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Reward is a feature that we hope will inspire experts to answer important questions and make their answers available to everyone. It allows a sponsor to signal that they think a question is particularly important by offering a financial prize for established arguments that contribute to the establishment or refutation of the topic. A prize winner can keep the money, apply it to reward other questions, or donate it to charity.

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TOPIC HISTORY

Will Interstellar Travel Within a Single Lifetime Ever Be Possible?



Statements

Statement Type Title Description Proposed Probability Author History Last Updated
STATEMENT Why not? The closest star is only 40 years away at a tenth of light speed.

Why not? The closest star is only 40 years away at a tenth of light speed.

A tenth of light speed might be possible.

Alpha Centuri is only 4 light years away.

At a tenth of light speed Alpha Centuri is only 40 years away.

PS Eric. Removing my post from your pristine comments with and to yourself won't work. I will just keep reposting. :) Sorry about that.

1.0 FTJSMbyEED (C) 2012 Angela Stahlfest-Moller Details 2016-09-28 22:27:34.0
CITATION Motl points out that GR reduces to Special Rel which bans FTL

http://motls.blogspot.com/2013/07/relativity-bans-faster-than-light-warp.html 

1.0 Eric Details 2016-09-28 22:27:34.0
STATEMENT interstellar travel within a lifetime will never be possible 1.0 Eric Details 2016-09-28 22:27:34.0
STATEMENT Interstellar travel within a lifetime will someday happen 1.0 Eric Details 2016-09-28 22:27:34.0
STATEMENT It takes too much energy to get to an appreciable fraction of the speed of light 1.0 Eric Details 2016-09-28 22:27:34.0
CITATION Physics Calculations About Propulsion

How much rocket fuel would be needed to accelerate a conventional space rocket to half lightspeed?

 campbelp2002

 Best Answer:  Using the space shuttle main engines to get a one kilogram space craft up to 50% the speed of light would take 3 followed by 14,476 zeroes kilograms of propellant. That is way, way more than the mass of the whole UNIVERSE! You calculate this with the rocket equation. You need the exhaust velocity of the engine. The space shuttle engines have an exhaust velocity of 4.5 kilometers per second. The speed of light is 300,000 kilometers per second, so half that is 150,000. The propellant needed to get a payload to that speed is the mass of the payload times e to the 150,000/4.5 power. That is e to the 33,333 power. "e" is the base of the natural logarithm, and is equal to about 2.7. So to get one kilogram up to 4.5 kilometers per second takes 2.7 kilograms of fuel, and to get up to twice that speed you need 2.7 * 2.7 = 15. That is more speed than you need to get to orbit, so the space shuttle needs less than 15 times its own weight in fuel to go to orbit. To get up to 33,333 times as fast, you need to multiply 2.7 times itself 33,333 times, and the number you get is more than the mass of the entire universe. This means it is absolutely, physically impossible to use conventional rockets to get any where near the speed of light.

https://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20070518065217AAKEurL 

1.0 Eric Details 2016-09-28 22:27:34.0
STATEMENT Not if we use a warp drive 1.0 Eric Details 2016-09-28 22:27:34.0
CITATION Alcubierre Drive Citation Alcubierre, Miguel (1994). "The warp drive: hyper-fast travel within general relativity". Classical and Quantum Gravity 11 (5): L73?L77. arXiv:gr-qc/0009013. Bibcode:1994CQGra..11L..73A. doi:10.1088/0264-9381/11/5/001. 1.0 Eric Details 2016-09-28 22:27:34.0
STATEMENT Special Relativity does not allow FTL 1.0 Eric Details 2016-09-28 22:27:34.0