Sunday, 18 September 2016

22.07.2352 - Preparations

Distance: 12.02 light years from Earth | Content Flag: Public

We’re almost ready to proceed. The solar panel for the Cetian satellite has been constructed and fitted to the structure. That was the easy part. It’s taken 2 months to devise a method to adapt the electrical output in a form that the Cetian system could use. Their power system uses a similar form to three-phase which complicated the transformation.

The basic theory wasn’t too challenging, building a device to do it proved more so. The Venti’s stores lacked the required components, so I had to fashion designs and print them. More problematic was the raw material needed. My plan was to plunder what I needed from the Cetian facility and there the covering material impeded my efforts.

Apart from the tunnel, the spiderbots failed to locate an access point. The spiderbots tried slicing through the walls of the inner passage and discovered that the material sealed itself in less than a second once the blade was removed. It was also thicker than I expected, much deeper than a spiderbot’s cutting blade. They tried drilling through the cladding only for the drill bit to seize up as the substance tried to recombine.

We enjoyed better success with the laser. Its heat cauterised the material like flesh and stopped its healing properties. That provided access, but not in a sense I expected. The material was solid throughout its entire volume and the components of the system were embedded deep within. In some ways it was more like surgery than engineering. The Cetians built this thing to survive whatever was thrown at it, but not to repair it, and that meant we caused more damage gaining access than I anticipated.

It also resulted in expending more effort than planned to keep it operational. Another problem arose as more details of the system were revealed. I’d expected to discover a set up similar to myself, different in form maybe, but with the same principles. So far I’ve only been able to isolate the transmitter. Everything else is integrated into a single physical entity. There’s no circuit boards or other recognisable components. Or rather, the system appears to be a single circuit contained within the enigmatic material.

This has not only delayed my plan, but changes it too. I’d intended to splice into their systems and override the message, yet still maintain its current function. I’d also intended that it could act as a relay station for my journey to Epsilon Indi. While I identified the transmitter, I had yet to find the antenna or receiver. As our journey covers a similar distance as Earth to Tau Ceti, the Venti’s communications system should be adequate. I would be more confident of that if we still had a working connection with home. Instead all I can do is patch in a message about my intentions with what I have learned so far.

The procedure to swap the power supply was more successful and I was able to connect the solar array I’d built. I needed to devise a modulation component to adapt the power to the Cetian structure’s requirements. At least this went to plan, as without it there would be no way I could leave this system.

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