Magnetic monopoles are objects created during the Big Bang. They are like regular magnets but have only one pole (either north or south). They can no longer be created in the universe and since their discovery they are a valuable commodity and focus of exploration.
As most monopoles are weaker than regular magnets, they are used like amplifiers to control and redirect larger fields. Monopoles are used to create the complex electromagnetic fields used by impulse engines and ramscoops.
The more complex the ship, the more monopoles are required; the heavier and larger the ship, the more powerful each monopole must be:
- A starfighter requires 30 microgauss monopoles.
- A cruiser or free trader needs 12 milligauss.
- A large passenger liner requires 4 centigauss.