2236-12-20 - More Questions Than Answers

Danica, Tamlin, and Walsh put their heads together and try to work the ongoing raptor problem.

Date: 2236-12-20

Location: Hangar Deck, Deck 6, //Galactica//

Related Scenes: None

Plot: None

Scene Number: 929

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"Don't worry, Chief. I've been holding them back." The comment is offered offhandedly to the Chief of the Deck, who happens to be actually on the Deck, as Tamlin sees her drift past. Tamlin has indeed set up a cordon around the wreckage of the raptor the Tauron forces flew back to Galactica. Most of the deck crew have been fairly professional, but a few have been looking at every member of the flight portion of the air wing as if they should probably sleep with both eyes open. There have been extra levels of snark, especially leading up to this meeting. Which was not a secret meeting, and thus did not require some sort of ludicrous code name. Although a code name might have made it seem less like a trip to the gallows for the Ensign whose presence has been requested at her convenience, by the PO (that would be Tamlin) whose been supervising the breakdown of the brokedown bird.

"Think we oughta be selling tickets," Walsh says with a snort, eyeing the commotion around the broken bird. She stands there, hands on hips, staring at the ship as if it's given her some sort of personal affront.

Danica shows up relatively soon after the request, it being at least partially linked to having nothing much to do now that she's out of sick bay. What does an Ensign with a crashed Raptor and a directive for ultra light duty, do? So this is probably a nice break up from the routine of doing the paperwork the CAG didn't want to do.

Danica approaches carefully, but this seems much more a function of her injuries and less the hulking remains on the deck. Her left wrist in a cast, her duty greens have been modified for wear since there's not much hope of getting her sleeve past the cast. Her gait is deliberate, a mildly pained look of concentration trundling her from Point A to B, which is here. "Hey, so... that's her?," Danica asks Tamlin and Walsh through a split lip and a bruised face, as if this Raptor has a twin somewhere. Gash on her forehead's pretty solid, too.

"I think we could get away with it. I'm pretty sure most of the crew has never actually seen a ship in this bad of a condition. If you've got scraps of paper, I will conveniently look the other way." I mean, who would dare accuse the Chief of running an unauthorized paid event? As Danica approaches, Tamlin hops up from the rolly stool she's been sitting on, "Oh, hey, Gopnik. You look like like someone tried to use you for chipped beef." She chucks a thumb back at the raptor, as she moves to lift the safety tape she's been using to mark off the area, "Thanks for coming. Yeah, this is her." Tamlin looks at Danica, studying the woman, "Damned good job getting as many back alive as you did." Considering the damage, 1 KIA and multiple injuries is a damned miracle.

"Ensign," Walsh greets with a nod. "Amazed anyone walked away from that one. Doing all right?" Well, relatively, of course, given the whole chopped beef look.

"Yeah," Gopnik agrees, her eyes casting around the deck and observing the notice she's rating out of the other crew members. She slides a smile on to her lips, perhaps trying to minimize the state of her. "Don't ever tell a Sag that they should lighten up a little," she adds, adding in a little more levity. That fading a bit with the reminder of the final score: Cuts and Breaks: Many, Dead: 1. "Surprised me a little," she admits, her eyes taking in the finer details of the wreck, before she looks at Walsh and Tamlin. "I was pretty sure we were going to die." Her good hand shifts and sticks itself in a duty suit pocket.

Her clear eyes slide to Walsh, twitching out a smile for the effort of her inquiry. "Yeah, I'm alright. I'm down to 2 doses of morpha a day. Soon, I'll be the queen of black market aspirin."

"I can't help this niggling little feeling that that was supposed to be the point." A wave of her hand, as she gestures for Danica to approach if she likes, "I don't mean it like that...or, I don't know, maybe I do, but Chief, it occurred to me...why are these raptors only shitting bricks in atmo? CAP after CAP after CAP, engagement upon engagement, and never a problem in space." She looks back to Dani, "We're working on your black box data, but we were hoping you might be able to give us some insight into what happened, how she was running, anything you can remember."

Walsh nods to Danica's report. "Well, you know what they say, sir - any one you can walk away from..." Walsh lets that bleak thought trail off, then nods to Tamlin. "Well, most of the sorties and engagements have been in atmo, not in space," she points out. Though Tamlin is right - there haven't been any problems on CAPs. And there have been a few engagements in space too. But the majority of the fighting has been planetside.

Dani's casted hand gestures towards the Raptor as if she's introducing it as tonight's guest on some Caprican late show before her arm just sort of drops in a I-give-up sort of way. "I... mean," she begins, pushing out a breath as she seems to be actively gathering the wool of her thoughts. "Everything was fine. I ran through my pre-flight checks. Pre-flight reports were good, no problems. Cargo manifest was just, like, bandaids and girly mags for the dudes planetside. DRADIS was extra quiet, even the weather surface side was its best behavior."

"Everything was fine and then my stick just got soupy or I thought at first. Just like, I don't know, slow on the upswing or something I thought and I was gonna just come back to the barn but then... she.. I don't know how to- lurched? Like no turbulence or anything? Like just lurched." It's a scientific term, to be sure.

Tamlin stands aside, allowing Dani to move or gesture as she needs or sees fit. If she glances around to see if any of the deckies are eavesdropping, she's surreptitious about it. A thoughtful expression as Dani describes the experience. "So you were fine through checks, no problems, fine through the loadout, and nothing started happening until after you were in atmosphere? And you said the ship lurched. Did it feel like turbulence, despite the fact that there was none? Or did it feel like you were fighting some sort of autopilot?"

Walsh crosses her arms, just listening to the pilot's tale. She's read the report, of course, but sometimes it helps to hear it out loud too.

"Just supposed to be a milk run," Dani clarifies, looking at Tamlin if a little helplessly for lacking grasp on how this happened. "Just like.. I don't know... um, sometimes you're on an elevator and it sorta wobbles a little before the doors open? Like its adjusting or something?" Dani's eyes slip from Tamlin to Walsh and back to Tamlin. "But I didn't think all that much about it at the time, I was too busy being fraking annoyed at my stick. I ran diagnostics and nothing. She said she was fine but yeah, I thought it was autopilot thing, too but the diagnostic report showed five by five. Altimeter and speedometer reporting in okay. But-"

"It's alright, sir...if it doesn't make sense to you. It doesn't to us either, that's why we're trying to pick this apart and see what we can come up with." Tamlin steps away, heading to grab her rolly chair and pull it over, in case Danica might like a seat, "I know exactly what you mean about the elevator." She glances over to Walsh. The Chief knows a heck of a lot more about the design of these ships than she does, "Everything was fine, according to the readings, but it clearly wasn't."

"Black box shows the autopilot wasn't engaged," Walsh confirms after Danica's comment. "But like you said... something went the frak wrong." Still frowning, she says, "It's a different symptom than Rabbit's bird. There the autopilot did engage."

"Yeah, that's the thing? I could punt the opener for a Pyramid match off my stick and it would have done nothing. I might as well have just asked the Marines to stick their arms out the windows and flap a little." Danica's mouth twitches through a brief amused smile for the mental view of such an event. "I haven't read the report on Scratch's version of events. Did he mention the bearing change?," Danica looks between the women again before she slips into a brief silence in contemplation of Walsh's information. Her forehead wrinkles slightly- or tries- but the gash on her forehead protests and Dani goes back to contemplation without forehead action.

Tamlin is clearly trying to put together any sort of idea that she can, and she perks up at the mention of a bearing change. "I don't rank high enough to get those sorts of reports." She glances to Walsh, before she moves away, moving to retrieve one of the currently unused dry erase boards the deck uses to record bits and bobs of the day. "Keep going, I have an idea. No, not an idea, just ignore me for a second."

Walsh nods. "Yeah he mentioned it. That was his explanation for the lurch - an unexpected shift in the bird's heading."

"Yeah, so, then... I guess he also mentioned that the change was gonna put us past the front and right in Toasterland?"," Danica offers, the information mostly offered up for Tamlin's consumption but by her expression, it's a fact that seems to bear repeating. She shifts her weight slightly, patiently nodding at Tamlin's moving off to return with the dry erase board. "Hey uh-," Danica asks, her attention shifting to Walsh again while she waits. "-did Rabbit say when exactly his auto pilot problem started? Atmo? Space?"

Tamlin draws the board over, pulling it close enough for the two other women to be able to use it. There are plenty of markers on the bottom ledge. She waits for Walsh's response, but asks, "If I gave you the numbers, sir, could you plot the eventual endpoint?" Ship navigation is completely outside of her rating. "If that would be alright with you, Chief." Tamlin wouldn't have gotten that part of the data, if she got anything at all, just the relevant crash statistics.

"Atmo. But the difference is that he actually turned the autopilot on. Their problem was they couldn't get the godsdamn thing to turn back off. And Taxi's bird just went completely frakking dead. Can't help but wonder if we're chasing different ghosts here." She waves a hand to Tamlin, nodding for her to go ahead.

Danica picks up a green marker and uncaps it. She sniffs it a little before grinning at the two. "...sorry, habit, used to have the ones that smelled like fake fruit. Might be why I love mess jello so much." She edges carefully towards the board, grimacing for raising her arm to writing height but once its raised enough she seems comfortable enough. "Let's do it," Danica says with a nod before her attention slides Walsh's way. Her expression scrunches a little, a thought rolling through. "Seems like its throwing pasta on a wall... if you ask me."

"Could be the same problem but different systems." Tamlin steps back, heading over to the tool cart that has the paperwork from the raptors in progress on it. She pulls out the envelopes that have the Chief's name on them, the good info, and walks it back to Walsh. "Two of the raptors had trouble with their guidance systems. They lost control of them, the third lost everything completely. But Rabbit and Gopnik's raptors were both new. Built for Galactica. I remember seeing their delivery manifests. Taxi's is old stock. What if it's the same problem, but it effects the ship's differently because they were built at different times and locations?" She offers a quick grin to Dani, "I have that set locked away for special occasions." And then, a more serious nod, "I haven't got any better ideas. I'll throw anything I've got until something sticks."

Danica notes the basic details of each crash on the board, as Tamlin speaks. She grins briefly at Tamlin, a brief waggle at her for being a follower of the good stuff where fruit markers are concerned. "So... it's not a manufacturers flaw, because we're dealing with two different ages. And... I mean, you could maybe argue that Taxi's is anomalous because it's older and older birds just have more wear and tear on them...," Danica speaks aloud, backing up from the board slightly to talk it through. "I mean the only thing that these three incidents have is that they happened near the same planet. Is there something about Tauron we're just missing?"

"Hey I'm not one to judge, sir," Walsh says, holding up her hands over the marker business. She nods to Tamlin. "That's possible too. We're still waiting for the XO to take some divers down to get Taxi's black box, so we'll know more then. But from what she described, had to've been either a control system failure that shut 'er down, or an EMP weapon we've never heard of. There's no frakking way that four different fail-safe hardware systems all went to shit at exactly the same moment. Rabbit's bird - we've both been over that thing with a godsdamned microscope, and there's no sign of anything electrically or mechanically wrong with her. Then there's Gopnik's..." she waves a hand.

Tamlin lets Danica work her magic, turning to give Walsh her attention, "Chief, something that the Ensign said got me thinking. She said," Tamlin gives an apologetic look to Danica, since it is sort of weird to talk about someone in the third person when they're standing in front of you, "that she could feel something wrong with the ship, but that the instrumentation told her nothing was wrong. Is it possible to tweak a system, so that if you run a check, the system will tell you one thing, when something else entirely is going on?"

Danica looks at Walsh, the frown of concentration creasing her bruised face furrowing a little deeper for Walsh's response. "But that would mean someone has access to the Raptors that allows them to...," she begins, letting it trail off. Do that?

Walsh shrugs. "Depends on what checks you're talking about. Some are in hardware, some software, different ways you could disable them. But like the Ensign says, that'd mean having access to the birds." She frowns, not liking that thought either. "But then again, we don't have a lot of in-flight diagnostics. Just 'cause the bird wasn't chirping alarms, doesn't mean everything was fine and dandy either." Lots of system checks can only be run with their flight diagnostic systems on the deck.

"I don't know much about the planet myself, sir," Tamlin returns to a question Danica asked, "I mean, I know there are mines in the area, but I don't know enough about the geography to give you any clues there. Maybe someone up in CIC might know." Tamlin frowns, looking at the diagrams that Danica is writing out on the board, "Leaving out Taxi's raptor for now, does it look as though the two ships, if they had not crashed, might have ended up near the same place?" A thoughtful sound, at Walsh's reply, "Taxi mentioned something to me, she wondered if we couldn't do some testing with a ship shutting down and turning on systems, or even flying it dead stick, see if we could shake loose a similar response to anything we've seen before." Without the possibility of plummeting to your death.

Danica nods at Walsh. She recaps the marker in her hand, tapping it against the hard surface of her cast with a light bap-bap-bap while she noodles over the situation a bit more. "What if...," Danica begins and then halts. Her thought catching on something, listening to Tamlin's information about Tauron itself and Taxi's hypothesis. "So- that's also a thing?"

Whatever her original thought is stowed for a moment, the marker in hand pointing to Tamlin instead. "I wondered if it was electromagnetic activity that was fraking with something? It's naturally occurring phenomena on its own so I thought maybe something was... magnifying it or one of the fleet ships was doing something or- I don't know. Anyway. Control lost actual with me after my first transmission which... I don't know- it's spooky is all I'm saying." Danica turns her attention to Tamlin. "Did Taxi say how she thought we could do that without falling out of the sky?"

"Worth checking out," Walsh says of the CIC mine information and Taxi's idea. "If by the same place you mean 'Cylon territory' then yeah, both the birds were headed that way. Difference being that the Ensign's bird wasn't before things got frakked, but Rabbit's was." Walsh looks at Danica then. "Wait, the coms went out too?" She must've missed that in the original report. "But no other systems - like, the diagnostics, the lights, the engines... that was all working?"

"She proposed stress-testing it in space. I'm sorry, I should have mentioned that. Which might or might not work if whatever is causing this needs either proximity to the planet, or need to be within the atmosphere. Like you said, Chief, all the problems have been planetside." Tamlin nods to Danica, "Both were heading into cylon territory, but what about where they would have ended up if they had followed the new bearings the system gave them? Can you extrapolate that far?" She's not got that much to work with, seeing as both raptors crashed fairly quickly.

"Yeah," Danica affirms carefully, nodding slowly for Walsh. "I got one pan pan out, describing the problem. Control says after that I just stopped responding and we sure didn't get anything more out of them. But it wasn't like... the comlink was noticeably dead. Just silent, I guess? Which... I guess, is as good as dead in that situation. But, I dunno, having had-" Danica nods, seemingly on the same wavelength as Tamlin. It's more a nod of affirmation as to being on the same line of thinking. "I mean, I can try? I didn't have a very good handle on it at the time with everything going tits up but Scratch said that the bearing adjusted on its own and that the resultant velocity calc also did the same...," Danica uses the marker again to point to the reports. "It's probably in Scratch's reporting record?"

Walsh nods to both of them. "We'd have to dig up the black box data from Rabbit's bird, but we could figure it, sure. They were in different parts of the front, but I dunno if we traced the path out if they'd intersect. She waves a hand to Danica, then. "But coms and flight control both going haywire but nothing else on the frakking ship? That's weird as hell." But then the Chief's getting called off by some other deckie with a mild crisis of some sort. "Excuse me," she mumbles to them, before hollering at the other crew. "No, not that one, the other frakker. Godsdamnit." Exasperated, she heads on over to intervene.

Tamlin opens her mouth, about to comment, before Walsh gets pulled away, "Ensign, sir," Tamlin offers as Walsh gives her evaluation of the situation, "I feel as if this is closer to having any sort of clue than we've been since this all started. I mean, I haven't found a thing wrong with Rabbit's raptor mechanically. I'm just about to start tearing apart your ship," what's left of it, "but I would stake my career that it's not mechanical. Will you help me, if I get whatever information I can from CIC and what the Chief gives me from the black box data? Maybe you can get more as well," being an Ensign and not enlisted and all. "I know this sound terrible. But if it's not mechanical, and it's not remote control, like what they did with the networked raptors, then the fault has to be something that was somehow built in, triggered or, I don't know, but it just doesn't feel random." She considers, "And you and Taxi could work out some testing. I can do whatever you need mechanically."


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