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Superluminal Communications

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Superluminal Communications are used by the RDA on their spaceships and their Hell's Gate colony to achieve instantaneous interstellar communications between Earth and the RDA facilities on Pandora. Even though according to conventional physics like Einstein's theory of relativity state that it is impossible to go faster than the speed of light, the world of subatomic particles is governed not by these traditional theories, but by the chaotic mess of quantum mechanics. There is a drawback, however, in that you can only send three bits of information per hour and it is extremely costly at $7,500 per bit.

How It WorksEdit

Until recently, it was believed that information could not be transmitted faster than the speed of light because it must be ether in some material form (e.g. a datacube) or modulated on some kind of energy (e.g. a series of long and short laser pulses). To prove otherwise would be to go against Einstein's celebrated theory of relativity and generations of science.

When physicists began to study individual subatomic particles (protons, neutrons, electrons, photons, muons, neutrinos, etc.) back in the early twentieth century, they found that these miniscule entities did not act according to the laws of classical Newtonian physics. A new branch of physics, quantum mechanics, was developed to explain the bizarre behavior of subatomic particles. One of the emergent theories postulated that if two "entangled" particles are created, a measurement made on one of them would affect the other instantaneously, regardless of the distance separating them.

It was not possible to send information using this theory, however, because there was no way to control the state the first particle would have when it was measured. As a result of this random element, there was no way to encode any information in the state of the second particle when it was measured. This phenomenon was tested by multiple experiments, and almost always gave the same confirmatory results.

Scientists have found many phenomena that seemed impossible at first (some types of radioactive decay, electrical current flowing through insulating metals, etc.) But it was later discovered that subatomic particles can pass through a barrier (either on a physical or an energy level) that is theoretically impossible. The "tunneling" mechanism by which this occurs is still unknown, but appears to be statistically predictable, even when random in nature.

In recent decades, physicist Austin McKinney, a researcher at the Broadlawn Institute, discovered that by imposing an intense oscillating magnetic field on the first entangled particle, a tunneling effect occurred, and he could influence the state it took when he measured it. This, in turn, instantly controlled the state of the other particle when it was measured, no matter how far away it happened to be.

However, the tunneling process was far from perfect. The particle would adopt the desired state only once in ten thousand attempts. The other 9999 were random. But McKinney was undeterred. He developed a highly redundant, error-correcting encoding scheme and was able the achieve a data transmission rate of three bits per hour. All current Superluminal Communications technology is based on his invention.


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