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 The Worlds of Laura E. Reeve

 

Solar Systems & Ships in Minoan Space

Here's descriptions of solar systems, to include government(s) and people(s) within each solar system. I've also provided information about ships, military and otherwise, that have been mentioned in the Major Ariane Kedros Novels. Upcoming features planned for this page are images and ship specifications.

 

Additional Information on Minoan Space

Solar Systems: Consortium of Autonomist Worlds (CAW)

Hellas:  One of the earliest solar systems colonized by humans, once they could use the Minoan convergence zone called Zakros. The Hellas solar system was accessed from the Zakros buoy and was first opened in 2029, using ships, equipments, and crews that would eventually form the Generational Ship Lines. The Hellas solar system is now the seat of power for the Consortium. The Hellas solar system contains the following:

A 'rock' leaves Alexandria Port for Hellas Prime

  • Hellas Prime is the biggest habitable planet in the system, and one of the six prime worlds of the Consortium. Largest port of entry is Port Alexandria, above the city of Alexandria. From the Port, one can go to the space elevator and take a safe, sedate, and long trip to the surface. If one needs to get to the surface of Hellas Prime quickly, there's always the Reuseable Re-entry Vehicle (RRV), in this case a Reuseable Re-entry Orbital Capsule (RROC-110-4M, which is shown in the picture). This mode of getting to the surface is called "taking a rock," because the RRV drops like a rock and when it's in dense enough atmosphere, it'll deploy its wings out to become aerodynamic (that's if you're not on an old one with weakened wings---good luck).
  • Hellas Daughter is a large habitated moon that orbits Hellas Prime, and is home to an Armed Forces (AFCAW) weapons development and testing complex, as well as the headquarters of the 1st Strategic Systems Wing.
  • Karthage Point is an AFCAW space habitat. It stays within the L2 stability point provided by Hellas Prime and its moon, Hellas Daughter (staying "outside" the planet and moon).
  • Athens Point is one of the largest commercial space habitats in CAW. It keeps station within the stable L4 (triangular Trojan point) area provided by Hellas Prime and its sun.

Pelagos:  Although this system doesn't contain a prime world, it had strategic importance during the war because it's the location of several major shipyards and the headquarters of Pelagos Spaceframes, Inc. The only natural celestial body that's (barely) habitable is the planet Pelagos Major. This system is also the location of AFCAW's 7th Strategic Systems Wing.

Solar Systems: Terran League (a.k.a. Terran Expansion League, TerraXL)

Sol:  Where mankind might still be confined, if the Minoans hadn't offered faster-than-light (FTL) navigation after the Hellenic Alliance landed on the moon in the late twentieth century. The twentifirst century brought the Colonization Period, the Yellowstone Extinction Event, the establishment of the Terran Expansion League, Colony/CAW Independence, and the inter-system wars (see timeline). Once the League was organized, this solar system was put under Overlord Three's control. Significant habitation centers still exist within this solar system:

  • Mars now has larger population centers than the "mother planet," Terra. The largest on the planet's surface is the shielded city of Roma Rosa, and ports of entry Mars Orbital One/Two have similar populations to Athens Point, one of the largest CAW habitats.
  • On the Terran surface, the human population that can live in the biomes is small, because protected and relocated native species (flora and fauna other than human) have priority. Living on the Terran surface requires approval at the Overlord staff level, and the successful applicant must prove useful to the rehabilitation of the planet or the operation of the artificial biomes.
  • The Terran moon is home to about four million people.
  • Habitats such as New Beijing, Refúgio Novo, Progressive Station, etc., are sprinkled in the inner solar system near Mars and Terra. Manufacturing and mining centers are located on Titan (one of Saturn's moons) and around Jupiter.

Teller's Colony:  A rather abysmal place without any temperate planets with water. Protected structures have been built on a planet that has no breathable atmosphere and no Gaian-based life, with a station above with docking facilities that can support class A ships (large ships with massive power and environmental support needs). The Terran Space Forces (TSF) has located a large weapon arsenal, second only to the one in the Sol system, here at Teller's Colony.

Solar Systems: Under Temporary Generational Ship Line Sovereignty

Pilgrimage/G-145:  The G-145 mission was planned and launched around 2083. Even though the Generational Lines maintained neutrality during the war, the missions were financed solely by one side or the other, and this one was primarily financed through Autonomist commercial entities. When there is little government investment, the final jurisdictional control is negotiated (basically, sold by the Ship Line) two to three years after the system is opened. Usually there are only a couple choices to be made, based upon economic viability and tax base: whether to become a self-governed system or not, and whether to exist under Consortium or League jurisdiction. Since alien (non-Minoan and non-human) ruins and technology have been found in G-145, to include a buoy for N-space navigation into alien solar systems--one can expect significant conflict over the governance of this system when the time comes.

In general, G-145's sun is similar to Sol.  All planetary orbits are in the same plane.  The major planets are three "rocks" and three gas giants, one just within the inner system and two far out in the outer system. The inner and outer system is divided by a meteor belt. Significant bodies/artifacts in this system are:

  • Of the planets, only Sophia II has Gaian-based life, although the planet is currently going through an ice-ball stage and the lifeforms are struggling to exist under the ice. There is evidence that the previous alien inhabitants of this system were attempting to terraform Sophia II.
  • Laomedon is the inner-most gas giant. Tithonos is its largest moon, while Priamos is second largest. Priamos is the location of the alien ruins--the first indication humans have found of another Gaian-based intelligent species (the Minoans hint that they are not the product of evolutionary/devolutionary processes).
  • So far, the major habitats in the system are the Pilgrimage III, a scientific orbital platform above Sophia II, a mining facility at Tethanos, and the Beta Priamos Station (above Priamos, providing access to an elevator down to the alien ruins).
  • The most important find in G-145 was the alien "artifact," later proven to be an N-space navigation buoy. Like Minoan-made buoys, it's fixed in space, located in the planetary orbital plane, between the orbits of Laomedon and Sophia II. Being fixed means that it is anchored in N-space; it doesn't orbit the sun in real-space, it can't be moved, and yet it manages to stay at exactly the same real-space distance/angles/coordinates with respect to its sun. How is this possible? Well, if mundane humans understood this phenomenon, they wouldn't have to buy navigation buoys from the Minoans, would they?

Ships: Mentioned in Ariane Kedros Novels

About Ship Technology

By now, most vessels have smart armor just to ensure safety against the possible foreign object damage inherent in space travel. The use of aerogel, specialized ceramics, and "directional" polymer shielding makes modern space travel/habitation safe and radiation "neutral," similar to what could be expected on a planet, protected by a magnetosphere and heavy atmosphere. Humans can't create windows that won't let radiation through, so space ships, particularly N-space-capable ones, don't have windows (some habitats have shutters that only open under certain conditions).

One sensitive human issue is that pregnancy doesn't mix well with space, in particular, gravity other than one gee. On space habitats, pregnancies must be registered with emergency response teams, so pregnant women can be evacuated if the gravity generator fails for a long period. Generational ship crews, who must operate for decades without normal gravity, can only safely grow fetuses inside artificial wombs--hence their somewhat impolite, but accurate, name of "crèche-get."

Specific Ships

  • Aether's Touch:  Owned and operated by Aether Exploration (majority owned by Mr. Matthew Journey, Peacekeeper). Registered out of Athens Point, Hellas system. As most second-wave prospector ships that go in after a solar system is opened by a Generational Ship Line, Aether's Touch is highly customized with extra sensors and antennae. The ship is N-space-capable.
  • Bright Crescent (AFCAW):  A medium-weight Fury Class Cruiser, N-space-capable, fitted with swarm weapons, and kinetic missile tubes, typically for use with the Champion or Assassinator missiles. Registered out of Karthage Point, Hellas system. Mission Commander: Colonel Owen Edones. Operations Commander: Lieutenant Colonel Lydia, replaced by Lieutenant Colonel Aquino in late 2105.
  • Candor Chasma:  Requisitioned by Terran State Prince Parmet (under League Overlord Three) for dignitary transport. Registered out of Mars, Sol system. It's an N-space-capable retrofitted Gladiator (MIL-8440), used by the Terran Space Forces (TSF) during the war for reconnaissance, special operations insertion and extraction, etc. Now registered as an unarmed TM-8440 (rail guns, rail gun slugs, and chaff are not considered weapons). Can be operated in real-space by a crew of two to five, depending upon the type of travel. The number of passengers can vary, but more than twenty-five would become uncomfortable.
  • Pilgrimage III: Owned and operated by Pilgrimage, which is a company (Generational Ship Line), a family, and an independent sovereignty, all in one. One of the largest generational ships ever built, the Pilgrimage III can support a population of fifteen hundred, although they recorded their population somewhere over 800 when they opened G-145. Like all generational ships, they are not capable of nous-transit (dropping into and traversing N-space). When they reconfigure for habitat mode, however, they can maintain artificial gravity through an N-space connection.
  • Pytheas:  According to Matt (in Pathfinder), "it's the tightest, best-equipped, third-wave exploration ship around." The third-wave exploration ships are always custom-made and this one was commissioned by Leukos Industries. It's cost is three orders of magnitude (that's 1,000-times, for the math-impaired) the value of Aether's Touch.
  • TLS Ming Adams:  This Terran League Ship comes under the authority of Overlord Six, who doesn't command as wealthy a set of solar systems as Overlord Three. This is an older Atlantic Class frigate, with less powerful weapons than the Defender Class ships. Hailing out of New Sousse, it arrives in G-145 to pick up prisoners (Pathfinder). But the questions on everyone's mind is whether it's truly operated by Terran Space Forces (TSF) or irregulars, and whether it violates the Status of Forces Agreeements made with the Generational Ship Lines.
  • TLS Percival:  This Terran League Ship is operated by Terran Space Forces (TSF) assigned to Overlord Three. It's a Defender Class frigate, faster and more maneuverable than a cruiser like the Bright Crescent. Since one of its missions is grappling and boarding, it has short-range weapons and carries more troops than a cruiser.
  • Venture's Way:  Owned and operated by Custody and Comfort Shipping. Registered out of Pelagos Major, Pelagos system. This ship is a mid-size, N-space-capable, civilian vessel designed by Pelagos Spaceframes, Inc. Other than the part this ship plays in Abram Hadi Rouxe's dark plot (Vigilante), there is nothing unique about it.

An explanation to readers: I have always referred to space-faring vessels as “she,” the way I would refer to naval ships. I did not know, however, that I was behind the times and the Chicago Manual of Style (CMS, otherwise known as the copyeditor's bible) says we must use neuter pronouns such as "it" for all vessels, naval or otherwise. Since I do not have the authority to flout the CMS, I have ground my teeth and acquiesed.

 

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