The Epsilon system has two wide asteroid belts and a large Kuiper Belt of comets, as well as six planets. One gas giant obits somewhat closer than Jupiter does, with three small rocky planets inside the inner asteroid belt and two more outside the outer one. The system primary star is a K2V orange dwarf somewhat smaller and cooler than the Sun. The third planet from the star, originally known by the code name J9, had a thin atmosphere and was just warm enough to have liquid water on its surface in significant amounts. It therefore developed a complex ecosystem of its own, although subsequent events have wiped out nearly all native macrofauna and only left a few hardy plants, insects, and microbes left of the native ecosystem, with all other life forms imported from elsewhere, mostly Earth.
HistoryEditWhen Earth Federation explorer ships were scouting the system for possible settlement in 2152, they discovered a colony of Arachnids on the third planet, a world code-named J9. Since the humans had thought the Bugs extinct at this time, this came as a shock to the Federation's leadership, and they ordered Earth Fleet to bombard the planet. The system's large asteroid belts and cometary cloud was extensively mined for candidates for orbital shifts onto impact trajectories, and thousands of nuclear missiles and mass driver projectiles rained onto the surface as well. Eventually, the top several meters of the crust was melted into slag.
When the surface had sufficiently cooled for landings two decades later, they of course found intact Bug hives hidden deep underground, despite nearly all of the native ecosystem having been driven to extinction. A decade-long campaign of extermination and cleansing followed, but by 2185, the system was declared Bug-free at last. Meanwhile, the water and volatile gasses that had arrived trapped in cometary ice during the bombardment had thickened the atmosphere significantly, and despite the utter devastation across much of the planetary surface, the Federation was eager to have something positive to show for so many years of effort. Thus, the planet was declared open for colonization in 2187 and sustained terraforming efforts were undertaken.
Only a few years later, a renewed Bug offensive into human-occupied space led to several brief landings on the planet, but all of them were driven off before full hives could be established. Four decades later, the planet suffered another bug attack, althogh this time the bugs never managed to reach the surface. Four years after THAT, the Eastern Bloc invaded, and heavy fighting left much of the new colonial infrastructure devastated. Still, the inhabitants rebuilt again. The Vin Shriak invasion briefly bombarded the planet but did not land, and the Caal invasion passed the Epsilon system by.
After the Federation collapsed following the Caal Invasion of 2265, the Epsilon colony shunned both the rump Federation and the fledgling Holy Terran Empire, and declared independence instead, eventually joining with the more libertarian-minded Terran Republic. The Republic quickly found itself at odds with the Empire, leading to a full-scale Imperial invasion of the Terran Republic. The decisive space battle was fought in the Epsilon system. The Terran Navy split its forces to attempt a pincer movement agasint the Imperial fleet, but wasn't able to coordinate the timing sucessfully, allowing the Imperial Navy to destroy the Republican fleet piecemeal. After the Battle of Epsilon, the Terran Republic quickly fell, Epsilon was absorbed into the Empire, and granted as a fiefdom to House Edwards.
At some undermined point in the future, Epsilon is conquered by House Velenkoshiv and ruled by a despot.
Six major cities were established during the original colonization in 2187, and large areas of bomb-fused glass around them was broken up and cleared away to allow the dirt beneath to be prepared for agriculture. The six cities were named Alpha Epsilon (largest and oldest), Beta Epsilon, Gamma Epsilon, Delta Epsilon, Phi Epsilon, and Kappa Epsilon. Many jokes and even songs have been written to explain why they departed from the actual order of the Greek Alphabet, since it so transparently was to avoid having a city named "Epsilon Epsilon, Epsilon". All six cities were devastated by heavy fighting during when the Eastern Bloc invaded during the Third Civil War, but two of them were actually nuked. The rubble was cleared away and the cities rebuilt after the war, some of the labor being performed by prisoners of war captured during the conflict.
Behind the ScenesEdit
Epsilon is named for and somewhat based upon the Epsilon Eridani system, a real star system frequently used in science fiction, as it a likely candidate for future human colonization or as the possible home of an alien civilization. Vulcan was occasionally mistakenly said to be here in Star Trek, and the titular station of Babylon 5 orbited the third planet in the system. The Eridani Incident in the Honor Harrington series took place here, which is partly why we seem to have bombarded this planet from space quite a few times.