Previous Next

The Simple Matter of the Unresponsive Diagnostic Sensor

Posted on 30 May 2016 @ 5:22pm by Lieutenant Commander Jiang-Chao Xiao

Mission: Outbreak
Location: Junction 12E-5
Timeline: MD 10

"I haven't been in a Jefferies tube in a while. Didn't miss it," he muttered, knowing no one was around to hear him. Though Xiao didn't suffer from claustrophobia, he had never been that comfortable maneuvering in the crawl spaces of ships.

Jiang-Chao had volunteered for this. With the medical situation on the ship thinning out the number of able-bodied crew, JC had pitched in as much as he could. He wasn't an engineer, but he had enough technical skill to deal with a faulty diagnostic sensor.

If only it wasn't so inaccessible, he thought.

He continued down the ladder until he came to the right junction. He set down his toolkit and knelt in front of the panel, behind which the offending sensor lay. Once he'd removed the access panel, Jiang-Chao pulled out his tricorder to scan the circuitry before him. The problematic sensor had been discovered during a diagnostic of the EPS relays onboard. When this sensor hadn't reported back about it's assigned relay, JC had decided to check it out personally.

Typical procedure called for the sensor to be physically inspected after a tricorder scan. JC reached in and pulled the sensor from it's housing. He held it up between his fingers; the sensor was about 5 centimeters long on each of it's four edges and 2 centimeters thick. "Looks fine," he said, turning the chip over in his hand. The external casing was undamaged. There were no visible indication that it was broken. With one hand, he reached into the toolkit and pulled out a testing unit. The Asian pilot slid the sensor's connector into the tester. He activated the testing unit and watched the small readout for results. When the unit reported that the sensor wasn't responding, JC checked to make sure that the sensor was fully inserted in the connector slot. It was. Then he rebooted the testing unit.

For a second time, the tester said that the sensor wasn't responding.

"Time for a replacement then," Xiao said aloud.

He pocketed the sensor before pulling a new one out from the toolkit. He plugged it into the proper socket and scanned it with his tricorder.

"Still not working. Maybe it's the socket and not the sensor," he theorized.

Pulling the new sensor from the board connector, Jiang-Chao grabbed another tool from the kit. As he touched the tip of the power tester to the sensor socket, a tone sounded signifying that the connector was without power.

His hand went into the toolkit again, this time it emerged with a micro power tap and shunt. With it, he could reroute the minimal amount of power the sensor would need, taking it from the local power node. With the help of the tricorder, he located the proper power relay, tapped into it, and shunted just a little bit of the power flow to the sensor connector. He reinstalled the diagnostic sensor, pressing it firmly into the socket. As he did this, he felt a small jolt of energy in his fingers.

"Shit," he exclaimed, pulling his hand back. The pain wasn't that bad, but the shock had surprised him.

He examined the micro power shunt to make sure it was set up correctly. Both visual inspection and tricorder scans showed it to be fine. He turned the tricorder on the diagnostic sensor. It was now operating on spec. Satisfied, Xiao packed up the toolkit and grabbed the access panel to replace it.

That was when his power tap blew. The force of the explosion caught the broadside of the panel covering, pushing JC back against the bulkhead. Momentarily dazed, Jiang-Chao took a moment to clear his head. He moved back towards the still-open panel and saw that the fire suppression system had activated to contain the power relay.

"Xiao to Engineering," he said after touching his communicator, "I'm in junction 12E-5. I've got a little problem here..." Before he could continue, the fire suppression field blinked off and a secondary explosion occurred, this time a piece of shrapnel lodged in JC's chest. It was small, and it hurt a lot, but it appeared to not be fatal.

"Xiao to Sickbay. Medical emergency in junction 12E-5. I've..."

The metal fragment that was now stuck in his chest was struck by an electrical bolt from the power relay. It was brief, but Jiang-Chao could feel pain in every part of his body.

Then he felt nothing and dropped to the deck.


Previous Next