Derelict is a science fiction short story by American author Alan E. Nourse.
What was the mystery of this great ship from the dark, deep reaches of space? For, within its death-filled chambers—was the avenue of life!
In a world run by a military dictatorship, problem soldiers are posted to a space station out by Saturn to watch for rumored space ships that never come.
But one day a huge derelict ship shows up that could only be from another star implying an interstellar drive.
The Earth has no such drive, and the disgraced captain of the station sees his chance to redeem his career by delivering the drive to his masters.
Derelict was first published in If: Worlds of Science Fiction May 1953.
Alan Edward Nourse (1928-1992) was an American science fiction author and physician. He wrote both juvenile and adult science fiction, as well as nonfiction works about medicine and science. His SF works generally focused on medicine and/or psionics. Psionics refers to the practice, study, or psychic ability of using the mind to induce paranormal phenomena. Examples of this include telepathy, telekinesis, and other workings of the outside world through the psyche.
His novel The Bladerunner lent its name to the Blade Runner movie, but no other aspects of its plot or characters, which were taken from Philip K. Dick's Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?