PHD #204: Hydroplanning
Summary: It's a pow-wow on deck between some DHs regarding feasibility of the hydroponics plan.
Date: 18 Sep 2041 AE
Related Logs: The Utility of Algae, Planting Seeds, and Roses and Sardines
Damon Cidra Madilyn 
Hangar Deck - Port - Midship - Battlestar Cerberus
The single largest rooms on the Cerberus are the hangar decks. Each flight pod consists of two stacked landing bays with adjoined decks and hangars, which along with computer-assisted landings results in a faster Viper recovery rate. Mirror images of each other, these two huge areas are located on the flight pods. The inboard sides of the deck, closest to the ship's main hull, are lined with parking and maintenance bays for Vipers and Raptors based aboard the battlestar. The outboard side of the deck contains the launch tubes used by the Vipers for standard deployment. Huge blast doors seal the deck into four sections, each one containing an elevator that leads up to the flight deck directly overhead. The fore-most section contains an elevator system that leads towards Aerospace Fabrication.
Post-Holocaust Day: #204

The Deck goes about its business tonight a little less hectic than usual. It's a welcome reprieve that sees Damon out of his office and out on the floor, even sending a couple mechanics off-shift early. He appears to be coaching a Crewman on the finer off-textbook methods of repairing the engine components of Raptors. The poor young Crewman looks stricken as the grinning Petty Officer smashes on various parts with a hefty wrench, listening to the responses the craft gives him. "These are the only diagnostic codes you need," he says, his voice loudly booming and boisterous as always. "Just listen to what the bird's tellin' you."

Cidra is prowling the Deck in her flight suit. Hardly an unusual sight, though the still un-sweaty look about her suggests she's yet to go on CAP herself this day. She's drawn to the Raptors. And to Damon and his lesson, which is taking place there. "Not overmuch trouble with the birds, I do hope, Petty Officer?" she asks him.

"It's good to know there's a department less subtle than the Colonial Marines," comes the wry reply from Madilyn. Amidst all the banging and scurrying of crewmembers and mechanics, slipping onto the deck was a relatively easy task. Unlike other non-deck, non-flight crew, she dares to venture far across the safety line in order to approach both Damon and Cidra.

"Subtlety can be a waste of time with machines," Damon answers, his broad grin turning on the visitors. "Vipers and Raptors don't usually get too offended if I don't wine and dine 'em before I start crammin' my tools in their exhaust pipes, if you know how I mean, Majors." Majors? Oh Gods, it's the CAG and - Crewman Carras can't figure out who Madilyn is, but she's wearing a Major's pins, so she must be important. He stands as straight as a support beam, not sure if he's supposed to salute or not. "And the birds are doing fine, Major," he says to Cidra reassuringly. "What brings both of you down to the Deck?"

"As you were, Petty Officer. I do not mean to interrupt your work here," Cidra says, waving a hand dismissively as to the prospect of a salute. The barest hint of a smile to the poor crewman. "Petty Officer Damon is quite correct. Particularly the Raptors. Vipers demand a slightly gentler touch, but they are finicky creatures by nature. Major Willows-Cavanaugh?" A hint of surprise at seeing the Marine in hangar country. "What brings you down?"

"This seemed the likeliest place to find both of you. I was looking to have a short talk about the potential of…adding one more ship to the fleet and helping to alleviate a few of the problems we either currently are facing, or will likely be facing in the future." Cidra's orders to be at ease around the two majors is reinforced by not giving a by-the-book salute. "I know that Major Hahn has spoken with a certain civilian - Ms. Ibbhanas - regarding these problems, and the next step on the ladder is to speak with both of you."

Damon gives a bemused look to the Crewman - who still stands with his shoulders squared back, eyes dead forward, afraid to even breathe - and gives him an elbow to the ribs. "Why don't you take a quick smoke break, Carras? Latch onto Petra - er, PO Timon - if I'm still a bit busy when you come back, yeah? She knows this stuff backwards and forwards." Given the dismissal, Carras breathes a sigh of relief and bolts off with a respectful bow of the head to Cidra and Madilyn. "Ibbhanas - is that Rose?" Damon asks Madilyn curiously. "I was just talking to her last night, actually, about all that phy… phyco… algae stuff."

"I did speak with Miss Ibbhanas, yes. Very nice young woman. As to the business. A ship, and parts, my pilots can search and salvage the planet for. That, I doubt, would be much trouble," Cidra says. One hand going to her hip, the other raising idly to gesture with her fingertips as she talks. It seems habitual for her. "My Captain Quinn is a native of this world and I do think should be able to recommend some ports where such might be located. Aerilon was a heavy exporter, after all, and I cannot believe every freight vessel was destroyed by the Cylons."

"Those were my thoughts exactly," Madilyn replies to Cidra. "But not knowing the planet or the types of ships that might be found, I was hesitant to recommend a plan of action to command before speaking with you. If Major Hahn were to locate a ship of say, sufficient capabilities - that is to say, able to keep up with Cerberus and the rest of the battlestar group, what are the chances that the deck crew could contribute to modifying said ship to a production-based role?"

Damon nods in agreement as Cidra speaks. To Madilyn, he answers, "Well, what I'd said to Rose was that I was behind the idea a hundred precent. If she were to draft up a proposal and plan, we could modify and outfit the ship, repair or refit as necessary, and also help out with the equipment necessary to turn it into a production plant." He sounds enthusiastic about the idea. "Logistics permitting, of course, and the engineers would have to hash out the fine details before we could get our plans in place, but that goes without saying."

Cidra nods to the pair of them. "I did ask her for specifications as well. On what she would require, both in terms of hydroponics equipment and space for the people here. Though perhaps I shall draft something more formal, in terms of what she might recommend for salvage. Let her know our interest in this is most serious. The Wing, certainly, is interested in picking up ship components anyway. So it…kills two birds with a shot? Is that the expression?"

"Really, it comes down to the size of the shot you're using and the quality of your aim," Madilyn confirms for Cidra. "I suspect that for any serious approval to be granted from CIC and the powers-that-be, it will require input from all sides. Technical requirements. Recon results and identification of craft that fit the requirements. Plans for hydroponics equipment. Security and crew requirements, when we're already stretched thin." It certainly is a tall order, Madilyn clearly thinks - the way she purses her lips together and looks just a bit worried say it, even if her words don't.

"I think that if we get everything lined up and ready to go, approval shouldn't be too much an issue," Damon says. Oh, optimists. "I suggested an in-house small-scale demonstration to prove that it's worth putting the time and manpower into. And the new vessel, once it's ready to be commissioned, could be primarily civilian-crewed and staffed with minimal military supervision, I think. Train them up, keep them employed, and free up some space on Cerberus as well. What are we up to now, killing five birds with one shot?"

"The feasibility of actually repairing and securing such a vessel is more to you both," Cidra says. "Me and mine shall find it, however, if such can be found. I can begin such searches presently as part of our overall salvage effort, come to it. As I did say, we need to secure usable aeronautical components anyhow, so we should be sifting in these locations as part of our normal course of duty."

"If you're familiar with such locales, and discover a potential candidate ship, please forward that information?" Madilyn asks of Cidra. "Even basic information like that could be useful, even if the exact condition of said ship can't be evaulated without more comprehensive scouting." As for the small-scale demonstration, there is that little hydroponics bay on Cerberus. "I do believe one of my marines has been working on a small garden or hydroponics setup here, though I've yet to see it first hand. I'll have to take a tour to see how growing plantlife in space works."

"I think I heard about that," Damon responds to Madilyn, frowning a bit. "I'm trying to remember if it was the same kind of deal, though. What Rose was talking about was specialized facilities and equipment for growing her algae things - and then converting them somehow into fuel and food. Of course, I'm not suggesting the whole ship be algae and algae alone, but I think that was the main point of it. Anyway - " he waves off his previous thought, "We'll all start planning our respective parts of this venture, yeah? Then as things progress, we can take a second look at everything. First, we need an actual usable ship before we can really start planning things out."

Cidra nods to Damon. "She did speak as if she would need larger facilities, or at least more scientific equipment, to do what she envisions. I should request specifics on that from her as well. I do understand she was attending university on this planet? Colchis, or something to that effect?"

"I'm afraid I don't remember the name of the university, if she even mentioned it in our conversation," Madilyn adds to the conversation. "This is sounding like an actual interdepartmental plan, in fact. So, as the Petty Officer says, step one is to find a usable ship, or ships. From there, I suspect the rest of the plan can take shape."

"Colchis. Colchis?" Damon's face quirks as he tries to remember. "Sounds weird but… sounds right at the same time. I've got a terrible memory for this kind of thing, you'll have to excuse me, Major. But she did say she went to university on Aerilon, aye." He fiddles with his toolbelt for a moment, starting to get lost in thought. So many things to think of and plan… "I'll have another chat with her, as I'm sure we all will soon, to see if I can't get more details about the Deck end of things," he says at last. "And of course, anything that I think is relevant between departments, I'll pass on to both of you."

"My thought was there might be something remaining there that she could make use of for this," Cidra says. "And besides…she did seem to want to visit the place again." Was that sympathy from the Inscrutable CAG? Or even a hint of sentimentality? Blink and you'll miss it. She clears her throat. "Well, I can get to targeting our salvage efforts to look for such a vessel, at least. I shall get to it and forward you both whatever my planes do see. Also, if you have any among your crew familiar with the Aerilon landscape who might have suggestions upon where to look, or be willing to ride along and direct some in our searches, I would appreciate it greatly."

"Ah…yes, she mentioned that the university - and other public facilities for that matter - may still have usuable tomes of knowledge. That had slipped my mind until you just mentioned it. I think that may also be a useful avenue, if for no other reason than to increase the size of the ship's library, and provide the civilians with some more materials to read. The first step in developing a workforce is to educate the workforce." More books obviously are more conducive to more people learning. "Like yourselves, if I make any significant discoveries or breakthroughs, I'll be sure to let you know," Madilyn says, nodding to the two of them. "For the moment, however, it would seem that I have to learn about agricultural efforts currently being undertaken on this ship."

"And speaking of educating the workforce," Damon says, eyeing PO3 Timon teaching the young Crewman Carras not too far off from them, "I should terrorize the floor a bit more. I don't get to get dirty as much anymore, so I relish every moment of it now." He grins and puts his heels together with an easy movement. "Major Hahn, Major Cavanaugh. I'm sure we'll all be in communications with each other often. I'll be sure to canvas the Deck for any people familiar with Aerilon and send 'em your way. Sirs, by your leave…?"

"Libraries?" Cidra's face is touched with one of those bare hints of a smile. "I do look forward to this. Of course, Petty Officer. Major. I should be preparing for CAP soon, myself." And off she goes.

Conversation over, CAG and Deck Chief heading in their own directions, Madilyn too turns to go. Of course, she's got to cross the deck and up the ladders to the catwalks to get out of here, so up and out she goes.

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