Interstellar and intergalactic travel

Discussion in 'Astronomy, Exobiology, & Cosmology' started by Norsefire, Jan 4, 2008.

  1. Norsefire Salam Shalom Salom Registered Senior Member

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    I grow ever more impatient everytime I hear of voyages being launched or to be launched only at the moon or mars or pluto!

    Why don't we launch interstellar travels? Certainly the Orion propulsion system can get us to Alpha Centuari in under a century!

    We have the capability!


    And then there is an issue, though, communication. I've always wondered, we can't send probes to faraway stars because it would take ages for their information to come back to us. How can we communicate with each other when we are at such distances?
     
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  3. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    Alpha Centauri is the closest star system to our Solar System at 4.37 light-years distant (about 41.5 trillion km, 25.8 trillion miles or 277,600 AU). Proxima Centauri, usually regarded as part of the system, is the closest star at 4.22 light-years distant.

    WIKI

    4.37 light years would mean that a rocket that left Earth traveling at todays speeds which is just over 45,000 MPH would take over 1000 years to get there! Light travels at 183,000 miles per second and we have only propulsion for miles per hour. That is why we don't explore other than our own solar system. Until humans can get better speed for their spacecraft they are only going to be able to stay around this area of space for a very long time.
     
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  5. orcot Valued Senior Member

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    you mean project orion witch would carry +500 nuclair bombs and in it smallest form weight 300 tons (the ISS weights 232 ton).
    The probe could possible be builled but would require in space assembly and would take abouth 10 years to construct.
    The probe itself would probably be verry small and therefore primitive and can only make a high speed fly by. Hence you only get visual information.
    Because it can be build with modern techniques there wouldn't be any real scientific gain except perhaps promoting the hopelesly expansive in space building.
    And data would take around a 100 years to get to earth.
    On the other hand space telescopes are developing so fast then you can expect similar results from them then can be recieved by such a fast flyby. In a matter of decades. I doubt then the space telescopes in a 100 years from now could see less then a lightweight power starved probe build with current techniques who would stay at least a 100 000 km from any celestial body with only a observation period of a couple of months/weeks. That by the way will be a 100 years old and had been bonbarded with space radiation/atoms for a 100 years
     
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  7. spidergoat Valued Senior Member

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    Interstellar travels? We are so backwards as a culture, we can't even deal with a guy in a dress.
     
  8. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    Orion doesn't get the speed up very much and it uses atomic explosions to drive it. What is going to prevent the ship itself from being blown up since it is within a few hundred feet of a 10 megaon nuclear explosion? It really is a very odd thing to use something that will blow your craft up to try and propell it isn't it? :shrug:
     
  9. superluminal . Registered Senior Member

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    It's got a big ass pusher plate with some ablative (I think) layering.
     
  10. superluminal . Registered Senior Member

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    Trans-verst-ite. Amazing new element with incredible propulsion applications, and fashion sense...
     
  11. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    A big ass pusher plate! Now what does that mean? Put anything within a 10 megaton nuclear device and see what the results are, SHAZZZM...Nothing left! I really don't think that is a very smart way to fly do you? Would you get aboard that thing?
     
  12. superluminal . Registered Senior Member

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  13. Dinosaur Rational Skeptic Valued Senior Member

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    The Orion drive using nuclear explosions to produce thrust seems like science fiction, not science.

    In the absence of some far out technology (not yet known), a star ship relies on conservation of momentum to obtain thrust. The ship sends reaction mass in the direction opposite to the direction of the destination. Consider 1000kg of payload and a 100kg reaction mass, both of which are not moving toward or away from the destination (Total momentum is zero).
    • Send the reaction mass away from the destination at 1000 km per second: Star ship velocity is 100km per second.

    • Send the reaction mass backwards at 100,000km per second (about 1/3 velocity of light): Star ship velocity is 10,000km per second.
    StarshipMass*StarshipVelocity = ReactionMass*ReactionVelocity

    If the star ship is moving, the above equation indicates the increase in velocity due to reaction mass propelled backwards. Use nuclear explosions or coolies throwing rocks: You need a huge amount of reaction mass sent backwards slowly or less mass sent backwards very fast.

    No matter how you accelrate the reaction mass, an enormous amount is required for a trip to a nearby star, unless you are willing to take a long time to get there. Perhaps a generation ship is the only possibility, allowing the descendants of the original crew to complete the journey.

    Perhaps it might be possible to get out of the solar system in the direction of the center of the galaxy and rely on the gravitational pull of the galactic core to speed up a star ship. I suspect that you might not want to go toward galactic center: It might be a one way trip. After building velocity toward galactic center, perhaps you could use a gravitational whip effect to return to the solar system or take a trip elsewhere.
     
  14. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    Where's the food, water and medical supplies? What about parts that are needed to fix and repair the ship? So many questions and so few real answers.:shrug:
     
  15. kmguru Staff Member

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    You mean FTL communication? Like Tachyon Communication in Sci-Fi? We do not know how to even theorize...

    Here are some speculation but that borders on psedoscience...

    1. Find a way to communicate via another dimension. The speculation is that the other dimensions are very small like a few millimeters...find a way through it

    2. Use Hyperspace - whatever that is

    3. Using quantum entanglement, but then one may have to send the other half particles first to the destination before using it.

    The solution may come from quantum mechanics....
     
  16. kaneda Actual Cynic Registered Senior Member

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    Short of an unexpected major advance involving presently unknown theories, we are not going to develop star travel this century. The distances are unbelievably huge and we would have to have a definite target to reach with an inhabitable planet, which may be 10 light years away, or 110 light years away. It is not something that can be hurried.

    Marvel Comics did a story in the late sixties about a man who did a thousand year voyage to the stars. Not long after he left, a new peopulsion system was discovered and when he finally reached his destination, he found Earth people there waiting for him on a planet they had reached several centuries ago.
     
  17. kaneda Actual Cynic Registered Senior Member

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    kmguru. Other dimensions like hyperspace (and tachyons) are all just ideas at present. Quantum Entaglement is a memory trick which works on atomic particles so no use for anything bigger.
     
  18. kmguru Staff Member

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    Well, we need to find what are the ideas that does not violate established phusical laws. Some of them may have practical applications. Normally I dream my computer system solutions. But one time, I dreamed that the empty space is not empty. It has string like rivers of energy that when seen through the sensors look like blue-green thread like spagetti. Our ship uses that path to go from one point to the other at half the speed of light. The ship is coated with some material that changes its properties when imersed in those energy streams. It may have something to do with dark energy/matter.

    Of course it is a dream but my dreams always give clues to a solution I am looking for, such as dense recording using Violet lasers on polymer crystals using phase encoding.
     
  19. orcot Valued Senior Member

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    There is a other thread in chemistry
    http://www.sciforums.com/showthread.php?t=75670&page=4
    where they discuss absolute 0kelvin and Bose–Einstein condensate.
    Quantum effects can aparently be upscaled

    Further I do believe star travel is possible with today's or near todays technology if you do not mind that it will only involve a stellar flyby and take near a 100 years.

    Like kaneda said with it's marvel story they fastest way to the stars probably involves staying yust here for now.
     
  20. Vega Banned Banned

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    yeah we will work on that as soon as we cleanup all the islamists scum bags from the earth!
     
  21. Gustav Banned Banned

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    oh and double oh
    what theories are floating around?
     
  22. Gustav Banned Banned

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    if this sci subforum does not produce, if its output is inferior to the pseudoscience subf, i propose deletion

    /slam for slam sake
     
  23. orcot Valued Senior Member

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    I suggest you lower your expectation, the change someone here will come up with a better realistic alternative to project orion are very slim. Besides Orion is one of the few realistic rockets that uses nuclair propulsion, something that has a bid of a taboe on it for some silly reason
     

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