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"You mean it's working? For real, this time? Because... I still have nightmares about that cat!"
Barney Calhoun[src]
 

Teleportation, Portals, or Displacements, are a means of transferring matter between two locations or dimensions, regardless of their proximity. It is the central and most pivotal theme of the Half-Life universe.

Overview Edit

Whether by paranormal means, or by technological artifice, teleportation is usually achieved instantaneously. The most common and popular form of teleportation is to use a portal; essentially two connected gateways, which allow an object entering one gateway to leave via the other.

Another method was investigated by Black Mesa, and later improved upon by the Resistance.

Black Mesa Edit

LambdaTeleportationSystem

Portals in the Lambda Reactor Core in the Lambda Complex.

Teleportation was a major field of study at Black Mesa, and their portals were used primarily in the procurement of Xen crystals, as they were used to transport scientists to and from the Borderworld for research and analysis. The portals can be used to travel between Xen and Earth, however, portals that allow for travel within the same dimension can be found across the facility, notably in the Lambda Reactor Core, which contains 9 portals, three on each of its three levels. Both Gordon Freeman (through the Black Mesa's Lambda Core teleport) and Barney Calhoun traveled to Xen through such a teleport, to escape from Black Mesa before its destruction.

The Displacer Cannon, found and used by Adrian Shephard, can also allow for dimensional travels, although how a hand-held device is capable of teleporting itself and the user into Xen and back using internal power is a mystery.

During his brief visit to Xen, Barney is also required to activate and calibrate a "focal point", which was then used by Doctor Rosenberg to teleport several members of the science team outside of Black Mesa.

Aperture Science Edit

Testchmb17

Orange and blue portals created by Chell with the ASHPD.

Research into the portal technology by Aperture Science focused upon travel within the same dimension. Portal technology was discovered with far more ease, and far earlier, than at Black Mesa, with the technology appearing as early as the 1950s in the form of the Aperture Science Handheld Quantum Tunnelling Device, which was eventually streamlined into the far more portable Aperture Science Handheld Portal Device. The ASHPD, or "Portal Gun", was used as a quick method of travel over potentially unlimited distances. Through the use of the Portal Gun, Chell, one of Aperture's Test Subjects, could make objects exist in two locations simultaneously.

These portals follow a more simplified portal style, where light is able to enter the portal and send an image of both sides. They also allow for a more instantaneous transit between the portals, as it is simply a matter of walking in and appearing out of the other one. The ability to place them on any flat surface with holes or a Moon rock surface to attach a portal to makes these much more versatile and efficient than their Black Mesa counterparts.

Resistance and Combine Edit

D1 trainstation Alyx

Alyx Vance about to be sent to Black Mesa East through Kleiner's Lab teleport.

During The Uprising, the Resistance was able to develop new advancements in portal technology that allowed for single-dimensional travel. The Combine, developing alongside the Resistance, were able to make developments, however were still unable to discover the means of single-dimension teleportation (due to their inability to factor in the Dark Energy equations), and were forced to use much slower and conventional means of transportation if they wanted to stay within a single dimension.

The teleport in Kleiner's lab was perfected upon Gordon's arrival in City 17, and it was inaugurated by Alyx Vance, who had a successful transit to Black Mesa East. However, being fragile, the teleporter was damaged by Lamarr during Gordon's attempt, and he was, instead, teleported outside of the lab.

The Resistance's discovery was major, as it put them one stride ahead of the Combine in the fight for Earth. It must be noted however, that human-made portals are able to accomplish this feat by using the dimensional borderworld Xen as a relay; in the words of Judith Mossman, "we figured out how to use Xen as an unexpressed axis, effectively a dimensional slingshot so we can swing around the borderworld and come back to local space without having to pass through". This method of using an "Unexpressed Axis" centered on Xen removes the need to travel through it or to use a focusing device (like the one activated by Barney Calhoun), but instead use a modulator to emulate its effects.

Additionally, teleporters are used to supply Freeman with Magnusson Devices during the Combine raid on White Forest. These teleporters are smaller and portable, allowing them to be placed in the surrounding wilderness and regularly replenished with the devices.

The Combine also housed their own teleport in the Depot, where it is seemingly used for transporting prisoners. When Alyx and Gordon visit Nova Prospekt to rescue Eli Vance, they are required to use this teleport to return to Kleiner's lab. This plan is waylaid, however, as Judith Mossman uses it to transport Eli to the Citadel. When the teleporter is finally recharged, Alyx and Gordon end up in City 17 a week later.

Using a different technology to the Resistance teleporters, the Combine were able to covertly work on same-dimensional travel, however the device was not able to teleport large masses, and required a long time to recharge. As oppose to the "sling shot" method, they used "string-based" technology.

Xen Edit

Xen first teleport1

Teleport on Xen.

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Xen creatures are also able to use portals to travel between worlds; after the Resonance Cascade, they can be seen teleporting in and out of the Black Mesa Research Facility. Their ability to do so made their siege on Black Mesa all the more easy, as they were able to teleport into almost all areas of the facility. During the events of Half-Life 2, they cannot be seen using portals to travel to Earth.

Xen also features several small monolithic teleports, portals, as well as a larger teleport leading to Nihilanth's lair.

After Gordon is trapped in stasis by the G-Man, just before the destruction of the Citadel's core, he is rescued by numerous Vortigaunts, who teleport him and Alyx from wherever they are, to next to the base of the Citadel.

Race X Edit

Sprites xen

Sprites flying from a Race X purple portal on Xen

Race X creatures seemed to have mastered teleportation technology, even with single units teleporting at will. Sprites also seem to power Race X portals, and seen powering the Gene Worm's portal to Earth. The difference is that their portals are purple rather than green.

Superportal Edit

Main article: Superportal
Superportal

Superportal above a destroyed Citadel.

As its name suggests, this is a considerably larger portal, capable of transporting much larger volumes of matter over greater distances.

When Alyx and Gordon escape from City 17 during the Portal Storms, they see in the distance the remains of the Citadel, and the infant superportal, which was said if it were to open, would allow Combine units to sweep in and recapture earth. However, Superportals take a while to gain strength and eventually open.

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References Edit

See also Edit

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