TARDIS Technical Index

Automatic Defence Mechanism

(aka Banshee Circuits)

Banshee circuits controlling people

The Automatic Defence Mechanisms (ADM) consists of all of the defensive systems normally controlled by the Banshee Circuits. These include the Cloister Bell, Safety Precaution Selector, Temporal Grace Field, Chameleon Circuit, HADS, and the Warp Ellipse Cut-out Circuit.

In an emergency the Banshee Circuits allow a TARDIS to use any resources available (including temporarily altering or controlling people, places, dreams and memories) to ensure the survival of the Capsule and its crew. The ADM has been known to put images on the Scanner to warn the crew of a dangerous location or situation. Its detection systems are known to be quite accurate, but sensitive enough that some operators disconnect certain systems to keep it from interfering.

Sometimes it will double-lock the doors (preventing entrance or exit) until the danger has passed. If necessary, parts of a TARDIS interior will dissolve into viscous metallic liquid as a TARDIS diverts resources to the Molecular Stabilizers. In certain extreme situations the TARDIS will dematerialize as soon as the operator enters the ship. In one case a rovie mouse was exposed to a time fallout from a leak in the capsule's temporal relays. Rather then being aged to dust the TARDIS did its best to reprocess its biodata to keep the mouse alive. This resulted in the mouse undergoing thousands of years of evolution in less then a minute.

This mechanism is a optional extra built into Mark I TARDIS systems. The Banshee Circuits also serve as the Temporal Flight Recorder which stores any flight codes that are used.

While it is easy for Gallifrey to get a signal lock on a stolen TARDIS that has switched off all of its defence systems, some operators use a switch on the console to keep the ADM disconnected because they resent how overly sensitive to threat it is. There are some emergency systems that will switch themselves back on even if deactivated by the operator. If the operator diverts all of a TARDIS's power to its Drive Systems it will be unable to activate its defence mechanisms. It would then be possible for intruders to breach the main doors.

Color Key

The following color code is used:

  • Black: For information from the TV Series, including Dimensions in Time, and 1996 TV Movie.
  • Blue: For information from the Novels and Audios including Target, Virgin, BCC, and Big Finish.
  • Green: For information from 'licensed' reference sources such as the Technical Manual, Doctor Who Magazine, and the Role Playing Games.
  • Red: For information from unofficial sources -The Faction Paradox series, behind the scenes interviews, author's speculation, and popular fan belief.
  • The TARDIS Technical Index is copyright Will B Swift.

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