Shards of Alexander
Alexander is the ark constructed by The Council of Six and their followers to escape the darkness and purify Gaia, hundreds of generations ago.
Alexander’s structure is primarily that of a hexagonal prism 60 km long, 15 km tall and 12 km wide. The bow of Alexander is comprised of the residential sectors, weapon systems, and gravity drive. The stern of Alexander is comprised of the dry docks, ram scoop, water storage, and engine systems.
The engines of Alexander are comprised of six, high yield fusion reactors, each of which power a single impulse thruster of Alexander. These reactors are fed by the four primary ram scoops located around the stern of Alexander. The wind crystal manages and maintains the complex fusion reactions occurring within these reactors, and pulls fusion material from the interstellar medium with the ram scoops to fuel the engines.
In the gap between the ram scoops and the main body of Alexander are the dry docks and sensor arrays. The dry docks are used for the repair and maintenance of Frames, the robotic exoskeletal suits used to defend Alexander from The Darkness. This location is a 0-g environment, to facilitate the work that comes hand in hand with using giant robots to fight off the enemy. The sensor arrays are four towers, partially fitted into the dry docks. These are used to detect the ever present Darkness, maintain communication links to deployed frames, and scan for nearby planets and asteroids which could be harvested for raw materials. The sensor array has a scan radius of several light years.
About 3/4 of the length from the bow of Alexander, the ship elongates slightly along its “height”, increasing from 15 km to 20 km, and then reducing back down to 15 km just before the engines. The ram scoops and dry docks are positioned around region, which is used for the storage of salt water. Approximately 25% of Alexander is salt water by volume, which is filtered, desalinated, and circulated by the water Crystal.
The primary weapon systems of Alexander are located on the bow. These consist of the primary mass drivers (rail guns) at the nose of the ship, and the launch corridors for the defence frames along the sides. There are six mass drivers in total, the rails of which run along the interior of Alexander. Each is capable of launching a solid cylinder of steel 50 m across and 100 m long at a peak velocity of 10 km / s, or 0.00003c. Reloading takes approximately 12 hours. There are 20 launch corridors, 10 along each side of Alexander, making the vessel capable of fielding a force of 100 frames in only 5 minutes.
The location, form, and function of the weapon known as “The Light of Altana”, which was supposedly used to purify Gaia, is a mystery lost to time.
The residential sector houses all the crew of Alexander and is the cradle of society on board the ship. It is a cylindrical shell 40 km long and 11 km across located in the bow of Alexander, approximately 2 km away from the outer hull of the ship. Gravity points radially outwards along the axis of the cylinder, and the interior surface is comprised almost entirely of a large city. This city is largely uninhabited as a result of The Fall. which claimed the lives of over 90% of the population of Alexander several generations ago. Along the central axis of the residential sector is a second, coaxial cylinder only 1 km across that runs the length of the sector and maintains the climate as dictated by Mateus. Halfway along the residential sector are three towers which extend all the way to climate control, evenly spaced around the circumference of the residential cylinder. These towers house the offices and residences of those who work within the Academia, Military, and Government. Much of the city has been built up around these towers and so from within the residential sector, the skyline appears to slowly slope away from this location. The population density rapidly decreases the farther away from the three towers you get, with the “lids” of the residential sector being almost entirely uninhabited. The ruins of two other towers lie at the bow and the stern of the sector and the last 10 km of the bow and stern of the residential sector is completely covered with water (“the sea”). Both of these features are a result of The Fall.
The hull of Alexander is honeycombed with labs and factories, some of which are actively used but many of which are “lost” or just simply undocumented. This is a result of the Alexander being staffed by what is effectively a skeleton crew. The vast majority of the population has little interaction or even knowledge of the internal systems of the ship itself. There are many rumors about what may potentially be living within the “walls” of the ship, but this is regarded by the general population as just that: rumors. The hull houses all of the factories used in the production of new frames and ammunition.
The outer most layer of Alexander is a sheet of ice and mineral deposits that have accumulated on the hull over the course of the lifetime of the vessel. This sheet ranges in thickness from 50 m to 150 m or so (where it has not been removed for access to space) and is pockmarked with craters. While not a part of the original construction of the ship, it is a welcome addition, as it greatly reduces the need to repair and maintain the hull of Alexander.
Because of the sheer size of Alexander compared to the size of its population, much of the ship locked down. Most of the ship can only be accessed by crew members, and even then, the vast majority is restricted, requiring various levels clearance granted by the directors.