Manuel Jimenez Garcia + Maria Olmos Zunica
Year 3.567, just the sound of the ground cracking slowly under the sun reminds the earth that it was once alive. We did see it coming, solar radiation was getting stronger and stronger. After many attempts to stop it, we realized that there was no way back, the sun was increasing exponentially. It was not just ozone concentrating at the troposphere leaving the stratosphere completely empty, it was not just us, the Sun started to gradually expand, coming closer and closer to an inevitable end. And that was not all, the emanating energy was uncontrollable, we had no technology able to absorb it, long time ago we stopped alternative ways of generating energy due to their tendency to cause catastrophes. After the disaster of the central power plant in 3.116, we limited our resources to solar and geothermal energy, without the former, there was just one chance to survive.
There was already an investment on geothermal energy, however it was far from being enough. We had two main power plants, one in Geysers, a geothermal field in California, and another one in Philippines. Both together did not even produce the 0.1% of what we needed. In 2.223, the French engineer Philip Gaysneir, fabricated the first prototype of “the Vertical Bomb”, it was an incredible small device (just 1 meter diameter) able to spin at such speed that it could perforate the ground and reach the outer core of the Earth in just 16 months. The size of the device made it also extremely inefficient, however it came back to the crust completely intact and its battery was fully charged after adsorbing energy from the core of the Earth. The discovery gave hope to the research community and in 2.250 half of the engineers of the planet were working together trying to evolve the prototype. Time was running fast and the solar radiation was completely devastating, one third of the earth was not inhabitable anymore, the lowest lands were completely covered with water and the hottest countries had no more oxygen under the scorching light of the sun. People started moving to cold lands around Alaska or even occupying lands that used to be much colder like the Antarctica. Inhabitable land was shrinking and therefore the density was untenable. Soon the necessity for openings in our housing buildings turned more into an inconvenience, even in the coldest lands it was not possible to breathe anymore.
Our aim for building higher and higher was already forgotten and the engineers who were not working on the “Vertical Bomb” development were trying to find new ways to shield us from the sun (for being protected from the sun). The underground became the “rich land” and, step by step, we related light to hell and darkness to salvation. In 2.360 a second prototype was turned on in the Antarctica. It was a much bigger device, almost 20 meters diameter, although it could house a whole country in it, just a bunch of ex-convicts accepted the challenge. When they came back alive from the Outer Core, after 32 mounts without hearing a sound but the rough spinning of a 50 meters depth helicoidal drill, they brought clarity. It was not just hope, it was a decision. Thirty years after, twenty “Vertical Bombs” were extracting energy from the Core, ten north and ten south, while serving both sides. Soon they have lost their names, Alaska and Antarctica have become just narrative. North and South keep growing towards the core nowadays, becoming the land that we lost, becoming hope for what is or is not out there.