The space bridge appears in several locations. The exact properties of the space bridge vary over time, but typically they serve as a more convenient means of moving Transformers from one planet to another than the traditional means of space travel.
Space bridges are nonetheless distinct from Transwarp, in that their primary function is movement through space, not time, though the time taken to traverse a space bridge seems to depend on the technology used.
Generation 1 cartoon continuity
The space bridge was first conceived by Shockwave in 1984, as a means of transport back to Cybertron for the Decepticons stranded on Earth, and to allow them to ferry energon cubes to revitalize the planet. The Cybertronic end of the space bridge is a fixture in Shockwave's command center, where it takes the form of a cylindrical tube, the top of which projects outside of the center's dome; it is through this open end that transportees enter or depart amid a gyser of energy. The Earth-based end of the space bridge is decidedly more flexible - the Decepticons frequently constructed new space bridges in various locations, normally in the form of large metal rings.
In early uses of the space bridge, the dimensional portal could only remain open and stable for a maximum of 11 minutes. Early Space Bridge travel likewise proved somewhat unstable, and required the use of a small vehicle to safely transport any cargo. The vehicle was rolled into the ring on a railed structure, and then had to be piloted along "a beam of light."
Some Decepticons displayed pronounced horror at being chosen for this unenviable task, as not staying on the light beam would cause the pilot and cargo to "cease to exist".
In the very first practice run of the mechanism, the villains opted to use the captive Spike Witwicky, rather than risk any of their number.
After being knocked into the bridge by accident, Megatron proved able to traverse the bridge without a craft. Several Autobots likewise survived the trip in their vehicle forms. After this, the need for the craft seems to have been removed, as many Transformers and various cargoes would travel by space bridge with no vessel and no difficulties. On one occasion, two humans in a convertible even made the trip with no ill effects.
The process could, however, still go wrong, as it did when the Decepticons attempted to convert a baseball field into a new space bridge site, and a malfunction blasted a small group of Transformers to an alien world of giants.
It's never made clear exactly how the space bridge works. Typical activation sequences show what appears to be a dimensional portal in the sky above the bridge, opened up by a blast of energy from the bridge ring; the bridge's contents (along with a great deal of rock and detritus) were then drawn into the portal, which then closed with a large discharge of energy. On the Cybertron end, the arrival is marked by a beam or gusher of energy arriving from deep space.
The space bridge technology was taken to its ultimate extent when the Decepticons constructed three colossal pylons that would generate a "space pyramid", the apex of which extended to Cybertron's location in another galaxy. Using this, Cybertron was transported into Earth's orbit for a brief period. Cybertron was later removed from Earth's orbit by an explosion; though never explicitly addressed, this event by rights should have left Cybertron much closer to Earth, possibly accounting for the ease of travel between the two planets thereafter.
The Revenge of Bruticus
The space bridge was used for planetary transportation once more when the Combaticon Onslaught wired his missile guidance systems into it and used its powers to redirect the orbit of Earth, intending to send it spiraling into the sun, only to be stopped by an Autobot-Decepticon team-up.
By the year 1997, the Autobots had studied and duplicated the space bridge technology for their own use. They developed their own space bridge network, allowing transport between Cybertron and Earth, with fixed space bridge receptors in each base (the transport beam was, of course, now the traditional Autobot orange, as opposed to the Decepticons' iconic purple). They did not, however, destroy the original Decepticon space bridge, and the Decepticons were able to use it to travel from Cybertron to Earth and back as well.
In 2013, The Polyhex Space Bridge terminus was destroyed by Hubcap, severely limiting the Decepticons' interplanetary mobility. Scrapper got it minimally functional again, until the Quintessons began jamming it in August. When Polyhex was taken over by a Quintesson Spire, Shockwave had the Space Bridge moved to Tarn and reassembled.
Most of the Quintesson cruisers used in the Quintesson invasion of Earth were destroyed with the Dweller overloaded their linked Space Bridge hub.
| This page uses content from Teletraan I: The Transformers Wiki. The original article was at Space bridge.