The Major Artificial Space Compression, or MASC, Drive is a highly potent space compression system that generates fields of compressed or decompressed space for movement. The primary method for this is by compressing vacuum or space filled with a fluid (gas or liquid) and funneling it behind the craft to create thrust. This system does not work well with heavy solids, largely due to the immense power drain they place on the drive.
As well, the MASC Drive also grants a kind of crude FTL via the creation of artificially compressed and decompressed fields, forming a corridor between the craft and the point of arrival. The corridor, once formed, will collapse behind the drive-equipped unit, catapulting it through rapidly decompressing space. The corridor itself is a microscopic tunnel lined with a high density compressed space field, which expands and conforms around the craft using the MASC corridor as it passes through. Despite being much faster than any conventional STL the Iromakuanhe have access to, objects exiting the corridor tend to experience potentially fatal recoil, meaning it was considered unsafe until refinements developed only recently were made available.
This system is largely resistant to passive phenomenon, such as the gravity generated by large stellar bodies and some artificial fields, but can be nonetheless stopped by systems that directly pull on the unit with enough force to prevent it from moving, such as the tractor beams on a craft of a similar or larger class.
The third, and final, movement-oriented system on the MASC Drive, is a passive space compression field that is created along all surfaces of the craft. This pushes evenly outwards in every direction, giving the equipped unit perfect neutral buoyancy in nearly all environments.
|Space Fortresses 1)
|500c (1 AU/s)
|2000c (4 AU/s)
|2000c (4 AU/s)
|2500c (5 AU/s)
|2800c (5.8 AU/s)
|3000c (6 AU/s)
Given the nature of the massive expanse that lay only a few dozen LY away from them and the manner in which they themselves had arrived in this sector, the Iromakuanhe always had a fascination with unstable space. Many researchers dedicated their entire lives to its study. One such scientist, who went by the name of Seyrnan Riel accidentally discovered a way of creating stable spatial compression in AR 533. The options were immense, and the MASC Drive, perfected eighty years later, was one of the more fruitful of his ventures. It is found on nearly all IAC spacecraft, and the technology has been the base for many inventions over the course of the next two centuries it has been used.