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Dunkle Halunken
Terry Pratchett
Blauer Mars (Mars, #3)
Kim Stanley Robinson

Rendezvous with Rama

Rendezvous with Rama - Arthur C. Clarke A mysterious object is coming towards the Solar system. First the scientist thought It’s an asteroid from the Asteroid Belt or comet. The spacecraft Endeavour is sent to randevour with the object. In much closer distance it became obvious that the object is not natural it has a cylindrical shape of more than 10 kilometers in length. The scientists christened it Rama after the Greek myth.

Endeavour landed on one of Rama’s poles. The crew went inside to explore. First Rama didn’t show any sign of activity. It was deep frozen as the consequence of long interstellar flight. It was considered as a derelict. The crew found atmosphere full of oxygen, what’s more they also found a frozen sea. From these they concluded that Rama’s a spaceship and its inhabitants were oxygen consumers. There were many theories as to the ship’s mission. The plausible one was that it’s some kind of Noah’s Ark

As Rama was getting close to Sun the changes in Rama occurred. The frozen sea thawed. Hurricanes appeared. The crew found bio-robots, biots activated. They moved like a spider on their tripods. They were not a threat to humans. They showed no sign of hostility. These creatures had no mouth but batteries to give them energy which we humans must take with food. All in all, it’s apparent that they are much more developed then we.

And now Rama came close to Mercury. The Mercurians dispatched a nuclear missile toward Rama. They thought it’s a threat to their sovereignty. They warned of course Endeavour to move far away before the nuke should go off. As the crew of Endeavour knew perfectly well that Rama is not much danger to humanity than humanity to itself they decided to deactivate the nuke. They succeeded.

Meanwhile the condition inside Rama for humans was getting worse and worse as it approached the Sun. The spaceship Endeavour evacuated from Rama. Rama left the solar system forever. And from now on humans knew that they are not alone.