TARDIS Technical Index

Gallifreyan Noosphere Parameters

The Time Lord's Noosphere is the field of thought and cultural understanding, whose limits are set by the Matrix's collection of data and the Time Lord mind's understanding of universal laws and imagination. A TARDIS can reach the edge of what a Time Lord can imagine (the Noosphere) and then a bit beyond.

The Back Time Field Buffers prevent a TARDIS from visiting Gallifrey's past. The Buffers can be breached, but it is extremely difficult to do this. Removal of the Relativity Differentiator will allow a TARDIS to travel into Gallifrey's distant past (before the Eye of Harmony), but it will prevent the TARDIS from changing its spatial coordinates relative to the current planet. For reasons that even the Time Lords don't understand, a TARDIS cannot enter the Kasterborous Sector in Gallifrey's immediate future. It is however, possible to visit Gallifrey's star system several million years after the fall of the Time Lords.

Despite the restrictions in and around Gallifrey, a TARDIS can visit the past or future of the rest of the Multiverse with only two limits. For the most part the Space Parameter is defined by the size of the Universe. A TARDIS will automatically stop when it reaches the edge of creation. It is limited by the boundary between is and isn't. The planetoid Hindmost lies so far from Gallifrey that a TARDIS would have to be specifically re-engineered to reach it.

A TARDIS cannot travel further back in time than around 3500 years after Event One (the Big Bang). This is approximately 10,000,000,000 years before Gallifrey's present (13,500,017,903 BC). This limit is established because of the danger to the universe a time traveller could represent. The laws of physics are still forming at this point, and the addition of any particle to Event One could change the entire universe. The other limit is dictated by the ability of a TARDIS to collect Artron Energy from the Prime Eye of Harmony on Gallifrey. The forward Time Parameter is located at approximately 3,510,000,000 years after Gallifrey's Present (10,000,000 AD). This forward limit of TARDIS travel was set because there are likely to be species in existence who have grown more powerful then even the Time Lords. Automatic Systems prevent a TARDIS from travelling beyond this point and will trigger a boundary limit error message stating "Time Parameters Exceeded."

Very few Time Lords have ever travelled to Event 2 - the end of the Universe. However, if an operator overrides the Automatic Systems his TARDIS will have to rely on its own copy of the Eye of Harmony. If the Automatic Systems are overridden then a TARDIS can travel forward until the universe begins to collapse. Beyond this point it begins to lose its anchor point on Gallifrey because time works differently. The controls will begin to lock up and then a TARDIS will be destroyed. An emergency re-materialization is the only known solution. If a TARDIS travels this far into the future it will require some time to recalibrate before it can dematerialize again.

The Parameters are also defined by the boundaries of the Vortex's Time Spiral. Any TARDIS that tries to pass this boundary would be destroyed and scattered throughout the Vortex. These parameters are wired into core of a TARDIS making accidental crossing a virtual impossibility. As back up, if the TARDIS is in danger of being crushed by the Time Spiral, a Boundary Error Alarm will sound. The Defence Unit can then be plugged to the console and the operator can then instigate an emergency landing, which will allow the Defence Unit to materialize on a “nearby” world. The Defence Unit can be found on Type 40 and later TARDISes.

(For more information on the limits of TARDIS travel see The Governing Circuit.)

Color Key

The following color code is used:

  • Black: For information from the TV Series, including Dimensions in Time, and 1996 TV Movie.
  • Blue: For information from the Novels and Audios including Target, Virgin, BCC, and Big Finish.
  • Green: For information from 'licensed' reference sources such as the Technical Manual, Doctor Who Magazine, and the Role Playing Games.
  • Red: For information from unofficial sources -The Faction Paradox series, behind the scenes interviews, author's speculation, and popular fan belief.
  • The TARDIS Technical Index is copyright Will B Swift.

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