On a mission to evacuate Maybourne from the planet on which he had settled, SG-1 discovered a small spacecraft of Ancient design, what had come to be known by the Atlantis expedition as a "puddle jumper." The ship had been designed to be used in conjunction with the stargate. A dialing panel of stargate glyphs on the control console functions much like a DHD, and the wing-like engine pods which extend during flight can be retracted to allow the ship to fit through the gate. The ship uses a crystal power source and has inertial dampeners that completely eliminate the effect of G forces. It is also equipped with cloaking technology that can be engaged both in flight and at rest, and which can be activated by a remote control device.
The ship discovered by SG-1 contained a device that enabled it to travel through time, and SG-1 concluded that an Ancient had used the ship to travel through time and to leave a written record of the planet's history on the walls of the temple. The ship is intuitive and seemed to come to life as SG-1 entered, but although certain systems, such as the cloaking device or the dialing console, could be operated by humans, only someone who possesses the Ancient gene could engage and fly the ship. The primary power source of the craft was depleted, but Carter successfully separated the time device from the control circuits and rerouted the controls to a secondary output to bring the engines online. O'Neill possesses the Ancient gene which allows him to activate Ancient technology, and he was able to pilot the craft by placing his hands on the console and using the power of thought alone. O'Neill engaged Ares's ha'tak in orbit above the planet and succeeded in destroying the mothership with a few shots to its vital systems.
Following the liberation of the planet, the SGC took possession of the valuable piece of Ancient technology and the ship was returned to Area 51 for study, however without the Ancient gene, the scientists had little success engaging either the ship or the time travel device. When SG-1 made the decision to go back in time to acquire a ZPM believed to have been present in ancient Egypt, O'Neill successfully flew the ship once again, and traveled to 3000 BC. The ship was cloaked and left in the desert, but a sandstorm partially covered the invisible ship and created a peculiar sand formation that drew the attention of Ra's Jaffa, preventing SG-1's escape. SG-1's presence in the past changed history, and in an altered timeline, the ship remained buried in Egypt for 5000 years until it was discovered in an archaeological dig and brought to the USAF Research Institute for study. Dubbed a "gateship" by McKay, the spacecraft was used by a team under O'Neill's command to travel through the stargate to Chulak, and then to travel back in time once more to ancient Egypt. The team used the cloaked ship to steal Earth's stargate, preventing Ra from taking it with him when he abandoned Earth during the rebellion, and Carter insisted that once history was set right, the team must destroy the ship and remain in the past.