Until I have time to write a more comprehensive tutorial, here instead is are pictorial examples of the way I construct a few different luminous materials.

Bussard Collectors

I constructed the Bussard collectors on my Ambassador-class starship. This method also works for impulse engines and starship deflectors like those found on the refit Constitution and Ambassador class.

The main thrust of this method is to create an actual object to emit the light that sits inside a colored cap. The cap filters the light while the internal object emits it and provides something real to show through the translucent cap.

Warp Grilles

While I ultimately modeled the warp grilles on my Ambassador, I slapped together a quick material to stand in for the warp grille while working on Coronado using all procedural methods.