Houston, Republic of Texas — January 17th 2173. One of mankind’s first three interstellar probes has emerged from hyperspace, mission control specialists have reported. The probe emerged just outside the orbit of Mars – it was off target by several thousand kilometers but in good shape. The probe immediately attempted to contact the Advanced Deep Space Network to broadcast its data.
While specialists pour through the data, we can already report on the makeup of Earth’s closest extra-solar star system. It contains eight planets:
- Desert World (0.02 AU): 6000km diameter, density 0.6, Gravity 0.3. Thin atmosphere, no water.
- Rock (0.034 AU): 2000km diameter, density 0.5, Gravity 0.08. No atmosphere, no ice or water.
- Failed Core (0.065 AU): 8000km diameter, density 0.4, Gravity 0.27. Thin atmosphere. Surface covered by ice sheets: 80%.
- Failed Core (0.13 AU): 9000km diameter, density 0.2, Gravity 0.15. Thin atmosphere. Surface covered by ice sheets: 70%.
- Icy Ball (0.19 AU): 5000km diameter, density 0.3, Gravity 0.13. No atmosphere. Surface covered by frozen oceans: 60%. One Moon.
- Failed Core (0.33 AU): 5000km diameter, density 1.3, Gravity 0.54. Standard atmosphere. Surface covered by ice sheets: 80%. Two Moons.
- Failed Core (0.43 AU): 8000km diameter, density 0.6, Gravity 0.4. Standard atmosphere. Surface covered by ice sheets: 30%.
- Rock (0.6 AU): 3000km diameter, density 1.3, Gravity 0.33. Very thin atmosphere. No water
It had not been anticipated to discover any Earthlike worlds at Proxima Centauri, or at Alpha Centauri, so the discovery of the Mars-like desert world was seen as being “as good as we could hope for”. A Federated Nations spokesman stated that the Colonial Authority would be soliciting proposals for colonization within the next six months.
The other two interstellar probes, “Dream” and “Vision”, are due to return in February and June from Alpha Centauri A/B and Barnard’s Star.