|Books character||TV character|
Solomon "Sol" Epstein was the inventor of the Epstein Drive, a modified fusion drive.
Born on Mars, Epstein was an engine engineer for Masstech for at least a decade before he started spending his free time implementing his design for a magnetic coil exhaust acceleration to increase drive efficiency, enabling spaceships to sustain thrust throughout the entire voyage.
After finishing his design, Epstein outfitted his private three-man yacht with the Epstein drive and turned it on, launching it out into the Sol system at a marginal percentage of the speed of light. He was, however, unable to turn the engine off, and never returned. His ship accelerated for 37 hours at an unknown rate above 7 g before his fuel supply ran out and ended up at about 5% the speed of light. Solomon himself died from the high acceleration within minutes. (While not offically mentioned, it can be approximated that based on 37 hours of constant acceleration and an end velocity of 5% of the speed of light that he accelerated at 11.5 g)
The plans for the Epstein drive were discovered on his home computer by his wife Caitlin Esquibel, and the mass production of the drive enabled humans to populate the Sol system.
- The character's first name, 'Solomon', is a reference to a king in the Hebrew bible.
- The character's last name, 'Epstein', is believed to be of Jewish origin. It is likely chosen for its resemblance to the last name of one of the most renowned theoretical physicists, Albert Einstein.