Outer Space / Technology
A prototype EMPS model developed as the successor to devices such as the Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU), the Simplified Aid for Extravehicular Activity Rescue (SAFER), and the Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU). Named after Yuri Gagarin, the first human being in outer space. The type piloted by Astronaut Jonathan Ingram in a test space walk in 2013. Unlike the MMU and SAFER's nitrogen gas thrusters, which only allowed for very basic movement, it was instead equipped with miniature rockets. It was developed as an attempt to realize true aerial navigation in space, and not just short-distance movement and position control; accordingly, the unit's gross weight is heavier than its predecessors, and it is considerably larger as well.
After Astronaut Ingram's accident, EMPS development was temporarily suspended and the technology reworked from the ground up. Having been designed for mechanical work outside the colony, the Yuri is equipped with various data recording units, but is not outfitted with weapons of any kind; however, it has 4 manipulator arms that provide its operator with basic feedback. Also equipped with emergency food rations and a 3-day energy supply.
Outer Space / Society
The accident that occurred with the Yuri EMPS prototype in 2013 during a test space walk. This unit was to be used by the Policenauts outside the colony. The unit underwent a malfunction in its vernier rockets, causing it to lose control and disappear out into space. There was a particularly strong solar wind blowing at the time, which resulted in a temporary communications blackout and the delay of the rescue operation.
The test was being broadcast live around the world, with the accident dealing a shock greater than that of even the Challenger disaster. This "second space shock" set EMPS development back 5 years. The Yuri was connected to a survival ball, which had a built-in cold sleep module, but because an SOS signal could not be detected, it had been thought that all hope was lost for its test pilot, Astronaut Jonathan Ingram.