Monday, November 13, 2017

Narmada Planetary Profile                                    

Narmada (1918 Narmada/Wayhaven) B260997-D

  Starport: Class B – A good quality installation with refined fuel, annual maintenance overhauls and shipyard facilities capable of constructing non-starships.  Numerous orbital and planetary sites are present.
  Size: Class 2 – Diameter 2,118 miles; surface gravity 0.21G (increased to 0.75G in urban areas with artificial gravity systems); rotation 28h 02m 15s (1.17 standard days); orbital period 45.81 days (0.15 standard years).  Narmada is the 15th moon of the gas giant Orgus.
  Atmosphere: Standard – 78% Nitrogen / 20% Oxygen mix at mean surface level; surface pressure 14.7 psi.  Some visitors may experience discomfort outside urban areas due to low humidity levels.
  Hydrographics: 0% - There is no free-standing water on Narmada.  Topography consists of rocky plains, exposed flats of bedrock, numerous low mountain ranges and deserts of coarse regolith.
  Population: Class 9 – 2.18 billion inhabitants (Grand Census of 1100); 97% humaniti (85% Solomani, 12% Sylean, 3% Villani), 2% Aslan, 1% Vargr.  Largest city is Mega-Alpha at 98.38 million; there are six other cities with populations over 60 million inhabitants –  Betaplex, Delta City, Omicropolis, Red Sun City, Theta-Xi and Zetaplex.
  Government: Type 9 (Impersonal Bureaucracy) – Narmada is a constitutional oligarchy with each agency, bureau and government subdivision run by a house of the nobility.  The planetary capital is at Mega-Alpha.  The current planetary leader is Isabella Ferranti.  The Imperial Liaison is Marquis Olam Thorpe.
  Law Level: Class 7 – Firearms are not permitted on Narmada, except in the Red Sun City district.  Open carry of melee weapons elsewhere requires a permit.  Concealed carry of any weapon is prohibited.  Legal system is extensive, formalized and usually requires professional representation for all cases.
  Tech Level: TL 13 (D) Average Interstellar – Most products commonly available for sale.  Weapons and accessories only available in Red Sun City.
  Bases: The subsector capital is located in Red Sun City.  Duke Darius Ingersoll is the Imperial Authority for the subsector and maintains a fief near Red Sun City.  An Imperial Naval Base present there as well as an Imperial Interstellar Scout Service Base.
  Notes: Narmada is a desert world with high population.
  Travel Zone: The Travellers’ Aid Society has given this world a green travel code.  There are no current alerts or notices for this world.
  Gas Giant: There are three gas giants in the system suitable for fuel skimming.  Narmada orbits the closest one, Orgus, with the others at distances of 6.3 AU and 12.8 AU, respectively.

Narmada is a small desert moon of Orgus, the 15th of 31 known moons of the gas giant.  It was settled by regolith miners during the Solomani expansion of the Second Imperium.  It became the subsector capital in Imperial Year 283 of the Third Imperium.
As the subsector capital with high population, to say Narmada is a busy place is an understatement.  Residents to this world contend with constant space and air traffic, requiring a dedicated and professional force of traffic regulators just to keep it all moving smoothly.  There are a dozen orbital starports and twice that many on the surface to accommodate the bustle of interstellar commerce, which goes at all hours of the day and night, everywhere on the surface.
One of the more important aspects of life on Narmada is the concept of water conservation and reclamation.  Much of the water that is in the system has been recycled for decades if not centuries through extensive solar distillation and hydroponic agriculture.  Wasting water is a serious crime which is rigorously enforced by the Bureau of Water Management.  Thus, visitors are strongly advised to keep all their water use and expulsion receipts in order to avoid Draconian usage fines upon their departure from the planet – which can be as much as Cr 10 per liter in extreme cases.

Human-Powered Flight
With its low natural gravity and thick atmosphere, the sport of ornithoptery – human-powered flight – is quite popular on Narmada.  The modern rig is a specialized flight suit with wings mounted on the arms and steering vanes on the legs which rents for about Cr 35 for a day, or can be purchased new for about Cr 350.
It takes considerable effort to take off from ground level, which is why most launch from a specialized platform that can be oriented to face the wind for maximum initial lift.  While most participants simply enjoy the feeling of flight, it is also a very athletic exercise.  (Fliers should test Strength hourly to avoid exhaustion and a possible crash.)  Crashes are moderated by the low gravity, but owing to the rocky terrain, there are a handful of deaths and numerous injuries every standard year.

Red Sun City
            Red Sun City is an Imperial enclave located on the planet Narmada (1918 Wayhaven).  This metropolis of 68.4 million inhabitants occupies the entirety of the Imperial Autonomy District, which coincidentally also happens to be the personal fief of Duke Darrius Ingersoll, the head noble of the Narmada subsector (Subsector G of Wayhaven).  

Imperial Autonomy District
            Narmada was a regolith mining colony before it became a major military outpost after the founding of the Third Imperium.  As the Imperium expanded its influence in the Wayhaven sector, Narmada rapidly transitioned from an outpost to a major trading center in the first two centuries of the newly reborn empire, attracting newly minted Imperial military veterans and opportunistic merchants and entrepreneurs.
            When Narmada was made the subsector capital in 283, the Ingersoll family was given the hereditary title and a fief that covered 500 square miles.  [For comparison, that is about the size of modern day Los Angeles.]  Jorge Ingersoll was a veteran of the Imperial Interstellar Scout Service and had conducted a detailed planetary survey of the planet early in his career.  Thus, it should be no surprise that he was very specific about where his fief was to be located – even to the point of bringing in five divisions of Imperial Marines to make it clear to the locals he wouldn’t settle for anywhere else.
            Duke Jorge knew from the survey that Narmada had accreted from a large number of asteroids in one of Orgus’ Trojan points, was displaced by a collision and eventually settled into the orbit around the gas giant as its 15th moon.  Jorge claimed an area that was rich in lanthanum, an essential metal needed in the field coils of starship jump drives.  In order to keep his profits from being taxed by the fledgling planetary government, he used his position to establish his fief as an autonomous district, backing his play by placing an Imperial Navy Base on his fief, bringing in an IISS Base a decade later.  The planetary government relented shortly after that, forgiving all back taxes in the process – there was plenty of additional income to be had from the other inhabitants and burgeoning interstellar trade the Imperium had brought.
            The Imperial Autonomy District (IAD) grew into a major city over the next two centuries, fed by an influx of refugees from the constant fighting in the Core Sector during the Imperial Civil War.  The Ingersoll family encouraged this through a unique form of fund-raising – buying into each and every business that wanted to do business in the district.  Depending upon the size and scope of the business, the Ingersoll interest in it ranges from one to ten percent.  If you don’t impress the Ingersoll family that your business can be profitable, they don’t buy in and you have to do business somewhere else.

Lay of the Land
            While the entirety of the IAD is the fief of Duke Darrius Ingersoll, not all of it is the city proper.  The Ingersoll family retains a personal estate covering four square miles, and the combined Naval and Scout base facilities cover an additional twenty square miles.  Various public utilities and Imperial facilities take up nearly fifty more square miles.  All told, the city occupies just over 400 square miles of the IAD.
            The space for the city filled in completely some 400 years ago, forcing the architecture to go vertical.  The outgrowth of this (with rapidly advancing technology) was the creation of arcologies – self-contained miniature cities that top a mile in height with housing, industries, agriculture and more for up to a half-million people.  The oldest arcology – Alpha Emerald Oh Four – is nearly 250 years old and is in a constant state of renovation, though there are no plans on replacing it, due to its convenient location and the inexpensive rents for first-year veterans just cycling out of military service.
            Life in the city is constant.  It is just as busy in the middle of the night as it is during the day.  Spacecraft are constantly arriving and departing from the starport, grav vehicles are shuttling through the air lanes, and public transit lines never have off-peak times.
            The city is divided up into numerous zones and most of the arcologies take their names from the zone they happen to occupy.  Zone names are standard military phonetic letter, Alpha through Zulu; a color, Scarlet, Amber, Emerald or Azure; and a two digit number, Oh One thru Nine Nine.  Each of the 10,400 zones covers approximately 24 acres – roughly a square about 1/5th of mile on a side.  The closer to the beginning of the alphabet the zone is, the closer that zone is to the starport.

            The Red Sun City Starport is a commercial venture that shares facilities with both the Imperial Navy and IISS.  The landing area is four miles east to west by three miles north to south, with the rest of the grounds occupied with the terminals and support facilities needed for constant operation.  Owing to the age of the facility, it still retains spaceplane runways, which also see service for fixed wing aircraft and sub-orbital shuttles.
            While independent starships are allowed to use the starport, they are only permitted 84 hours (three planetary days) loiter time on the grounds before they are required to transfer to another port facility.  Some exceptions can be made in special cases of need or duress (and for members of the nobility participating in the biennial subsector moot).  Those who cannot meet the limit are arrested by the Starport Authority and their spacecraft impounded until penalty fees are paid (or other arrangements made).
            The Red Sun Longshore Union controls the loading and off-loading process for all civilian craft and many of the Imperial Navy and IISS vessels.  They have extreme esprit de corps and are incredibly efficient and trustworthy.

Public Services
            Law Enforcement: The Imperial Army maintains twelve divisions of military police in the IAD – approximately 240,000 personnel, or approximately 3.5 law enforcers per 1,000 residents.  There is extensive surveillance of all public locations within the city with advanced AI monitoring of all holovid feeds.
            Starport Authority:  The Red Sun Starport Authority (RSSA) maintains a security force of 6,500 enforcement officers, backed by a battalion of Imperial Marines from the Naval Base.  There is also extensive surveillance of all areas of the starport with both AI and human monitoring of all holovid feeds.
            Red Sun Emergency Services:  The RSES (pronounced “Reeses” colloquially) handles fire suppression and emergency rescue and medical services around the IAD, though most arcologies operate volunteer Rapid Response Teams (RRT, or “Artee”) to assess situations professionally and determine what services are needed, if any.
            Imperial Public Utilities Service:  The IPUS (given the unflattering nickname of “eyepus” by the locals) handles power, artificial gravity, water, sanitation, recycling and reclamation for the IAD.  They tend to be overworked and underappreciated but still manage to keep most of the essential services operating at an acceptable level of efficiency, though not nearly as good as it could be.
            District Agency of Rapid Transit: DART operates the district’s multiple modes of mass transit for both passengers and freight.  Private vehicles are not allowed to operate within the District, so DART operates maglev subways, grav transports, surface haulers and moving walkways to facilitate the movement of the populace.  Rather than publish a mind-boggling array of routes and staff numerous ticketing locations, transit is handled via the public network with instructions to facilitate a prompt arrival at or near one’s intended destination.
            District Information Network Organization:  DINO (“Dynoh” to the locals) handles the nightmarishly complex networks needed to move information and data around the IAD while maintaining its security.  Most arcologies have their own dedicated local data networks for their residences, businesses and organizations, as does the Starport, Naval and Scout Bases, and district’s law enforcers.  They also are responsible for maintaining the networks and spend much of their time responding to service calls on hardware repair and on software security.
            Autonomy Defense Force: This military force is two mechanized infantry divisions strong and dedicated to the defense of the IAD, though it is also designed to be supplemented by Imperial Military forces at need.  For the most part, these forces patrol the borders of the district and a special unit serves as Duke Darrius’ house guard.  Membership in the ADF is limited to veterans of the Imperial Army who are residents of the IAD.
            Bureau of Environmental Engineering:  This is one of the few planetary government agencies that is allowed to operate within the borders of the IAD.  This bureau manages the planetary atmosphere – a significant responsibility when there is virtually no oxygen producing plant life.  The engineers and technicians of BEE oversee, maintain and construct new atmosphere processors that scrub the lower level of the atmosphere of carbon dioxide and pump out oxygen for the masses of the planet to breathe.  Most atmosphere processors are located a few miles beyond the edges of urban districts.

Points of Interest
            The Grand Assembly:  This impressive building near the Duke’s estate is where the nobles of the subsector gather for the biennial Subsector Moot.  When it isn’t hosting the Moot, this building is home to a five-star hotel that always has room for nobility and heads of state.
            The Ingersoll Estate:  The ancestral home of the Ingersoll family that has ruled the subsector for over 800 years is located in the center of this carefully landscaped plot that covers over 2,500 acres,  This modern fortress is a complex of living areas, manicured gardens, business offices and guest accommodations.  It also has barracks for Duke Darrius’ personal guard, chosen from the ranks of the ADF.  The estate also has a landing pad for the Ship’s Boat that ferries him to and from his personal star yacht.
            Alpha Emerald Oh Four:  The oldest arcology of the hundreds that populate the skyline of the city is also the closest one to the starport and a frequent choice of Imperial veterans who have recently mustered out of the service.  The place is in a constant state of renovation, but also has reduced rents for veterans in their first year out of Imperial service.  Veterans typically share a three or four bedroom apartment until a studio or one-bedroom unit opens up, though there are some who retain the living arrangement after making friends with their roommates.  The arco’s upper ten floors are an immense greenhouse and hydroponics farm, with solar converters and wind turbines crowning its summit.
            Duke Jorge Ingersoll Park:  A common practical joke on newcomers to Red Sun City is to say something is located at November Scarlet Four Eight, which happens to be the district where this beautiful public park is located.  The central plaza enshrines a large bronze statue of the first duke of the subsector, along with life-sized busts of every subsequent ruler to follow.  The rest of the park is a perfectly laid out and rigorously maintained expanse of manicured lawns and groves of ornamental tress imported from all corners of the subsector.
            Ornithoptery Park:  Located at Zulu Azure Nine Eight, this artificial mesa is a departure and landing field for the popular sport of human-powered flight.  The gravity on the mesa is deliberately reduced to the natural planetary standard of 0.21G which allows practitioners of the sport to take off and soar over the magnificent desolation of the surrounding terrain.  It is also the starting and finishing point for the annual Roundabout Air Races, where participants make a lap around the IAD, threading their way through the city’s architecture for prizes and prestige.  Even Duke Darrius regularly participates as a contestant, donating whatever he wins to charity.

            The Field of Honor:  At Sierra Scarlet Three Seven is a small, walled in lawn that dedicated to the distasteful legacy of nobility – personal duels.  Duke Darrius attends each duel in an attempt to dissuade the participants before agreeing to become an official witness.

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