Sol

From New Frontiers Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Human Lore Pages
Species Lore Pages Humanity | Court of Sol
Planet and System Pages SolEarth · Mars | VoltkerVoltker Prime | MiranmirOnia
Governments and Organizations Pages Galactic CoalitionCoalition Holdings | The FederationFederation Holdings | White Belt Administration



The Solar System, colloquially referred to as Sol, is the birthplace of humanity and the cradle of human civilization. Some of humanity's oldest colonies are located in Sol, with the oldest dating back to the 22nd century. It is the bustling center of Coalition space, and is home to the Coalition's core worlds. Despite being hailed as the backbone of Coalition society, there exist extreme economic disparities between the rich politicians, military officials and government bureaucrats that live on Earth and the poor, struggling citizens of heavily industrialized worlds like Mars or Venus. Sol is also home to the official capital of the Galactic Coalition, that being Earth, with its government headquartered in New York City on the North American continent.

Sol's star, known as the Sun or simply as 'Sol', is a Class G main sequence star that is informally called a yellow dwarf. It is almost 4.5 billion years old, and has eight planets in orbit around it along with a myriad of other celestial bodies, from an asteroid belt to the planetoid Pluto.

Planets and Major Celestial Bodies

Mercury (Sol I)

Mercury is an inferior planet that is tidally locked to the Sun, and the closest planet to the Sun in the Sol system. It has a very marginal exosphere comprised mainly of oxygen, though it is too thin to sustain any kind of life. Even if it could, the extreme temperatures on Mercury's surface (up to 430 °C!) coupled with the extreme cold on Mercury's dark side (reaching negatives in the 180 °C) renders any thought of life illogical. It is small, smaller even than Earth's moon - and lacks any real value beyond scientific curiosity. As a rocky planet devoid of life or even important mineral resources, it is of no importance to the Coalition, though it may be the site of the very rare scientific expedition. Civilian travel is not advised.

Venus (Sol II)

Venus is the second planet in the solar system and is sometimes bright enough to be seen from Earth with the naked eye. Venus rotates extremely slowly on its axis, taking a total of around 243 Earth days to complete a single rotation, in essence making a day last longer on Venus than a single year, which is technically 1.92 Venusian days! Despite Venus' inhospitable conditions due to its proximity to the sun, it was forcefully colonized by the human species and is home to several massive anti-grav stations that float high in the atmosphere, above the cloud layer, both to avoid Venus' acid rain and intense atmospheric pressure (equatable to the crushing depths of the Earth's oceans). Adventuring outside of these specially designed stations without the usage of temperature-regulated pressure suits is a fatal mistake. Venus has a profitable mining industry, and is also a major exporter of natural gases.

Earth (Sol III)

Earth is the birthplace of humanity. Humanity has made efforts to restore Earth's climate.

Earth, or Terra, is the homeworld of humanity and the birthplace of the human species. As wanton human development, extreme resource consumption and the unrestricted burning of fossil fuels culminated in a climate crisis early in the 21st century, the human nations were forced to begin colonizing Mars and constructing space stations to take pressure off their ailing homeworld. Now, the Earth is home to the capital of the Galactic Coalition and has seen a revival thanks to the climate-conscious regulating of development on Earth's surface. The upper class of Coalition elite live in massive arcologies that seamlessly blend human architecture with plants, conservatories and forests, described by visitors as beautiful ivory towers interwoven with the natural landscape.

Luna

Luna, or the Moon, is the natural satellite of Earth and was the site of humanity's first foray into the exploration of other celestial bodies. The Moon is home to several incorporated megacities and is a popular tourist spot. One can visit the Lunar Museum to learn about the first moon landing and subsequent space exploration efforts made by the human race, or visit the Coalition's Naval Officer Academy, where young recruits are trained to helm, staff, and oversee the powerful ships that make up the Coalition's fleet. The Moon is also important for space travel in the Sol system, where it acts as a shipyard and refueling point for vessels leaving Earth or attempting to land on Earth. As such, it is also crucial to civilian shipbuilding, as vessels are constructed and designed with help from the Lunar Engineers Association.

Mars (Sol IV)

Mars, affectionately referred to as the Red Planet, was the site of humanity's first actual planetary colony. It is an industrial world of major importance to the Coalition economy and industry; plenty of heavy metals are mined and refined not only from Mars itself but from the nearby asteroid belt as well. Compared to Earth, Venus, or even the cities on Luna, Mars can be considered dirtier and less developed. Despite the strategic value of Mars' mines and manufacturing corporations, the majority of citizens who live on the Red Planet are poor and destitute; megacorporations invested heavily in the first colonization attempts centuries ago and now, despite Mars being part of the Coalition, the megacorporations are allowed to effectively run it how they like. Money can go a long way into making politicians look the other way.

The Asteroid Belt

Located roughly between Mars and Jupiter, the Asteroid Belt is a torus-shaped region of space home to countless irregularly shaped celestial bodies too small to be considered planets. The only asteroid in the belt large enough to reach the sizes of a dwarf planet, Ceres, is home to the largest non-planetary mining operation in the Sol region. Ceres' Mineral Concern, a mining megacorporation, maintains their headquarters within the now nearly hollowed-out rock and control almost all of the mining efforts in the asteroid belt. They claim exclusive rights to the belt, and regularly push out other companies with a myriad of underhanded tactics. The density of asteroids in the zone is relatively low, thankfully making space travel beyond Mars less perilous. The Coalition maintains several defensive installations in the belt, as it is a natural defensive barrier to both Earth and Mars.

Jupiter (Sol V)

Jupiter is the fifth planet and largest gas giant in the Sol system. It is widely known for the colorful bands of clouds and massive storms that make up the upper level of its atmosphere, and the Great Red Spot - a hurricane larger than the size of Earth which has been raging for centuries. Jupiter itself is home to several stations that refine and sell the gas that comprises its atmosphere, and its many moons are also the site of several opportunistic colonies founded either to house the workers for these stations or to take advantage of whatever moon's natural resources. The Galilean moons of Io, Ganymede, Callisto and Europa claim the largest of these colonies, but Jupiter's industry is not as developed as the worlds on the other side of the asteroid belt. The gas refineries are notoriously dangerous due to the high winds inside Jupiter's atmosphere, requiring all external employees to wear magboots to prevent getting blown off their stations to their inevitable deaths. Be that as it may, safety measures are lackluster and the megacorporations that own these refineries are more interested in profit than safety measures.

Saturn (Sol VI)

Saturn is the sixth planet in Sol and the second largest gas giant in the system. It is a major tourist destination where people come to get space tours and see Saturn's vibrant rings for themselves. It has a small population mostly centered around tiny outposts on its myriad 62 moons, and its economy is entirely dependent on said tourism. Saturn is a favorite destination for cargo freighter captains and smugglers - many orbital refueling platforms, diners, and motels are frequented by people either looking for a moment of rest after a long interstellar journey or attempting to unwind after a long vacation. Saturn is the last decently developed outpost before the edge of Sol space, which lends itself well to Saturn's local cultural identity as a hive for captains, smugglers, and free agents.

Uranus (Sol VII)

Uranus is the seventh planet in the Sol system and an ice giant. Its atmosphere is chemically distinct from those of other gas giants like Jupiter and Saturn, leading to the coinage of the term ice giant. While Uranus' moons hold an outpost or two they are scientific in nature, founded to observe the planet and nothing more. Uranus is a small cultural icon among humans, though - it is often the butt of jokes, no pun intended. Beyond its status as a cheap joke bereft of depth of grip, there really is nothing else of significance about Uranus, and it holds no material strategic value for the Galactic Coalition.

Neptune (Sol VIII)

Neptune is the second of the two ice giants and the eighth planet in the Sol system. It is denser and physically smaller than Uranus, because its greater mass leads to more gravitational compression of its atmosphere. Neptune is not populated and none of its 13 moons save Triton are home to any installation. A communication outpost is located on Triton but its sole purpose is traffic control for incoming and outgoing ships, as well as the handling of intergalactic messages which it then relays back to Earth or other planets and colonies. It has a crew of only ten people, and is widely considered one of the worst postings for government personnel due to its distance from civilized space and the outdated equipment in the outpost itself.

The Kuiper Belt

The Kuiper Belt exists beyond Neptune and is circumstellar disc located in the outer Sol system. It is similar to the asteroid belt but significantly larger, and is equally comprised of celestial bodies too small to be planets, as well as gas, dust, and other fragments left over from the formation of the Sol system. Of the icy bodies located in the belt, Pluto and Eris are the most well-known. Most of the asteroids here are comprised mainly of hydrogen and water, giving little incentive for mining companies to bother settling this far out.

The Oort Cloud

The Oort Cloud is the accepted boundary of Sol space; it is a spherical collection of metal-deficient icy bodies that surrounds the Sol system. It begins where the Kuiper Belt ends. Scientists estimate there may be up to three trillion tiny bodies in the Oort Cloud, but as the main composition of pretty much every planetesimal out there is hydrogen and water, any mining operation would be fruitless and a waste of money. A series of hyperspace lane beacons are placed to help ships navigate the treacherous Cloud, where the density of debris can pose a real danger to travel.