Getting a Technology System in Modern Day-Chapter 606 Preventing Piss-Poor Performance

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Chapter 606 Preventing Piss-Poor Performance

An AR hologram of Proxima Centauri b was floating in the middle of the Farsight’s bridge, updated moment by moment thanks to hundreds of close-in survey satellites that the exploration squadron had released. Each of them were specialized satellites, some for weather, some for tectonic activity, some for mana detection, and so on. The information was collated and sent to the squadron flagship by a network of relay satellites so there was no delay in delivering information gathered on the opposite side of the planet from the ships.

They were to be the first to set foot on a planet outside the Sol system, so before that historic event took place, they were determined to know everything they could about the planet in order to prevent as many possible mishaps as they could. Of course, nothing could prevent Murphy from sticking his own fingers into their meticulously prepared pie, but proper planning and preparation prevents piss-poor performance, and they were determined to at least do that much.

The only tool they had at their disposal that hadn’t been released en masse were their rovers. Those would remain in the ships until if and when they ruled out the existence of intelligent life; before the satellites finished their data sweeps, absolutely nothing would be entering the planet’s atmosphere.

The TEF had already designed a complex operational doctrine for situations like this one, and despite it being the first time it was put into practice in reality, the crews of the exploration ships were operating like clockwork and checking every box. All of them knew the risk of contamination, not only cultural, but biological as well. When the Pinta, Nina, and Santa Maria had landed on the shore of America in 526 BE (1492 by the Gregorian calendar), the explorers from Columbus’ crew—and the colonizers that followed from all over Europe—devastated the indigenous population by introducing new pathogens to them. Smallpox, measles, influenza, typhus, and so on... all of them contributed their part in the collapse of societies and cultures across North America, some of which never recovered.

Thus, the first line of text in The Book read, “Something as simple as the common cold can destroy an entire civilization.”

As the hologram on the bridge continued being updated, the first survey result was displayed next to it. The composition of the planet’s atmosphere had been measured by spectroscopy from the Farsight, and a transit spectroscopy study had just been completed by the weather satellite. It wasn’t detailed enough, yet, to determine exact composition ratios, but the gasses themselves had been listed: hydrogen, helium, water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane, ammonia, nitrogen, and oxygen were all present in Proxima Centauri b’s atmosphere.

A great, whooping cheer went up on the bridge as the announcement was made. With those gasses, the planet was very likely to have a breathable atmosphere!

The next satellite to report the gross completion of its task was the mapping satellite. Though the image would continue to be refined as it continued orbiting, the hologram had at least been filled out with continents and oceans. The bridge fell silent as everyone turned from their station to look at the hologram, and they received their first shock of ‘This Is A Different Planet’ from the view.

The vegetation covering the single supercontinent on Proxima Centauri b was a deep, dark green that was practically black. As a red dwarf, Proxima Centauri emitted light primarily in the ultraviolet and red spectrum, and its low luminosity dictated that visible light was far behind ultraviolet. Thus, the plant life had adapted to that; the darker they became, the more ultraviolet light they could absorb.

The oceans—or rather, ocean, singular—weren’t spared the difference, either. The planet lacked the polar ice caps that Earth had, which perhaps explained why most of the planet was covered in ocean, to the tune of 88.25%. The rest of it was mostly concentrated in a single, large land mass (around 9.5%), with archipelagos scattered around the rest to make up the difference.

And also due likely in large part to the low luminosity of Proxima Centauri, the water on Proxima Centauri b was a deep, murky green instead of the brilliant blue of Earth’s oceans.

“Beautiful,” Ayaka breathily said as she gazed upon the hologram of the alien planet. Then she gave herself a mental shake and asked, “Farsight, how long until the data collection is complete?”

{One rotation around the star, Commander,} the AI replied.

‘So eleven days,’ Ayaka thought to herself. If she was a mind reader, she would have heard that same thought—or at least close variations along the same theme—from everyone else on the bridge as well. “Captain,” she began, turning to the Farsight’s captain seated next to her on the bridge. “Request permission to gather mission specifics from the rest of the task force.”

“Granted, Commander,” the captain gravely replied, aware that every word he spoke was being recorded for posterity.

During the trip from Earth, the two had gotten to know each other fairly well. And Captain Dimitrios Marinakis was normally a jovial, high-spirited fellow, as quick with a joke as he was with a wink. But now he was all grave-faced duty and stoicism, likely because he was aware that every action he took and every word he spoke would become part of the official record that historians would study for millennia to come.

“Thank you, Captain,” Ayaka replied, just as formal as the captain.

Formality came easy to her, unlike the captain’s gregariousness. She had been raised strictly by traditional Japanese standards, while the captain had been raised on the wind and waves around the island of Mykonos, playing host to tourist after tourist wanting to play in the famously crystalline blue water that surrounded the island-cum-tourist trap. Perhaps their two personalities, neither of which clashed with each other (Ayaka was too polite to externalize a personality conflict, while Captain Marinakis was too jovial to take offense at much of anything, after all), was the main reason they were so effective as a command team.

Commander Takahashi turned to her display and said, “Pass the request to the scientists. They have ten days, Earth time, to send a prioritized list of what experiments they would like carried out on the planet. Link them into the datanet so they have a real-time updated information base to help them make their decisions and rank them.”

{Yes, Commander.}

“Also, squadron-wide announcement.”

{Recording, Commander.}

“All hands are clear to step down from General Quarters. Condition Yellow across the squadron. I say again, Condition Yellow across the squadron.”

{All hands message delivered, Commander,} the AI reported a few seconds later.

“Very well. Thank you, Farsight,” she said.

{You’re welcome, Commander.}

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