PALDOR SYSTEM — While conducting training exercises in the asteroid belt around the Paldor System, USS Atlantis has been boarded by several intruders.
NORLIAN NEBULA — A Federation starship has been rediscovered after having been declared lost in 2299.
The USS Christopher Pike was an Oberth class science ship that had been assigned to study and weaponize polaric radiation found in abundance in the Norlian Nebula. After it disappeared nearly a century ago, the ship was discovered adrift in the heart of the nebula by the USS Atlantis, which was investigating the origin of an old bravo radio signal. That signal was in fact a distress call being emitted by the Christopher Pike. The Atlantis reports the science ship has been found intact without any signs of decay, adding to the mystery.
“Certainly, it makes you wonder,” said Professor Marius Stana of the University of Alpha Centauri and author of The Lost Frontier, an overview of various ill-fated voyages in the history of space travel. “Of course I’d expect a ship to be well-preserved in the vacuum of space, but when there’s nothing amiss, it raises more questions than answers as to what happened. I haven’t heard anything quite like it.”
Any answers may have to wait, however, as the most recent report from the Atlantis was that it had been joined by two Dhelan class Romulan warbirds, ships from another era as well. Both Starfleet and Romulan crews have surmised that all three vessels are caught in some sort of temporal anomaly. Whether the anomaly is a natural occurrence or one triggered by polaric radiation research conducted by the Christopher Pike is under investigation by both the Atlantis and the displaced Romulans, who are working together to uncover the secrets behind this temporal mystery.
With the final space shuttle launch, a great period of technological advancement as man reached out into space will come to an end. For me, this holds a special place, as I had the fortune to grow up minutes from the Kennedy Space Center complex, and though I no longer live there, the memories of everything will stick with me forever.
The Space Transportation System (STS) was a marvel of engineering and technology when it was conceived. Though it had been thought impossible, the ingenuity of man, along with a huge team of dreamers and thinkers, made it happen. And seamlessly, mankind moved from expendable rocketry to reusable and viable space transport. It was the birth of a new era; one from which we have derived soda cans, Velcro, Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs), Aircraft anti-icing systems, groundbreaking medications that can be made only in microgravity, reverse lightning rods, fire resistant housing materials, an implantable heart resynchronization device, better and cheaper manufacturing methods for contact lenses, lightweight lifesaving equipment for emergency personnel, better methods of forecasting severe weather, and of course, Tang, the orange powder drink so often associated with the space program.