Dan Sylveste, son of Calvin Sylveste, is from an enormously wealthy family of scholars and industrialists, was driving force behind the Resurgam expedition and leader of the colony. He is a driven man who had come closer to penetrating a Shrouder enclave than anyone else living, but it is only after this experience that he develops an interest in the Delta Pavonis system.

At the beginning of Revelation Space he is an archaeologist working on Resurgam and studying the ruins of the ancient Amarantin, convinced that their history holds the key to why no alien species has yet survived long enough for humans to make contact. Resurgam may hold important clues, as it appears the entire planet surface was scoured by a coronal mass ejection from the otherwise stable star, just as the Amarantin were gaining spaceflight.

The Nostalgia for Infinity arrives in the system searching for Dan Sylveste so that he can heal Captain Brannigan, with the help of his father's Beta level simulation. It becomes apparent that Dan is a biological clone of his father, an immortality contingency plan that was never enacted. Sylveste is taken aboard the ship, which he has been on board before. Once he is aboard, traces of the Sun Stealer entity that have been aboard since that previous time are able to gain influence over the ship and Sylveste. Fighting breaks out for control of the ship.

Sylveste unwittingly, under the influence of Sun Stealer awakens the Inhibitors to the existence of mankind by triggering the inhibitor device left near the Hades object. Too late Dan realizes he is no longer in control and tries to destroy himself and the Inhibitor artifact with anti-lithium 'hot dust'.

He is eventually inducted into the Hades Matrix, an apparent neutron star that is actually a solid sphere of computronium, where he effectively becomes immortal as a component of the computronium.

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