Motto: Strength, Unity, Prosperity
Anthem: "Path of the Stars"
|Lixija Dyrtroi IV|
15,235 million (homeworld on Tourr)54,256 million (Imperial)
2,989 trillion Zaal (Tourri homeworld)5,750 trillion Zaal (Imperial)
The Tourr Imperium, also dubbed the Tourri Empire, is the preeminent interplanetary authority within the Rasq system. Founded in 0 IE by Emperor Zaal, the Imperium established control over a sphere of planets in order to obtain valuable industrial minerals, ultimately conquering the Xii homeworld following the Great Interplanetary War. Today, the Tourri political and economic administration encompasses the entire solar system, with a series of tributaries offering mining wealth and industrial production to the Imperial rulers in exchange for new technologies, infrastructure, and military security. The advent of the antimatter drive in 92 BIE became the foundation of trade and commerce within the Empire, allowing valuable goods and persons to travel from planet to planet. Today, the system is home to over 50 billion individuals, with nearly 16 billion inhabiting the capital planet. The Tourri people continue to be a source of scientific research and innovation, as their armed forces protect interplanetary stability and safety.
See also History of Tourr for information regarding pre-Imperial history on the Tourri homeworld.
As the Narhour Empire exploded into space in roughly 80 BIE, with access to the newly developed antimatter engine, administrators focused on obtaining the "Trio" of Yttrium, Praseodymium, and Neodymium, essential to the construction of room-temperature superconducting magnets. During the 100s BIE, Narhour engineers had developed both fusion power and vacuum-levitation transportation networks, which required at first YBCO-alloy components, and ultimately increasingly efficient mineral composites incorporating other elements of the Trio. By 90 BIE, global energy infrastructure depended upon a steady supply of these resources. As deposits of these resources were depleted on Tourr, external reserves were in strong demand. Starting with a private mine established on Urr in 82 BIE, first contact, followed quickly by economic influence, was pursued on Giyar, Ryarpi, and Xaxir as well, all possessing a level of technology comparable with 200s BIE Tourr. By 40 BIE, some 10 million tons of mineral production was flowing from these worlds to the industrial centers of Barq. Some historians regard Tourr as essentially having ascended to Imperial status by this point; however, minerals were acquired generally through free trade involving private mining corporations, and no tribute or tax was levied by Tourr against other worlds.
During the 20s BIE the mineral worlds nationalized local mining industry, kicking out the Tourri resource companies, while greatly raising prices for the essential minerals. Due to the abolishment of free-market trade, the governments of the outer worlds, aware that Tourri industrialists would pay any price to continue receiving these necessary resources, greatly increased costs of exports. In response, Emperor Zaal of the Narhour Empire launched the Assimilation Wars, consolidating control of resources throughout the Rasq system to maintain low mineral prices. Conquering the outer worlds, Zaal banned the nationalization of mining, and restricted the royalty fees that mineral worlds could demand from resource corporations; additionally, tribute in the form of mining production was demanded from the new colonies, which was managed by the Imperial Resource Commission.
During the assimilation campaigns, the Xii Empire had established a colony on Urr, utilizing the local minerals. Following the post-war rebellions, in which Tourr's three tributaries were subject to a resource nationalist insurgency, the Tourr Imperium launched an invasion of Urr in 90 IE, to take control of the rich mineral deposits of the planet. Thus began the Great Interplanetary War, which ended with the Tourri conquest of Xii in 111. The world's vast industrial capacity was utilized by Tourri rulers, who demanded tribute from the planet in the form of technological production.
The Civil War of 133-167 IE split apart the Empire, seeing widespread insurrection of the Planetary Guard in Xii, Riyarpi, and Xaxir. After expanding its military forces, Tourr crushed the rebellion, and changed the political administration across the Rasq system to reduce the chance of future rebellion. Thus began the Two Centuries of Peace, interrupted by only a few isolated rebellions, including the recent Riyarpi insurrection of 360.
The key to interplanetary trade and commerce within the Imperium is the antimatter drive. Narhour physicist Bradnou Drarhour discovered the existence of a network of parallel universes, accessible through an interaction with a fifth fundamental force. By drawing energy from these other universes, the advent of efficient antiproton generation technology came to fruition by 100 BIE, allowing the particles to be produced at a cost of 10,000 Zaal per kWh. Current antimatter drives function by catalyzing micro fission/fusion within a helium pellet with a stream of antiprotons, thus producing thrust. A typical interplanetary trip on a 1,000-tonne liner requires approximately 1,300 kWh of Drarhour energy, and shipping costs run about 38,000 Zaal per tonne of cargo. The antimatter propulsion system is the foundation of Imperial rule; without it, the economy of the Rasq system would slow to a halt.
Antimatter generation, as per Drarhour theory, although central to catalyzed fission/fusion propulsion, is far too expensive to provide a practical power source. The Tourr homeworld uses a mixture of fusion energy and space-based solar power to energize the industrial base; electricity is broadcast through orbital systems across a global wireless network. Less developed worlds in the Imperium require a continual input of Tourri technology and expertise to maintain these sophisticated systems. Across the empire, over 1,200 TW of power is consumed. A VacTrain transportation network allows for intra-world trade and commerce, while the advent of carbon nanotubes allowed for the construction of space elevator infrastructure to cheaply transport cargo and persons to orbit. On colony and tributary worlds, Tourr administrators constructed VacTrains to ship mineral ores to space, and sponsor local economic growth. Both fusion energy and transportation networks, along with antimatter generators and specialized military technologies, require an extensive supply of Yttrium, Praseodymium, and Neodymium to be incorporated within room-temperature superconducting magnets; electrical generators and power distribution infrastructure also uses superconducting coils incorporating these elements. These minerals are sourced from the outer colonies, and are shipped to the technological hubs of Tourr and Xii, at over 298 million tonnes per year at 500 Zaal/kg. A typical 500 MW fusion power facility requires over 3,000 tons of the Trio minerals within superconducting coils.
Within the Imperium, the Tourr homeworld has specialized in nuclear fusion technology, superconducting systems, and robotics, while the other technologically advanced world of Xii produces space-based solar equipment, certain electronics, and biotechnology; a lucrative trade has developed between both worlds. Part of the impetus for the Great Interplanetary War was the desire to conquer Xii's advanced industrial capacity, which ultimately generated much wealth for the Tourri rulers.
Automation, developed during the 100s BIE, is central to the Tourr economy. Computers within the Imperium are generally based on standard silicon transistors, which peaked in processing power circa 150 BIE. Due to quantum interference with the behavior of electrons on small scales, commercially available transistors never surpassed the 4 nm barrier. Today, advances are made generally in developing new software and programming, while boosting the power efficiency of processing units. While computers and robotics are able to perform routine tasks, they are incapable of competing with humans in creative ability.
The Tourri Emperor, given the title Zaal, is appointed every thirty years by the Interplanetary Senate, a governing body located in central Barq. The Senate itself is chosen by the electorate, a wealthy group of elite Tourri scientists, inventors, entrepreneurs, and businessmen, with each vote cast costing 1 million Zaal. The Emperor has the sole discretion to mobilize military forces, raise taxes and tariffs, set laws and regulations regarding interplanetary trade and commerce, and determine the Imperial budget. The Senate advises him on political and economic concerns, and proposes actions and laws that the Emperor may pass. With a 90% vote, the Senate may overrule an Emperor's decision or pass an action; rarely, with a unanimous vote, the Senate may impeach an Emperor, removing him from office.
The Imperial government has essentially three civilian powers: to regulate and sponsor interplanetary trade, to levy taxes from territories and tributaries, and to fund welfare, development, and infrastructure programs across the Empire. Additionally, the Imperial military provides security, and cracks down upon uprisings and rebellion. Administration on Tourr itself is provided by an independent democratic government, while Xii is ruled by the Xii Empire, an institution tolerated by the broader Imperium as long as taxes and tribute continue to flow to Barq. Other worlds of the Imperium are administrated by a variety of governments, which offer tribute in the form of mineral wealth to Tourri rulers.
A colony consists of any planet that pays tribute or taxes (either financial, or in direct mineral wealth) to Tourr. Colonies are divided into tributaries, which enjoy greater autonomy, and terrioties, that are subject to stricter Imperial control. Xaxir and Riyarpi, due to rebellion in the Imperial Civil War and occasional incidents afterwards, are territories; nonetheless, Xii has maintained its independent status. All planets, aside from territories, maintain a Planetary Guard autonomous from Imperial military control; however, Tourr does station battle units across the many worlds. The Imperium has only the authority to obtain tribute from tributaries, offer funds and investment for local infrastructure programs, and launch emergency troop deployments, either at the request of the local leaders or in a case of insurrection. Territories, however, are subject to the Imperial police force.
The Imperial Resource Commission receives mineral tributes from colony worlds, distributing them to industrial institutions on Tourr at a low cost of 500 Zaal/kg. The proceeds of mineral sale, combined with tax revenue from industry on Xii, supports the Empire's budget. As of 366 IE, 40% of Imperial spending was on the military-police force, 40% funded public projects and programs on Tourr, 10% was used on development projects on off-world colonies, 5% was utilized to sponsor interplanetary trade and commerce, and 5% was used for miscellaneous government operations.
The Imperium possesses a total economic output of about 6 quadrillion Zaal, roughly 8% of which consists of interplanetary trade. Commerce in minerals, particularly the "trio" of Yttrium, Praseodymium, and Neodymium, totals about 3% of the Rasq system's economy. The lucrative trade between Tourr and Xii, in electronics, robotics, and energy systems, produces another 5% of total output. While minerals may only add up to about 150 trillion Zaal of cost per year, the mining wealth is nonetheless of disproportionately high value to the functioning of industry and infrastructure, due to its importance in room-temperature superconductors; if inter-world commerce collapsed, Tourri civilization would rapidly disintegrate as all modern technologies failed. Minerals are also important to the outer colony planets, serving as their main source of revenue.
The Imperium's taxes and tariffs on territories and tributaries add up to about 2.5% of the Rasq system's GDP. Mineral wealth is taken as tribute from colonies, whilst Xii's sophisticated industrial production of energy systems and biotechnology offers another source of government revenue; the remaining majority of interplanetary commerce consists of free trade between worlds. The Tourr mining corporations offer technology and infrastructure development to colonies in exchange for minerals; alternatively, enterprises in Xii exchange solar power systems, biotechnology, and electronics to Tourr for robotics, magnet systems, and nuclear fusion components.
Interplanetary shipping rates run at about 38,000 Zaal per tonne of payload. Inter-world transportation tickets cost about 10,000 Zaal per person. Due to the high cost, antimatter propulsion systems are generally only used to move expensive cargo, like superconductor minerals and sophisticated technological systems. About 2,000,000,000 people travel through space every year, primarily for tourism, although this type of travel is common among important political functionaries and business leaders.
The advent of automation in the 100s BIE caused the Tourr homeworld to transition from a services-based economy to a creative economy. While computers and robotics took control of routine tasks, humans continued to offer innovation and creative invention. Through to the Imperial Era, a class of scientists, innovators, inventors, creative engineers, and technicians rose to power, while businessmen and entrepreneurs nonetheless remained powerful. Today, the largest single source of employment is within the field of Applied Mathematics (offering 720,000,000 jobs across the Empire).
The Imperial Armed Forces are the ultimate defenders of order and security throughout the Rasq system. Some 54 million individuals are employed with the military, of which 43 million are members of the Imperial Army, ground forces deployed on all the colonies. With a budget of about 57 trillion Zaal per annum, the Imperial defense utilizes the latest in battle technology, including antiproton missiles. Antimatter is used in sophisticated munitions and explosives, while advances in carbon nanotubes and nanotechnology are utilized to produce strong, powered infantry exoskeletons. Robotics are also used for ground forces.
The Imperial Navy patrols and secures the vast oceans and seas of the colony worlds. The Space Force holds complete supremacy over orbital infrastructure, using space-based systems to offer line-of-sight, secure communications, guidance for drones, robotics, and missiles, as well as launch bases for orbital-to-surface missiles.
Barq The capital and largest city of the Imperium is Barq, with a population of over 3.2 billion and an economic output of 870 trillion Zaal per annum. The industrial and financial center of the Empire, Barq possesses both the Interplanetary Senate and the Imperial Palace. With a history stretching back to the Narhour Empire, the vast urban metropolis is located within the Drarhour River Valley in the vast plains occupying the south of the Bradhour continent. Most of Tourr's fusion power capacity is located within the city, which also possesses industrial infrastructure producing robotics, advanced nano-engineered materials, magnetics systems, and spacecraft. A large number of space elevators are located here, to ship persons and freight to orbit for the great interplanetary voyages. Along with a wealthy luxury district, habitating a business and political elite, low-cost developments house many poor within the city. Covering 28,000 square miles, Barq possesses dozens of self-contained Archologies, with a combined capacity of over 250 million. A crowded and busy cosmopolitan center, few foreigners have the stamina to adapt to the incredibly fast-passed life here.
Society and Culture
The majority of the inhabitants of the Imperium is secular, with approximately 63% of the systemwide population lacking a belief in deities or supernatural forces. Nonetheless, the mineral colony worlds are relatively religious, with many still embracing local folk faiths, mysticism, and village worship, especially in Xaxir and Riyarpi. Xii is highly secular, with a culture entrenched by science, technology, and industry; however, about 5% of the planet's population retains some sort of traditional religion. While about 60% of Tourr's population is secular, many (about 15% of the general population) Narhour nationalists abide by the Xijhour faith, a polytheistic religion focused upon the deity of Xijour, a legendary figure who united the peoples of the Drarhour River Valley in Ancient times.