If I recall correctly there seem to have been a number of occasions where people have been able to initiate a ship's transporter themselves and then get on the pad quickly enough to safely transport away.

Is the small delay which gives them enough time inherent to the transporter, or can they control this setting?

It usually seems that the transporter, when operated normally, starts to transport as soon as the operator engages it.

  • 1
    In TNG: Starship Mine, Picard has to press a bunch of buttons before running onto the platform. I'm guessing the transport normally starts as soon as you've slid the sliders otherwise.
    – Valorum
    Aug 30, 2020 at 19:53
  • @Valorum seems possible, though I imagine you also have to specify coordinates somehow. BTW, amazed at how fast you found that gif! Aug 30, 2020 at 20:08
  • I took it from another answer I posted; scifi.stackexchange.com/a/230503/20774
    – Valorum
    Aug 30, 2020 at 20:12
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    I think it's much more like operating on yourself. Theoretically possible, but not the sort of thing you'd want to do in anything other than an emergency
    – Valorum
    Aug 30, 2020 at 21:27
  • 2
    From the TNG era onwards the computer might not actually start the beaming sequence until it detects one or more people have stepped up onto the transporter pad Aug 30, 2020 at 22:09

1 Answer 1


One would presume that you could use it either way, press a button to transport immediately, or set a few seconds delay.

Any modern camera will have a similar function. It can take a photo as soon as you press the button, or you can set a delay timer, so that you can photograph yourself. Why wouldn't a 23rd century device have a similar function?

  • It is also worth noticing that you don't need to be on transporter pad for transporter to lock into you and teleport you.
    – jo1storm
    Aug 31, 2020 at 14:41

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