Shatterbomb

Space-time Metric Weapon

Shatterbomb
Image from Steve Bowers
A shatterbomb (artist's impression based on accounts transmitted by witnesses before the bomb detonated)
Godtech weapon that is believed to operate by creating a brief, intense and localized increase in the expansion of space-time resulting in the disruption of any matter within the affected volume. It is theorized that the shatterbomb somehow generates a massive localized increase in the "dark energy" within its effective volume, but the exact mechanism is unknown.

It has been theorized that a shatterbomb detonation causes space-time within its effect radius (typically about 20 km across, but radii as large as 2,000 km have been observed) to increase its rate and intensity of expansion to such a degree that each atom within the area of effect moves as much as 0.1 mm away from any other atom within the volume. This has the effect of breaking virtually all chemical bonds within the volume and reducing any matter within it to a fine dust. Chemical bonding reestablishes itself within seconds after the shatterbomb has detonated, but re-bonding side effects and drift among the constituent atoms virtually guarantee the destruction of any organized structure within the detonation zone.

Shatterbombs appear to be a technology employed only by the AI Gods themselves and have never been observed in use by anything below the level of an SI:6 mind or an associated seraiph. They are often deployed as mines, although in some instances shatterbombs have apparently been used as projectiles.

To date there are only three known cases of nearbaseline minds observing and describing what is believed to be a shatterbomb prior to its detonation. Each account describes a gauzy spherical bubble made up of hundreds of glass-like threads defining an apparently empty space. In two accounts the sphere is described as about a centimeter across, but in the third it is described as closer to a meter in diameter. In this instance the volume of the shatterbomb detonation was nearly 2,000 km across. This leads to the hypothesis that the bomb casing is a form of container for something that directly contributes to the size of the shatterbomb effect. Unfortunately, in all three cases of sophont observation of a pre-detonation shatterbomb, the beings involved did not survive long enough to provide more than the most basic description.
 
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Development Notes
Text by Todd Drashner

Initially published on 19 January 2005.