217: dr carla broker (hyperspace physics)

the, ahem, science of calling black holes in hyperspace “black balls” was started by, of course, male hyperphysicists about a hundred years ago. it was an inside joke sort of thing, you see, in the strangely machismo world of science, but then the media got hold of it and suddenly everyone in the arm knew them as “black balls,” once again treating science like with a particular disdain the general populace always seems to have about it. strange, how they sit in enormous hyperspace ships capable of traversing enormous distances within a few hours, talking to their friends and loved ones on vidcoms thanks to subspace node technology, and yet when they describe it, they sound almost like stupid children, or, if they don’t understand it, they make fun of it. they make fun of the very ship they sit inside, whose hulls and engine and life support keeps them alive. funny how that works.

in hyperspace, a black ball inflates. as the black hole in realspace sucks up matter, the black ball expels matter. but it doesn’t go anywhere. if you were to enter a black ball and continued traveling forward, in front of you you would see the matter of hyperspace–which, by the way, is white to human perception, not black, defeating the purpose of the colloquialism–you would see the matter grow and grow and grow until it looked like you were fully inside of it. your perception would be that you had traveled for an hour, two hours, four hours, however long you thought you traveled forward. but then, if you turned around, you would see that you have not moved at all. you could travel forward in a black ball for eternity and you would remain in the same spot, once you turned around. the ball seems to “inflate” around you, like a balloon, but for all intents and purposes you are stationary. in a way it’s like the opposite of a black hole–rather than sucking you in, it’s keeping you out. we suspect that it’s where the matter from the black hole goes, but we’re still working on that. the important part is that time and energy in hyperspace is limited, and so if you ever make a jump into hyperspace and your sensors indicate increasing hyperspace matter, you should take a look out the back and see if you’ve even moved. luckily if you’re stuck in a black ball, it’s not hard to get out–you just turn around or back up. the problem is, the longer you stay in hyperspace, the more deteriorated your shielding becomes, until it breaks down and then your ship breaks down, and then you’re dead. and none of us want you dead! so it’s important to pay attention to black holes in hyperspace.

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