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Tonberry
23-05-2009, 17:33
Space Marine shoulder pads are described as being 'auto reactive'. What exactly does this mean and is it a feature unique to the pads?

Threeshades
23-05-2009, 17:47
Space Marine shoulder pads are described as being 'auto reactive'. What exactly does this mean and is it a feature unique to the pads?

I'd say its meant to mean, that the shoulder pads adjust their position automatically to fit with any arm position. Unlike any other parts the shoulder pads are the only part of the armour that has to be flexible but can't be consciously controlled like any of the wearer's body parts.

If not that, it's technobabble.

Maidel
23-05-2009, 17:48
Im pretty certain its to do with defense - like reactive armour on modern tanks.

Thats how id always taken it - I could be wrong.

Threeshades
23-05-2009, 17:53
Im pretty certain its to do with defense - like reactive armour on modern tanks.

Thats how id always taken it - I could be wrong.

If I recall correctly the last time i saw a model of a (real) tank with reactive armour, it was more or less the standard version with some bolt-on extra plating. Is that what it means? If so, it might fit, since the space marine models have smaller shoulder pads under their huge half-domes

Iuris
23-05-2009, 18:06
It probably means that they automatically follow the motions of the arm.

Still doesn't make them realistic - they are just way too big to allow any real range of motion...

Iuris
23-05-2009, 18:07
Re: reactive armor on modern tanks:

The reactive armor is a few slabs of EXPLOSIVES strapped onto the tank. I'm not kidding.

Threeshades
23-05-2009, 18:27
Re: reactive armor on modern tanks:

The reactive armor is a few slabs of EXPLOSIVES strapped onto the tank. I'm not kidding.

Just checked it on Wikipedia. That's only half true. Not all Reactive armour is explosive.


An element of explosive reactive armour consists of a sheet or slab of high explosive sandwiched between two plates, typically metal, called the reactive or dynamic elements. On attack by a penetrating weapon, the explosive detonates, forcibly driving the metal plates apart to damage the penetrator. Against a shaped charge, the projected plates disrupt the metallic jet penetrator, effectively providing a greater path-length of material to be penetrated. Against a long rod penetrator, the projected plates serve to deflect and break up the rod.


NERA and NxRA operate similarly to explosive reactive armour, but without the explosive liner. Two metal plates sandwich an inert liner, such as rubber.[1] When struck by a shaped charge's metal jet, some of the impact energy is dissipated into the inert liner layer, and the resulting high pressure causes a localized bending or bulging of the plates in the area of the impact. As the plates bulge, the point of jet impact shifts with the plate bulging, increasing the effective thickness of the armour. This is almost the same as the second mechanism that explosive reactive armour uses, but it uses energy from the shaped charge jet rather than from explosives.[2]

Iuris
23-05-2009, 19:14
Yeah, models will differ, technologies will differ. The core idea is to disrupt the blast focusing effect of the HEAT shaped charge. Some alternative methods exist.

However, all of them are far from "bolt on extra plating".

TheBigBadWolf
23-05-2009, 19:24
It just means it moves the arm movements and also the head.

Like if a marine turns his head to the side, the shoulder pad will drop down to give him a clear view.

Threeshades
23-05-2009, 19:37
It just means it moves the arm movements and also the head.

Like if a marine turns his head to the side, the shoulder pad will drop down to give him a clear view.

perfect moment for the eldar ranger to pull the trigger. :D

Other wise pretty close to my first theory

Hrw-Amen
23-05-2009, 20:03
Perhaps it means both things, that the pads move or even somehow change shape to accomodate different poses and that they also have some kind of reactive armour element built into them.

I have to say that I assumed all power armour had some kind of reactive element built into it, just because that appears to be the kind of thing we get nowadays on vehicles so in another few thousand years that will just be normal and not very high tech at all. They probably don't mention it so much just because it is so normal that it barely warrants a mention.

PondaNagura
23-05-2009, 20:23
due to their bulky size and proportions, the shoulder pads [or shields since they're that large anyways] move to compensate any positional changes to keep the marine protected, but not hinder his movements. so if he were to life his arm up the shoulder pad would swing down and back so as not to clobber his cheek.

i could see the studded shoulder plates as possibly an ablative, but i think the later Mk variants since had improved the ceramite technologies so ablative armors were no longer as needed. any additional plating would probably slow down the servos some, and even then you'd be getting into artificed armor to compensate for the added weight and power draw.

Nakor
23-05-2009, 20:44
do they also have auto-run-active legs and auto-punch-active arms? doesnt make sense to point out 'hey this bit works on its own'. it should stay out of the way so the marine has normal function. and yes having it move out of the way depending on the movement makes sense, but then because the marine controls the movement he is indirectly controlling the pad, so its not really so auto is it. logic tells me its reactive armor. look at the edges on the models, you can see its 2 layers with honeycomb type gaps .

Grimbad
23-05-2009, 21:58
I think the deathwatch index astartes mentioned that the armor automatically changes chapter and rank insignia and displeased if the feature is overridden, which is why deathwatch keep one chapter symbol.

Maidel
23-05-2009, 22:02
I think the deathwatch index astartes mentioned that the armor automatically changes chapter and rank insignia and displeased if the feature is overridden, which is why deathwatch keep one chapter symbol.

Well they screw that up in the artwork all the time with 'chipped' paint on all the chapter symbols....

biggreengribbly
23-05-2009, 22:07
I think the deathwatch index astartes mentioned that the armor automatically changes chapter and rank insignia and displeased if the feature is overridden, which is why deathwatch keep one chapter symbol.

What? Which white Dwarf would this be in? The 'Deathwatch Index Astartes' I read stated they Ritually repainted their entire armour Apart from the single shoulderpad to avoid offending it's machine-spirit. Nothing was mentioned about automatically redecorating armour getting snarky about not being used.

Vaulkhar
23-05-2009, 22:18
The armour doesn't recolour itself as far as I know. The whole 'armour's spirit gets annoyed' is mostly the 40k universe's way of rationalising what happens if you don't do proper maintenance (and they'd include a proper repaint in the rites, not knowing how much of a difference it wouldn't make).

There was a side story way back in the mists of time of an Ultramarine shoulder pad that got recycled by another chapter and repainted...whereupon it let all manner of rounds through until the new owners left it in Ultramarine colours.

spacewolf_sven
23-05-2009, 22:54
I think the deathwatch index astartes mentioned that the armor automatically changes chapter and rank insignia and displeased if the feature is overridden, which is why deathwatch keep one chapter symbol.

Whaat?
Power armour is self painting?

starlight
23-05-2009, 23:11
Let's be clear here...

A bunch of geeks at GW wrote it over 20 years ago because it sounded cool.

Don't try to read anything that isn't there, because there isn't anything there. :p

LexxBomb
24-05-2009, 02:11
The only Instance of armour reshaping itself to suit the wearer comes from the early days specificly 2 sources...
1. Draco put on a suit worn by a chaos marine and the armour changes shape to suit the nature of the new wearer becoming glorius and hoy looking... Inquisition war series
2. a Dark Angel Trapped in the Eye of Terror swears loyalty to Khorne and his armnour changes to suit its new status as being worn by a devotee of Khorne... Into the Maelstorm

Wolfblade670
24-05-2009, 04:05
I was always under the impression it was similar to reactive tank armor.

starlight
24-05-2009, 04:08
Except that there has never been any description of Marine Armour exploding outward in response to being hit by enemy fire... :eyebrows:

Hellebore
24-05-2009, 04:12
I'm pretty sure Angels of Darkness mentions this specifically when a marine turns to fire at something.

Something like "The autoreactive should pad shifted down as marine bob turned to fire his bolt pistol."

Hellebore

Firaxin
24-05-2009, 06:11
Except that there has never been any description of Marine Armour exploding outward in response to being hit by enemy fire... :eyebrows:
That is not the only way reactive armor works, as stated earlier in the thread.

Judging by the honeycomb nature between the two outer layers of the shoulder pad, I'm inclined to agree that it works similarly to reactive tank armor (the NERA/NxRA kind), though they probably use a more advanced material than rubber.

Of course, that doesn't mean it can't be both--a shoulder pad that moves out of the way would make sense, and is probably necessary for the marine to be able to sight down the barrel (of course, a marine probably wouldn't need to in most cases, as the gun can be linked into his HUD).

Hellebore
24-05-2009, 06:17
The other thing that I think provides a pyschological reason for their shoulder pads not to be the explosive/ablative kind is that they contain the heraldry and squad markings for a space marine.

Somehow I don't think marines would treat their sacred squad markings and chapter heraldry as ablative armour, considering just PAINTING it wrong is a no no.

Hellebore

Firaxin
24-05-2009, 06:33
Hmm. I wonder if there's a particular biological reason for the shoulders to be so well protected (other than that if your arm's removed at the shoulder, you can't fight with that arm anymore. But then, you wouldn't be able to really fight with that arm if it's taken off at the elbow, either.

I know there's a vulnerable artery there (particulary well known because medieval knights were easily dispatched if someone could wedge a knife into their vulnerable armpit) but that artery continues down the arm and a marine's physiology should rapidly stop the bleeding.

Hmm... Is it to better protect the neck from the sides? Because I'd imagine the Mk.7 Crusader armor with it's 360 degree neck brace (or whatever it is) would be better at that (and not restrict movement as much.

LexxBomb
24-05-2009, 07:03
the reason to protect the shulder with such a large peice of armour is that when firing at the enermy, you face them shoulder on so as to limit your exposed side. By that if you stand shoulder on your siloete (excuse spelling) is drasticly reduced making it probably 80% harder to be hit... now the reason the shouolder is so large is to provide a better form of protection by providing a large area that the incomming fire can 'Glance' off of.

Firaxin
24-05-2009, 07:14
*facepalm*
I should've known that.

Tonberry
24-05-2009, 07:31
Let's be clear here...

A bunch of geeks at GW wrote it over 20 years ago because it sounded cool.

Don't try to read anything that isn't there, because there isn't anything there. :p

I think this may be the closest to the truth :eyebrows:

Take the term 'shoulder pads', then apply two quasi-scientific terms to it, and eureka!

...

:confused:

imperial90
24-05-2009, 10:08
but it does do something, i remember that too, just like hellebore said, I honestly cant remember which novel i read it in, but ive read about the shoulder moving to accomadate the marine

borithan
24-05-2009, 10:41
Except that there has never been any description of Marine Armour exploding outward in response to being hit by enemy fire... :eyebrows:As far as I am aware it was initially described as "Auto-reactive armour" which meant... well, diddly squat as it was not explained. However, it had occasionally been mistaken for "Reactive Armour", like ERA. And now that has become official. The description of the Space Marines in one of the Imperial Armour books (the Tau one... Taros was it?) mentions that the shoulder pads do in fact have explosive reactive armour.

MajorWesJanson
24-05-2009, 11:25
Yeah, Taros. Page 48.

Iuris
24-05-2009, 12:39
That is not the only way reactive armor works, as stated earlier in the thread.

It is for most types of reactive armor. The newer non-explosive types do work in a different way, but to the outside, they would look the same - a big explosion, and after the smoke clears out, there's huge amount of outer armor missing, but no hole in the inner, "true", armor.

Also note one thing: reactive armor only works against one hit. Just one.

Of course, in real war, that one hit is q HUGE difference. Like the difference between dieing immediately and having a chance to drive into cover. Or firing off one more shot, which may kill the enemy first.

Now, for the space marines: "auto-reactive" is a nonsensical term. The reactive armor is still passive in nature - it gets hit and blows up/disperses the hit's focus by destroying itself. No need to be auto-reactive.

The term only makes sense if taken in context of those huge shoulder pads following the movements of the arm on their own, not moved by the arm. Especially since they are so cumbersome that half of the motion range they theoretically still allow would require an automatic mechanism to allow.


Just... thing about how you'd climb a cliff face, or throw a grenade, or grab a foe that jumps on your back. You'll see the problem.

starlight
24-05-2009, 13:18
That is not the only way reactive armor works, as stated earlier in the thread.

Judging by the honeycomb nature between the two outer layers of the shoulder pad, I'm inclined to agree that it works similarly to reactive tank armor (the NERA/NxRA kind), though they probably use a more advanced material than rubber.

Of course, that doesn't mean it can't be both--a shoulder pad that moves out of the way would make sense, and is probably necessary for the marine to be able to sight down the barrel (of course, a marine probably wouldn't need to in most cases, as the gun can be linked into his HUD).

Bear in mind that when the background was first written, that explosive reactive armour *was* the only way it worked. The NERA/NxRA type is more recent, so retroactively applying it doesn't fly well...

Marines don't have HUDs. The information from their various sensors (including the ones on their weapons) are fed directly into their brains via neural interface, bypassing the need for a HUD, Black Library authors who don't know their terminology and randomly throw cool sounding terms around notwithstanding. :p

LexxBomb
24-05-2009, 13:35
we know for a fact that marines have a HUD thanks to the Dark Crusade intro from Dawn of War

starlight
24-05-2009, 13:42
There are no *facts* in a work of fiction... :eyebrows: Only what various authors make up and we know that they often contradict each other. The DoW intro is done entirely because it looks cool, not because it reflects the established background. Sadly things like this are all to common with GW. :(

Threeshades
24-05-2009, 14:42
the reason to protect the shulder with such a large peice of armour is that when firing at the enermy, you face them shoulder on so as to limit your exposed side. By that if you stand shoulder on your siloete (excuse spelling) is drasticly reduced making it probably 80% harder to be hit... now the reason the shouolder is so large is to provide a better form of protection by providing a large area that the incomming fire can 'Glance' off of.


*facepalm*
I should've known that.

That's also why Tau have a big plate on their left shoulder. Left-handed tau are screwed though.



Also note one thing: reactive armor only works against one hit. Just one.

One Hit of sufficient firepower. Otherwise there would always be a buch of infantry sent forth to take out the reactive plating with their assault rifles before the AT gun/missile launcher/whatever takes a shot.

starlight
24-05-2009, 14:47
Which was a problem with early versions of Reactive Armour, and a big part of the reason for moving to non-explosive versions (danger to supporting infantry and logistics personnel being the other major reson). :)

borithan
24-05-2009, 16:16
It always seemed a bit odd that strapping extra explosives onto the armour actually meant it had a better chance of surviving...

Hellebore
24-05-2009, 16:20
It's a bit like a head on car crash. If both cars are of the same mass and travelling at the same speed they should run into each other and cancel out each other's forward momentum, stopping them on the spot (maybe with some bounce back).

Hellebore

LexxBomb
24-05-2009, 16:29
except that in the car crash you die

Threeshades
24-05-2009, 19:06
It always seemed a bit odd that strapping extra explosives onto the armour actually meant it had a better chance of surviving...


It's a bit like a head on car crash. If both cars are of the same mass and travelling at the same speed they should run into each other and cancel out each other's forward momentum, stopping them on the spot (maybe with some bounce back).

Hellebore

Well to crack tanks Solid shots are used, that pierce through the armor instead of exploding outside of it. If there's a layer of explosives on the armor, it would repel the solid shot hitting it, and thus reduces its impact. The explosion itself does little if any considerable damage to the vehicle armour.

Goruax
24-05-2009, 19:43
The Taros book explains it uses "micro-explosions" to reduce the impact and penetrative power of incoming shots.
I think this indicates that some of the "auto-reactive" nature is around the armour automatically reacting (ie, without Marine input) to incoming shots.

starlight
24-05-2009, 19:56
Which flies in the face of long established background maintaining that defiling the heraldry of the armour is offensive to it's spirit... :eyebrows:

It sounds like BL authors are trying to make the toys of the 40K sound all shiny without paying attention to the simple premise that they aren't supposed to be.

Green Shoes
24-05-2009, 21:04
"Autoreactive - Pertaining to an immune response directed against the body's own tissues."

So we have an answer, and it is that the shoulderpads are intended to hold a marine back in his armor so his giant biceps don't explode out all over the place and slam into things. Seems pretty simple to me...

But I've always taken the term to refer to the shoulderpads reacting to the movements of the wearer. I'm sure that I've read the word in other works of sci-fi besides 40k and they always meant generally the same thing.

Goruax
24-05-2009, 21:40
Which flies in the face of long established background maintaining that defiling the heraldry of the armour is offensive to it's spirit... :eyebrows:

It sounds like BL authors are trying to make the toys of the 40K sound all shiny without paying attention to the simple premise that they aren't supposed to be.

Well, I wouldn't blame the BL authors for Forgeworld material TBH ;)

But regardless, I think with their advanced state of technology (even with techno-worship, the religiosity of it all and so forth, they still have a decent grasp of technology - new technologies are not just found for Marine armour, they are being actively developed) they quite possibly have developed tiny bomblets to be integrated into the pad.

And the iconography is gonna get somewhat damaged anyway, so a tiny fraction damaged to aid in the survival of the Marine (who should honour his wargear, repair it and redecorate it) is a small trade-off for smiting the buggers who would destroy it completely! :p

starlight
24-05-2009, 22:35
It's all BL's fault! :p It's BL Flu and it's spreading! :eek:

Tell you what, head over to the nearest Catholic Church and tell them you're going to *improve* their Icons...then imagine the Inquisition responding...with Bolters...

Marines *revere* their armour and there is very little advancement going on in the Imperium, especially on this level (revered icons, etc).

Goruax
24-05-2009, 23:05
I beg to differ - the Errant pattern is a very recent step and it changes a lot of establised features of the Imperaor and Corvus. Traditionalists are very "Mmmm....no thanks" but it is an ongoing field of research. Nothing insanely massive is done, but progressive research still goes on, especially within the Astartes - look at all the variant vehicles.

Land Raider - Crusader, Redeemer, Prometheus, Helios.
Land Speeder - Typhoon, Tornado, Tempest.
Vindicator - came out of a Rhino chasis fitted with a Thunderer Cannon and spawned the Vindicator.

Again, progressive steps, but these progressive steps over a fair while all amount to a slow but not crawling research.

starlight
24-05-2009, 23:34
I like it when they beg. :D


I disagree with the fundamental difference between the incidental and haphazard *research* that goes on in the Imperium and an active and focused plan of improvement. :)

The Tau have a culture of actual research, the Imperium has a history of haphazard and random discoveries based on emergent needs.

Goruax
24-05-2009, 23:47
The Imperium doesn't focus on overall improvement, but certain lines of technology are still advanced, eg Power Armour.

I agree the Imperium's approach is sporadic at the very best, but that's still progress. Stellar when you consider the rest of the Imperium.

Although, we get the whole stagnation line, but there are a fair few things which contradict this.

Green Shoes
25-05-2009, 02:00
I'd be willing to say the fastest R&D in the Imperium happens within the Space marines, although its not saying much. Of the more technically-minded chapters (Iron Hands, Salamanders, etc.) they are also not exactly as religiously fanatical about their tech as the AdMech. While not much can be expected from a Space Marine chapter in the way of new materials and totally new vehicles or w/e, they probably have a much higher amount of practical improvements to equipment like certain curvature of armor or things like the armored collars on Mk.VIII armor, as well as different patterns of bolters, as there are sure to be extras around and a Techmarine can't be busy all the time.

There is probably a similar amount of practicality demanding changes to equipment amongst the Imperial Guard too. From all of the fluff I've read the Guard are presented as being religious about their equipment only through fear of reprisal and lack of knowledge. In between campaigns the average IG soldier probably has a lot of time on his hands, and all it takes is one curious Guardsman to fiddle with his lasgun to figure out what makes them shoot faster or harder or farther.

starlight
25-05-2009, 02:21
And one suspicious (is there any other kind) Commissar seeing the fiddling...:eyebrows: and :eek: followed by :skull:


Yes certain small groups will be advancing in small ways (Salamanders, Mentors, parts of the Inquisition, etc), but the Imperium as a whole...? Nope. In addition, some Imperial groups will see this advancement as heresy... :(

That's why my Legio Phoenix Templars are primarily Salamander Successors. :D

borithan
25-05-2009, 12:49
Well to crack tanks Solid shots are used, that pierce through the armor instead of exploding outside of it. If there's a layer of explosives on the armor, it would repel the solid shot hitting it, and thus reduces its impact. The explosion itself does little if any considerable damage to the vehicle armour.Oh, no, I know why ERA is used, just I found the idea odd.

Oh, and it actually has very little effect on solid shots. It is when HEAT (High Explosive Anti-Tank) is used, which generates a jet of superheated gas, fragments, and, in some more modern cases, even plasma, to punch through the armour. The ERA, when hit by this jet, explodes, disrupting it and severely reduces its penetrative power. Solid shots just knife through it like it isn't really there. There is some more modern add-on armour that do effect solid penetrators, but by very different means entirely.

Vaulkhar
25-05-2009, 17:31
And one suspicious (is there any other kind) Commissar seeing the fiddling...:eyebrows: and :eek: followed by :skull:


That's if he's lucky. If the cogboys see it: :wtf:->:eek:->:chrome: