Pre-TARDIS Time Travel Capsules
Less then 200 years before the anchoring of the Eye of Harmony, during the Time of Chaos, the 508th Pythia foresaw a point when the veil of Time would not be breached by thought, as had been tradition. Instead time would be physically travelled by Gallifreyans. At her instigation the Academia began the Time Program.
Early research was based heavily on psychic ways of perceiving the [link=vortex]Astral Vortex[/vortex]. But even then, Gallifreyans had to take into account the fact that revolution-induced gravity exists and affects all temporal manipulation. The first Time Scoop was created after the rare element Taranium was discovered and mined from Gallifrey's moon Pazithi. This element was essential to early Gallifreyan temporal science. While the Time Scoop did rely on psychic power for control it was the Taranium that allowed the Transmission of Matter Through Interstitial Time (TOMTIT). Using Interstitial Motive Bridges, the Scoop could collect items and aliens from across time and space and bring them to Gallifrey. But the trip is strictly one way.
Taranium also allowed the creation of Warp Ellipse Field Generators. These hand-held devices were capable of dilating time so that the user would experience almost 9000 seconds for each second that passed outside the time bubble.
While still a student serving as a time plumber Omega (originally known as Paylix) realized that to make unlimited time travel possible a nearly endless power source would be needed. He went on to discover De-materialization Theory and constructed the first Dematerialization Circuits. Using this knowledge the first Prototype transportation pods capable of entering the Astral Vortex were created. They were manned only with Gallifreyan Womprats and could only leave the vortex at the same point they entered. Thus they were incapable of any time travel and even returning to normal space required an external power source.
One hundred and two years before the Eye of Harmony was created, the first space-time craft capable of carrying a Gallifreyan into the Vortex was constructed by Palix. This Taranium-based capsule allowedPalix (who would later be known as Omega) to become the first Gallifreyan to enter the Space-Time Vortex and return alive. Using this device he undertook his famous Odyssey into Deep Time, mapping out much of the Astral Vortex. It was around this time that Omega discovered the Population III Q star Qqaba (also known as Jartus).
Sixty-five years later, construction began on the first Time Scaphe. The Scaphe was a craft designed to enter the Astral Vortex and travel forward in time. The Scaphe was powered by the mental artron energy of the Chronaut Crew and used forced-matter calculation to travel in time. Like all of the early Time Travel Capsules, the Time Scaphe was constructed of real matter.
After 3 years and hundreds of simulations the Time Scaphe was launched with a crew of five under the command of Captain Quennesander Olyesti Pekkary. Their mission was to travel 90 days forward in time, but the Scaphe failed to arrive. While technically a valid method of time travel, the guidance of the craft relied entirely of the psychic focus of its pilot. There was no proper way of mastering the direction of travel nor control over the destination.
While Rassilon led his revolution, overthrowing the Pythia, Omega energies on politics and the solar engineering of Qqaba. The Scaphe's unexpected return after going missing for 10 months did little to advance temporal science, but it was seen as an omen signalling the end of the Dark Time and the beginning of the Time of Legend. Indeed, with the Curse of sterility and the first Vampire War looming, the Time Program was suspended within months of the Scaphe's return.
Despite the suspension of the Time Program, key discoveries were being made in related fields. Block-Transfer Mathematics were appropriated from the Logopolitans and the study of Tribophysics eventually allowed them the ability to slip through dimensions. After about a year the Time Program was reinstated by Rassilon, despite the Council's disinterest. Omega was made Chief of the Scientific Fraternity and several more Time Scaphes were launched. The Temporal Scientists Vanderkerian and Omega discovered the secret of time travel. But, in the end, Rassilon would take credit for this discovery. The Equation of Rassilon (as it became known) allows time travel through the Vortex via a Time Corridor.
Making use of the Equation of Rassilon, the Time Program created the Labyrinth. The Labyrinth still exists today and can be used as a primitive form of time travel, involving Time Corridors. It serves as the framework beneath Normal time - and it would eventually become the foundation of History itself. The Labyrinth consist of a network of open-ended time corridors that connect numerous specific points in space and time to a maze-like complex of corridors. But to achieve unlimited time travel, Rassilon, Omega, and the Other realized they would need a massive singularity for a power source. Together they constructed a remote stellar manipulator, called the Hand of Omega.
Using early time travel technology, the discovery of the Tachyon on Sol III (Earth) was taken back to Gallifrey, where it was developed into Gallifreyan tachyonics.
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.