Hammerspace storage is a sophisticated technology that allows for real objects and matter to be compressed into an extremely dense space. The technology was created after dense electron batteries was invented, making use of advanced metamaterials to convert objects into electron states that are then compressed and stored into matrices. When an object is needed from a storage module, it is simply reconstructed using a projector. Hammerspace drives connect to interfaces for easy selection of which items to retrieve. There are two types of common hamerspace storage: electronegative and annihilation storage.
Electronegative storage maintains the full mass of the objects it stores, only compressing objects and materials. It does this by instead essentially removing the space between the atoms present in an object, compressing it into a matrix. Because the stored objects are still real matter, the storage drive maintains the full mass of the things it stores. However, electronegative drives can typically store more mass than their alternative, and can also compress and reconstruct stored objects significantly faster. They are the ideal go-to for portable hammerspace drives which are around the physical size of a thick physical wallet, but can store upwards of around 140 kg of mass.
Electronegative storage cannot safely store certain materials, such as volatile materials or living matter. Volatile materials such as fuel or explosives will detonate upon conversion, and living things can't be stored, just dying from the conversion process.
Annihilation storage is more advanced than electronegative storage; it uses similar technology, but instead converts objects entirely to energy, causing them to become massless and thus not increase the mass of the drive. There are numerous disadvantages, however. If the drive is excessively damaged, it could explode like a grenade as all the stored mess of matter shoots out like shrapnel; it will also explode if it runs out of power, though when not storing anything the power output of an atomic battery can satiate portable models. It is also more power hungry than electronegative storage, using up considerable power while converting objects. Annihilation drives can also only store a third of what electronegative drives the same size can; portable modules can only store 45 kg.
Like electronegative storage, annihilation drives cannot safely store volatile materials or living matter.
An annihilation storage device works by annihilating matter and transporting it to special batteries that act as storage drives for the matter. An ENDI scanner is used to scan the matter for later reconstruction. Then, a device called an 'annihilator', similar to a reverse 3D printer, is used to deconstruct matter. Annihilation is performed by a rig of tiny, high yield lasers which blast the item, subsequently destroying the matter and transforming it into pure energy. This energy is captured and transported via wires, so called “energised matter conduits”, to storage banks. These storage banks are, in a lot of ways, no different from standard batteries. During this stage great care is put into organising the energy. Energy derived from, say, copper is placed into one bank whereas energy derived from carbon is placed into another. This is to make sure that the device can easily read how much of whatever material is stored on the device.
Finally comes the reconstruction phase. Energy drawn from the onboard storage banks is focused into a tight, powerful beam similar to the one which once destroyed the matter initially. It should be noted that, during the process it requires a little over twice as much energy as the matter is technically worth in order to be transformed back into matter. This is the primary reason why input and withdrawal are such energy demanding processes. Regardless, energy in the form of photons is smashed together into the correct quantity of protons, electrons and subsequently neutrons. These are reassembled into their constituent materials by an advanced, highly intricate 3D printer and eventually you yield the same, or sometimes a different, item that you inserted into the annihilation storage device initially.
A network of interconnected hammerspace drives (both electronegative and annihilation) along with reconstruction projectors and interfaces is called an ME network (matter-energy network). For instantaneous transportation and storage of large amounts of matter, ME networks are a useful though expensive option, as it is significantly less energy intensive and complex than teleporter networks. Networks must be connected to stable power grids (usually with auxilliary emergency power systems) in order to maintain the integrity of present matter. Such networks are capable of storing immense amount of mass at the cost of being very expensive and complex to set up, in addition to large power requirements.