How I Wonder What You Aargh

Cirys superzorcher (n.): A hypothetical weapons system in which the various elements of a Cirys swarm (q.v.) are equipped to function as the radiative elements of a phased-array laser. Such an array, with an effective aperture equal to the diameter of the swarm, would theoretically be able to deliver a substantial portion of the total solar output of the contained star in a single beam against targets located at interstellar distances.

Occasional peaceful uses for such beams have been mooted, including laser sail propulsion (although it should be noted that there is little call for such craft on a larger scale than existing propulsion arrays – which have the advantage of being mobile – can handle, and the ability to build a laser-sail craft capable of surviving such propulsion is questionable), long-distance, including extragalactic, communications (a matter of great interest to the Elsewhere Society), and even remote power generation and delivery.

However, while condemned by Cirys Aendyr himself – who is said to have wept when this application of his concept was brought to his attention – the most common proposal is to use the Cirys superzorcher as the weapons system implied by its name. The ability to place so much power on target (a figure of the order of 108 exawatts for a Hearth-class star) across interstellar distances, capable of vaporizing lithic worlds and severely damaging gas giants and stars, is peculiarly attractive to certain types of mentality, especially when it is considered that the purely photonic beam of a superzorcher is substantially more difficult to detect than a typical RKV, and cannot be practically intercepted or recalled.

As such, while the Cirys superzorcher requires a high degree of technological advancement and autoindustrialism to produce (a potential currently limited to the Empire and certain other Core Markets) and is in any case a prohibited weapons system (classified as a Tier I star-killer under the Ley Accords), an informal consensus exists among the Presidium powers that the construction of such a device by any polity, within or without the Worlds, may be reasonably interpreted as notice of intent to commit gigacide, and as such is a legitimate cause for preemptive defense of the highest order.

– A Star Traveler’s Dictionary

Trope-a-Day: Dyson Sphere

Dyson Sphere: The Empire has two, although neither by that name, the concept *there* having been devised by Cirys Minaxianos. One, a Cirys bubble, is at Esilmúr (Imperial Core); a thin layer of light-sail material surrounds the star, held up by photon and solar wind pressure in much the same manner as a statite, and managed by magnetic manipulation and selective releases of solar wind. The material, in turn, is coated with energy-producing solar foil, powering massive arrays of antimatter production facilities.

The other, a three-layered incomplete Cirys swarm is at Corícal Ailék, where the Transcend keeps its brain: the innermost being golden-winged energy-collection complexes skimming the corona of the star and powering the rest of the swarm, the middle layer being fractal chandeliers of organic crystal nanocircuitry, providing the Transcend with its massive processing power, and the outermost being the hexterranes, a lattice of hexagonal habitat-plates providing living space here at the heart of the light.