depth and meaning even if I’m not role playing.

I’ve always just imagined that I see them banking, only because the camera drones show them banking. The same drones that don’t show me escape pods when ships are destroyed and other visual things.

As much as I hate to admit, sometimes it’s just easier to ignore it, like I do a lot of other physically impossibilities in New Eden.

IIRC there’s somekind of mega-evil nigh-unstoppable super-race from outside the galaxy a la Reapers, Borg, Tyranids etc. that fighting those were built for and the Emperor was actually good guy who had foreseen their coming. Yeah I dont really get it either.

Planet shields for a start. Planetary shields in star wars can bounce asteroids but they couldn’t bounce the death stars firepower. Hyper drives also aren’t that simple in star wars either

Simple enough to start with the flip of a lever that for some reason couldn’t be automated on a timer or just had a droid throw while you get into an escape pod! God purplette died the dumbest death I’ve ever seen and spent the majority of the movie harping on Poe about tactics… A flight of bombers for a dreadnought seems like a steal of a trade to me. But that’s not what pissed me off the most about that whole situation. They had the opportunity to create complex, deep, meaningful female character and blew it. Like the whole conflict with Poe could have been more about being deliberate and responsible with the lives of his troops rather then some peacenik hippy garbage. That would have allowed her to be a competent commander while still being a foil to Poe’s recklessness. But no she just had to command her ships to run until out of fuel rather then warp away. So what if they chase them, that’s less ships on the field. Or just have them jump into the oncoming enemy if they are going to blow up anyway.

Sorry, I really hate that movie. Dark Side problems.

I’m just glad EVE makes more sense. Or at least we can SiFi it enough that the lore is more then skin deep. Star Wars used to be that way until Disney decided depth != sales. Contrary to the very precedence the franchise itself set.

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