ultradrive n.

a type of faster-than-light star drive



  • 1949 R. M. Williams Sound of Bugles in Startling Stories Mar. 76/2 page image Robert Moore Williams bibliography

    He’s a financier, or something like that. He put up the money to finance Threlkeld’s investigation of the ultra-drive for UN.

  • 1951 P. Anderson Tiger by Tail in Planet Stories Jan. 38/1 page image Poul Anderson bibliography

    He grew aware of the thrum and quiver which meant he was aboard a spaceship running on ultra[-]drive.

  • 1952 B. Walton To Each His Star in Space Science Fiction May 148/2 Bryce Walton bibliography

    A lot of time had rushed past into darkness. Russell had no idea now how long the four of them had been plunging toward the red-rimmed sun that never seemed to get any nearer. When the ultra-drive had gone crazy the four of them had blanked out and nobody could say now how long an interim that had been. Nobody knew what happened to a man who suffered a space-time warping like that.

  • 1954 R. Garrett Time Fuze in Worlds of If Mar. 68/2 Randall Garrett bibliography

    The ship had only been provisioned to go to Alpha Centauri, scout the system without landing on any of the planets, and return. At ten lights, top speed for the ultradrive, it would take better than three months to get back.

  • 1957 A. Budrys Hot Potato in Astounding Science Fiction July 110/1 page image Algis Budrys bibliography

    Four hundred years ago, this had been Man’s earliest foothold on the stars—earliest, and, as it developed, only. The passage time had been worked down from ten years to five and a half, toward the end, but that was the best they could do. They were tinkering with an ultradrive just before the Invaders hit Earth. They still were, but it was too late for the Solar System.

  • 1992 V. Vinge Fire upon Deep 62 Vernor Vinge bibliography

    The wreck had no ultradrive capability; it was truly a Slow Zone design.

  • 2001 ‘M. Maloney’ Planet America 203 bibliography

    He kicked into ultradrive again and was soon passing close to the next moon in line, several million miles away.

Research requirements

antedating 1949

Earliest cite

Robert Moore Williams, in Startling Stories

Research History
Fred Galvin submitted a 1954 cite from Randall Garrett's "Time Fuze".
Fred Galvin submitted a 1952 cite from Bryce Walton's "To Each His Star".

Last modified 2021-12-08 02:26:25
In the compilation of some entries, HDSF has drawn extensively on corresponding entries in OED.