Characteristics and history
The development of this compound was difficult to achieve at one time due to an inability to stabilize it. Its noted characteristics was being an inhibitor of nuclear reactions such as those found in the fusion processes within the interior of stars. A small amount of the compound was enough to halt all nuclear fusion in a star which resulted in a quantum explosion. This in turn brought about the collapse of the star which did so under its own mass and generated a powerful shockwave that was strong enough to destroy everything within a star system. Should the star be of sufficient size, this core collapse could even result in a supernova.
The compound previously existed on a theoretical basis until 2268 where it was believed to had allowed for the advanced flow of energy to be used in a compacted transwarp drive. Doctor Ursula Mornay managed to synthesize it in solid form but it was only capable of existing within a matter/antimatter flux environment which meant that once the power source was turned off, the trilithium began to degenerate. By 2269, Professor Mornay along with Perren, Boma and Sarda had combined their abilities and devised a mechanism that allowed for trilithium to retain its integrity for a workable period of time, even when the system was not in flux. This allowed it to be used in experiments in relation to transwarp drive propulsion by the year 2270. (TOS novel: Battlestations!)
In February 2268 Starfleet Intelligence provided a 5 megaton trilithium compact ordinance package (aka a bomb) to a couple of SI agents as a back up plan to prevent the Klingons from getting any Shedai technology. Lieutenant commander Bridget McLellan was able to carry the bomb in her backpack and used it to prevent the approaching Klingon troops from getting the Shedai machine. (VAN - Declassified novella: The Stars Look Down)
- Doctor Mornay and the scientific community were probably not aware in 2268 that Starfleet Intelligence had developed trilithium to the point of making weapons.
In 2371, the Romulan Star Empire was conducting experiments with trilithium but faced numerous problems with it as they were unable to stabilize the compound. This supply was stolen in a raid by the House of Duras who had been contracted by Doctor Tolian Soran. He required it in order to develop a fully functional trilithium based weapon which he was going to develop for the Klingon sisters Lursa and B'Etor. After getting the compound, Soran used it to detonate the Amargosa star as part of his plan to control the course of the Nexus. (TNG movie: Star Trek Generations)
Soran also formed an alliance with the Chodak who had an outpost which contained trilithium present on it but were unable to mine it. In exchange for their help, Soran helped the Chodak in mining the outpost of the compound and developing trilithium weaponry for them. (TNG video game: Generations)
The doctor later attempted to use it on the Veridian star which would have destroyed the pre-warp civilization of Veridian IV in order to have the Nexus pass through one of the worlds present allowing Soran to be one with the Nexus. However, he was thwarted in his plan by the actions of the USS Enterprise. (TNG movie: Star Trek Generations)
The USS Voyager encountered a conventional trilithium based explosive in 2373 which was employed by the Akritirian terrorist group called Open Sky who used it to bomb the Laktivia recreational facility. Oriignally, the Voyager crew were implicated in the attack until it was discovered that Open Sky had been responsible for synthesizing the compound from paralithium which was taken from an Akritirian freighter. (VOY episode: "The Chute")
Later that year, Benjamin Sisko had the USS Defiant fire quantum torpedos loaded with trilithium into the atmosphere of the Maquis planet Solosos III, making it uninhabitable to Humans, although not Cardassians. (DS9 episode: "For the Uniform")
Several weeks later, the Dominion had a Founder spy in the Alpha Quadrant create a trilithium explosive device which was mixed with Tekasite and Protomatter in order to detonate the Bajoran sun, B'hava'el. As a delivery mechanism, the Changeling infiltrator hijacked the USS Yukon, a runabout from Deep Space 9 in order to deliver the device into the sun in the Bajor system. The objective was to cause the star to explode and destroy a combined fleet of Federation, Klingon and Romulans which had assembled at Deep Space 9 as a show of force against the Dominion. Had the Founder been successful, the triggering of the supernova would have destroyed the entire system and the assembled fleet. However, the Defiant was able to learn of this and tractored the Yukon away from the sun where it exploded harmlessly in empty space. (DS9 episode: "By Inferno's Light")
|This section is written
from the Real World
point of view.
Star Trek didn't reveal many scientific details of this element, so its position on the periodic table and specific makeup is unestablished, but its status as an element is indicated by the fact that it has isotopes. The formation of the name has the prefix tri- preceding lithium, indicating some sort of threefold increase of the basic lithium. A similar nomenclature is used for dilithium and decalithium.
- TNG movie & novelization: Generations
- DS9 episodes: "By Inferno's Light", "Image in the Sand", "For the Uniform"
- TOS - Fortunes of War novel: Battlestations!
- VAN - Declassified novella: The Stars Look Down
- TNG video game: Generations
- VOY episodes: "The Chute", "Course: Oblivion"
- DS9 - Millennium novel: The War of the Prophets