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Old 05-31-2011, 11:25 PM   #1
Join Date: Dec 2008
Default Orichalcum Universe: Machines, Vehicles, Robots, etc...

Since I'm planning to post some designs and details for some of the robots, machines, vehicles, and other devices used in my Orichalcum Universe, I decided it would work best to put them all in a single thread and link to it as seemed appropriate.

For more about the Orichalcum Universe, see here:


Veltak Exopod Model 1

The Veltak Mark One Exopod is a cyborg support system
and combat unit designed with basically only two purposes
in mind:

1. Sustain the life of the 'pilot'.
2. Make the pilot an effective and versatile combat unit
in most situations.

The term 'pilot' is actually something of a misnomer,
the actual Veltak is a Thalerigen creature, bred and
genetically engineered to serve as a pilot, or more
precisely as a living control module, for the exopod.
The pilot is completely sustained by the life-support
system of the exopod, and normally will never emerge
from the machine through its lifetime. The life-support
system provides nutrients, water, survivable temperatures,
protection from radiation and shock, and everything else
the 'pilot' requires. Indeed, the pilot is surgically
fused with the control system and life-support system
of the exopod, and can not voluntarily emerge from it.

(The few Homosapients who have ever seen a Veltak outside
its exopod almost universally describe its appearance as
looking like a translucent, fleshy 'worm' form about one
and a half meters long and ten centimeters in diameter,
with internal organs dimly visible through the strange
white/transparent integument.)

Though physically quite frail, the Veltak 'pilot' is
psychically powerful. Indeed, this is part of the
reason for the physical frailty, these creatures have
been so heavily bred and mutated for psionic ability
that their other faculties and abilities have suffered
in consequence. The exopod is designed to make up
these lacks, and for the purposes of the Veltak, it does.
The Veltak are so closely associated with their exopods
that many Homosapients mistake the exopod for the
creature, assuming it to be a robot, and this assessment
is not absolutely wrong. The fusion is so intimate that,
as noted above, the operator is more like a living control
component of the exopod than a separate living entity.

Even then, the lines blur. The central computer of the
exopod, for example, though a separate device than the
pilot, is itself a biocomputer, a fusion of living tissues
akin to the Veltak and cybertronics...and the actual
Veltak has cybernetic/bionic components implanted into
its body when it is merged with its exopod shortly after
its 'birth'.

The exopod has a number of 'interface ports' built into
its frame, behind armor seals, which it can use to fully
integrate itself into larger machinery, in which case
the entire exopod acts as a 'control module' for the
larger machine. Such machines can include any number
of different vehicles or weapon platforms.

The Veltak exopod (in its basic form, specialized models
do exist) is built around a fission-rocket engine of
advances design, which can provide both thrust (via
heating hydrogen as a reaction mass) and energy, the
standard model can produce up to fifty thousand pounds of
thrust, and up to 17,500 kilowatts of energy, or both
(the reaction can be throttled down to nearly nothing),
and the core has enough fuel to operate, with typical
usage, for many Terran years before requiring refueling.
(Note the distinction between fuel and reaction mass,
which must be replenished far more often.)

The exopod is equipped with ten arm-tentacles, made of
semi-flexible segments mounted on universal joints, these
can be reconfigured to serve either as walking limbs,
swimming limbs, or arms, and contain various specialized
manipulators and weapons as well, they can also be
reconfigured to serve as strikers able to do either
slicing or piercing damage in accordance with strength.

An intricate network of sophisticated psionic amplifiers
and psychotronic systemry is an integral part of the
entire exopod, enabling the alien psionic power of the
'pilot' to be harnessed and used in unusual ways. The
primary means of propulsion for an exopod, other than
its limbs, is a specialized amplifier that boosts and
mutates the psychokinetic power of the Veltak 'pilot',
combines it with the energy from the power core of
the exopod, and generates levitation/propulsive force
suitable for operating in vacuum, or most atmospheres
and liquid environments. (The rocket is used primarily
for short bursts of quick acceleration, or for achieving
orbital or escape velocity from a planetary surface in
combination with PK thrust.)

The psionic power of the pilot can also be combined with the psychotronics of the exopod and the energy of the power
core to produce a protective barrier-field around the
exopod, making it very difficult either to hit or damage
(PD 4, DR 1000).

The pilots primarily communicate with each other via a form of artificially augmented telepathy, with a range of hundreds
of thousands of miles (or more if boosted and relayed).
They do, however, have radio and laser communication
facilities to communicate with telepathy is interfered
with, or to communicate with other life-forms, and there
are standard systems built into the exopod to communicate
with beings who normally use sound or light or other
means of communication (when the Veltak bother).

The Veltak exopod is heavily armored, and armed with
two powerful infra-red lasers cannon, as well as being
equipped with the necessary mounts to carry various
types of missiles and other weaponry. In addition, the
retractable 'arm/tentacles' can be used to operate
separate machinery, and the interface points enable
the entire exopod to dock with and operate heavier
equipment with more powerful weaponry. The outer
surfaces of an exopod can be heated rapidly to as much
as five hundred degrees F, or made to vibrate at an
enormous rate for a short time.

A Veltak exopod can operate efficiently underwater,
including at far greater depths than its apparent
crush depth, because it can use its psychokinetic
screen to resist the pressures. They are temperature
resistant across a greater range of temperatures than
would normally occur on Earth (broadly, from about
-200 F to up to +1000 F indefinitely).

To Be Continued...

Last edited by Johnny1A.2; 05-31-2011 at 11:29 PM.
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Old 05-31-2011, 11:43 PM   #2
Join Date: Dec 2008
Default Re: Orichalcum Universe: Machines, Vehicles, Robots, etc...


Crew: 1 total

Subassemblies: Vehicle +6, Body +6, 2xWeapon Turret -2, 10xManipulator/Support Limb -3.

P&P: two 360,000-kWs rechargeable power cells, 5,000 gal
hydrogen (fire 13), 50,000 lbs. thrust basic forced-fission
rocket - 1 (vectored thrust, Isp 6,207, delta-V ~6
miles/sec [rocket alone]; no access space).

Fuel: 5,000 gal hydrogen (fire 13), two 5,000 gal self-
sealing ultralight fuel tanks (fire modifier -1).

Occupancy: battlesuit body control, 1-man total life
support system.

Armor F RL B T U
Body 4/250 4/250 4/250 4/250 4/250
Manipulator/Support Limb 4/100 4/100 4/100 4/100 4/100

Weaponry Malf Type Damage SS Acc 1/2D yds Max yds RoF TL
500mm integral missile launching tube - Cr 0d 11 0 0 0 1/25 10
IR laser Ver. Imp. 6dx5 20 22 7,900(x10) 24,000(x10) 4 10

Body: integral automed; microframe AI computer (complexity
8; genius, hardened, very high capacity, robot brain,
biocomputer, semi-volitional, IQ 8); surgical control
interface; very long range laser communicator (500,000-
mile range; blue-green laser); long range radio
communicator (500,000-mile range; tight beam, direction
finder); inertial navigation system; chemical sensor
array; advanced radiation detector; ranging sound
detector (sound level 10); PESA (scan 21, 50-mile
range); AESA (scan 21, 50-mile range); active sonar
system (15-mile range; active/passive); multispectral
(UV/IR) searchlight (3-mile range); ten 500mm muzzle-
loader integral missile launching tubes; six 100 lbs.
unloaded hard points; liquid crystal skin (-2 spotting
modifier); infrared jammer (4.5-mile range, jammer
rating 5); deceptive jammer (jammer rating 8); chaff
distraction discharger.

Weapon Turret: 1,500-kJ IR laser (normal range; compact).

Manipulator/Support Limb: arm motor (ST:100, retractable,
striker, micromanipulator).

Size: Dimensions variable, exopod partly reconfigurable
Payload: 3,004 lbs. Lwt: 19,559 lbs. Volume: 3,677 cf
HT: 13 HP: 1,800 [Body], 6 each [2x Weapon Turret], 6
each [10x Manipulator/Support Limb].

Ground Performance: Top Speed (walking) 35 mph

Water Performance: Top Speed (swimming on limbs) 15 mph,
PK drive 80 mph

Underwater Performance: Top Speed (swimming) 10 mph,
PK drive 25 mph, Test Depth 55 yds, Crush Depth 110 yds.

Air Performance (rocket): Motive Thrust 50,000 lbs.,
Stall Speed 0 mph, Top Speed 610 mph, Terminal Velocity
381 mph, Glide Speed 152 mph, Glide Ratio 0.607:1,
aAccel 50 mph/s, aMR 2.5, aSR 5, aDecel 10 mph/s.

Air Performance (PK drive): Stall Speed 0 mph, Top
Speed 2000 mph, Terminal Velocity 381 mph, Glide
Speed 152 mph, Glide Ratio 0.607:1, aAccel 250 mph/s,
aMR 2.5, aSR 5, aDecel 10 mph/s.

Space Performance: sAccel: 2.56 G / 3.02 G (empty),
sDecel: 2.56 G, sMR: 2.56.

Design Notes:
TL10 robotic biomechanical medium frame very expensive
materials [Vehicle].
DR 250 laminate [Body].
DR 100 advanced laminate [10x Manipulator/Support Limb].
Operating Duration (reaction mass for rocket): 12 M.
Vehicle Features: computerized controls, computerized diving
controls, self-sealed, ruggedized, waterproofed, Fair
streamlining, finely made.
Water Features: no lines, flotation.
Underwater Features: submersible.
Weapon Turret: limited rotation.
Manipulator/Support Limb: retractable.
Volume: 3,673 cf [Body]

Last edited by Johnny1A.2; 05-31-2011 at 11:46 PM.
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Old 01-01-2012, 11:39 AM   #3
Join Date: Dec 2008
Default Re: Orichalcum Universe: Machines, Vehicles, Robots, etc...


In the Orichalcum Universe, there are multiple ways that the limit of light-speed
can be evaded. One such is the natural network of 'hyperconduits' that stretches
across the Universe, a legacy of the creation of the Universe itself. This natural
network came into existence as a side-effect of the first expansion of spacetime,
and reaches back and forth across the Universe, providing a natural highway for
travel over almost in theory. As a wag once observed, he wanted to
move to Theory because everything works there.

In practice, using the network is rather challenging, and it has certain limits that
one must operate within even if can be accessed.

A ‘hyperconduit’ is the connecting pathway through hyperspace that connects a
pair of ‘hyperpoints’ in normal spacetime. A hyperpoint is not really a point, but
rather a spherical volume of space, of varying size. Under the right conditions, a
material object in a hyperpoint volume can transfer to a matching hyperpoint
volume in another part of the Universe, though how long this requires depends on
the point of view of the observer.

Such voyages are always instantaneous (or rather, they occur over one instance
of the Planck time) as measured by the observer making the transfer. From
the point of view of the outside universe, matters are somewhat more complex.
Also, conditions have to be just right for the transfer to occur at all, which means
that a would-be traveller who lacks the patience to wait for such a moment must
be able to make the right conditions happen intentionally. This can be done, but
requires considerable amounts of energy and some specialized equipment.

Still, it is generally seen as worth doing, because the energy necessary to use the
hyperconduits is only necessary to initiate the transfer. The hyperconduit
network itself is a reservoir of kinetic energy and momentum that permits travel
across enormous distances and arrival ‘for free’. The hyperpoints themselves
move in response to such transfers to balance out the momentum changes, and
can absorb or shed energy to provide necessary velocity changes. The capacity
is not infinite, but is sufficient to make most journeys easily possible, if one has
found a hyperpoint that leads conveniently close to where one wishes to be, and
has the necessary knowledge and resources to activate that pathway.

Hyperpoints have no material structure (at least in this universe) and contain no
matter as such, but they do have mass, though they also have a tendency to be
repelled by mass as well, this is a separate force that keeps hyperpoints well out
from stars and planets. They also have a tendency to be drawn toward each
other as well, so hyperpoints tend to cluster. Thus, as a matter of probability, a
given hyperpath is more likely than not to arrive near the terminus of further
hyperconduits. However, this is only a good probability, not a certainty.

Every hyperconduit has an ‘order’. This is a number that determines how swift
a transfer along its length seems to be, from the point of view of the Universe as
opposed to the traveler. The number taken to its own exponent determines the
multiple of ‘c’ that the conduit offers. The higher the order, the fewer conduits
display it, over half of all hyperconduits are ‘first order’, meaning that a transfer
along it seems to occur at the velocity of light, from the point of view of any
outside observe. (The traveler perceives the transfer as being instantaneous.)

A ‘second order’ hyperconduit will make the transfer as two to the second power
times the speed of light, or four times light-speed. A ‘third order’ hyperconduit
will make the transfer at three to the third power times the speed of light, or
twenty-seven times light-speed. This progression continues up the scale, with
the number of hyperpaths decreasing as the order of the pathways increases.

The order of a hyperconduit is innate and can not be changed, nor is there any
way to change the destination, a hyperconduit leads where it leads. There is
change in length from the motion of the hyperpoints, always slower than light,
in normal space, but that is slow enough as to not matter on a mortal scale.
Stability issues mean that no hyperpath is much less than about one hundred
light-years long, but there is no known upper limit to the possible length of a
hyperconduit. However, longer links do tend to be rarer than shorter links, and
intergalactic connections are much less common than intragalactic links.

A hyperconduit can only transfer objects up to a certain mass. Anything with a
mass greater than that limit simply will not transfer, no matter what. Attempting
to ‘jump’ too large a mass can have risks, because the energy that would have
triggered the transfer instead reappears in the workings of the mechanism, which
can produce results ranging from nuisance level to destruction of the vessel.

In appearance, a hyperpoint seems to be simply a volume of empty space. There
is nothing about it that will suggest to normal Homosapient senses that there is
anything unusual about that volume of space, unless something happens to arrive
or depart while the observer is observing. Some psionically talented individuals
with the appropriate extrasensory abilities can detect a hyperpoint, however.

Sensitive instrumentation can detect hyperpoints as well, and with the appropriate
skills the information derived from those devices can be used to calculate with a
high probability of success both the destination and ‘order’ of the hyperpath. It
is crucial to make no errors, however, because a mistake in using a hyperpath can
have very serious consequences for the traveler.

The actual hypertransfer itself is not dangerous, the jump either occurs or does
not occur. The risk lies elsewhere. A hypertransfer could take a traveler to some
dangerous location, for example. There is the aforementioned risk of trying to
transfer too much mass through a conduit, as well.

More subtly, a mistake about the ‘order’ of a hyperconduit can have very severe
temporal consequences. While the transfer always happens instantaneously as
seen by the traveler, the transfer always takes time as measured from outside.
A hypertransfer along a low-order conduit may well take hundreds or thousands
of years as measured from outside. Mistaking a low-order (or even a first order)
hyperconduit for a high-order link can displace a traveler in time by centuries or
millennia, depending on the length of the connection.

The mechanisms necessary to artificially activate a hyperpoint can take various
forms in engineering practice. The devices do not absolutely require the
use of orichalcum, but absent that substance the mechanisms must be far more
complex and require far more energy and far more bulk and volume to operate.
The expense of the orichalcum means that it is often more economically viable
to build a facility that remains in the hyperpoint and permits ships to make the
jump without the necessity of carrying the mechanisms themselves. This also
had the advantage of permitting larger, more massive supporting infrastructure.

A ship can carry onboard jump equipment, however, if the vessel is large
and powerful enough and the necessary economic resources are available. Such
devices are usually called ‘hyperkeys’ when carried aboard a vessel, or hyper-
gates if the mechanisms are installed in a facility that remains on-site.

Hypergates can only ‘activate’ a hyperconduit in one direction, of course. A
ship must either carry a hyperkey for the return trip (all hyperconduits are
potentially two-way) or there must be a hypergate on the other end of the link
in order for a round trip to occur.

A ship can make a transfer ‘quietly’ if the transfer happens because the conduit
opens up naturally. This is rare and uncontrolled, however. If a hyperconduit is
activated artificially, that energy manifests when the ship arrives as a burst of
electromagnetic radiation, i.e. light. In the same moment that the ship appears,
that activation energy appears as a pulse of light, fairly even across the spectrum.
This makes an arriving vessel very ‘visible’ and the more massive the vessel, the
more energy is radiated (because it takes greater energy to trigger the transfer).

Now for some specific examples.

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Old 01-01-2012, 12:44 PM   #4
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Default Re: Orichalcum Universe: Machines, Vehicles, Robots, etc...


GURPS SKILL: Hyperspatial Astrogation (M/VH, prereq: Physics (Hyperspace)-12, Astrophysics-12, Mathematics-14) (Special limit: Hyperspatial Astrogation skill can be no
higher than the lower of the three prerequisite skills)

This skill enables the astrogator to analyze a hyperpoint by means of instruments,
and use that data to calculate the most likely destination, mass limit, and order of
the hyperconduit. It can also be used to calculate where hyperpoints are likely to
exist by analyzing astronomical and astrophysical data gathered on a galactic scale,
and (with difficulty) where to find long-distance, high-order connections.

If the astrogator also possesses the esper talent that enables him or her to sense and
perceive hyperconduits, then he or she gets a +1 on all rolls with the Hyperspatial
Astrogation skill.

With the appropriate instruments (highly experimental at GURPS 3e TL9, mature
at GURPS 3e TL10), the volume of a hyperpoint can be determined directly, any
vehicle below the critical mass and with the right equipment can attempt to make
a hyperjump if it will fit entirely inside the hyperpoint volume. Attempting
to jump with any part of the vessel outside the hyperpoint will simply fail, though
there may be damage to the drive mechanisms as a side-effect.

When a new hyperpoint is first examined by an astrogator, the following procedure
ensues. The astrogator examines the data from the instrument scans of the new
hyperpoint. A minimum of six days of observation are recommended for good
data, for every day under six the astrogator suffers a -2 on every roll, for every
additional day the astrogator gets +1, up to an extra six days (for a maximum of
a +6 bonus). If the astrogator personally supervised the data collection, he or she
gets an additional +1 on all rolls to use the skill.

The data set will be good for up to seven days after it is collected, after that all rolls
based on it will be at -2 for each additional day.

The astrogator must spend at least eight hours analyzing the data to do anything
with it. For every additional two hours of analysis, there is a +1 bonus, for a
maximum of +3.

This permits an attempt to use the Hyperspatial Astrogation skill. If user does not
make the attempt immediately after the analysis, he or she must start the analysis
over again (since the details have changed with time).

Use of the H-Astrogation skill consists of three rolls. These rolls are to determine
the Mass Capacity, Destination, and Order of the pathway. The rolls should be
done in that order.

The first roll is success/fail. A successful roll against skill tells the astrogator the
maximum mass the hyperconduit will carry. A failure means that the Astrogator
underestimates it, so the link would carry more mass than the astrogator thinks,
a critical failure means he overestimates the mass (which could damage the
jump system in the jump attempt).

The second roll is to determine destination. On a success, the astrogator gets a
general idea of the location of the other end of the connection, that is, the broad
region of the galaxy where the connection goes, the better the success, the more
precise the result. A critical success gives the exact location to within a few
light-years or so. The longer the conduit, the higher the penalty on the roll for
this. On a failure the astrogator is wrong about the destination, the worse the
failure the more wrong s/he is. On a critical failure the actual destination is
somewhere Very Bad.

As a thumb rule guideline:

-1 for every five thousand light-years of distance, OR -5 if the link leads out of
the galaxy entirely. In the latter event, the most precision possible is to recognize
that the connection is extra-galactic, on a critical success the astrogator will
learn which galaxy it leads to (very probably a ‘near’ one).

(Connections very rarely lead to intergalactic space, for various reasons of the
physics of the network. Rarely is not never.)

The third roll, to determine the order, is vital because of the possibility of loss
in time (forward only). Underestimating the order is rarely worse than just a
nuisance, overestimating the order opens up the chance of being thrown many
hundreds or thousands of light-years into the future by the jump.

(If what is supposed to be a 1000 light-year, sixth-order conduit is actually a
first-order conduit, then the jump will take 1000 years from the POV of the
outside universe, rather than just a week or so! Either way it will still seem to
be instantaneous to the travelers.)

This roll is pass/fail, for the most part. On any success, the astrogator learns
the correct ‘order’ of the connection. On a failure, he or she is off by 1 or
more in the good direction, the link is faster than she thinks. Only a critical
failure opens the possibility of disaster. On a critical failure, the astrogator
gets a second roll, if this also is failure then the astrogator has made a major
error. The GM should determine how bad the error is, keeping in mind that
being thrown hundreds or thousands of years forward in time can be a literal
game-changer. If the second roll is a success, it means the astrogator discovers
s/he has bungled the calculation and can start over. If the astrogator has that
particular ESP faculty and skill that is useful for it, the ‘backup roll’ gets a +2

(The second chance is recommended because the consequences of a mistake on
this roll can potentially be so enormous.)

The GM can of course apply what penalties and bonuses for circumstances that
seem reasonable. Equipment quality, mental state of the astrogator, weird
external conditions, etc.

The hyperspatial astrogation skill can also be used to seek out unmapped new
hyperpoints. The user must have access to a large and extensive database of up
to date astronomical and astrophysical data for his galaxy, ideally collected with
GURPS TL10+ technology. (If the data were gathered at TL9, the roll is at -2.
At TL8 or TL7 the penalty is -4, it is impossible with data gathered below TL7).

If the data are less than complete for the galaxy, add an additional -2 to -6 as
seems appropriate.

For ex, using the Hyperspatial Astrogation skill with modern Earth’s data on
the Milky Way Galaxy would be at -4 for data gathered mostly at TL7, and
-5 for incompleteness, for a -9 penalty.

The astrogator must analyze the data, this time for a minimum of one year.
For every additional two months, up to 12 months, add +1.

The astrogator can then roll vs. his/her H-Astrogation skill, and on a success
he or she will determine regions of the galaxy where hyperpoints are likely
to cluster. The better the success, the more precise the locations that will be
successfully predicted. A critical success will determine very precise regions
and also a hint as to where high-order, long-range links will be found.

The high responsibility and demanding requirements of the skill mean that a
skilled hyperspatial astrogator can command a high price. If she or he has
that esper faculty that can aid in the work, this rises considerably.

To Be Continued...

ADDENDUM: The above figures for the work of a hyperastrogator all assume the
use of a fairly good computer and the appropriate software, otherwise the sheer
volume of calculation is prohibitive, by the time one had the answer the data
would all be far out of date.

Last edited by Johnny1A.2; 01-02-2012 at 10:45 PM.
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Old 01-01-2012, 01:32 PM   #5
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Default Re: Orichalcum Universe: Machines, Vehicles, Robots, etc...


The GM can determine the size of a hyperpoint randomly, by rolling 3d, this gives
the diameter of the hyperpoint in miles. Rare hyperpoints exist that are larger,
but probably should not be generated randomly. (Both ends of a given conduit are
always the same size.)

Roll 3d again, this gives the mass limit of the hyperconduit, in millions of metric
tons. About ten percent of the links will carry more, for those multiply that figure
by 1d. Note that the mass limit and volume limit are independent of each other, a
connection that might carry your mass might not admit your volume, or vice versa.

In order to make a jump, the ship inside the volume must be at rest with regard
to the hyperpoint
. It will arrive at the matching hyperpoint at rest with regard
to that hyperpoint. This is where the vast momentum/energy reservoir of the
is critically displayed, it can absorb or provide the necessary kinetic energy and
momentum for such transitions, the balance being provided by changes in the
motions of the total network of hyperpoints across the entire Universe. This can
be especially critical for very long passages.

For example, a ship jumping from Sol to the equivalent point on the opposite side
of the Milky Way would arrive at rest with the regard to the receiving hyperpoint
on that side, which is moving (more or less) with the local stars. If this was not
the case, if original motion was retained, the voyager would arrive moving at over
200 miles per second relative to the local stars, going the wrong way. Using the
hyperconduits, momentum is not an issue and the only energy necessary is that
needed to initiate the transfer, the network takes care of the rest itself.

This is even more critical for the occasional intergalactic passage, the differences
in gravitational potential energy, kinetic energy, and momentum can rapidly
become daunting over such distances.

For example, a hyperconduit linking the Milky Way and a galaxy a few billion
light-years away might well be bridging a redshift gap of tens of thousands of
miles per second
. (This is part of why such long-distance connections are so
very rare, in fact.) Yet the traveler even so still needs only provide the necessary
‘activation energy’, assuming he can find the hyperconduit in question.

(Note too that such a long conduit would be dangerously long even at ‘orders’
that are usually useful intragalactically, like five or six. A sixth order hyper-
link would enable one to cross the Milky Way from edge to edge in a bit over
two Terran years, as seen from the outside. A sixth-order connection to a
galaxy 1 billion light-years distant (not that far on a universal scale) would
use up over 21,000 years. (It would seem instantaneous to the traveler.)

Thus even the few hyperconnections that cross such distances still may not be
practically useful. The astrogator should double-check his figures before using
such a connection.

Note that in theory, there is another way the network can send you out of your
own time. If one end of a hyperconnection is very deep in a really steep gravity
well such as a neutron star or black hole, then the traveler will arrive in synch
with that locale, which means that he may find himself out of step with his own
time even if he was using a very fast hyperconduit. This is an improbable
situation, though, because only the most freakish conditions would let either end
of a connection be that deep in such a steep gravity well (or equivalently, let
either end such a connection be moving so close to the speed of light).

An exception to that exception: if a link existed to a galaxy so far away that
it’s redshift gap was near light-speed, then that could be an issue for time rate
when the traveler returned. But such a link would be fantastically rare and
probably of a low enough order to make the issue moot anyway.

(GM’s discretion, really.)

There is no way to send a message along a hyperconduit unless one sends a ship,
and ultimately the only way to determine if the calculations about a given hyper-
conduit are correct is to use it. Any ship carrying a hyperkey can try to make
such a trip, but for reasons of expense most such scouting operations are carried
out by relatively small vessels. Still, a large vessel with the right equipment can
engage in such scouting work, just as an aircraft carrier could be used for
carrying low-priority freight. It is just not the usual practice.

End Sidebar

Last edited by Johnny1A.2; 01-01-2012 at 01:52 PM.
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Old 01-01-2012, 09:16 PM   #6
Join Date: Dec 2008
Default Re: Orichalcum Universe: Machines, Vehicles, Robots, etc...

'Generic' Grand Fleet Basic Hyperscout Ship

This is an abstract version, a generalized assessment
of a Grand Fleet hyperscout. In practice Grand Fleet
makes use of dozens of models of hyperscout ship, each
different in detail, but broadly speaking most are very
similar to this one. It has a crew of 3, can carry up
to five, and can in theory operate with only one person
aboard, though this is risky and is considered to run
counter to standard operational doctrine.

It is not a huge vessel, but it is not as compact as it
could be. For reasons of economics, most of its thrust
derives from a relatively conventional fission-working
fluid rocket (though this incorporates a certain amount
of TL10 superscience as well, adding to efficiency and
keeping the exhaust from being radioactive). A larger
dimensionator could take the place of the rocket, providing
the entire thrust as well as the translight capacity of
the vehicle, but this would be enormously more expensive
because of the greater amount of orichalcum required,
thus making the ship more costly to build and far more
precious to risk, and hyperscouting work is inherently
risky. The fission rocket has the additional benefit of
providing a large and reliable supply of energy for other
purposes as well, serving as a power plant.

The fission rocket uses liquid hydrogen as its working
fluid, and carries an electrolysis system that can be
used to manufacture reaction mass from any available
supply or water or water ice. In an emergency, the rocket
could be used with some other, heavier liquids and
gases as reaction mass, but this places immense strain
on the system and will likely lead to damage if kept
over a long period, and performance falls by a large
margin when using anything except hydrogen.

The onboard main dimensionator is thus reserved for
operations in space, where it provides faster-than-light
capacity and thrust in translight mode, which the rocket
engine can not do. (A dimensionator and a rocket engine,
by their very nature, can not both operate at the same
time, because the exhaust of the rocket would not be
able to escape the drive-envelope of the dimensionator.)

In appearance the hyperscout would appear to most
Terrans as being almost 'retro', a vertically landing and
launching rocket-propelled spacecraft, like something
out of early 20th century science fiction movies.

The translight capacity of this ship is modest, it is
primarily designed to scout the hyperconduits, with the
ability to travel in the range of 25 to 75 light-years
from the emergence point of the hyperconduit. When
necessary, there are cryonic capsules permitting the
crew to make months-long voyages in suspension.

It is not designed for warfare, though it does carry 3
ultraviolet-band laser cannons.

Three retractable landing struts provide landing support,
The ship can float, or function underwater for brief periods,
but it is not by any stretch designed to serve as a submarine.
It is able to land and launch from shallow water, but this is
not standard doctrine and is somewhat dangerous.

Crew: 3 total.

Subassemblies: Vehicle +11, Body +11, 3xLanding Strut (Folding, Retractable) -4.

P&P: 360,000,000-kWs rechargeable general purpose ower cell, 10,000,000 gal hydrogen (fire 13), three 3,600,000-kWs rechargeable weapon-dedicated high-discharge power cells, 1,000,000 lbs standard dimensionator (Short term access; 6th order), 40,000,000 lbs. thrust basic forced-fission rocket (vectored thrust, Isp 6,207, delta-V ~20 miles/sec; short term access), major hyperkey.

NOTE: The weapon-dedicated power cells are specially designed
for fast discharge, and are linked to the laser cannon to provide
100 shots each at full charge.

Fuel: 10,000,000 gal self-sealing ultralight fuel tank (fire modifier -1), 10,000,000 gal hydrogen (fire 13).

Occupancy: normal command pilot station (bridge access, g-seat), normal copilot station (bridge access, g-seat), normal reconfigurable crew station (bridge access, g-seat), command cabin, dual occupancy cabin, galley, shower, normal toilet, 5-man full life support system, 1,500-cf cargo hold.

Armor F RL B T U
Body 4/200 4/200 4/200 4/200 4/200
Landing Strut (Folding, Retractable) 4/50 4/50 4/50 4/50 4/50

Weaponry Malf Type Damage SS Acc 1/2D yds Max yds RoF TL
UV laser cannon Ver. Imp. 6dx50 30 25 27,000(x50) 81,000(x50) 4* 10

EquipmentBody: 200-sf wardroom; operating room (table w/full stabilization); three cryonic capsules; three emergency support units; systemic range radio communicator (100,000,000,000-mile range; tight beam); extreme range laser communicator (10,000,000-mile range); short range ultracommunicator (0.2-AU); PESA (scan 35, 10,000-mile range); ISTA (scan 29, 1,000-AU range); AESA (scan 41, 100,000-mile range); ultrascanner (scan 11, 1-AU range); geophone (scan 17, 10-mile range); magnetic anomaly detector (scan 17, 10-mile range); advanced radiation detector; set of astronomical instruments; chemical sensor array; geology survey array; meteorology instrument; seismology package; high resolution planetary survey array; inertial navigation system; mainframe main computer (complexity 8; genius, hardened, very high capacity, neural net, robot brain); two microframe backup computers (complexity 6; hardened, neural net, robot brain); three 36,000-kJ UV laser cannons (long range; compact); radiation shielding (10,000 PF); radiation shielding (10,000 PF); 2-man airlock (shower); three multispectral searchlights (20-mile range, signal lamp shutter); complete mini-workshop; science lab; 20,000-gph fuel electrolysis system.

StatisticsSize: [LxWxH] 429 x 80 Payload: 5,830,600 lbs. Lwt: 14,227,308 lbs.
Volume: 2,464,098 cf Maint: 1.16 Hrs (82.4 man-hrs./day)

HT: 8 HP: 125,301 [Body], 0 each [3x Landing Strut (Folding, Retractable)].

Underwater Performance: Top Speed 0 mph, uAcc 0 mph/s, uDec 5 mph/s (5 mph/s), uMR 0.05, uSR 9, Draft 179 ft, Drag 287,315, Test Depth 8.18 yds, Crush Depth 16.4 yds.

Air Performance: Motive Thrust 40,000,000 lbs., Stall Speed 0 mph, Top Speed 1,660 mph, Terminal Velocity 987 mph, Glide Speed 395 mph, Glide Ratio 0.023:1, aAccel 60 mph/s, aMR 0.125, aSR 7, aDecel 0.5 mph/s.

Space Performance: sAccel: 2.81 G / 4.76 G (empty), sDecel: 2.81 G, sMR: 2.81.

Average Translight Velocity: 50c

Design Notes:
TL10 robotic medium frame very expensive materials [Vehicle].
TL10 DR 200 expensive laminate [Body].
TL10 DR 50 expensive laminate [3x Landing Strut (Folding, Retractable)].
Vehicle Features: computerized controls, self-sealed, ruggedized, waterproofed, no streamlining, finely made.
Body: total compartmentalization.
Landing Strut (Folding, Retractable): retractable.
Volume: 2,464,098 cf [Body], 0 cf [3x Landing Strut (Folding, Retractable)].
Area: 109,460 sf [Body].

Addendum: Obviously a 3-person crew is not a very practical complement for
planetary exploration. Normally, a hyperscout is used to scout the far end of
a hyperconduit, it has the capacity to travel beyond the far-end hyperpoint
and land on a suitable world, but for a planned exploration mission, either many
such ships would be sent, or the hyperscout would be followed by a larger
vessel with a more practical crew and resource complement.

Last edited by Johnny1A.2; 01-11-2012 at 10:19 PM.
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Old 01-02-2012, 02:09 AM   #7
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Join Date: Apr 2007
Default Re: Orichalcum Universe: Machines, Vehicles, Robots, etc...

For the love of the Great Ghu, tell me they look like this.

If you think an Apache can't tell right from wrong....wrong him, and see what happens.
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Old 01-02-2012, 06:08 PM   #8
Join Date: Dec 2008
Default Re: Orichalcum Universe: Machines, Vehicles, Robots, etc...

Originally Posted by Apache View Post
For the love of the Great Ghu, tell me they look like this.

Unfortunately, they would look somewhat more (in a loose way) like this.

There would be four radiator fins instead of two, and they would have other functions as well as radiating heat, but it would look loosely like that.
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Old 01-02-2012, 06:57 PM   #9
Join Date: May 2009
Location: In Rio de Janeiro, where it was cyberpunk before it was cool.
Default Re: Orichalcum Universe: Machines, Vehicles, Robots, etc...

I cant see the link =(
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Old 01-02-2012, 10:16 PM   #10
Join Date: Dec 2008
Default Re: Orichalcum Universe: Machines, Vehicles, Robots, etc...

Originally Posted by D10 View Post
I cant see the link =(
Try this:

It should give you the image.
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