T Pyxidis

T Pyxidis

T Pyxidis is a star that we have heard about in the news recently. The scientist Dr Sion claims that it will go supernova quite soon and threaten the earth. Other scientists say that this is not the case.

In any case, T Pyxidis is an interesting object that will be interesting to study. Especially in the Far Future when we can go there. It is only 1000 parsecs away. It will only take about 4 years to go there with an average speed of jump-5. So lets equip a 100-kton scout-cruiser and go there! It will be an epic adventure. 😀

T Pyx

Image from NASA. Public Domain.

Only referees should read on.

Since T Pyxadis (lets call it T-Pyx from now on) is in the general direction of where Alpha Centauri is means that T-Pyx should be located somewhere far beyond K’kree space. In the maps showing the stellar concentrations from the traveller map site, we can see that there are no rifts along the way.


But there will be other problems. The reason that the K’kree haven’t expanded in the trailing direction is that a lot of fugitives from over 50 different races (including humans) have gathered there. They have decided that they don’t want to be killed and that the don’t want to be turned into vegetarian slaves. So they fled. Then they organized themselves. Now they have established the G’naak Zone, where the K’kree are not welcome.

If the expedition starts on Annapabar (Ley Sector 1936) then it has to go through K’kree space. When the K’kree learns about the ships mission, they will not let it pass through K’kree space. Then it is up to the captain to determine if they should make a detour around K’kree space, or if they should pass though anyway (and rely on their high jump-factor to travel faster than the news about them).

The reason for the K’kree to not wanting the expedition to go through K’kree space is that the K’kree don’t want the imperials to know about the G’naak, since the imperials might want to help the G’naak.

On the other side of K’kree space is the G’naak Zone. In the 50 first parsecs in the G’naak Zone there aren’t many populated worlds. Most habitable world have been nuked by the K’kree. In some gas-giants there are G’naak system defence boats waiting for K’kree ships to attack. In some systems there will be automated missile defence stations. A ship must identify itself as not being a K’kree ship to avoid being attacked. Since the scout cruiser is so big, it will probably be identified as a K’kree ship at first, until the G’naak codes have been learnt.

Deeper into the G’naak Zone the new G’naak home world will be found.

If a route even further rimward is selected, the expedition will encounter the Free Worlds, that believe that the are free of the Hiver manipulations. But that is just what the Hivers want them to think. On some of these planets, strange psycho-historical experiments are performed. The ideal route for this epic adventure would be to encounter both the G’naak Zone and the Free Worlds.

Another problems that might occur along the way are fuel shortages, due to that the expected gas-giant wasn’t there or that it’s atmosphere wasn’t suitable for fuel.

There might also be mechanical problems. The engineers might have to produce a broken part from scratch on an uninhabited planet.

Problems with the crew might be deaths, plague or just psychological problems from being away so long (for the scientists that are untrained for this situation). Maybe someone will fall in love and have children. Maybe with a human from the G’naak Zone.

When arriving at T-Pax, it’s up to the scientists to investigate the star. Will it go supernova (and when)? Maybe the scientists will come to different conclusions… Maybe an invited Darrian scientist will have a different opinion than the imperial scientists. After this it’s just another 4-year trip back.

The PCs should have important command positions on the ship. They can also have a secondary character for some planetside adventures, where the captain isn’t involved. The captain then might have to punish the secondary characters after their little side adventure.

The ship is a 100kton Scout Cruiser. It is capable of Jump-6. It has only got a 1-G manuever drive. The armor rating is 1. But it has a level-9 meson screen, and a level-9 nuclear damper. The ship is lightly armed (for its size). It has 10 level-9 meson bays, 10 level-9 particle accelerators, 10 level-4 beam lasers and 4 level-5 repulsors. The computer is a model-9fib. The ship carries 2 standard (but armed) 100-tons scout ships and 2 modular cutters. A cargo space of 714 tons can be used for scientific equipment, replacements parts, food extra fuel etc. The crew is 700 and the ship also carries 50 scientists.

SC-0001-T'Pyx  SC-R3616J3-109905-40990-0  GCr 103 100 ktons
Crew=700 TL=15 Cargo=714, Fuel=66000, EP=6000, Agility=1

Except for the 50 scientists, there should be a crew of 50 for the command section, 250 for the engineering section, 80 for the gunnery section, 20 for the flight section, and 300 service crews. Most of the crew should be scouts.

For navigation in unknown space, the random subsector generator can be used. Set the settlement to frontier, outer limit or barren depending on how far beyond K’kree space the expedition has reached.

11 thoughts on “T Pyxidis”

  1. First time poster, long time player of Traveller, recent returnee to the game. Great post – I read the doomsday version of the article, and I was greatful for the link to the discovery article. Great idea to tie in real world astronomy to Traveller. Huge challenge for a referee!

  2. That Fomalhaut article is a good one, too! I’d say Marc Miller and GDW must have done some astronomy to get so much physics etc. correct on the star.

    It’s funny, but when exo-planets started being discovered through indirect methods, what struck me was a comparison to the extended system generation in Traveller. The discoveries are re-writing the rule-book (as it were) on what systems look like: for instance, there are DMs in the Traveller extended system creation that suggest Gas Giants occur in colder parts of a star system only, with long orbital periods. This is modelled on our solar system, of course. But now we’ve discovered massive gas giants orbiting close to stars with ultra-tight orbital periods. It makes you realise that before now, we’ve really only had a sample of one system to go on!

    Ahhhh, the imagination is stirred and stirred again. I’ll have to have a re-read of Alien Module 6 now. 😉

  3. i am just crazy about the universe.. i wish i would be able to see the rare happening supernova

  4. This is a great setting idea and I stumbled across it accidentally looking at Traveller Map Images. I think that special Long term High end Giant Scoutship expeditions in general would make for a great campaign. Their are so so many endless possibilities. Great Stuff

  5. You may need to update the article though, according to Wikipedia T Pyxidis is now estimated to be 4780 parsec distant. It’s also pretty clear that it going supernova wouldn’t do any damage to Earth.

    The basic expedition idea reminds me of the 2300AD adventure “Bayern”, and should make for a great campaign if the GM can supply enough exploration opportunities en route.

  6. 1000 parsecs was a good number to make this adventure interesting. 4780 is a bit too long. I’ll have to find an alternative interesting object in the same direction that is about 1000 parsecs away.

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