The Astrobeam is an artificial quantum superposition inducer. Because subatomic particles exist in a state of positional probability instead of certainty, their location at any given time is measured by the probability index of their wave-function. By manipulating the wave-function, the Astrobeam can cause masses of subatomic particles to each reach the same unlikely positional probability for a period of time.
Uh...in other words, it's a temporary teleporter. Get zapped, go someplace else until the effect reverses itself, then return to the starting point.
Employed by Guardians and Renegades alike, the Astrobeam is often used to summon reinforcements quickly to Earth, rather than wait on space travel. However, the unstable nature of the Beam's quantum superpositioning makes it unpredictable when the effects will wear off and cause the new arrivals to vanish. Useful for escapes, potentially hazardous during a battle.
Challenge of the GoBots cartoon
The Astrobeam was standard Guardians equipment, though they generally preferred to use Command Centers for transportation—though it was occasionally used for emergencies, such as calling in help for technical problems, brief repair visits to GoBotron, emergency reinforcements, or rapid deployment of their Power Suits.
A smaller, portable version was created on GoBotron in a facility in GoBotolis, but was stolen by Cy-Kill, Crasher, and Cop-Tur. This led to the Guardian Council authorising a full-strength strike on the Renegade Fortress. However, the Renegades were able to keep possession of the device, which was important for allowing both status updates and reinforcements during their near-successful conquest of Earth. While the bulk of the Renegades were captured when the scheme failed they retained the Astrobeam, which was a key part of their plan to free Cy-Kill and Fitor from GoBotron's Prison Moon, as Dr. Go used it to send them a Stealth Device. After that the device remained a regular part of the Renegades' schemes as it allowed reinforcements and specialists to be quickly transferred from Roguestar to Earth or wherever else they were needed. As such it was used for bringing in reinforcements and extracting spies. Dr. Go attempted to modify the device to extend or remove the time lapse before it reversed, but it is unknown whether the work was ever completed. . However, the Renegades were later able to miniaturise it further as part of their plan to kidnap Zeemon.
- The Astrobeam is twice quoted as having 48 hours before reversing - in "Fitor to the Finish" and "Steamer's Defection" - but the figure is one of the many, many things not represented consistently across the series; in practice an Astrobeam lasts as long or short as is needed for the plot.
- The original animation models for the Astrobeam and the rare printed media that used the device (such as text story "By Astrobeam to GoBotron") do not use a hyphen. Renegade Rhetoric incorrectly (unless it's "meta" or somesuch) parsed it as "Astro-Beam" and Transformers fans displayed their usual perspective by taking it as gospel.
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