Herschel Key The Herschel is shown in the standard phase and orientation. The central cell, marked in red, is the location of a Herschel when describing a translation or movement by a Herschel Track Component.

A Herschel Track Component is a Herschel (usually, but not always, shown in the standard format), along with a set of objects. The evolving Herschel interacts with these objects, usually throwing off several gliders in the process, eventually reappearing at a new location and possibly rotated or reflected. Most of the objects in a Component are stable, as this allows for asynchronous use of the Component in Glider Reflectors, Glider Guns and other engineered patterns. But some specialized Components do contain oscillators, which restrict the timing in the use of those Components.

Much of the original work on Herschel Tracks was done by Deiter Leithner, who provided much of the original data used in the tables. David Greene has provided many of the additions since.

A history of Herschel Tracks/Conduits. and further discussion.