Interdiction

I Said Stop...

Mute eyed the edge of the cloud as he spoke, a rapid succession of words spoken in calm urgency, "Caydie, watch your left. I've got movement."   "Probably a derelict."   "That's a negative. I would have noticed it earlier. That, or it just gained speed."   They turned in time to a massive structure burst from the nebula. The hull was black, save for dark and bright red concentrations of heat across its width.   Mute recognized it immediately, its tendrils unfurling toward his ship. "We should probably go, yeah?" He said with a forced smile. Caydie didn't respond. Her eyes were fixed on its hulking mass as it tore free from the nebula. Waves of gas from the cloud poured off its jagged frame.   Caydie couldn't move, couldn't think. She wanted to run, but she was fixed in place.   "Caydie," Mute shouted. "We need to-"   Another mass appeared, a greenish blur streaking overhead at a speed too fast to follow. They saw a flash of white light as another ship slammed into the enemy vessel as it dropped out of warp.   The ship's were nearly equal in size, the latest contender shrouded in a thick green mist radiating from vents along its hull. It was the sea of names.   The Dreadnought was forced to a stop, its thrusters activating to reverse the trajectory of the ship.   Within moments, silo doors opened on all sides of The Sea of Names. Missiles flew wildly from each silo, whirling around the dreadnought and detonating upon impact.   Mute squinted to see. The explosions were awfully small. "Caydie, we-" he stopped at the sound of another voice coming through the speaker. "December, this is Captain Invicta aboard The Sea of Names. Immediately alter course and rendezvous at the attached coordinates. Move fast, and veer away from the cloud, now. They're onto you."
     
Interdiction, as defined by galactic law, is the act of inhibiting the movement of an enemy vessel using external means. The origin of this broad definition speaks volumes on how interdiction has come to shape technology. Interdiction is the one thing you never want to be the victim of. The very nature of the technology makes it a first strike tool, a form of technology designed to ambush the victim. It has appeared in many forms across galactic history, and in some forms is considered a war crime.   Interdiction began with a very simple idea. It wasn't called interdiction at the time, this form of interdiction would come to be called inertial interdiction. By placing an object of high density and mass in the path of voidcraft traveling at a high velocity, the impact will stop the craft, kill its crew, and leave the spoils behind to be salvaged when the debris field dissipates. This is considered a war crime because it is virtually impossible for anyone to stop it, and causes an enormously large amount of trouble when it comes to hyperlane travel.   This method would carry over after the discovery of hyperlanes. Nefarious individuals would place asteroids and other obstacles in a hyperlane and wait for something to hit it. This ring is a hyperlane useless for an extended period of time, and can kill trade to a particular system. Furthermore, it can lead to further damage to other vessels long after these nefarious individuals are gone. Any attempt to avoid these objects, especially if placed in hyperlane, can tear a ship apart to the amount of force involved.

Guided Interdiction

Guided interdiction was a solution to the problem of polluted hyperlanes. Specialized drones referred to as interdiction buoys would be placed on the outside of the hyperlane. They would then match the speed of incoming vessels, harpoon those vessels, and slowly guide them out of the hyperlane. Once outside, the buoys will activate reverse thrusters at the moment of maximum velocity.   Vessels traveling from place to place across such vast distances do not have their engines on constantly. This waste fuel and also builds up velocity which increases the time needed to slow down the vessel safely. In a hyperlane, the center most point of the lane is the point of maximum velocity. Vessels at this point will go no faster and start to decelerate when they pass this point. The drones take advantage of this. Because of the velocity of the vessel and the amount of harpoons attached to the hull, the slightest change in velocity can result in a successful interdiction, allowing those who staged the interdiction to board the vessel with no resistance.   The sudden burst of deceleration is not designed to stop the vessel immediately. It is usually carefully controlled so that the ship is not ripped apart. The goal of decelerating in this way is to kill everyone inside. Imagine traveling at 2 kilometers a second. When the drones activate and decelerate the vessel, they only need to drop a fraction of this speed. For example, by decelerating to 1.92 km a second, everyone on board will be thrown forward at .08km a second. (252 Kmph) considering how compact the inside of a voidcraft can be, this means that the crew of The vessel will be thrown into the walls of the vessel or any other obstacles at rapid speed. Not a pleasant way to go.
   

The graveyard of bad days

The centralized star systems of the galactic community avoid a single hyperlane that was once a stronghold for pirates. These pirates build a space station just outside of the hyperlane's center point. They used inertial interdiction so often that the entire hyperlane has been rendered a ship graveyard. The graveyard of bad days happens to be the reason why inertial interdiction is considered a war crime.   The hyperlane originally led to a star system that maintained a staggeringly successful economy for eons. When the pirates settled, the economy collapsed. Valuable goods provided by this system could not get where they needed to go. Things like medicines, food, and raw materials skyrocketed in price, assuming you can get them in the first place.   Other forms of inertial interdiction have been used over the years, especially with the emergence of Higgstech. These other phones and addiction are not considered war crimes and are perfectly valid forms of attack.  

Ward Drives

With the introduction of warp technology, hyperlanes started getting used less and less frequently. Naturally, those losing out Rose to the occasion and developed a form of interdiction that interferes with warp technology, allowing them to stop any vessel in range.   Warp technology involves altering space-time in such a way that the universe moves around you, as opposed to you moving through it. Buy a technicality, voidcraft using this technology rarely ever move, that is to say, they have no velocity. The kind of distance that can be traveled with this technology is mind-boggling.   As luck would have it, a vessel that is traveling at what would be several times faster than the speed of light can be suddenly rendered to a complete stop and not kill the crew inside. This technology is incredibly advanced and as such, it is very rare. Interdictors can cut the head of a fleet off by separating large ships from their escorts. Small fleets can destabilize the military power of an empire with a single interdictor.

Ramming

Such a typical response: a problem arises and the only thing to do to make it stio is to hit it as hard as you can until it breaks. It's barbaric, but it's remarkably effective.   With the presence of higgstech, a new form of interdiction emerged. By attaching a ram to the front of a vessel, one can drive their ship into another with minimal risk to themselves. Such a thing would be a horrible idea without a way to manipulate density, gravity, and mass.   A ram isnt exactly advanced technology. It's a dense metal implement of any shape and size. In the hands of a Corvette, or a vessel that can easily close distance, it can cause severe hull damage, sometimes cleaving through vessel entirely.

Comments

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2 Nov, 2020 18:43

Sounds like warp interdiction just needs to put another, opposite treadmill under the treadmill the ship is generating to move it through space in the fist place. Or is it more complex than that?   Now I want a story where a refugee ship (or any ship, really) has to navigate the graveyard of bad days in order to get to a place where they can get their higgs drive fixed. Very carefully.   Honestly, I'm surprised you can get anything useful from an impact that happens at any practical interstellar speed. once the crash happens, you'll only have a very small window of time to gather the stuff you want before it floats off into the void never to be seen again. Not to mention having your ship anywhere near the impact at the time would probably put you at very high risk of shrapnel damage...   So far I think there are three separate ways that a crew of an unwary vessel can end up as ketchup on the walls in this universe.

Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
2 Nov, 2020 19:56

OOOO cosmic treadmill is a perfect analogy. The warp drive creates a dip in space-time. By creating a reversed effect, whether traveling near the vessel or from a distance, perpendicular to the vessel, you can stop it cold, as the dip isn't there anymore when it crosses your path. Its not used very much though. The Eden have a bad habit of answering war crimes with war crimes. They will then throw rocks. at your planet. They like to be conservative with ammunition.     Many humans populated the graveyard for quite some time, and a lot of human tech in the present came from it. Some took the parts and fastened them together to either repair or completely rebuild new ships. Being careful is a problem, a lot of the high velocity debris is long gone but those pirates learned the same trick humans used. They make mismatched ships and hide in the graveyard for scavengers. it's rare, but it has happened.   Ahhh, you wouldn't be able to comment on it, but talks a lot about how tech develops in this world. Originally, and i really should have included this (note to self), Inertial interdiction was a wartime tactic when fighting a much larger force. Take some haulers and park asteroids at the right place and suddenly a massive enemy fleet becomes a goldmine, The damage is indeed extensive, but the right piece of scrap makes the difference between research that takes years vs. months, hence why guided interdiction was developed. It's more intensive and requires so much more effort and coordination, but the ship usually remains intact. It's the poor crew that suffers. The drones can slow the ship down as it progresses, even lifting it back into the hyperlane if your home system is at the end. Warp interdiction came about cause other methods simply didn't work. People REALLY want Higgstech, so its valuable prize.   Yes. Plenty of sapient salsa to be made, though its not a problem with warp interdiction, as there is no true velocity. Instead, warp interdiction is disorienting. the ship is caught with its engines cold, weapons down, and likely some minor shifts in orientation, resulting in a spinning ship. Not the best position when enemy ships are converging on you.   Thank you so much! Sorry i ramble lol

2 Nov, 2020 20:19

The Eden seem like warriors after my own heart; not the war crimes part necessarily but the part about saving ammo by using rocks. A very efficient projectile if you know how to use it.

Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
2 Nov, 2020 21:04

The Eden are among the most advanced species. They are a strange bunch. Probably the next article i work on.

7 Nov, 2020 12:58

I think Warp Interdiction got cut off in the side bar. It still makes sense, though.   This is a really interesting idea. I like how everything here feels grounded in scientific theory. It sounds like a terrifying and horrible way to go. I can definitely understand why space pirates do it.

Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
7 Nov, 2020 20:31

I really want the science to be somewhat grounded in this world. Communication takes alot of time. Travel too with a few exceptions. It's not a fun way to go at all,   Thanks so much for the comments and likes! I'll try to figure out what's going on with that sidebar lol.

24 Feb, 2021 19:37

Oof, not a fun way to go at all! I don't fully understand this complex of science, but I do find it fascinating. Traveling through the void is even more dangerous in this universe than I initially realized!

~TimeBender~
Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
27 Feb, 2021 15:25

Indeed it is. Void travel is something i want to be as scary as possible, but realistic at the same time. I do get carried away in regards to the science, and I'll try to make it less complicated. Thanks so much!

24 Aug, 2021 18:44

I like the story bit you added here. :D

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