Saturday, 10 November 2012

To Boldly Float ... Orbital Airships

They’re still at it. The folks at JP Aerospace are still chipping away at their orbital airship concept. I had seen the concept on the web while writing The Black Ships and thought it might be an interesting way to get large ship modules into space. I didn’t realise, at the time that anyone was actively working on such an idea, but these guys really seem to believe in it. There are still quite a few problems to iron out, such as high-altitude buoyancy and heat transfer, but the thing that really catches my imagination is size. At seven times the size of the Hindenburg, where the heck do you park the thing? For a look at what they're working on, drop by their blog here:
I’m hoping they pull it off. There’s a certain elegance to the idea of massive airships, slowly lifting cargo into space. It almost seems anachronistic - I love stuff like that.

The image above is not from JP. I was just playing around with an open source program called Blender. I had created a model of an airship while writing  The Black Ships and thought it might show scale better if I built the Golden Gate bridge and put them together. Then I got carried away and turned it into an animated fly-by, complete with crowd sounds and police radio chatter.

Tons of fun, but I got very little writing done that day...

Monday, 5 November 2012

Release of Orbital Decay

Orbital Decay is now released on Amazon for all territories. This 18,000 word novella occurs after the events in The Dark Defiance and it revolves around the discoveries made by Jan Kennedy during the homeward flight of the Völund.
 This is a story of the Living Impaired and it will end up changing everything for the Human/Midgaard alliance as they struggle to keep their enemy at bay in the next, full length installment of the series.
Interest permitting, a  side-series of novellas will grow from the Orbital Decay story, describing events on Earth as we try to survive the outbreak.

A Black Ships Novella - Fourth in the series
Detective Sergeant Ben Mark's life is falling apart. It's been a long, painful process for years but the pace has just accelerated dramatically. A suicide turns into the case from Hell as Ben realizes that Dr. Mortensen was the victim of foul play.

And he may not be the last.

Ben's own life is in danger as he struggles desperately to uncover what Gaia Biodesign is doing on their orbital lab, and why they are willing to kill to keep it quiet. As he races to uncover the truth, he learns that the entire species may be the next victim.

Just as humanity is finally reaching for the stars, a terrible mistake may knock us back into the Stone Age.
If anyone is left alive...

(approx 18,000 words)