Photo of Red, the first colony ship. Launched from the TerraNova Project Docks in Earth orbit September 6 2026, it was the first crewed ship to reach another star system, in July 17 2076 (Set as January 1, year zero in the Nova calendar).
The total length is 1443 meters. The bow is protected by the seven ice shields/tanks, containing water ice for use as reaction mass and radiation shielding. Behind the tanks are the cylindrical main section, containin life support, habitat modules, cryosystems and biological storage. On both sides external cargo sections have been attached, and two of the shuttle bays are visible at the top as well as the long-range transceiver which was used for Earth-ship communication during the trip. Most of the hull is covered with grey and brown radiation insulating foam. The main fusion systems and thrusters are located at the stern. The other two Nova colony ships, the Green and the Blue were constructed along similar lines, with minor differences mainly in the crew compartments and equipment sections. The basic design proved reliable and was used for all colony ships until the 2040's.
Stern view of Red. Here the four main thrusters are visible, as well as the cooling boxes of the fusion reactors.
The Red is currently a museum in Oakmann Orbit, operated by the TerraNova Colonial Foundation. Opening times are weekdays 9:00-16:00, weekends 7:00-16:00. Tours of the exterior are done every hour. On Arrival Day special showings and celebrations are held, tickets have to be pre-ordered well in time.