Comments

  1. Rafael says

    This is fascinating. Alcurribe drives holds so much promise. I wonder if it could be used to collide protons at speeds higher than the speed of light.

  2. Rafael says

    This is fascinating. Alcurribe drives holds so much promise. I wonder if it could be used to collide protons at speeds higher than the speed of light.

  3. Bill says

    @Rafael : no, protons won’t collide at speeds higher than the speed of light. Locally, all massive objects move slower than the speed of light.

    There is also no “drive” – what exists instead is a solution to the general-relativity field equations that showed that a ‘warp drive’ would be possible if you could create a region of space with a negative energy density. The original paper showed there were such solutions – but the energy needed to run the thing was way too large to be practical – you’d have to tow a star along 0r do something equivalent to have a power source up to the task. The work at NASA showed that with a variant of the original idea, you could reduce the power requirements to something that is not way too high to be practical.

    Right now they are trying a lab experiment to see if they can generate a slight blue shift in a light beam, measuring it using interferometers. The expected shift is very small – so small as to be very hard to detect.

  4. Randy says

    “NASA Unveils Incredible Star Trek-style Warp Drive Space Ship”

    No.

    NASA released an artist’s rendering, otherwise known as “vaporware”.

    Lies like these are what give creationists their power.

    Thanks a lot, NASA.

  5. tominsf says

    Grow up, people – science fiction is FICTION. This is the circuses part of bread and circuses – your government wasting your taxes to keep you dumb, happy, and ignorant.

    The speed of light is an absolute speed limit in the universe, both for communications and objects; that’s just a fact of life. And it means that we will never, never be exchanging billets doux or boxes of chocolates with little green men. Even if those little green men exist (likely enough, I suppose, given the incomprehensibly huge size of the universe) the odds are overwhelming that they are too far away, way way way too far away, to have a conversation with.

    So yeah, Randy, I’m in your camp. NASA is a necessity (possibly mostly for military reasons, but still a necessity); they shouldn’t have to inflict this pablum on the public to make sure they have funding. On the other hand, they shouldn’t be wasting our money like this.

  6. Raybob says

    Everything physical begins as fiction in someone’s head.

    One example: Arthur C. Clark, scientist AND science fiction writer, was one of a handful of people who described geostationary satellites before we even had artificial satellites AT ALL.

    All *ideas* are fiction. Until they get built.

    Human flight was pure fiction until the Wright brothers did it.

  7. crispy says

    Randy and Tom are right. This is nothing but a fantasy. Just like all those powerful handheld devices that Star Trek imagined everyone would be carrying around.

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