Hyper Drives (and More) Part 2

 Yes more.

You see I find it interesting that according to the TL charts in Traveller societies tend to discover fusion power, reactionless drives and the Jump drive around the same time (TLs 8-9). That's when the big jump (hah) from ground grubbers to space capable cultures begin. 

Let's take fusion first. Our hyper-space is a realm of tremendous gravity. In ftl flight we usually kick around its outer reaches. Digging deeper, gravity and pressure increase. That's just the boost we need for attempting fusion! Making a tiny aperture to hyper-space we start the fusion process, we inject hot plasma into hyper and use various power taps to extract power. The waste products, radiation and waste heat remain (for the most part) in hyper-space. Ever wonder why ships fusing tons of fuel don't need radiators the size of a small moon? 

Note that we still need radiators, for the life support system and machinery. Life support needs to cool off and equipment will still need cooling if it's in our universe. But their size will be manageable. 

You can scale the power generation however you want deciding what percentage is lost to maintaining the hyper-space conduit and inefficiency. Extra fuel can also represent plasma used to maintain the size of the hyper-space pocket. 

This also keeps a fusion reactor from making a multi-megaton boom if stuff goes horribly wrong. They're engineered so that in the event of a catastrophe the hyper generator is the first casualty. So a malfunctioning reactor is more a 'boom' risk and not a mega boom. Or more likely will melt. 

These hyper-reactors are fairly high tech, high maintenance and require a dedicated engineer. The aperture they generate is tiny. You aren't building a portal to hyper to dispose of bodies or chemical waste in any reasonable amount of time. Far easier to build a reactor and use its power to disintegrate unwanted materials or recycle them. Note recycling disintegrated people will be quite difficult. Using a hyper drive on a planet of course still results in a misjump. However, as long as you get power out of the beast, who cares where or if hydrogen/helium comes back to our universe. 

Creating a wormhole and keeping it stable requires you to balance the matter going in with matter going out according to current science. All I can say is this isn't a wormhole and the same argument can be made against ftl travel which almost everyone loves. Maybe the wormholes do collapse and are part of the cycle of the power generation? Or hyper-space balances the matter entering with an equal amount of dark matter or WIMPs or neutrinos released along a ship's path? Tis could mean you can get an idea of where a ship is going... if you can detect neutrinos or whatever. Detecting them and finding a probable course might come a few tech levels after ftl flight and have restriction that make it possible for naughty crews to still sneak about. 

Next: Gravity control and reactionless drives.


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