The ISV Venture Star, and the other ships of its class, represent the highest technological achievement in human history. As with the other ships of the “Capital Star” class, it was designed to carry a large payload of cargo and passengers to the worlds of the Alpha Centauri star system, especially the rich world of Pandora.
The ship's current mission is the exploitation of indigenous resources on Pandora, and is one of twelve ISVs that travel between Earth and Pandora on a continuing basis.
Length = 1,502.4 meters; Width = 302.25 meters; Height = 218.3 meters.
4.4 light-years. This range is set by onboard fuel supply and its containment system, and the life-support consumables, and the infrastructure needed to contain them. Because each gram of mass must be accelerated and decelerated (as well as the onboard fuel to accomplish this), every possible weight-saving measure has been taken. The ship carries only enough fuel for the planned mission profile, and a minimal amount of additional maneuvering. There are only enough supplies for the minimum crew needed to remain out of cryosleep. Air, water, and food must be replenished at Pandora, and the ship refueled there with locally-manufactured anti-matter and hydrogen and deuterium harvested from Polyphemus.
210,000 kilometers per second (70% of lightspeed, or 0.7 c).
Maximum Acceleration: 1.5 g.
0.46 year initial acceleration @ 1.5 g to reach 0.7 c; 5.83 years cruise @ 0.7 c; 0.46 year deceleration; 1 year loiter in orbit around Pandora; 0.46 year acceleration @ 1.5 g to 0.7 c for return trip; 5.83 years cruise; 0.46 year final deceleration @ 1.5 g to go into orbit around Earth.
6.75 + 1.0 + 6.75 = 14.5 Earth years. However, relativistic effects shorten the time onboard ship to slightly less than 6 years each way.
Hybrid deuterium fusion / matter-antimatter annihilation.
Propulsion: Two hybrid fusion/matter-antimatter engines. One photon sail. One fusion PME (Planetary Maneuvering Engine.) Beamed photon power from Earth for outward acceleration phase; ship’s hybrid fusion / matter-antimatter power for deceleration phase on approach to Pandora. Sequence reversed for return to Earth.