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Project Infinity (The Second Renaissance)

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Project Infinity was a spaceflight effort conducted by every human nation which sent the first humans to another star system, the Gleisa 581 system. Conceived by Mariner Space Development spaceflight veteran Theo Bell and conducted by the International Space Administration, Infinity began in earnest after the 2037 message from Gleisa was determined to be a call for help after the species on that world had entered into a nuclear war. Leaders from around the world called for any possible action to at the very least salvage what might remain of this civilization, leading to then-head of the ISA Theo Bell to announce the formation of Project Infinity.

This goal was determined to be best accomplished through the means of recently discovered Slip-Space by the late Professor Stephen Hawking. For the last several years the technology had been used in a very limited degree for faster-than-light communications which enabled messages to be sent, at very low bit-rates, across the solar system with almost no delay. The ISA called for using the technology to create humanity's first FTL capable spacecraft.

Project Infinity ran from 2037 until 2040, and was Humanity's third human spaceflight program following the Apollo Program of the 20th Century. The program developed and built the largest spacecraft by that point in history, The Interstellar Exploration Vehicle (IEV) Independence. Constructed across the solar system and assembled in Earth Orbit at the Armstrong Shipyards, Independence was the first craft to employ the use of a Hawking Drive. Using next-gen fusion reactors to power the manifestation of a micro-black hole, Independence would approach a large Gravity Well (at first the sun was the only mass physicists felt comfortable with) and fire 10 grams of antimatter to engage the tear into slip-space. With the use of advanced software, the craft would re-enter normal space at the gravity well determined by the ship as the point of arrival (also a star).

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