In order to circumvent the logistical problems the project focused on developing a system of “catapults” which could propel ships tens of thousands of light years at a time. The plan developed was to shoot construction drones beyond the rim which would then construct another “catapult” which could be used to return manned missions to Imperial space after conducting manned missions on “the other side”.
With the start of Acaddon’s rebellion resources became scarce and Project Odyssey like many other long term science projects was quickly cancelled in favor or more short term advances that would be of use in the civil war. In Odyssey’s case the cancellation amounted to little more than shifting its scientists to other projects as it had not left the planning phase before the start of the war.
It was only after the events of Syr Darya; with the Triborozon shortage threatening to collapse the Imperial economy and bring the war to a disastrous close, that Regent Camar ordered the project restarted. It was his hope the project could be used for shorter trips as well, and provide an alternative to Triborozon travel within the galaxy.
Now lavished with Imperial resources the original team of Odyssey scientists was reassembled and given orders to get a prototype working as quickly as possible. The Ithica system was chosen because of its distance from the front lines and its unique feature of having two suns which actually orbiting each other. It was hoped this unusual phenomenon would help solve one of the long running problems with the projects design, inability to generate enough power to tear open a hole in space time and allow tunneling without Triborozon. The project scientists decided to construct a system of huge solar arrays which would suck up the twin suns power and shoot them via microwave emitter to the station to power its catapult.
A crash program was begun to complete the catapult and its solar arrays as quickly as possible, remarkably it took less than a year to complete the project. Testing began almost immediately, first with drones going a short distance, then manned vessels and finally going to longer and longer distances. It did not take long to discover than even the twin suns of Ithica could not provide the power they needed for regular usage. It would take weeks to store up enough energy for a single jump mid range jump, ultimately it was realized that the system just required too much power to be put into practical usage.
Repurposing It was at this point with the project on the verge of being cancelled yet again, that Dr. Kally demanded a meeting with the Regent to pitch a new idea: using Triborozon to power the catapult. Initially the Regent refused, this would after all defeat his initial goal for the project, but Kally argued that with the catapult already built they could explore beyond the rim, and possibly discover new sources of the vital fuel. Hoping to salvage something from what was fast becoming an expensive boondoggle the Regent reluctantly agreed.
Now armed with Triborozon the scientists dusted off their plans for beyond the rim exploration and began shooting construction zones into deep space to build the return catapult which would allow for manned exploration to begin in earnest.
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