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Technology

Augmentation

The science of Bionic Augmentation is an ancient one, going back to the 20th century where a primitive device called a "Pacemaker" was attached to a human heart to regulate a patient's heartrate. The 21st century saw a great deal of experimentation, but it wasn't until the 23rd century that cybernetic augmentations started to be accepted as part of ordinary life. In the 27th century, life without augmentations is almost unthinkable and surveys show that roughly 80% of planetry populations and 95% of space-going populations have been augmented.

 

Augmentations are typically defined by their function and their class:

 

Different Functions of Cybernetic Augmentation
Cosmetic Certain augmentations are essentially consumer products, designed with minimal functionality but purchased primarily for aesthetic reasons. Such augs are influenced by changes in fashion, and tend to be short-lived.
Supplemental Designed to add new functionality, regarldess of appearance, these augmentations cause the most controversy. Essentially used to give humans abilities that do not come naturally, some governments have strict controls over what is legally acceptable. Supplemental Augs are commonly called "Enhancements" and used to improve strength, stamina and vision.
Surgical Augmentations which repair or replace damaged organic tissue are regarded as Surgical in nature, and are generally unopposed in most societies. Often, surgical augmentations will come with supplemental features (a cybernetic limb is likely to be stronger than an organic one).

 

Classes of Cybernetic Augmentations
Class A These augmentations are primarily external to the person's body, sitting on top of the skin or grafted onto it. Some class A augmentations may be readily removeable. Most "cosmetic" Augmentations fall into this class. Though many Class A augs are quite cheap, some can also be remarkably expensive.
Class B Class B Augs are both internal and external, partially replacing organic tissue but still obviously visible from the outside. The vast majority of enhancement augs fall into this class.
Class C Class C Augs are primarily or entirely internal, replacing organic tissue and organs. Many of the most advanced surgical augmentations are Class C.
Class D These augs completely replace a significant portion of a person's body with cybernetic equivalents. Typically, class D augs are used to replace lost or crippled limbs.

 

Jump Drive

Faster-than-light travel through space is achieved through a series of "jumps", inititated by a ship's "Jump Drive".

The Jump Drive generates a pocket of narya particles which temporarily shift a vessel into a hyperspacial dimension commonly known as "riftspace". The riftspace manifold is relative to, but dimensionally distinct from the space-time continuum. An object in riftspace acts as though the speed of light and gravitational constant of the universe were fluid and changeable. The result is that a vessel can travel at an unremarkable speed relative to riftspace, but appear to be travelling at many times the speed of light relative to the spacetime continuum. Technically speaking, the vessel is not moving "faster-than-light" because, as far as it is concerned, light is moving even faster.

 

Though a vessel travelling through riftspace is affected by spacetime, the vessel is effectively insubstantial and highly maleable. As a result , without precise calculations, a vessel can easily be smeared across space by any substantial gravitic mass (such as a star) - such a vessel would return to normal space as a cloud of dust or gas.

 

The calculations required for each jump can take minutes or hours, depending on the complexity of the jump. Jumping without properly calculating a course is tantamount to suicide. For safety and efficiency reasons, the standard practice is to calculate inter-stellar jumps from one system's edge to another, and then to calculate a second sub-system jump to reach to desire planet or station.

 

The Planar Positioning System (PPS)

Since there are no positional absolutes in space, it is necessary for ships to map their position on a hypothetical plane, relative to an arbitary reference point. The most common reference points are:

 

  • Solar - relative to the nearest sun. This is the default reference point for ships within a star system, but not near any planets or stations
  • Planetary - relative to the nearest planet. Default when a planet is nearby.
  • Stationary - relative to the nearest station or immobile construct. Default when near a station.
  • Command - relative to the commanding ship. Default when in deep space, between systems.
  • Home - relative to a ship's point of origin. Default for carrier-based fighters.