- Solarships have a streamlined silhouette, like a rocket; or better, aquadynamic like a shark or a whale.
- Solarship have long decks (interior) that run the length of the ship, perpendicular to the usual axis of thrust. So more like a ship than a skyscraper.
- Solarships usually have a length to beam ratio somewhere between 6:1 to 8:1.
- Solarships have two means of propulsion: a “Radium Drive” that is reactionless in that it doesn’t expel a propellant to impart motion (think directed anti-gravity, but *thirsty* anti-gravity), and “Empyrean Sails” that displace the majority of a ship’s mass and let it accelerate a fractional speed of light by dipping into subtle energy fields mostly emanated by the sun and gas-giant located in the system. Empyrean sails don’t help in in the solar void between stars, or when your acceleration becomes too much a fraction of your mass.
- Note that when there is a catastrophic Empyrean Sails failure, you don’t displace your full mass into realspace; you displace your remaining mass into the dark energy dimension the bulk of your mass was already hiding.
- There are Radium Drive Field modules that are external to the ship’s superstructure to generate and harness the inertial field moving the bulk of the ship around, Those modules are probably lit with strange energies, but are going to be reinforced to prevent damage, and to be solidly connected to the structure of the ship since the modules are where the thrust is being generated, and if they’re not solidly attached, they’ll tear themselves loose. The modules are probably as sleek and smooth as the ship itself.
- The Empyrean Sail itself is just going to look like a giant magnetic field ten times the size of the ship, catching photons. The Empyrean Sail projectors (or anchors), on the other hand, look roughly like spark plugs extending a significant fraction of the ship’s beam away from the hull. All things considered, they’re probably angled, and they probably extend and retract a fair amount.
- Solarship weapon systems are kinetic, energetic, or rocket (but not torpedo) based, and all but the smallest are crewed by multiple gunner’s mates each. Given the streamlined nature of the hulls, the systems will be entirely or significantly withdrawn into the hull during normal operations.
- Solarship design requires Technik to work.