YV-89-c5 "Elandra" (Solar System)

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The Elandra System comprises the star previously designated as YV-89-c5 and it's planetary system of eight planets, as well as multiple moons, two asteroid belts, and other objects that have been pulled into orbit by the star. The system is approximately 5 billion years old, created from the collapse of a molecular cloud. The vast majority of the system's mass is taken up with the Star YV-89-c5, which is a Class G Main-Sequence Star not unlike Sol. The innermost 5 planets, Elandra I through V, are so-called terrestrial planets. Elandra VI is a Gas Giant, where as Elandra VII is an Ice Giant. The final planet, Elandra VIII, appears to be a captured rogue planet from another system, also being terrestrial in nature.

There are two known Asteroid Belts in the system. The thinner one that appears to observers outside the system as a thin 'ring' around the main star lies between Elandra IV and V, and is composed primarily of metalloids and ices that never quite were able to form into any full planetoids. The second is a denser ring that is has formed from cosmic dust, ice comets, and what could simply be planetary debris that were caught in between the two giant planets and pulverized into chunks over the years.

Beyond the eighth planet is a disk very much akin to the composition of the Kuiper belt of the Sol System, comprised of linked populations of objects comprised primarily of ices and molecular dust.

Contents

Discovery

The star YV-89-c5 was initially discovered by long-distance orbital telescopes that were launched prior to the Startide Project's inception. It was one of a cluster of stars that were all considered a possibility of having life and slated for additional research as time and resources would allow. The astronomer Richard Nye is ultimately credited with the system's discovery after observing the planet-cast shadows across the light of the star. As a possible "Goldie Locks" system, so named because it had planets in the theoretical range of not too cold and not too hot due to the distance from the primary star, it was given a short bit of limelight before being filed away with no missions slated to visit that far out. The distance, roughly 35LY from the Sol System, made it prohibitive to do much but observe from orbital equipment. The name Elandra is taken from Richard Nye's eldest daughter.

The system was given a second look during the planning stages of the Startide Project. The Star Cluster YV-89 was an interest not only due to the c5 Star itself, but also having a higher-then-average chance of other stars in the cluster having habitable Goldie Locks planets, or at least habitable ones with stars that would not require continual sight augmentation to live by. The original Colony Class and Sleeper Class Startide Ships both passed on the YV-89 Cluster due to limitations in their life support and power systems. It wasn't until the Brahma Class was created that the YV-89 Cluster piqued interest, but ultimately that ship was sent to the IX-12 coordinates instead due to a more recently discovered system in that region. It was the Rihla Class Startide Ship that was finally given the mission to explore the YV-89 Cluster for possible colonization, and in particular the c5 System was put on the priority list of the onboard AIs.

Inner System

The inner system traditionally the region that is comprised of terrestrial planets and asteroids. However, the odd location of the second asteroid belt as made this more focused on the inner rocky planets, moving to the Outer System at the first Gas Giant.

Inner Planets

The five inner, terrestrial planets have dense, rocky compositions with a minimal amount of moons, and no ring systems. They are composed largely or refractory minerals, such as the silicates, which form their crusts and mantles, as well as metals such as iron and nickel which can be found in their cores. Three of the Five planets have some sort of atmosphere substantial enough to show signs of weather. All these planets do appear to exhibit common features such as impact craters, rift valleys, and signs of volcanic movement. Two of these planets have liquid water in quantity that suggest the support of life, and one of the remaining exhibits ice caps on the poles, as well as a frozen permafrost in quantities that suggest bombardment of ice comets.

Elandra I

Elandra I is a small rocky planet that is an unexplored mystery. It whips around the central star at incredible speeds, and the surface is either a molten-rock sea or a frozen, cracked and creaking desolate desert. It rotates in the opposite direction that it orbits the sun, which when coupled with it's high orbital speed, makes the concept of the "year" more important then what would normally be considered a "day" on other planets. It has no natural satellites, and the heat/ cool cycle appears to be the only reason why it doesn't appear to have been blasted apart by the intensity of the Star's Solar Wind.

Elandra II

Due to the orbital arrangement of these planets, the innermost two planets are partially molten wastelands whose crust is either molten magma from the sun or a frozen, cracked and broken crust that continually reforms. The third planet in the system could potentially serve as a habitable planet, but was never fully explored as an option due to the fourth planet in the system, a rare example a fully evolved life-supporting planet.