Title Posted
Hyper transits Apr 2009
Hyper translation Apr 2009
The Fourth Empire's missing ships Apr 2009
Status of the Grand Alliance as of the start of <em>In Death Ground</em> Apr 2009
How do you pronounce 'Dahak'? Apr 2009
Why does towing pods decrease ship acceleration? Apr 2009
Firing through a drive band Apr 2009
Naval blockades Apr 2009
The rationale for the Theisman Buildup Apr 2009
Aftermath of the Terran Civil War Apr 2009


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Pearls of Weber

A collection of posts by David Weber containing background information for his stories, collected and generously made available Joe Buckley.

Grav pulse comm and the detection of hyper footprints

  • Series: Honorverse
  • Date: November 01, 2002

The Manticoran FTL com and, for that matter, gravitic sensors in general, do not function solely in normal-space. Or, to put it more precisely, they do not detect solely n-space phenomena. The grav pulses of an FTL com, like an impeller wedge, distort local n-space. They also produce an echo in hyper-space--a sort of ripple or cascade effect--which is what the gravitics actually detect and measure. In theory, any gravity field--even that of an itty-bitty meteor--produces the same sort of ripple or cascade; in practice, only a very powerful gravity field produces on which present-generations gravitics can detect and/or measure. A hyper footprint, on the other hand, is detectable at far greater distances than any impeller wedge simply because the "ripple" a starship produces as it actually enters or leaves hyper is much more of a roaring cataract. The real trick for the FTL com was developing the ability to produce finely controlled pulses (ripples), and the RMN has been steadily improving that ability.