Shielding technology is an incredibly important and effective asset for the various factions, organisations and individuals throughout the known systems. Without it, many capital ships, cruisers, shuttles and fighters wouldn't be able to function within the vacuum of space.
Due to the large size of individual shield generators, they are mostly equipped to spaceships, large model vehicles and buildings, though some small generators to exist for personal use.
However, these generators often differ in terms of size and power, and as such, a system was created to determine the amount of protection a shield can offer, known as the Levels of Shielding.
It is important to note, however, that shielding technology is not strictly linear, and all shields (given enough time and concentrated fire power) can be overloaded.
Though physical shields have been a part of conflict for as long as war has existed, shield generators are a much newer creation. On Earth, the first shield generator was created in 2051, after the advancement in electrical generation opened up new possibilities in the realm of engineering. Alongside the computing power offered by Artificial Intelligences, the Ryconos Research Company crafted the first prototype shield generator, utilizing an artificial gravity field to repel physical projectiles.
After research into inertial dampeners produced several more advancements in the field, shielding technology improved and was built into the first of Earth's capital ships, constructed in low Earth orbit. Eventually, with the advent of plasma and laser-based weaponry, the need for more effective shields was more evident than ever before.
Once again, Ryconos came through with a ground-breaking design. After bombarding the element Ryconium (found after drilling the Lunar surface in 2072) with a heavy dosage of plasma energy, a field capable of repelling similar energy was produced. This discovery revolutionized the shielding community, and soon more companies sprang up, utilizing different forms of plasma and Ryconium alloys to produce stronger types of shields.
After the Shift took place, shielding generators were improved even further. As those is System 54 had also discovered Ryconium (known to them as Basalkalite) the integration of newer ideas and technology was close to seamless.
Currently, shield generators are found on board most spacecraft, as they are necessary to prevent damage attained from spacial impacts with debris and small asteroids. They are also a must-have on any combat-vessel, as most plasma-based weaponry could blow a hole in an un-shielded vessel.
Shield Generator Variations Edit
Almost all shield generators found within System 54 and System 55 utilize Ryconium as the primary power source, with few exceptions. Some companies still make shielding generators based on gravity or magnetic repulsion. Though these have the advantage of much smaller generator sizes, they cannot stop plasma-based weaponry.
That being said, Ryconium alloys are often used by some companies in order to produce shields more specialized to protect from a certain element or projectile. Some elemental combinations can also change a shields colouring (most Ryconium shields are light grey when active).