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37 votes

Is there any way that real stars would move like they do in the classic Windows 3.x screensaver if traveling through space at extreme speed?

I do disagree with the other answers, not on the result, but on the reason. You don't need to go faster than the speed of light to pass through multiple stars in a few seconds. Putting aside the ...
lvella's user avatar
  • 471
32 votes
Accepted

Interstellar Travel Thought Experiment

Does this logic make sense? Has anyone thought of this before? Yes, it's been considered. In the literature it's known as the "incentive trap". There are a couple of academic papers on it, ...
Russell Borogove's user avatar
23 votes
Accepted

Overcoming the speed of light thanks to ion thrusters

The expression $v_e = \sqrt{\frac{2Vq}{m}}$ is a non-relativistic approximation. This is quite valid when the exhaust velocity is small compared to the speed of light, which is the case for ion ...
David Hammen's user avatar
15 votes

Have we done any research trying to reach the speed of light?

Not on macroscopic scale. The Special Relativity theory is fairly well understood and says it's impossible for any objects that possess rest mass, period. The closer you get to speed of light the more ...
SF.'s user avatar
  • 55k
10 votes

Could time illusion be used to send a spacecraft faster than the speed of light?

Could time illusion be used to send a spacecraft faster than the speed of light? Absolutely not. Could the time illusion be used to send a space [probe] slower than light but have it seem like it is ...
asdfex's user avatar
  • 15.1k
8 votes

Overcoming the speed of light thanks to ion thrusters

Matter cannot move faster than the speed of light in vacuum. Nothing you try to come up with is changing that. (If you do come up with a peer-reviewable proof that it's possible you're in for a Nobel ...
DarkDust's user avatar
  • 12.5k
7 votes

How much did we know about space in 1940?

Excellent question, with easy answers! Humanity first saw our planet from space in 1946 (in black & white), thanks to a camera strapped to a suborbital altitude test of the A-4/V-2 ballistic ...
Anton Hengst's user avatar
  • 10.7k
6 votes

Overcoming the speed of light thanks to ion thrusters

Your equation is non-relativistic, and hence only works for small numbers. What happens at relativistic speeds is that, from our point of view, an object will shrink in length, increase its mass, and ...
David Thornley's user avatar
6 votes

About non-FTL travel and realitivistic effect for a hard sci fi novel

The important thing to note here is that to say "it takes 8-9 years" doesn't make sense without specifying who it applies to. When relativistic effects start to apply, it's not the same in all ...
SE - stop firing the good guys's user avatar
5 votes

Could using magnetism principles aid us in achieve near speed of light travel

So you're proposing a railgun or a circular railgun which is basically nothing else that the ring shaped accelerators like we already have at CERN or Fermilab. Just instead of subatomic particles we'...
TrySCE2AUX's user avatar
  • 3,255
5 votes
Accepted

Perception @ light speed

MIT made a little demo game, called A Slower Speed of Light, which attempts to show what would happen as you reach the speed of light by slowing the speed of light in the game. Watch the Youtube ...
Rory Alsop's user avatar
  • 13.6k
4 votes

Is there any way that real stars would move like they do in the classic Windows 3.x screensaver if traveling through space at extreme speed?

It helps to suppose that you're flying your ship somewhere closer to a galactic nucleus than we are. Sure, the nearest star to us (after the Sun) is several light years away, but if you get within a ...
hobbs's user avatar
  • 947
4 votes

Perception @ light speed

Nothing with mass can move at the speed of light. A massless particle (such as a photon) moving at the speed of light experiences no duration (also known as proper time) at all. As an illustration of ...
Steve Linton's user avatar
  • 19.6k
4 votes
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During interstellar travel, does time dilation make the trip shorter?

We can't talk about travel at the speed of light, because the length contraction goes to zero for the travelers and their time dilation goes to infinity. It would take infinite energy to go that fast. ...
WaterMolecule's user avatar
4 votes

Is the universe already colonized or are the Drake equation coefficients a much stronger filter: what are the cosmology issues with this paper?

The first thing I notice is that the paper first handwaves away the difference between the size of the probe and the size of the replicator. It references the Freitas paper (which is itself pretty ...
Russell Borogove's user avatar
3 votes

Time when traveling around the speed of light

I think you've misunderstood something; there's no generally accepted model for light-speed-or-faster travel, and so there's no generally accepted model for the passage of time in such a mode. There ...
Russell Borogove's user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

How much anti-matter is needed for an anti-matter propelled rocket to reach $P$ % ($P\lt{100}$) of the speed of light (c)?

The section "How Much Fuel is Needed" of this page essentially answers your question $$M/m = \gamma (1 + v/c) - 1$$ Here $m$ is the mass of the rocket, $M$ the mass of the fuel (matter/...
Steve Linton's user avatar
  • 19.6k
2 votes

If the lights we receive from old galaxies are old, could we see ours if we were in those galaxies?

Yes. IF you were to travel faster than light, you would be able to witness your own departure after your arrival, among many other things.
Anton Hengst's user avatar
  • 10.7k
2 votes

Is there any way that real stars would move like they do in the classic Windows 3.x screensaver if traveling through space at extreme speed?

Yes, via a light-speed U-turn When traveling at speeds close to the speed of light, stars appear to conglomerate into a single blurb in front of a spacecraft (artistic example). When slowing down, ...
Please stop being evil's user avatar
2 votes
Accepted

Could Breakthrough Starshot proposed propulsion system be used in a regular size probe to accelerate it faster than any probe has been before?

It's not going to do much at all with a regular sized probe. There are two problems: 1) You can't effectively scale this up due to the incredible acceleration. The bigger it gets the tougher it ...
Loren Pechtel's user avatar
1 vote

Looking out the window of a subluminal spaceship, what would be the sight?

It depends on whether you are approaching or leaving that star. Light undergoes blue shift if the source of light is moving towards the observer (equivalently, if the observer is moving towards the ...
Michael Stachowsky's user avatar

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