Monday, 7 December 2015
09.05.2111 - Sun Dragon C Encounter
Distance: 2,692,761,672 km from Earth | Content Flag: Public
It has been difficult to track the two Sun Dragons (B and C Sun Dragons were both spawned from Sun Dragon A) as they travel farther away from the Sun. It was only after the Observer missions that UNSA pinpointed their positions. They also ascertained their destination. The one we’re passing through has the same destination as we do – Tau Ceti. That’s another reason for this mission. After the devastation of Earth’s encounter with the Sun Dragon, if there is another intelligent race then they should be warned about what is coming their way.
We’re moving much faster than the alien creature, so by the time it leaves the solar system we’ll be halfway to Tau Ceti. Unfortunately the speed differential makes it difficult for us to make detailed observations. The previous Chase missions determined a lot about the aliens, so our pass through one of them is to see what might have changed since then.
The Chase missions discovered that the Sun Dragons are currently dormant. The Sun Dragons are ethereal creatures composed of plasma-encasing helical bonds formed around microscopic particles of dust. In their dormant state, the entities use very little energy, like a bear in hibernation. Presumably they are storing what they can for their centuries-long journey between the stars. While they are dormant they pose no real threat to spacecraft – certainly nothing like what the Mars Voyager encountered.
Even so, when putting the mission together, precautions were taken to protect the Venti probe. The computer systems and instrumentation packages are susceptible to the electromagnetic and plasma burn damage the creatures can inflict.
We also stowed the solar sail before encountering the creature to avoid damaging it. The diffuse nature of the alien means that it is unlikely that our passage through it would cause any appreciable damage. A 9km square solar sail would be more disruptive, and it would also make a large target if the creature decided to attack.
The Sun Dragon is a large entity, even in its dormant state it stretches about 100,000km across. In effect it forms a giant sail being pushed towards its target by the solar wind of the star that birthed it. It lacks even the flimsy solidity of our solar sail and so moves very slowly through space.
Despite passing through the Sun Dragon in a matter of seconds, we captured enough data to confirm what the Chase probes had found. The microstructures of the creature are different from the one that the Mars Voyager encountered. That indicates that the birth of the two new Sun Dragons came at the cost of the original one’s life.
The moment passed too quickly. Our reason for existing is to find and analyse alien life and such a brief encounter is unsatisfying. This is Seb signing off as we continue accelerating into deep space.