Jump drives are a method of faster-than-light travel utilized by both Alliance and Syndicate vessels. System jump drives were once the only form of FTL travel available to humanity, but 29 years after the Battle of Grendel, both the Alliance and the Syndicate Worlds discovered the Hypernet, enabling much faster movement.
Jump drives are reliant on the gravity wells of stars and other stellar bodies. Using a jump drive, a ship is capable of traveling from one jump point in a star system to a jump exit in another in a matter of days or weeks, provided the systems are close enough together (generaly a few light years away).
Jump points are fixed points in space positioned at specific distances from the system´s stars as to be influenced by it´s gravity well and enable the jump drive to propel the vessel to faster-than-light travel in jump space. The point where the ship leaves jump space is called jump exit. These points are natural "choke points" often utilized to set up ambushes or minefields.
Because of the great distances between stars and the great dispersion of the human race a trip from the center of the Syndicate space to the Alliance space can take several months or years.
In the beginning of The Lost Fleet: Dauntless, the technology advances enables a ship to be travelling as fast as 0.1c (10% the speed of light) to make the jump. Previously the ships would have to decelerate to slower speeds.
A formation of ships will exit jump space it in the same disposition they entered it. No relative movement is possible during the travel.
The system jump between stars is not instantaneous. It can take several days or weeks to go from one star to another. During this period the spacecraft does not remain in regular space but in another dimension called jump space.
Dauntless describes jump space as follows:
...jump space presented only the same vista of an endless drab black that always seemed just on the verge of turning into darkest gray.
Splayed across that vastness were rare splashes of light, following no understood pattern and representing something that remained unknown even now.
"The sailors say the lights are the homes of our ancestors."
Geary looked toward Captain Desjani.
Communication between ships in jump space is difficult although not impossible. High data rate transfers cannot be made but the Alliance can send simple, text-only messages.