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# Warp Drive

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posted on Jul, 20 2006 @ 09:57 PM

Originally posted by CaptainIraq
1) Braking would be nearly impossible, since the ship would be cut off from our universe, so the signal could not be sent to it, and the ship would never stop.

You said yourself that the ship doesn't move. Stopping would be as simple as turning off the propulsion system.

2) The, in effect, "sonic boom" with infinite energy created by the opening of a new universe just might be a little problematic.

Who says that there would be "infinite energy?" You would need a vast amount, sure, but if the energy required were in fact infinite, then it would be almost impossible - and the only reason I say almost is to leave room for chance.

After reading through your post, to me it seems like you have your methods interstellar travel a bit skewed. A normal FTL drive would take time. Say, at LS it would take 4 years to get to a point 4 LY away, at 2 LS it would take 2 years, at 4 LS it would take 1 year, etc... Now, a warp drive the time between the starting and ending point is considerably less, if almost anything at all.

As you had stated, with a warp drive, the ship doesn't actually pass through normal space. Think of it as a wormhole from point a to point b. For example, take a piece of paper, then mark points on the paper that you will have as your starting and ending points. Now, chances are that if you were to go from point a to point b in normal space, you would have to move around something. Now, the way a warp drive works would be like folding a piece of paper so that the two points meet. You don't have to avoid any of that stuff, you just arrive there as space is warped around the craft to make the two points merge, which in turn makes the travel time very short due to the fact that it makes the distance almost negligible.

Originally posted by watch_the_rocks
And the existence of dark and anti matter is still just a theory even now, we're to scared to make it if you ask me. But I don't blame us; the stuff is so dangerous.

Actually, both have been proven to exist. We can create anti-matter in labs all around the world, just in very minuscule quantities. We know dark matter exists, as it's simply matter that we can't identify - meaning, we know it's there, we just don't know what it is or what it's doing.

Negative matter or energy just have theories behind them, and maybe that's what you were thinking of.

One thing that has always got me with this faster than light travel thing: no matter what happens, the ship is always moving through space relative to a fixed point. So what happens when it slams into a star?

I think I just answered that a couple paragraphs ago!

Originally posted by CaptainIraq
The navigation system onbaord would have to be extremely precise...

I agree that it would have to be precise, though for other reasons, which are not as complicated as you may think... As I already said, you really won't have to worry about all of that other gobblygook (yes, before anyone asks, that is a "technical term") of normal space. Why? Well, the ship never moves, so you won't have to worry about running into something at relativistic speeds, unless of course the object you hit is itself moving at relativistic speeds... Basically, all you'll have to worry about is the normal stuff we worry about already, mainly micrometeorites. Those can be ruled out by simply using shielding, both active and passive. Active being something like a plasma or deflector or ray or any-other-fancy-name-you-want-to-give-it shield, which I'm sure we'll be able to create as people already say we can and in the future we'll no doubt have better technology. Passive would be shields similar to what the Space Shuttle and other craft are already using, though probably beefed up (sorry for another technical term) a bit as technology advances.

Anyway, I digress... The navigation system could be easily done, even with todays meager technology. How? Well, we already have the system in place, mainly being the equitorial coordinate system. We have the RA and Dec of billions of objects, in our Solar System, Galaxy, and into the depths of intergalactic space mapped out very precisely already. More would need to be done, though, for this to be functional, but, again, we already have the framework in place. Basically, we take what we know about the motion of the star, planet, nebula, galaxy, whatever from its red shift and use that to figure out the location of the object at exactly that instant. That way you really don't have to worry about ending up inside a star or another form of celestial body.

Then again, maybe those are complicated and only making sense to me.

Originally posted by CaptainIraq
And hitting a star would depend on if there is a star in your path in that universe you are entering.
That brings up the main navigational issue: How can you find out what is in your path in that alternate universe without actually going there?

Well, again, the premise of the warp drive is that in the bubble of space that it creates for itself is its own universe, meaning nothing will exist inside of it except for what you put there. So you won't have to worry about hitting something in it, as whatever is inside it will also be warped with you to the next location. Also, as I explained already in this post, which you obviously have not read as I type this (unless you have somehow managed to time travel), you don't need to worry about that sort of a navigational issue.

Originally posted by psilogod
merely bending space, to me, seems like it would take a certain amount of time for the space to bend to your point (especially if it is light years away), and then when released, it would take time for it to unbend back to the original point...

That is actually a very good observation! I'll try and explain this to the best of my ability, but if you get lost or I make no sense at all, I'm sorry and just ask for me to clarify. So here goes...

The reason that the bending of space is instantaneous (or nearly so) is that as the craft creates its own universe to exist in, whichin turn separates it from the normal bounds of our own universe, therefore allowing it to happen so quickly.

Hmm... That was a lot more simple than I had anticipated, so I'm sure I'm leaving something out and/or not thinking about that one entirely. I'll probably end up coming back to this later and refining my explanation.

Originally posted by Mechanic 32
what happens to a craft travelling past the speed of light? A 'visual boom'??

Another excellent question, and, quite honestly, the best answer I can think of is that a craft traveling FTL would actually appear invsible to us. Why? It's traveling by faster than the light can be reflected off of for it to be seen. Of course, it may leave a trail of some form of radiation (if not Cherkenov (spelling?) then something else more powerful) behind it, but that's just speculation on my part.

Ah, I see Tom Bedlam put down some very informative posts about that. Great work!

posted on Jul, 20 2006 @ 10:05 PM
For fun, if your hypothetical FTL drive can stop you instantly, to an outside observer, you will just 'appear', and the Cerenkov trail will appear to pop into place around you, then travel backwards down your flight path into the distance.

posted on Jul, 20 2006 @ 10:13 PM
Not with a warp drive, as there would be no Cherkenov radiation. Nothing would be moving FTL, so none would be created.

posted on Jul, 20 2006 @ 10:20 PM
It depends on if you're using a drag angle to keep from dislocating.

If your decoupling angle goes all the way to 90 degrees, you're in your own pocket universe. Bye bye.

posted on Jul, 20 2006 @ 10:34 PM
I have heard of neither a drag angle nor a decoupling angle. I tried searching on Google, but really didn't find anything of use. Most of it related to Star Trek. Could you please elaborate/explain? Thanks!

posted on Jul, 20 2006 @ 11:25 PM

Now, the way a warp drive works would be like folding a piece of paper

No, that is how a wormhole works. A warp drive works by compressing space in front of the ship and expanding it behind the ship.

posted on Jul, 20 2006 @ 11:42 PM

Originally posted by cmdrkeenkid
I have heard of neither a drag angle nor a decoupling angle. I tried searching on Google, but really didn't find anything of use. Most of it related to Star Trek. Could you please elaborate/explain? Thanks!

Ok. Here's a bad analogy. Think of the Einsteinian universe as flatland. It's the tabletop in front of you. Your FTL craft is a penny lying on the table. In flatland, you can thump the penny with your finger and it will slide at some rate, but that rate is limited by the penny's interaction with the desktop.

Now, consider decoupling the penny from the desktop. As you rotate it up on edge, the projection of the penny in deskspace becomes smaller. The desktop interaction with the penny becomes smaller...it becomes decoupled from the deskspace. As the angle approaches 90 degrees, the pennyspace's connection to the deskspace approaches zero. The friction of the penny's projection in deskspace is related to the cosine of the decoupling angle.

The drag is related to the thickness of the penny, sort of. It's the minimum projection the penny has in deskspace at 90 degrees of decoupling. If an infinitely thin penny is stood on edge, it has no connection at all (well, one point), the penny can then roll across the desktop with very little friction.

posted on Jul, 21 2006 @ 08:24 AM
IM pretty sure there would be a sort of visual boom. even if something does reach teh speed of light it is still in this universe so light ill still hit it, obviusly in much smaller amounts but it will still be hit.

posted on Jul, 21 2006 @ 01:21 PM
I think a way to travel faster then light is to invent new technology to give us a better view of the universe. If we could see worm holes then it would make it much easier. I believe that worm holes (if real) would be like the rivers and oceans of the world today. Its much faster to send something by boat then to send across land I think.

posted on Jul, 21 2006 @ 07:46 PM
First off, i would like to say that after the big bang matter never traveled at speeds greater than light, rather the fabric of spacetime between matter was expanding, this same idea can be applied to universal expansion, distant galaxies are not moving away from us faster than light, but rather the spacetime between us expands. Anyway, if We accept general relativity, it says that any technique that could be used for faster than light travel could also be used for time travel. The problem with this is that it violated casuality(which is widely accepted) and give rise to a large number of paradoxes. General Relativity shows that speed of light travel is impossible, but that one can appear to move at the speed of light depending on the observer. General Relativity does allow for the bending of spacetime however. It is theorized that this is possible to do this by shrinking spacetime infront of you and ezpanding it behind you. According to Mitchell Pfenning the amount of energy this would take would supposedly be about 10 billion times all the energy in the universe. Even if this is not true, it would obviously still take enormous amounts of energy to do this. Where would we get this energy from, Dark Energy? We know absolutely nothing about dark energy, we have no idea how it behaves or what it exactly is, so how are we to know that we could even use this to create this energy. I would also like to say that NO particle has ever been shown to have negative mass, so i don't understand how you can say simple things like, "All that would be required would be negative mass and dark energy". Antimatter is suspected of having a positive mass so you can't use that. I have to leave but ill be back later to see what you have to say.

posted on Jul, 21 2006 @ 08:01 PM

According to Mitchell Pfenning the amount of energy this would take would supposedly be about 10 billion times all the energy in the universe.

I distrust those numbers as I've seen many people attempt to answer the question of "how much energy it will take" and they all seem to end up with different answers, and the newer the answer the power requirements seem to drop oddly enough. We won't know for sure until we can unify Gravity with Quantum Mechanics.

posted on Jul, 21 2006 @ 09:52 PM
This program seems odly similar to the one described in that article, but apparently nasa canceled it in 2002: www.grc.nasa.gov...

posted on Jul, 23 2006 @ 08:25 AM
I might sound really dumb here but how the hell an you calculate the energy required to do something when you havnt got all the variables. Also 10 billion times all the energy in the universe is relative to the size of the universe whihc we dont know.

posted on Jul, 26 2006 @ 09:26 PM

Originally posted by Shenroon
IM pretty sure there would be a sort of visual boom. even if something does reach teh speed of light it is still in this universe so light ill still hit it, obviusly in much smaller amounts but it will still be hit.

All you are doing is moving space, and light doesn't reflect off space.

Originally posted by Shenroon
I might sound really dumb here but how the hell an you calculate the energy required to do something when you havnt got all the variables. Also 10 billion times all the energy in the universe is relative to the size of the universe whihc we dont know.

I believe that's what theoretical physics are for.

posted on Jul, 28 2006 @ 05:34 AM

Originally posted by CaptainIraq

Originally posted by Shenroon
IM pretty sure there would be a sort of visual boom. even if something does reach teh speed of light it is still in this universe so light ill still hit it, obviusly in much smaller amounts but it will still be hit.

All you are doing is moving space, and light doesn't reflect off space.

Originally posted by Shenroon
I might sound really dumb here but how the hell an you calculate the energy required to do something when you havnt got all the variables. Also 10 billion times all the energy in the universe is relative to the size of the universe whihc we dont know.

I believe that's what theoretical physics are for.

First off if you move space or not your still present and solid which means light will reflect off you no mater what. It wont hit your ass but the rest of the space ship will hit tons of light. Your front will go straight into loads of light rays and the sides will be hit by light as well.

And by the sounds of it these theoredical physics as way wrong, if theres been several different answers you cant trust any of them if its purly theoretical.

posted on Jul, 29 2006 @ 04:30 AM
I admire the determination of many of you in your attempts to find answers to the problem at hand. Faster than light travel is an extremely difficult project to undertake. However; for all of the talk about "Wormholes", "Dark Energy" and the like, the probability of human kind achieving any kind or warp drive may be near impossible. There are several problems that must be addressed before liftoff. Some of them have already been touched upon , but we need to review them as individual problems to be overcome before any "whole" concept can be embraced.

1. Moving mass - The more you have then the more energy it takes to move it. If you also include human occupants to a ship, then the necessary support equipment must be included, thus increasing the mass load.
a) Anti-matter has the energy potential to move large interstellar ships, but it is difficult to obtain and control. Fermi labs has been creating it for 30 years and has way less than a gram. No other current known substance has the energy potential to get you up to speed, or send you very far due to its conversion inefficiency.
b) At the speed of light the nearest star system is 4 light years away. Even at the speed of light you also have to consider acceleration and braking. (Plus enough supplies, and fuel for the return trip). This extends the flight time considerably. The human body cannot withstand the g-forces of an sudden acceleration, or braking at light speeds. These two functions alone could take years.

OK suppose we say we have figured out how to get up to the speed of light and brake the ship to a complete stop. We now have to consider shielding.

1. As posted before there are two types of shielding . Active and passive.
a) Our hardest known substances are carbon based. Things such as diamonds, carbon fiber ect....
These substances are very heavy and increase the size and weight of any ship traveling at light speed. Their main drawback is while they may resist dust or radiations they will not stop a softball sized iron meteor from blowing a hole through any ship. In fact at light speed complete destruction of the ship is a high probability.
b) "What about active shielding", then you may ask. Ok.....If you are traveling at light speed then any other energy source is out of the question. It is like having a car with it's headlights on doing light speed. The headlights will not project beyond their origination point. Lasers won't work. Microwaves won't work. Nothing that we know of is faster than light speed so no known energy source will project beyond the ship. Unless the ship goes much slower than light speed thus increasing travel time ship size, fuel load ect.......

There is no known shielding to protect your ship.

The so called "Warp" drives increase the above factors by several degrees of magnitude.
1. How do you navigate going beyond light speed? The human eye or the fastest computer will not work at such hypothetical speeds.
2. How do you communicate? Even a laser communications device will lag at greater distances
3. Movement of the ships personnel? If the g-forces does not squash them then they still will not be able to move due to acceleration speeds? Maintenance, navigation or bodily function would be very, very difficult.

Wormholes? Forget them. You enter one you would be crushed like a tin can at the bottom of the ocean. You might use the gravitational pull of one to "sling shot" away but get to close and you get squashed. To far away and the speed increase is negligible.

I hate to discourage anyone or burst their bubble, but we humans are not going anywhere for a long time. If ever.

p.s. By bending space time you still have to move mass. If you can convert the mass to energy and then reconvert it back to mass at the destination point then you might get somewhere. Most likely right back where you started. You would also need a "converter" at your destination point.

Virtual travel may be our only chance.

posted on Jul, 30 2006 @ 12:47 AM

1. How do you navigate going beyond light speed? The human eye or the fastest computer will not work at such hypothetical speeds.

The Hop and Stop approach. Using high powered and extremely sensitive telescopes on-ship a zone directly in front of the ship for as far as can be managed will be cleared before warp is activated. Of course, powerfull computers will be needed to plot the trajectory of every object above the size of a grain of sand in this "Safe Zone." The Warp will only continue as long as they remian in this safe zone only coming out of Warp to plot a new course to take them to the second waypoint on their journey.

Another way to reduce risk of impact at Warp speed(which isn't actually FTL in the literal sense), would be to use the bubble to deflect objects and radiation around the ship.

2. How do you communicate? Even a laser communications device will lag at greater distances

Use the approach that Humans used before the telegraph was created. Make a class of Warp Ship designed specifically to courier information in the form of letters or data.

3. Movement of the ships personnel? If the g-forces does not squash them then they still will not be able to move due to acceleration speeds? Maintenance, navigation or bodily function would be very, very difficult.

G-Forces in a Warp drive only applies when Firing the Sub-Light engines. All the warp engines do is move space around the ship, inertia does not exist in such a propulsion method as the general rule of thumb, "For Every Action, there is an opposite and equal reaction," does not apply. When the bubble is created, it is hypothesized that firing the Sub-Light engines will increase the "Warp Factor" by some degree. Wether it's linear as has been theorized in RL or is Exponential proportional to the degree of thrust(1/5 c in normal space equal Warp 5 which is 4 magnitudes of order faster then warp one which is twice the Speed of c) isn't known, yet there is really nothing in the realm of physics to forbid the creation of such a propulsion technology.

Wormholes? Forget them. You enter one you would be crushed like a tin can at the bottom of the ocean. You might use the gravitational pull of one to "sling shot" away but get to close and you get squashed. To far away and the speed increase is negligible.

A wormholes isn't a black hole. One has been confirmed, while the other is still mostly in the realm of science fiction. If a wormhole does exist, then who's to say what types of properties it will have.
It's a bit arrogant to even assume we have even a fraction of all the answers...

"A True Skeptic holds all widely accepted truths with suspicion." I forgot who said that, but I live my life like that.

posted on Aug, 1 2006 @ 06:18 PM

Originally posted by RecDude
Wormholes? Forget them. You enter one you would be crushed like a tin can at the bottom of the ocean. You might use the gravitational pull of one to "sling shot" away but get to close and you get squashed. To far away and the speed increase is negligible.

im sorry but i just want to know where u got this information considering we dont even know if they exist. Crushed like a tin can? With the understanding we have of so called wormholes now if any matter was to enter a wormhole then it would be transported and not deformed or altered in any way (thats as far as theories stretch currently in the latest journals). The only major problem is if the destination has a slight change of physical nature then we could not survive (who knows what would happen if 'our' constants were different in another universe and we were to enter, i mean its like the aliens in war of the worlds dying of the common cold in our world as they had not encountered it before - simplifying the case a little bit here )

[edit on 1/8/06 by a_buck_fifty]

posted on Aug, 3 2006 @ 06:16 AM

Originally posted by RecDude
Wormholes? Forget them. You enter one you would be crushed like a tin can at the bottom of the ocean. You might use the gravitational pull of one to "sling shot" away but get to close and you get squashed. To far away and the speed increase is negligible.

Your thinking of balck holes, theyre collapsed stars that have been compressed into a singularity leading to them having emmense gravity. They are fact.
Worm hoels on the other hand are purely theoredical so there isnt much to say about them is there.

posted on Aug, 3 2006 @ 11:16 AM
No, he's right, some wormholes have a spectacularly high gravity field across the entry and exit ports.

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