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Talk:Romulan Neutral Zone

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Size of the RNZEdit

I temporarily removed the following conjectural information from the article:

  • roughly 1 light year wide
  • established in 2161
  • Treaty originally signed between Earth and the Romulan Empire, but the Federation has also ratified the treaties.

We don't really know this exactly. The Zone appears to be bigger in TNG, the end of the war could have been some years earlier, and there are at least some allies involved in the war. -- Cid Highwind 05:36, 26 Dec 2003 (PST)

OK. But I thought the 1 ly figure was more or less indicated by the BoT map. -- Harry 07:24, 31 Dec 2003 (PST)

I don't think there was a definite scale given for that map - some tried to calculate that from the speed of those little blinking dots or the distance between the outposts, but I don't think any of this is really accurate enough.

I also checked some fan sites regarding that scale. [1] states that "1ly" is directly from TNG (no episode reference, though). [2] uses the same scale (among others) but doesn't even mention TNG as the source. -- Cid Highwind 08:32, 31 Dec 2003 (PST)

It was mentioned by Spock in dialogue in TOS: Balance of Terror that the RMZ was 1 light year width. Ottens 23:31, 8 Jul 2004 (CEST)

OK, I just double-checked an episode transcript to be sure. The width wasn't mentioned in that episode. -- Cid Highwind 00:48, 9 Jul 2004 (CEST)

That is odd. I was probably incorrect, but I thought Spock mentioned it. Ottens 19:54, 9 Jul 2004 (CEST)
You are right. I just watched Balance of Terror again, and it wasn't mentioned. My apoligies. Ottens 14:51, 28 Jul 2004 (CEST)
One cannot calculate the width based on the map using the speed. The Enterprise manages to travel from the outer left to the right of the map within minutes, but it takes hours to travel the last grid unit. -- Kobi 08:47, 9 Jul 2004 (CEST)
Another image appears in the Season 3 TNG episode "The Defector". As well, in "The Deadly Years", it is implied that the zone is convex into Federation space, requiring a vessel to cross it in order to travel a direct path between Gamma Hydra and the starbase that Commodore Stocker is to take command at. GCapp1959 07:39, 29 November 2008 (UTC)
The Enterprise traveled from the outer left to the right of the map within minutes, because it was traveling at maximum speed, which in TOS Season 1 seemed to be Warp 6. It took hours to travel the last grid unit, because it was paralleling the Romulan ship, which was traveling on impulse power.
In any case, I think one can calculate the Neutral Zone's width based on the map and using the speed (in the last grid unit). Shortly after the Romulan ship attacked Earth Output 4 and began heading back to the Neutral Zone, and after the Enterprise began paralleling the Romulan ship, Mr. Stiles said that the Enterprise would enter the Neutral Zone in less than an hour. If we assume that Romulan impulse engines are similar to Federation ones, then the Romulan ship was traveling at about 32% c (I calculated the speed from the distance the Enterprise traveled from Earth to Jupiter in ST: TMP, a minimum distance of 4.2 AU, and the time it took to travel that distance, 1.8 hours.) If we assume the time when the ships would enter the Neutral Zone was about 59 minutes, adjust it for time dilation at 32% c, and multiply it by 32% c, the distance between the outpost and the Neutral Zone would be about 20 light minutes. On the map, this distance is about the same as the Neutral Zone's width. So if the speed was 32% c, the Neutral Zone's width would be about 20 light minutes, at least in Earth Outpost Sector Z-6.
If we assume the speed was 52% c, the width would be 36 light minutes. On the map, the Neutral Zone's width is about 1.1 tic marks. So 1 tic mark would be about 33 light minutes, or about 2000 light seconds. Multiplying this by 2.5 tic marks would give the 5000 on the map's legend.
Incidentally, on the map, the distance between Outpost 4 and Romulus is about 5.5 tic marks, which would be about 110 light minutes, based on a speed of 32% c, or about 198 light minutes, based on a speed of 52% c. This would mean that the line of Earth outposts were inside the Romulan Star System itself! -- Astrophysicophile 08:37, 22 May 2009 (UTC)

2.5 light years? ...repostedEdit

The estimate of 2.5ly is derived from Tomalak's first transmission. While at the Romulan edge of the Zone, the ETA at Galorndon Core is 6 hours. After Picard forbids entering Federation space, he calculates an ETA of 5 hours for a point near the Federation edge of the Zone. We also learn that Galorndon Core is located about 0.5 light years from the Zone. This results in a width of about 2.5 light years for the RNZ, even if the Romulan's flight path was not exactly perpendicular to the border. -- Cid Highwind 04:30, 25 Mar 2004 (PST)

"These are the Voyages" mentions that the Treaty of Algeron redefined the Romulan Neutral Zone, so its possible that it was once 1 light year, but is now 2.5 light years
A width of 2.5 light years assumes that the angle of entry is at or close to 0 degrees from a line perpendicular to the Zone. However, if the angle is close to 90 degrees, then the Zone will be substantially thinner. So 2.5 light years is just the maximum possible width. -- Astrophysicophile 10:48 4 May 2009 (PDT)

Wow, that's an old discussion being revived here. :) FWIW, what we do know is that the distance from some point at the Federation edge of the RNZ (F) to a point at the Romulan edge (R) is 5/6 of the distance from F to Galorndon Core (GC). Assuming a straight flight path and a locally constant width of the RNZ, and combining that with the known shortest distance from GC to the RNZ of 0.5ly, the intercept theorem does in fact lead to a width of 2.5ly, no matter the angle. -- Cid Highwind 21:11, 4 May 2009 (UTC)

Okay, thanks for citing the intercept theorem. -- Astrophysicophile 07:23, 19 May 2009 (UTC)
The 2.5 ly number seems to assume that Tomalak's flight plan didn't include speed variation. It's possible that Tomalak was orignally planning to scream across the the RNZ and then tiptoe in Federation Space. After Picard blew the whistle he may have decided that it would be less provacative to take a slower pace through the zone. It's also possible that Tomalak would originally have had to stop (maybe for hours) at the Federation/RNZ interface to contend with border detection systems and maybe even run some scans for Federation ships.--Hribar 14:32, 19 May 2009 (UTC)

Suspicion of BorgEdit

I believe the following is in error: "It is presumed that the outposts were decimated by the Borg due to a signature obliterative technique unique to their kind." TNG: The Neutral Zone is the last episode of Season 1. The Federation did not know of the Borg until Q introduced them in TNG: Q Who, well into Season 2. Based upon an examination of the script for TNG: The Neutral Zone it is correct to say: "It is presumed that the out outposts were attacked by the Romulans." The preceding unsigned comment was added by 66.58.143.71 (talk).

Finish reading the paragraph. It explains why it is LATER presumed that the Borg, not the Romulans, were responsible. --OuroborosCobra talk 07:12, 30 October 2007 (UTC)

Removed Edit

Different canon sources suggest the width differs in different regions of the Zone from one to several light years. TOS: "Balance of Terror" suggests a width of one light year, TNG: "The Enemy" suggests 2.5 light years, TNG: "The Defector" suggests more than 2.5 light years.

A section of the map from Sector Z-6 appeared in "The Defector". It was the area of space between Outposts 3 to 6. This shows that the Neutral Zone is greater than 1 light year and that it might be closer to 2.5 to 3 light years.Throwback (talk) 00:43, July 20, 2014 (UTC)

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