Ad Astra: A Science Fiction Game

News and Rumours

Aldrin People's Corporate Republic, 2286 May 6
The latest data from the Thorne Gravitational Observatory still shows anomalous sources scattered over a diffuse region in the general direction of the Esperance colony. Following last month's unexpected data, the observatory press office dismissed the anomalies as being caused by easily-corrected software faults within the data assimilation tools. The continued failure of the system is a major blow for the groups studying supernova 2285C, the nearest such event observed since the first gravitational oberservatories became operational almost three centuries ago.
Sarah3 Yoshida, the head of the Thorne Observatory Hardware and Systems Group, now believes that the cause of the spurious events may be more serious than previously believed: "It seems to be down to chaotic oscillation modes in the mirrors' active controls. We are now advising that the interferometer be shut down for ten days to allow recalibration and possible redesign of the mirror stabilisers."
When asked about the effects of this decision on already tight observing schedules and on Praesidial funding for the troubled instrument, the Observatory refused to comment.
(data available at the Physics/Astronomy/Gravity sublogos of the Garden of Structured Enlightenment. Full semantic array beyond capabilities of current interface)
Los Angeles, 2286 May 5
The oneiricist Greg Heller is expected to made public his latest holodrama The Descent of Ishtar within the next two weeks. The work is expected to be a semi-interactive drama which will use myth to mirror events in the System. As with the earlier works in Heller's sequence, Eurydice and Isis and Osiris, the acclaimed ractor Celeste Edelman has been cast in the lead role.
Greg Heller was raised to his current prominence following the attempt by Consensus Enforcement to ban Isis and Osiris on the grounds that it was a subversive work of anti-Earth propaganda. David Kolmanov, Lunaya Pravda's drama critic, has seen a rough render of The Descent of Ishtar and expects it to be as controversial as its precursors: "This remarkable vignette acts as a further iteration on the model of [Heller's] previous dramas, recapitulating the savage aesthetics of Isis and Osiris and remodulating them with a new-found kinetic intensity."
Berlin, 2286 May 5
The Praesidium has granted Soyuz-Mikoyan a 30 day Limited Action Licence for use within the borders of the Kazakh Autonomous Region. The Licence authorises the use of conventional weapons against non-civilian targets within the Region. Soyuz-Mikoyan Security have declared Tyuratam a safe area, but citizens of Eurasia and other phylai have been advised to evacuate the Region.
Kazakh nationalist guerrillas have been mounting attacks on transnational facilities within the AR (which is the property of Soyuz-Mikoyan) for several months. The issuing of the License follows the arrests last month of a number of Kazakh leaders - a move that had little effect on paramilitary activity within the Region. Soyuz-Mikoyan will now be able to increase the intensity of its security operations: airstrikes against guerrilla training centres and camps are said to be 'imminent'.
The issuing of this Licence will allow Soyuz-Mikoyan to demonstrate the efficacy of its new MiG-107 multirole scramjets. The corporation hopes to win the contract to replace TDFAC's ageing F.31 squadrons.
Xanadu Cluster, 2286 May 4
Makanee Sunspeckled has finished her tour of the Belt by attending a party held by Stefan Fjeld, Xanadu Consul and famed hedonist. The dolphin expressed her disappointment that the trip could not be arranged to coincide with the Xanadu Carnival. Nevertheless, she managed to cut a swathe through the Cluster's social life. She seemingly managing to flirt with every dolphin coalition in attendance, joined the Imperial Princess Justinia Flavia in making lewd comments about most of the males present (regardless of species) and defeated the drone Tithane-Krietl in a duel by poetry. All of this is likely to increase her standing in dolphin society no end.
Earlier in the tour Makanee visited Maiapolis and Piazzi and was knighted by Aurelian II in a formal audience; Astarte Cluster was excluded from the itinerary. She is expected to return directly to Earth to prepare for several important debates later in the current Ecclesial session. Sources close to the dolphin have suggested that she may also stand for election to the Praesidium's Central Committee later this year.
Kaliningrad, 2286 May 2
TDF Deep Space Command have confirmed that the torchship Napoleon was lost last month with all hands. The vessel had been operating three light days from Sol in the Kuiper disk; on a classified mission. A preliminary investigation based on an emergency telemetry packet received by the DSN suggests that the ship was heavily irradiated when its plasma containment field collapsed after a meteorite impact. This conclusion is supported by footage from the Astartan vessel Temporary Suspension of Ethics, the nearest observer; the telescopic images show an expanding plasma plume with minimal carbon or metallic wreckage.
The only other TDF ship to have been lost in action was the ESS Belisarius, another Alexander-class destroyer. Containment collapse (under beam weapon attack from an Imperial battlecruiser) was also responsible for the destruction of that ship. TDF Command maintain that this is not evidence of a fundamental flaw in the 20TW Exodynamics fusion drives used in all examples of the class.

The future of Ad Astra

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