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Speed Of Ligh Impossible to Reach

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posted on Jan, 11 2003 @ 12:49 PM
Ok, Everyone knows that space is said to be a vaccum, but none the less there are still sub-atomic particles out there. So if you had a ship going the speed of light it would make everything going the speed of light stretched out into a mass of particles until it stopped, so as your traveling through space and you hit a proton, it would do quite substantial damage to your craft by knocking other atoms that make up your ship out of arrangement...?

posted on Jan, 11 2003 @ 01:38 PM
Well then I wonder how much these sub-atomic particles really effect light travelling through space, you'd think that you'd not be able to see light from say more than 100 million light years.

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posted on Jan, 11 2003 @ 02:39 PM

Originally posted by FreeMason
Well then I wonder how much these sub-atomic particles really effect light travelling through space

That's the idea, a lone particle could cause a chain reaction of knocking atoms out of arrangement traveling at those speeds...

posted on Jan, 12 2003 @ 12:02 AM
Actually, even though the idea seems to make sense, if you look at lab results, the explosion from particles or subatomic particles colliding is significant, but any one particle would be invisible. The number of particles a ship would have to encounter at near light speed would have to be tremendous in order to destroy the ship.

Another way to look at a solution for this is...
Someone is swinging a baseball bat at your head... what do you do?
Well, now you have several options. You disarm the attacker by removing the bat; you attack the attacker; you dodge the bat; you move in close to the bat to limit the amount of energy in the swing; you break the bat; you make the bat miss you; you make the bat go through you; you change the properties of the bat; you get out of range of the bat; you convince the attacker not to finish his swing.

Ok, not all of these options are very practical, but that doesn't mean they aren't possible in the realm of quantum mechanics, or relativity. There are several ways to deal with the problem, but some solutions are very difficult to achieve.

Applying this to the problem at hand...
You are a spaceship getting bombarded by particles... what do you do?
Whatever works.

We'll probably be travelling at the speed of light or faster by the end of the century. I hope it comes much, much sooner, but people are slow.

Just remember that everything you know will probably be wrong in 10 years.

posted on Jan, 12 2003 @ 12:07 AM
It doesn't really matter, because the speed of light is not so much a speed as it is a state of existance, a state that we simply can not obtain because while light is made up of massless particles, we however are not.

Think of Mass as an anchor to space
We just can't run that fast.

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posted on Jan, 12 2003 @ 12:41 AM
Well, now that you know what one of the problems is, find a way to solve it FreeMason

Well done.

A few words of caution.... don't believe with such certainty that you are absolutely correct. Just because you think of mass as an anchor, doesn't mean that some mass might not go the speed of light or faster... as some scientists theorize.

Einstein was very, very 'right'. But he couldn't solve every problem, which makes his theories mostly right. That still leaves room for correction. BTW, it was Einstein that postulated that we could not exceed light speed (I think). If small variables change, his entire notion could be proven false.

posted on Jul, 10 2003 @ 05:06 AM
The problem is that mass grows as you approach the speed of light, so at the speed of light you would have an infinite mass. Thats why particles which travel at the speed of light never have mass.

posted on Jul, 10 2003 @ 05:25 AM
The effect of sub-atomic particles on something travelling the speed of light is probably nothing like you are envisioning. There are a couple of threads concerning the nature of light and such that you might visit. The question becomes must an object become "light-like" in properties in order to obtain the speed of light.

Here is a real good discussion:

Science guy, what you are speaking of is in relation to Einstein's theory of relativity. I think this will probably be achieved more in the learnings of Quantum Mechanics and Particle Physics.

And don't ever say never...remember, just a few decades back it was believed that the sound barrier would never be exceeded. (and that there would never be a market for more than about 10 personal computers).

posted on Jul, 10 2003 @ 08:14 AM
I must harken back to the days before flight, no one thought that was possible either.

I believe that once terminal velocity has been reached and is constantly able to be recreated, we will develop some time of proton deflector to decrease hull damage.

Then again I would not want to be the first guy who tries it either, the speed of light would be murder on the hips (it adds weight)

posted on Jul, 10 2003 @ 11:36 AM
So....if there was a way to negate mass, it would be possible to travel as fast or faster than the speed of light.

Or...if there were some way to give your "ship" or whatever the properties of these massless particles you could go faster than the speed of light.

posted on Jul, 10 2003 @ 11:45 AM
"The problem is that mass grows as you approach the speed of light, so at the speed of light you would have an infinite mass. Thats why particles which travel at the speed of light never have mass."

Mass grows because of various frictions against it. These include either collisions against something (such as particles) or forces (like pressure). Since the vacuum of space is theoretically devoid of most pressures (other than faint background radiation and gravitational waves), the fact remains that a very large number of subatomic particles prevaid all of space. Because of this, and maybe the newer discoveries of dark matter and dark energy, travelling extremely fast (near or at the speed of light) causes an enormous amount of friction.

As I posted in another note, it is not a matter of living with the friction, but getting rid of it. I saw a mock-saucer design that used a particle field to create a negative pressure that both sucked the craft in a certain direction and pushed particles out of the way to greatly reduce any chances of friction. Secondly, you have warp power, which does not require you to go the speed of light, just a very small fraction of it. Bending space greatly reduces the total velocity required to reach a given point in a certain amount of time, so scientists remain open to the idea of warp drive.

Finally, I'd like to reintroduce relativity into the discussion. Because of relativity, we can not move the velocity of light in a given direction away from a given starting point. However, if one could figure out a way to reorient the craft to the relative alignment of another object, the negative aspects of relatively accerating away from an a particular object would be removed.

That might not make sense, but the truth is that we are speeding away form the center of the galaxy at a great portion of the speed of light, rotating, revolving around the sun, spinning in a solar system, bouncing and spinning around the galaxy, and that galaxy may be moving within a supercluster. Therefore, we are already moving at a tremendous speed with tremendous force. Once calculated together, we may be going well over the speed of light, as far as force and acceleration are concerned. However, since each factor has its own relative spacetime position (relativity of placement), we do not ever feel the effects... thus you can sit at your computer comfortably and not be moving at all (relatively speaking).

I think many of the problems can be solved, but getting over neutralizing mass and energy forces, as well as following the dreaded thermodynamics are the big challenges that will take time to conquer. In 200 or 300 years, a Geo Metro will cruise around lightspeed
. Ok, maybe 500 years, assuming no major global disasters.

posted on Jul, 10 2003 @ 11:58 AM
"So....if there was a way to negate mass, it would be possible to travel as fast or faster than the speed of light."

Well, if you negate mass, you are probably destroying it and turning it into energy, which, "yes," you would go light speed. Mass is a form of energy, one where energy is arranged in certain advanced patterns, so as to create objects with density. You can't remove density (that I know of) without removing the very idea of what makes mass "mass." The solution is probably to manipulate what is outside of the mass so that the density of the structure, "ship," will not have to encounter negative effects against the density. I've listed a few ways of how to approach this, but it will be a very long time before people get the balls, or risk the money, on serious endevours to get through the problems.

"Or...if there were some way to give your "ship" or whatever the properties of these massless particles you could go faster than the speed of light."

Lightwaves act as particle, but I perfer to think of them as complex EM (electromagnetic) waves. The masslessness (if that's a word) is related to the fact that the photon particles have no charge (neither + or -), nor are made up of other charges, such as a neutron is. Also, the exact makeup of a particle verse a pure energy wave is not known... so if you know for sure, you can go win the Nobel Science Award.

My guess is that the structure of the EM wave has the beginnings of what causes structures to gain mass and energy through further disruption of the spacetime fabric. How do I know this? I don't. It is just a guess. Again, a lot of this comes down to friction.

To increase light speed, the wavelength has to be altered. To go beyond light speed, you'd need to find a better way of transmitting information than what a lightwave does.

posted on Jul, 10 2003 @ 12:20 PM
But we have found, or think we have found evidence of particles that travel FASTER than the speed of light, correct? If so, doesn't that kind of scrap the theory that nothing can travel faster than the speed of light?

I wish someone would as you say "have the balls" to fund research into this. It seems like we're wasting so much time, and going far to slowly when it comes to space research. If attention had been paid to cutting edge theories and a few more risks had been taken, imagine where we could be by now. Instead, the most advanced projects NASA is working on are things like nuclear propulsion, something that could have been achieved decades ago.

posted on Jul, 10 2003 @ 12:34 PM
The faster than light particle is still theoretically, I believe. I forget the name of it, but it is a particle that does maybe ??? 30% ??? faster than the speed of light. Because of this, it is the "faster than light particle" that you speak of. I do not believe it has been found or detected, only theoretically possible as a result of another process... you'd have to read up on it (from real scientific sites) to understand it better.

As far as fear, it is running NASA to this day. With manned flights cancelled for quite some time, I'm beginning to think our space program is the biggest joke of the year. If those astronauts didn't know that they had a large chance of dying when they went up in that giant fuel tank, then they should not have signed on. Simple as that. The public needs to get over it. Risk is necessary in such a business... the public is not informed enough to speak on such matters. Risking life is all a part of the business, so remember that if you want to go into such a program as the space program or underwater research or nuclear research... anything along those lines.

I'm sorry to say, but the advancement of a species should not be put in jeparady just because a freak accident occured. The fact that it does is becoming all too common these days.

posted on Jul, 10 2003 @ 12:47 PM
You're absolutely right...we are far to concerned with risk. I can imagine what would happen if there were another accident. They would probably cancel the space program completely. Every time an airplane crashes we don't stop all flights do we? Back during the "golden age" of the space program there were accidents but we got over it and continued.

Maybe if they hadn't cancelled the funding for the new orbiter, they wouldn't have to worry about these crappy old space shuttles falling apart. Hell, what does the orbiter do anyway? Orbit. We sent men to the moon 30 years ago, but haven't done anything since. There's no progress. I don't think people care enough. They just don't realize the importance of space.

Heh, they will when an asteroid comes hurtling towards the planet...

posted on Jul, 10 2003 @ 02:06 PM
Well, there are many factors that come into play, but here is a website that was just published regarding many of your concerns.

It isn't good news.

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