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Star Trekkin' to Alpha Centauri

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posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 06:31 PM
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a reply to: JadeStar

Why would you discount the possibilities presented by the space warping drive you mentioned? No, it is not well understood right now, but you must appreciate that ploughing more research money exclusively into that sort of research NOW would see propulsion systems created in fifty years time, that could potentially make that journey in a little more than two handfuls of years, or better.

Not only that, but if the systems are sophisticated enough, we could even MAN the mission! Yes, there are hurdles to overcome, but nothing worth getting done, was ever achieved by going about it half cocked!




posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 06:35 PM
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Higher dimensions... hyperspace... wormholes... we have the inklings about how to circumnavigate that pesky universal speed limit, C, down here in peasantville... and have had them for quite awhile.

If certain persistent rumors creeping out of the deep black world are even close to truth, we have actually done it and reached a stellar neighbor already ...and found a fetid, dismal world of protoplasmic sludge... IF true.

Either way, we peons will get out there eventually... and it cannot be soon enough... and we will find something better than slime oceans, eventually, too... but I'd even settle for slime at this point.

I know baseless rumors have no place in the tech forum... but dangit, it's cool to imagine and that imagination will be the thing that gets us there... if it hasn't already... heh.



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 08:29 PM
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our technology is developing fast though. VASIMR is no longer the fastest ion/plasma thruster around. the new champ is 4 times faster than VASIMR. ELF tube ion thrusters. so divide VASIMIR's time by 4 now



and if you want a warp drive, a wormhole or a disjunction drive- plain old QED provides an answer: Bare electron mass is negative (and huge.)
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posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 08:53 PM
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originally posted by: EA006
a reply to: JadeStar

Daedalus doesn't look like it has any braking system, so it's hitting alpha centauri at 80m mph?

That's a great introduction to any life there lol
if i remember right Daedalus was to be a drive by. but it does not have to be. adding several of Dr Winglee's m2p2 generators and a tank of appropriate gases gets you a magnetic/electrical parachute up to 100 KM in diameter to react against the targets stellar wind. Winglee's helicon M2P2 generators minus the gas tank is the size of a coffee can. the gas tank would require 1/4 KG per day of operation so the additional mass would be negligible because it would only operate inside the helio-sheath of the target star as a brake and maybe inside ours for a cheap initial speed boost.
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posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 09:17 PM
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originally posted by: flammadraco
Great thread! S&F

We also need to consider a "Force Field" at those speeds, a speak of dust would be catastrophic!
specks of dust are easy to deal with. a simple plasma sheath would move everything out of the way up to sand grain or slightly larger. such a shield would require very little fuel to create and very little added mass for the generator. there are other shielding schemes some of which might be justified as part of a reactor thermal rejection system (radiators.) they are far more massive.



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 09:19 PM
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How about we use that 38 year to Alpha Centauri technology and launch it for 1 year with a telescope and stop to observe. Then we would be 1/38th of the way on a 4.25 light year journey, we'd have a pretty close look. Then in the mean time we create technology that makes traveling light years only months and go to Alpha Centauri.



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 09:56 PM
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Impressive post Jadestar but we really need a breakthrough in technology before interstellar travel becomes a reality. It seems that the energy we need is already present in matter. So all we really need is a drive that can convert matter directly into propulsion to make interstellar travel a possibility. Probes that can constantly accelerate at 1G could reach Alpha Centauri within 6.2 Years including deceleration,



We already know that mass and energy can be interconverted, according to the relation E = mc2. It may turn out to be possible to interconvert everything in the stress-energy tensor, perhaps according to an equation like E = mc2 = pc = Lc/A. Vast amounts of propulsive energy would become available. Says Forward: "If we took one unit of spin which is 10-34 units of angular momentum (very small), we would get 6.6 kg-m/sec of linear momentum or 10-8 kg of mass or, equivalently, 109 joules of energy -- all from one atom.

The interconversion of only 45 billion atoms -- about 0.1 picograms of hydrogen -- would thus be sufficient to propel a 100-ton starship at l%c

Link



posted on Mar, 30 2015 @ 11:24 PM
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a reply to: JadeStar

Acceleration forces would kill humans, not to mention accelerating forces from rest would destroy the ship.



posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 12:01 AM
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originally posted by: yorkshirelad
a reply to: JadeStar
Either :

A. "Nominal" faster than light is not possible in which case forget exploring the "stars" (a massive waste of time dreaming) we are stuck within our own solar ystem.
or
B. Faster than light is possible, in which case forget research into sub light rocket propulsion ( a massive waste of resources) and design FTL drives so we can explore the universe.

It seems to me that we need to answer this question first : Is it possible, and has been demonstrated, to move an object between two points at a speed that in normal space-time appears faster than light. NB the opposite question also applies : Has it been demonstrated, beyond all reasonable doubt, that FTL travel is not possible. Q1 could be answered before the "Ultimate Book of Physics" is complete. Q2 can only be answered if either Q1 is answered OR the "Ultimate Book of Physics" is complete.


If the laws of physics are correct, it would take more energy than that which is contained in the entire universe to move an average sized space craft at the speed of light. So I think that's kind of improbable. Then there are classical level ER/EPR solutions, also problematic as we've only been able to move information, not the actual bits, so far. That may change in the future, who knows. BEC solutions, again, moving information, not the actual bits and still limited by light speed to get the entangled pair in place.

There has been talk, theoretically of using exotic matter to create wormholes through an "underlying" spatial construct deemed as hyperspace, but I think we're a long way off from that process as well. It would be nice if solar masses were "gateways" but I doubt it, a lot of fanciful talk in that direction, at least on ATS.

The greatest problem with any of this, that most seem to forget, is shielding. How do you shield a vehicle moving at say 600 million miles per hour from everything? Even micro-particles and dust would pit a hull in no time. How do make a course correction around a 1 kg rock in space that would effectively hit you at 600 million mph? Can you make a shield powerful enough that it will extend a million miles ahead of you (about 6 or 7 seconds travel time) and push stuff out of the way?

Cheers - Dave
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posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 12:40 AM
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a reply to: bobs_uruncle

I'm pretty ignorant on such things, but don't most objects orbit within a few degrees of each other? In order to minimize the number of these rocks on a trip between solar systems, wouldn't it be possible to go above or below them?



posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 12:42 AM
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originally posted by: ziplock9000
a reply to: JadeStar

Acceleration forces would kill humans, not to mention accelerating forces from rest would destroy the ship.
no. first off even using just classical physics an acceleration of 1 g is enough to get to light speed in less than one year. you are asserting that 1 g (that is the equivalent of earth normal gravity) is fatal. that's illogical.

Secondly in nonclassical physics there are ways to accelerate that do not produce inertial forces and so produce none of the complications normally associated with abrupt accelerations plus the relativistic problems associated with it.



posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 01:10 AM
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a reply to: JadeStar

Cool info...

Question though.. Regardless of the speed how would we protect these crafts from space debris? The damage a paint chip can do to the space station, travelling at 17k+ mph could be catastrophic so we can assume without some type of shielding the effort might not work.

Secondly if we send probes to our nearest neighbor how do we communicate with it?



posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 01:57 AM
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originally posted by: Xcathdra
a reply to: JadeStar

Cool info...

Question though.. Regardless of the speed how would we protect these crafts from space debris? The damage a paint chip can do to the space station, travelling at 17k+ mph could be catastrophic so we can assume without some type of shielding the effort might not work.

Secondly if we send probes to our nearest neighbor how do we communicate with it?

there are lots of schemes.

the easiest no muss no fuss way is to inflate a plasma balloon around the ship. the plasma has an electrical and magnetic field. the dust motes become charged. when they are charged the magnetic flux lines deflect the dust motes and on up to slightly larger than sand grain sized pebbles out of the center line and away from the ship. The "balloon" is not made of solid matter just a minute amount of charged gas. the balloon can be inflated to enormous size even over 100 KM. so the dust is obliged to start getting away from the ships path long before the ship gets there.

because the specks you specify are most abundant compared to larger sizes this is an almost comprehensive protection. for dust specks the incidence of impacts at an even higher travel speed is 1 per square meter of the ships frontal cross section per day. even if a dust speck hits it is no more difficult to manage than a high powered rifle bullet.

for specks of larger size they are exponentially more rare. and for mini-pebbles they are even rarer still. you would want a multi-spectral scanner that can see the blue shifted light emitted from the advancing body and fire a weapon grade beam at them. turn the whole object to either plasma or of a size that the magnetic shield can deflect.

another scheme involves a molten metal droplet curtain radiator for a ships nuclear or fusion reactor. if put out front of the ship any impinging matter gets swallowed up and molten and becomes part of the coolant volume.

other schemes involve a sacrificial ship shield flown in front of the probe/human inhabited ship or a huge column of frozen water or self sealing reservoirs filled with a shear thickening fluid (properties like cornstarch; energy of impact causes temporary transformation to solid form.)

having a long narrow shape limits the frontal cross section of the ship and brings down the probability of impact especially for larger than mote sized impactors.

warp speed does not even have this problem. nor wormholes.
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posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 03:36 AM
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The Valkyrie Tethered antimatter starship (here: ) en.wikipedia.org... (Top speed: 92 percent C)

uses a molten liquid droplet radiator design

en.wikipedia.org...

of which project rho seems to have the best picture of the molten drop radiator:

www.projectrho.com...

www.projectrho.com...




edit on 31-3-2015 by stormbringer1701 because: (no reason given)



In addition to shielding against gamma shine and avoiding the absorption of engine heat, another major design consideration is shielding against interstellar dust grains. Flying through space at significant fractions of lightspeed is like looking through the barrel of a super particle collider. Even an isolated proton has a sting, and grains of sand begin to look like torpedoes. Judging from what is presently known about the nature of interstellar space, such torpedoes will certainly be encountered, perhaps as frequently as once a day. Add to this the fact that as energy from the matter-antimatter reaction zone (particularly gamma radiation) shines through the tungsten shields and other ship components, the heat it deposits must be ejected.

Jim Powell and I have a system that can perform both services (particle shielding and heat shedding), at least during the acceleration and coast phases of flight. We can dump intercepted engine heat into a fluid (chiefly organic material with metallic inclusions) and throw streams of hot droplets out ahead of the ship. The droplets radiate their heat load into space before the ship accelerates into and recaptures them in magnetic funnels for eventual reuse. These same heat-shedding droplets can ionize most of the atoms they encounter by stripping off their electrons. The rocket itself then shuts the resulting shower of charged particles - protons and electrons - off to either side of its magnetic field, much the same as when a boat's prow pushes aside water.

The power generated by occasional dust grains should range from the equivalent of rifle shots to (rarely) small bombs. These detonate in the shield, harmlessly, far ahead of the ship. Fortunately, almost all of the interstellar particles likely to be encountered are fewer than 20 microns across (10,000 microns = 1 centimeter), and we should expect no more than one impact per day per square meter of Valkyrie's flight path profile...

...One of the great advantages of a droplet shield is that it is constantly renewing itself. Put a dent in it, and the cavity is immediately filled by outrushing spray.

If a dust grain passes into the shield, many of the shield's droplets are bound to be exploded. Some of the scattered droplet fluid will be absorbed and recovered by surrounding droplets, but some fluid is bound to be hurled out of the droplet stream, which means that we must add the weight of droplets to be replaced to the ship's initial mass.

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posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 04:11 AM
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shear thickening fluid armor. Not saying this particular STF would be a good interstellar collider shield but this illustrates the principle:

science.howstuffworks.com...

or for a low tech illustration fun with cornstarch:




posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 04:44 AM
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originally posted by: flammadraco
Great thread! S&F

We also need to consider a "Force Field" at those speeds, a speak of dust would be catastrophic!


Not to mention ordinary wear and tear...any nuclear powered craft which includes a pusher plate or similar would be kaput within a few years, never mind decades or centuries. Any chamber built to contain and direct the forces of H Bombs, even mini H bombs, would also require replacement and refitting periodically.

Cosmic rays, micro-meteors, other errant radiations and emanations, miscalculated gravitational pushes and pulls from large cosmological bodies will all conspire against the success of any long term mission being proposed.

The only way we could realistically get to visit the stars, would be using technologies assumed and theorised to be incorporated in hypothetical UFOs and their reported flight characteristics, whether the UFO's are excepted by you, the reader as real or fantasy.

We couldn't make it using conventional technology, there's simply too much conspiring against the success of such a proposal methinks.



posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 04:54 AM
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originally posted by: MysterX

originally posted by: flammadraco
Great thread! S&F

We also need to consider a "Force Field" at those speeds, a speak of dust would be catastrophic!


Not to mention ordinary wear and tear...any nuclear powered craft which includes a pusher plate or similar would be kaput within a few years, never mind decades or centuries. Any chamber built to contain and direct the forces of H Bombs, even mini H bombs, would also require replacement and refitting periodically.

Cosmic rays, micro-meteors, other errant radiations and emanations, miscalculated gravitational pushes and pulls from large cosmological bodies will all conspire against the success of any long term mission being proposed.

The only way we could realistically get to visit the stars, would be using technologies assumed and theorised to be incorporated in hypothetical UFOs and their reported flight characteristics, whether the UFO's are excepted by you, the reader as real or fantasy.

We couldn't make it using conventional technology, there's simply too much conspiring against the success of such a proposal methinks.



1. nuclear propulsion does not necessarily mean detonation type. one of the best ways is to power a ion or plasma drive. but pusher plate engineering was worked on during NERVA, DUMBO and other nuclear rocket programs. they are not blindly assuming that the systems would have the requisite reliability.

gravitational influence: From what? empty space? there is literally nothing in between here and there that can have any gravitational effect of significance. this isn't star trek. they aren't taking little side excursions to other star systems, black holes and the like. these diversions would be light years long and require decades more to accomplish. they are going straight on (allowing for leading the target to make sure the star is there when the ship arrives at the end of the journey.)

We could do it using conventional tech. But we don't have the funding or the political will.



posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 05:53 AM
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I sort of think that Dr Chang Diaz will be stung by VASIMR being knocked off as the top speedster and will redesign it to be even more awesome. He's got a lot of money and reputation riding on it.

www.adastrarocket.com...



posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 06:38 AM
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a reply to: bobs_uruncle

The old Dean Drive.

No one has every been able to produce documented proof this even works. I would love to see some proof of that.

You didn't happen to keep any records you would be willing to share?



posted on Mar, 31 2015 @ 06:52 AM
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originally posted by: dismanrc
a reply to: bobs_uruncle

The old Dean Drive.

No one has every been able to produce documented proof this even works. I would love to see some proof of that.

You didn't happen to keep any records you would be willing to share?

actually the dean drive has been explained/refuted as a type of space drive. i read a refutation of it in Dr Woodward's book on Mach effects and wormholes title: Making Starships and Stargates/ The science of interstellar transport and absurdly benign wormholes. it came up as he was going through his controls (read olympic class beat-downs) for spurious signal sources in his mach effect thrusters. The dean drive effect exists but it isn't useful for thrust.

He says it was thoroughly investigated and discredited in the 1960s. it arises in reality from the fact that the coefficients of static and kinetic friction are generally the same. if you produce a periodic mechanical effect where the static friction operates in part of the cycle and the kinetic part operates in the rest of the cycle you can get movement out of a vibrating object. but this is not useful for anything more that scooting something along a plane surface.
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