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Author Topic: What is warp drive?  (Read 1289 times)

Offline thedoc

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What is warp drive?
« on: 18/03/2014 05:30:01 »
daniel maguire  asked the Naked Scientists:
   
What is warp drive and is it possible?

thanks, Danny



What do you think?
« Last Edit: 18/03/2014 05:30:01 by _system »


 

Offline evan_au

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Re: What is warp drive?
« Reply #1 on: 18/03/2014 11:18:17 »
A warp drive is a hypothetical engine for a spaceship which could (in theory) travel faster than light.

Einstein's General Theory of Relativity has stood the test of time quite well, and it is based on the assumption that no material object can exceed the speed of light (or even reach the speed of light).

A warp drive would need a "trick" to remain compatible with the Theory of Relativity.

The hypothetical Alcubierre drive avoids the spacecraft accelerating to reach the speed of light by shrinking the vacuum of space in front of the spaceship, and expanding it behind the spaceship. This drive assumes several things which have never been observed, like negative mass.

So it's theoretically possible, but impossible with our current technology.
It's a brave person who bets against Albert Einstein - but who knows what might be possible in the future?
 

Offline jeffreyH

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Re: What is warp drive?
« Reply #2 on: 18/03/2014 18:52:00 »
It appears to be related to frame dragging where a volume of spacetime is dragged along with a massive object. In this case the spacetime is dragged from in front of the craft and pushed behind it. Much in the way a boat is rowed along a river. Where the water in the river is an analogue for spacetime. Water has been used to model gravitational effects.

http://www.technologyreview.com/view/421185/white-holes-and-kitchen-sinks/
 

Offline Pmb

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Re: What is warp drive?
« Reply #3 on: 20/03/2014 03:19:25 »
It appears to be related to frame dragging where a volume of spacetime is dragged along with a massive object. In this case the spacetime is dragged from in front of the craft and pushed behind it. Much in the way a boat is rowed along a river. Where the water in the river is an analogue for spacetime. Water has been used to model gravitational effects.

http://www.technologyreview.com/view/421185/white-holes-and-kitchen-sinks/
That's something totally different. Warp drive used to be mere science fiction - a way to travel faster than light. Now that fantasy might be a reality but it remains to be see. If negative mass exists then it may be possible. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warp_drive
 

Offline jeffreyH

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Re: What is warp drive?
« Reply #4 on: 21/03/2014 01:49:23 »
It appears to be related to frame dragging where a volume of spacetime is dragged along with a massive object. In this case the spacetime is dragged from in front of the craft and pushed behind it. Much in the way a boat is rowed along a river. Where the water in the river is an analogue for spacetime. Water has been used to model gravitational effects.

http://www.technologyreview.com/view/421185/white-holes-and-kitchen-sinks/
That's something totally different. Warp drive used to be mere science fiction - a way to travel faster than light. Now that fantasy might be a reality but it remains to be see. If negative mass exists then it may be possible. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warp_drive

I have to admit I am not up on this one so probably shouldn't have commented.
 

Offline jeffreyH

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Re: What is warp drive?
« Reply #5 on: 21/03/2014 01:57:34 »
Could this be linked to the vacuum catastrophy? Is there something about this discrepancy that could allow a warp drive?
 

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Re: What is warp drive?
« Reply #5 on: 21/03/2014 01:57:34 »

 

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