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Taungoo Slingshot

If you've ever observed the shuttle prices at Sol, you might have noticed that the prices for shuttles to and from Taungoo vary much faster than between any other two stations.

Either Taungoo is in a really low orbit, or in a retrograde orbit.

Be it as it may, you can use this to get a faster and cheaper connection than a direct connection. I think I my travel started at the Alpha Centauri Jump Gate, and I wanted to visit both all stations in the Sol system, and eventually land on Nouveau Limoges.

Traveling to Taungoo first and then to Daedalus provided to be less expensive than the direct flight, and at least the total travel time was also shorter than the direct flight. I used the time before shuttle departure to run some errands.

In an old book I've read that, before the invention of Anti Matter Drives, space probes used similar tricks: for example the way from Earth to Saturn would take a detour to Mars or even Venus, to get some acceleration from the other planet's gravity. A "gravity slingshot" or "gravity assist maneuver".

In principle, you can also use stations at Alpha Centauri for optimizations, but the much slower changes in station distances don't make that very feasible.

This observation motivates me build a more precise model of the relative positions of all the stations over time, so that I can calculate such slingshot opportunities better.


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  2. Station Destination Min Max Average Variance Cycle
    Tau Station K0benhavn 3793 18209 11001 14416 37
    Tau Station Daedalus 4601 17497 11049 12896 28
    Tau > Nouveau Limoges 18709 20472 19591 1763 38
    Tau Station Sol Jump Gate 1670 6941 4306 5271 42
    Tau Station Taungoo Station 7467 14594 11031 7127 9