As faster than light travel becomes more prevalent, a number of private companies launch ships with the goal of analyzing nearby exoplanets with an eye toward colonization. It is manifest destiny on a galactic scale as hundreds of little ships equipped with light sails and top of the line sensor suites are sent to any far-flung planet that might be a good candidate for terraforming, atmosphere rehabilitation, and colonization.
Building ships equipped for travel far beyond our solar system is comparatively easy with the advances in nanomanufacturing, but finding crewmen willing to be away from Earth for an estimated 40 years proves difficult. As such, many of these surveyor ships leave Earth severely understaffed.
The Malta Flier left Earth with a crew of one, with intent to have that crewman enter a period of suspended animation two days into the journey, and awake once it arrived at its scanning target, the exoplanet Kepler 442b.
Things did not go according to plan.
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