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There's a star nearly 5 light-years from Earth. Stephen Hawking is sending a spacecraft to it

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posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 04:19 AM
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If this thing is to travel at nearly the speed of light. I think we also would have to take into account for time-dialation.

If this Object is to travel for 20 years just to Reach its destination at Close to the speed of light. Non of us or Our grandchildrens granchildren would receive a damn thing from this probe.

I dont know, i could be wrong science is a funny thing.




posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 04:21 AM
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originally posted by: BIGPoJo

originally posted by: Jonjonj
a reply to: tsurfer2000h

Is this story real? I thought our nearest star was Proxima Centauri, not Alpha Centauri...

Confused



You are correct.


Correct in part.

Alpha Centauri is the closest star system to the Solar System at 4.37 ly. It consists of three stars: the pair Alpha Centauri A and Alpha Centauri B and a small and faint red dwarf, Alpha Centauri C, better known as Proxima Centauri, that may be gravitationally bound to the other two. To the unaided eye, the two main components appear as a single object of an apparent visual magnitude of −0.27, forming the brightest star in the southern constellation Centaurus and the third-brightest star in the night sky, only outshone by Sirius and Canopus.


Link



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 04:23 AM
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originally posted by: spy66
If this thing is to travel at nearly the speed of light. I think we also would have to take into account for time-dialation.

If this Object is to travel for 20 years just to Reach its destination at Close to the speed of light. Non of us or Our grandchildrens granchildren would receive a damn thing from this probe.

I dont know, i could be wrong science is a funny thing.


No, time-dialation occurs for a human being travelling at those speeds.
Not a machine.



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 04:25 AM
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a reply to: verschickter

Cheers. I was thinking aloud how they work out their specs etc when technology runs apace. For example, I'll take your word for 'stagnation' and might have used the wrong terms to express myself. In phone terms, the Samsung 7 is packing a greater wallop than the S3 and they're about four years apart.

The designers of the S3 would have been aware of projections to envisage *where* the S7 might be in terms of advances. Not an exact science, but something akin to Moore's Law would give people in that industry a notion.

So what I was getting at was wondering about how to design this 'nano spaceship' with today's technology whilst knowing by launch, the tech will be potentially leaps ahead. Receivers can be more sensitive, transmitters more powerful, on-board computers faster and able to be busier for longer etc.

I'm not an engineer and wonder how the experts go about allowing for the predictable advances?

This is the great thing about 'big ideas,' they generate creativity. Even if this whatever-sized device never leaves the lab, it'd inspire lateral thoughts and technically creative designs and programming.



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 04:25 AM
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originally posted by: Iamnotadoctor

originally posted by: spy66
If this thing is to travel at nearly the speed of light. I think we also would have to take into account for time-dialation.

If this Object is to travel for 20 years just to Reach its destination at Close to the speed of light. Non of us or Our grandchildrens granchildren would receive a damn thing from this probe.

I dont know, i could be wrong science is a funny thing.


No, time-dialation occurs for a human being travelling at those speeds.
Not a machine.


Okay. so we would have to wait for +-40 years than.



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 04:27 AM
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a reply to: spy66
Sadly, yes.



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 04:35 AM
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a reply to: Kandinsky

It's actually pretty simple.
They just decide 'cutoff points' for components.
Some components may be adaptable to newer tech whilst they are spending the years building it.
Others may be integral so they just have to say "stick with the best we have atm".



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 04:38 AM
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a reply to: Kandinsky
That´s why the industry holds summits so they have a brief overview what´s to come and the suppliers can adjust to that. They made Moore´s law to be self fulfilling. They made sure it stays a law.
Now, the first time ever in history, manufacturers are not just pressing for doubling the transistor count but rather look at the different fields of usage and adapt to that.

Meaning, you design the chips for a purpose, not just trying to crank up the clock cycle or going for more performance, then see how to use it. It´s a small revolution in the field, and I myself have not really looked into the projections they made but I guess, they will change the industry.

Look into Northrop Grumman, what they are doing.



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 05:02 AM
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originally posted by: TrueBrit
a reply to: Gothmog

First of all, I highly doubt that sling shot manoeuvres are going to help when the whole idea is to propel the object, with a laser, up to one hundred million miles per hour. And as for being fixed...no. Simply no.

Look, the objects cannot be fixed, because they, the ground station and the objects themselves AND their target are not fixed but moving in space and time. The planet is rotating for one thing!

The plan is not lightspeed. To reach the exact speed of light takes infinite energy. Remember the "20 years" for the mission ? Not 4 years as would be attainable at the speed of light . Which , using math, means 1/20th of the speed of light only. We have to do what we can do....

For the last one...the lasers are mounted on the craft to be deployed in space. Not earth based. Something to the effect of a sailing ship propelled by fans mounted on that ship.




posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 05:30 AM
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a reply to: Iamnotadoctor

a reply to: verschickter

Cheers fellas


I read The Register and /. so know a little about the techie scene...enough to ask questions anyway. El Reg and /. frequently write about the summits and conferences.

I guess they work within an agreed margin that includes foreseeable upgrades whilst not jumping the shark and assuming 'jet packs.' The more I think about the plans, the more it appears like a 'proof of concept' type of deal. He's talking about things we can't currently do with things we can't currently make. By starting the discussion, he could attract new ideas in scientific academia and the R&D guys in the tech/engineering spheres.



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 05:35 AM
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a reply to: Gothmog

First of all, no one suggested that the device would be propelled up to light speed. I am merely going by the data provided thus far by the articles and info graphics which have been linked to thus far.

It is also worth mentioning, that at no point is a laser mounted to the craft mentioned in any of those. The only reference to lasers is a ground station, on earth, not in orbit, nor attached to the devices themselves.



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 06:18 AM
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a reply to: tsurfer2000h

I figured it would be a sail type idea as I know scientists in the past have suggested using solar sails as a form of propulsion in space, I still can't quite get my head round the idea of them slowing it down though because it would need equal energy in the opposite direction to slow it down. The speeding up part is probably the easiest part of the project for them outside of building the device itself, being able to slow it down however in a frictionless environment is going to be the hardest probably.

It's an ambitious project for sure revolving around tech which doesn't exist, I hope they're successful with it



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 07:47 AM
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a reply to: Discotech

Hell, maybe they could detach the front/accelerating sail at a given time and pop a decelerating sail out the back!
I imagine that planning to get it into any orbit would be impossible (I rather not use that word, but there it is) but something so small? Who knows, maybe they could slow it down just enough and hope and pray that it falls into an orbit of some kind, all the while hopefully transmitting with Earth and relaying some awesome data!



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 07:57 AM
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originally posted by: Jimjolnir
a reply to: Discotech

Hell, maybe they could detach the front/accelerating sail at a given time and pop a decelerating sail out the back!


How would that work when the driving force is a laser beam? The sail would be in the back because that´s where the laser comes from (and always). Remember, space is vacuum, there is no air resistance. If you target a planet there, depending on air density and gravity when the sail makes sense to deploy agains the atmospheric resistance, it´s an eye blink and the thing is a speck on the surface or burned to crisps.

If there is an atmosphere. If not, it just slamms into whatever is in its way.

Edit: Let away the fact we don´t know those planets, their orbits and can´t react fast enough. Even with the mars mission, they did not know if the landing was a success, only when the signals came in. Make that 4.5 light years one way, with light speed communication.
Even a rounding mistake in the computer could jeopardize everything. Heck, even the light needs 4.5 years to get to us. If we could zoom in with our telescopes that far, every command would take 9 years. The light being sent to us, us reacting with commands -> two way.

edit on 13-4-2016 by verschickter because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 08:01 AM
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a reply to: Jimjolnir

How would it decelerate with no force pushing against the sail ?

There needs to be an equal force pushing against it for it to decelerate.

If we take the principles of thrusters as an example, If I burn thrusters for 6 seconds to move forwards, to stop my craft, I need to burn thrusters for 6 seconds at the same power in the opposite direction.

If it takes 20 years to reach a destination then realistically you need to start decelerating 10 years into the journey in order to reach the destination if you're keeping constant energy usage otherwise you will overshoot and miss or you can decelerate later than 10 years but then you need to apply more energy to compensate



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 08:05 AM
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a reply to: Discotech
Don´t forget there even may be orbital differences and the whole system is moving at a different speed than ours. I hope I found the right words to bring it over. Basically I mean, if the target moves away or even slowly towards us, we have to take that into consideration too.



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 09:30 AM
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originally posted by: Iamnotadoctor

originally posted by: spy66
If this thing is to travel at nearly the speed of light. I think we also would have to take into account for time-dialation.

If this Object is to travel for 20 years just to Reach its destination at Close to the speed of light. Non of us or Our grandchildrens granchildren would receive a damn thing from this probe.

I dont know, i could be wrong science is a funny thing.


No, time-dialation occurs for a human being travelling at those speeds.
Not a machine.

Time dilation applies to everything and everyone equally, including machines. Time dilation has been confirmed experimentally using atomic clocks.

The signal from such a spacecraft would we redshifted as viewed from earth.



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 10:58 AM
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originally posted by: Iamnotadoctor

originally posted by: spy66
If this thing is to travel at nearly the speed of light. I think we also would have to take into account for time-dialation.

If this Object is to travel for 20 years just to Reach its destination at Close to the speed of light. Non of us or Our grandchildrens granchildren would receive a damn thing from this probe.

I dont know, i could be wrong science is a funny thing.


No, time-dialation occurs for a human being travelling at those speeds.
Not a machine.


Time dilation occurs for everything, everywhere.



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 12:20 PM
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a reply to: Discotech




I'm still confused on how they're going to get it to decelerate in order for it to reach its target. As far as I know you need an equal amount of energy expended in the opposite in direction in order to slow down in space ?

Laser to get it there.
Solar energy from the star system to decelerate.



posted on Apr, 13 2016 @ 12:29 PM
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a reply to: primespickle




Try to make it indestructible and put information on it saying where we are. Maybe someone out there will find one of them eventually.

Modern humans have destroyed the lives of every race of people we have intruded on.
Aliens would do the same to us.

It may be as simple as we want to immigrate a few thousand people to Earth to save our race.
Guess what would happen.



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