A jump drive is a ship component that allows capital ships and certain sub-capital ships to travel between systems without a the use of a stargate. This is the sole means of inter-system travel for capital ships since they are too large to utilize stargates.
Performing a Jump
Capital ships require a jump target in order for their jump drives to lock onto and create a temporary controlled worm-hole between the origin and destination system.
This can either be the form of a Cynosural_Generator_Array deployed at an allied POS or more commonly by ship generated cynosural field (colloquially known as a "cyno"). Both acts as a sort of pseudo-gravity well , enabling the jump drive to calibrate itself for the jump.
Cynosural field generation requires the user have levels in Cynosural Field Theory. Remote generation of cynosural fields is not currently possible. Thus, capital pilots must rely upon another pilot to generate a cynosural field in the target system. When activated, cynosural fields act as beacons, allowing any pilot in the system to locate and warp to the field.
Jump drives rely upon out-of-band faster-than-light communications in order to calibrate and lock onto a cynosural field. Because of this, both the cynosural field generator and jumping pilot must be in the same fleet when the cynosural field is generated. This information is broadcast only once, when the cynosural field is activated. Thus, pilots entering the fleet after the field has been activated will not be able to lock onto the field instantly. However, it is possible to re-broadcast the cynosural field location, enabling later joining fleet members to lock onto it. By relying upon FTL communications, only authorized pilots (those in your fleet) will be able to jump to the same field, preventing an enemy capital fleet from jumping to a friendly cynosural field.
Cynosural fields can also be generated on a continuous basis by using a Cynosural Field Generator I. Such generators require an alliance to have appropriate sovereignty to use. These generators operate on a constant basis, broadcasting the appropriate calibration information out-of-band via the Alliance channel, allowing any pilot in that alliance to lock onto the generator's field.
Activating a jump drive requires additional resources beyond the capacitor to generate the wormhole used to complete a jump. These resources come in the form of elemental isotopes which provide the neutrons required to create the high-frequency neutron rays which initiate wormhole creation. Each faction has specialized their technology to a certain isotope type based upon those available from the naturally occurring ice in their part of the universe. The following table shows the correlation between faction and isotope variety:
For capital ships, the base consumption is 1,000 isotopes per light-year of travel; jump freighters require a base 3,100 isotopes per light-year; and, black ops require a base 400 isotopes per light-year.
Completing the Jumpfleet member, right-click that member's name on the fleet overview and select "Jump to Member." To jump to an alliance cynosural field generator, right-click on your ship in space, select "Jump to", and then select the system to which you wish to jump.
Once the jump is initiated, the isotopes required are consumed from the ship's cargo hold. If not enough isotopes are available, then the jump fails to occur and no isotopes are consumed.
Jumping is bound by the same session change timer constraints as docking, switching ships, and using stargates. Thus, a jumping ship will have to wait thirty seconds after undocking before jumping and thirty seconds after jumping before being able to dock again.
Black ops ships have a unique ability to focus on covert cynosural fields. These fields require considerable skill to generate, but do not appear as an in system beacon, nor do they appear on scans. This allows a black ops ship to covertly jump into a hostile system with less chance of discovery on jump-in.
There are a set of three skills that specifically affect the use of the jump drive for all ships and one ship-specific skill that affects jump freighters.
Jump Drive Operation is required either directly or as a prerequisite to pilot any jump-capable ship and is a prerequisite for the following skills. Each level of this skill reduces the percent of capacitor consumed to perform a jump from 90% at level 1 to 70% at level 5.
Jump Fuel Conservation is not a required skill for any jump-capable ship, but reduces the jump fuel consumption by 10% per level, halving the jump fuel cost at level 5.
Jump Drive Calibration is required for both Jump Freighters and black ops ships, but affects the jumping ability of all jump drives. This skill allows jump-capable ships to cover more ground with each jump, reducing the number of jumps required. Each level of this skill increases the maximum jump range for a ship by 25% to a total increase of 125% at level 5.
Jump Freighters is another skill that is only required to pilot freighters with jump drives. Each of those ships benefit from increased levels in this skill, reducing their need for jump fuel by 10% per level. This benefit is multiplicative with the reduction from Jump Fuel Conservation.
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