a spaceship that uses a torch drive n.
He held a torcher’s contempt for the vast distance itself. Older pilots thought of interplanetary trips with a rocketman’s bias, in terms of years—trips that a torch ship with steady acceleration covered in days.
Sky Lift in Imagination Nov. 8/2
The Can Do—that’s this bucket—is about to rendezvous with the Go For Broke, which is a high-gee torchship.
Double Star in Astounding Science Fiction Feb. 29/2
He held a torcher’s contempt for the vast distance itself. Older pilots thought of interplanetary trips with a rocketman’s bias in terms of years—trips that a torch ship with steady acceleration covered in days.
Menace From Earth (1968) 115
The first scout[-]ship is launched by the Trek. Crewed by five volunteers, it is powered by a full-sized fusion torch though its mass is only one-tenth that of a conventional torchship.
Riding the Torch in R. Silverberg Threads of Time 176
‘You think it oughta be like the old days? Say, like when there were torchships?’ ‘You ain’t gotta go back that far, but tha’s good example. More beer! Back when they was ion ships and men to match 'em.’ ‘Torchships my ass,’ Raschid sneered. He spat on the floor. ‘Those torchships. You know how they worked? Computer-run. From lift-off to set down.’
Sten (1990) 48
When they arrived the first task awaiting the torch ship’s crew was to recover the huge cylinders containing the deep-sleeping majority of the mission crew. There were disadvantages to each style of travel—torch ship or slot tug.
Heart of Comet 20
The little torchship had not been doing well of late, and the kzin-nominated purchasing combines on the asteroid base of Tiamat had been squeezing harder and harder.
Asteroid Queen in L. Niven et al. Man-Kzin Wars III (1992) . 41
Pitcairn was the last and largest torchship built by Earth, and it’s the most famous of the bunch.
It couldn’t reach superluminal speeds, but its metric engineering drives could generate internal gravity in the crew compartments, and it could land and take off from spaces that a torchship wouldn’t be able to reach, much less a sailship.
Further: Beyond the Threshold xxxiii. 155
R. Heinlein 'Sky Lift'
Research HistoryMalcolm Farmer submitted a cite from a reprint of Robert Heinlein's "Double Star"; Mike Christie verified the cite in the 1956 original magazine appearance.
Mike Christie submitted a cite from a 1990 reprint of Dan Simmons' 1989 "Hyperion".
Malcolm Farmer suggested Norman Spinrad's "Riding the Torch"; Mike Christie located a cite from a 1978 reprint, and Jesse Sheidlower verified it in its first appearance in Robert Silverberg's "Threads of Time" anthology.
Malcolm Farmer submitted a 1992 cite from Robert Reed's "The Remarkables".
Douglas Winston submitted a cite from a 1990 reprint of Allan Cole and Chris Bunch's 1982 "Sten".
Malcolm Farmer submitted a cite from a 1968 reprint of Robert Heinlein's "Sky Lift"; Derek Hepburn verified this in the story's 1953 first publication.
Enoch Forrester submitted a 1987 cite from a reprint of David Brin and Gregory Benford's 1986 "Heart of the Comet".
Ben Ostrowsky submitted a 2012 cite from Chris Roberson's "Further".
Last modified 2023-10-09 11:44:26
In the compilation of some entries, HDSF has drawn extensively on corresponding entries in OED.