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Replicators are an offshoot technology of the Transporter. While the use of the replicators dramatically reduces need to carry and store foodstuffs and spare parts. The primary limiting factor is the energy cost of molecular synthesis verse the cost of carrying an object on board the ship. In the case of foodstuffs, the cost of maintaining a large volume of perishable supplies becomes prohibitive, especially when the cost of preparation is included. Also, the savings in the overall mass of the foodstuffs and the necessary equipment to store such perishable items for long periods of time. When high volume recycling is taken into account the use of replicators for foodstuffs allows the ship to operate for longer periods of time between the need to resupply.

When it comes to commonly used spare parts and supplies it is more economical to store these parts within the ship. These items are used so frequently or in such numbers that the power needs to replicate replacement parts would constitute a significant drain on the ships resources. Also, certain critical spares and consumables are maintained for possible use during alert situations when power for replication systems may be severely restricted of otherwise unavailable. In the case of parts that may be rarely required it would be more economically viable to replicate these parts rather than take up valuable storage space.

Each item in the inventory of the replicator system has a corresponding data file storing transformational matrix data. Due to the massive amount of computer memory required to store data on even the simplest object, it is impossible to record each molecule individually. Instead, extensive data compression and averaging techniques are used. Such techniques reduce memory storage required for molecular patterns by factors approaching 2.7 X 109 . The resulting single-bit inaccuracies do not significantly impact the quality of most reproducible objects, but preclude the use of replicator technology to recreate living objects.

There are two major types of replicators in use the Food Replicators and Industrial Replicators. Both types of replicators operate in the same way with only minor differences between the two systems.

Replicator Components:

Raw Materials Storage:

The raw material for the replicators are stored in storage tanks constructed from six alternating layers of duranium and low density expanded ceramic-polymer composites. These storage tanks are connected via a magnetic peristaltic supply conduit to a distribution manifold. The distribution manifold is composed duranium tritanide and housed magnetically secured valves that can be opened and closed to direct the raw material to the desired location wither that is another storage tank or to the phase transition coil camber for processing.

Phase Transition Coil Camber:

The phase transition coil camber housed the phase transition coils. The coil are wide band quark manipulation field devices that accomplish the actual dematerialization and materialization of the raw material and the requested item. This is done by partially decoupling the binding energy between subatomic particles during the dematerialization and ensure the binding energy is recoupled during the materialization process. The coil within the camber is tuned to molecular resolution. An array of coil cambers is connected to the distribution manifold via supply conduits. This camber array allows the system to handle requests from multiple replicator terminals at the same time without any notable lag time between the request is made of the system and the requested item is delivered. The camber array is then connected to the replicator thermals in the system by a network of wave guide conduits that direct the matter stream to the requesting terminal.

Replicator Terminal:

When an item is requested at a replicator terminal the control processor within the terminal requested the transformation data packet from the main computer core also, the required amount of matter is requested from the storage tanks. The control processor is a bank of twenty-six isolinear chips. In ships with bio neural gel packs supported computer system a bio neural gel pack is also part of the processor and is the primary operating component of the processor with the isolinear chips acting as a back up to the gel pack.

Once the matter stream arrives at the requesting terminal the matter stream enters the molecular transformational tank where the quantum geometry transformational matrix is used to generate a transformational field that is applied to the matter stream to conform to the digitally stored molecular pattern matrix. The transformed matter stream is then passed into a second phase transition coil chamber built into replicator terminal where the matter stream is rematerialized into the requested item for use