The Quirium Drive refers to an early technology used to traverse the Galaxy. For other iterations in Hyperspace technology, see Hyperspace.
By the year 3125, the existing method for traversing space, known as the Faraway Jump, had been retired in favor of more conventional autonomous mechanisms that could be triggered aboard a ship with no external assistance, as previously required. These original hyperdrives were powered by a fuel known as Quirium, an exclusive invention by Galactic Cooperative. At the time, hyperspace jumps were limited to a 7 light-year maximum in any particular direction, requiring multiple jumps for even relatively short hops between systems. The mechanism had its own unique fuelling system, independent from other ship systems.
The secret formula for the manufacturing of this high energy substance was lost in the collapse of the Galactic Cooperative and the Quirium hyperspace technology became obsolete as a result. Rumours abound that Quirium fuel was reverse engineered from captured Thargoid vessels.
When this formula was lost, the hyperspace industry suffered a major setback. A number of different drives strove to fill the void left by the Quirium drives, but it was the Type 2b that proved most popular.