Warp Engine Testing

Nacelles get a touch up.

ranger_refit_088hPreparing to go to warp.

I started working on the inner grills of the warp nacelles.  At first I began fiddling with the already present stand-in versions I’d modeled, which looked OK when not lit up, but I was disappointed at how two dimensional they appeared for a modeled feature after ramping up the glow.  I started experimenting with shapes even more akin to the movie style; With a significantly reduced number shaped in concavity, they’re wider than the grills on the nacelles’ outer lengths, with relatively narrow gap separations. I was pleased with my first attempt, but soon realized the gaps were too narrow and the grill structure was too thick/deep.  Also between the gaps, I totally forgot an abrupt curvy cutoff of the outwardly glowing light into a non-illuminated region towards the aft end.  I finally employed it, however there is a curious optical effect from certain angles (see below), as the grill’s concavity actually helps cancel out the curvature of the light/dark transition zone.  And although distinct, I had to work on the glowing/dark transition zone itself, as most reference images depict a minor darkening change in color near the border where the glow cuts off completely.  I eventually replaced the entire glowing surface with a luminous UV texture.

ranger_refit_090aA concave grill design for the nacelle interior. It’s more akin to the film nacelles, but with a curious optical effect; the glow ending’s curvature is cancelled out by the grill’s concavity at this angular perspective.  The color transition phase was not employed yet in this render.

ranger_refit_085eFrom here, the glow end’s curvature is more apparent.

ranger_refit_093aEven more noticeable from here, as are some newly added panel details on the nacelle’s outer facing.

ranger_refit_091aLong shot sporting the new aglow.

ranger_refit_092Engines powered down for shuttle activities. Added some aft aiming phasers atop the saucer hull.

ranger_refit_089cIn addition to the upper aft phasers, a few formation lights take on the underside, close to the major engineering elements.

3 earlier attempts:

ranger_refit_088aTried to bring up the internal glow on the original stand-in grill, but appearances somehow fell a bit flat and two dimensional for modeled detailing.

ranger_refit_088bFirst major attempt to make the grills more movie like, but I think things were a little too thick to let decent light pass. However, it’s an interesting look strangely enough.

ranger_refit_088cAlmost there, but I totally forgot the little glow cutoff towards the back end and the gaps were a bit too narrow.

Just some more updated shots:

ranger_refit_094

ranger_refit_095

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~ by starstation on July 23, 2013.

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