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Author Topic: Warp drive more feasible than first thought  (Read 15851 times)

naufrago

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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #60 on: September 24, 2012, 02:39:13 PM »

negative mass.

Does that not apply to Dark Matter?

Kind of the opposite, actually. Dark matter is supposedly what makes up most of the mass of the universe. Things with negative mass-energy are theorized to be created in minute amounts in some quantum thingamabob. We don't have any way of producing it, which is kinda the whole lynchpin of creating a warp drive.

Also, it will most likely require tachyonic matter (matter that already travels faster than light) or require further understanding of quantum gravity. Non-trivial tasks, to be sure.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2012, 02:46:18 PM by naufrago »
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Upgradecap

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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #61 on: September 24, 2012, 02:55:56 PM »

But what about dark energy or something like that? IIRC, the universe consists to a very large degree of Dark Energy.
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naufrago

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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #62 on: September 24, 2012, 03:01:06 PM »

But what about dark energy or something like that? IIRC, the universe consists to a very large degree of Dark Energy.

From Wikipedia: "In physical cosmology and astronomy, dark energy is a hypothetical form of energy that permeates all of space and tends to accelerate the expansion of the universe. Dark energy is the most accepted hypothesis to explain observations since the 1990s that indicate that the universe is expanding at an accelerating rate. In the standard model of cosmology, dark energy currently accounts for 73% of the total mass–energy of the universe."

In other words, dark energy has positive mass-energy.

EDIT: And here's some info from wikipedia on dark matter: "In astronomy and cosmology, dark matter is a type of matter hypothesized to account for a large part of the total mass in the universe. Dark matter cannot be seen directly with telescopes; evidently it neither emits nor absorbs light or other electromagnetic radiation at any significant level. Instead, its existence and properties are inferred from its gravitational effects on visible matter, radiation, and the large scale structure of the universe. Dark matter is estimated to constitute 84% of the matter in the universe and 23% of the mass-energy."

In other words, it also has positive mass-energy.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2012, 03:03:14 PM by naufrago »
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Upgradecap

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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #63 on: September 24, 2012, 03:03:25 PM »

But what kind of material would have negative mass? Nothing in this universe, that's for sure. Or maybe not, since we haven't even begun scratching the surface of all secrets, but still. I'd find an more acceptable theory to use that could be counted as legit:

Wormholes.
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naufrago

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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #64 on: September 24, 2012, 03:11:29 PM »

But what kind of material would have negative mass? Nothing in this universe, that's for sure. Or maybe not, since we haven't even begun scratching the surface of all secrets, but still. I'd find an more acceptable theory to use that could be counted as legit:

Wormholes.

Wormholes and the alcubierre drive operate on extremely similar principles. In fact, they both require negative mass-energy if we want to do anything with them.

From the wiki article on the Alcubierre drive: "It is true that certain experimentally verified quantum phenomena, such as the Casimir effect, when described in the context of the quantum field theories, lead to stress–energy tensors that also violate the energy conditions, such as negative mass-energy, and thus one can hope that Alcubierre-type warp drives can be physically realized by clever engineering taking advantage of such quantum effects."

And the part that you should really read from that wiki article: "Thus, as the energy density is negative, one needs exotic matter to travel faster than the speed of light.[1] The existence of exotic matter is not theoretically ruled out; however, generating enough exotic matter and sustaining it to perform feats such as faster-than-light travel (and also to keep open the 'throat' of a wormhole) is thought to be impractical. Low has argued that within the context of general relativity, it is impossible to construct a warp drive in the absence of exotic matter.[3] It is generally believed that a consistent theory of quantum gravity will resolve such issues once and for all."

EDIT: Also, I was slightly wrong about not being able to produce negative mass-energy. The Casimir effect can be used to create a "locally mass-negative region of space-time," but we don't have any way of harnessing that. That being said, the Casimir effect also has some potential uses outside of warp drive stuff, so... yeah, just thought that was interesting.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2012, 03:25:44 PM by naufrago »
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The Soldier

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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #65 on: September 24, 2012, 04:33:38 PM »

You are all now under survailance by the CIA.
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Archduke Astro

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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #66 on: September 24, 2012, 05:46:22 PM »

You are all now under survailance by the CIA.

Regarding surveillance: the CIA is very powerful indeed, but this site's moderation team is one heck of a lot closer to this subforum. ;)

Seriously, though -- interesting discussion, folks. Kindly continue, please, but without more of the warfare off-topic detour.
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Archduke Astro

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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #67 on: September 24, 2012, 06:14:16 PM »

"...one can hope that Alcubierre-type warp drives can be physically realized by clever engineering taking advantage of such quantum effects."

Naufrago found a really interesting feature to quote from. The excerpt above is always the part in such blue-sky dream schemes which makes me sigh with dismay: the required, unprecedented engineering / materials science breakthrough that everything else eventually relies upon. One may as well substitute the above-quoted phrase with something akin to "---and then a miracle happens". :-\

I want this to succeed just as much as you guys do, but since the 1970s I have read optimistic blurbs such as multiple excited rumors, premature news reports, and articles in OMNI magazine (back when OMNI was really awesome) promising us the stars "real soon now, just as soon as we can get a million tons of unobtainium to harness these energies." Hence my jaded tone.

Oh, and somebody earlier in this thread mentioned wormholes as one possibility for FTL travel. Alas, that appears to be unlikely, if Wikipedia is to be believed. I quote:

"The Einstein–Rosen bridge was discovered by Albert Einstein and his colleague Nathan Rosen, who first published the result in 1935. However, in 1962 John A. Wheeler and Robert W. Fuller published a paper showing that this type of wormhole is unstable if it connects two parts of the same universe, and that it will pinch off too quickly for light (or any particle moving slower than light) that falls in from one exterior region to make it to the other exterior region.

The motion through a Schwarzschild wormhole connecting two universes is possible in only one direction."

What a bitter irony, to safely use this method of FTL travel at all, you will already require some other reliable method of FTL travel. Man, it makes one's head hurt to chase the logic bunnies like this. ::)

The thought of us being marooned on this warm rock until a big enough asteroid crosses our orbit at the wrong time just chills my spirit. If we cannot find a realistic means to spread self-sustaining colonies of H. sapiens throughout the stars, we're likely going to perish right where we began. I greatly doubt that our shared distant future is going to even remotely resemble Star Trek, but even a comparatively inefficient, under-performing method of travel at very low multiples of c would change everything. Everything.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2012, 06:16:44 PM by Archduke Astro »
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Rowanas

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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #68 on: September 25, 2012, 02:05:59 AM »

What we clearly need is to send off vast Generation Ships, housing millions of people in vast, sustainable arcologies. In every piece of fiction, we always send off the Generation Ships and -then- discover FTL travel to get there before they do, so clearly we're not going to get FTL as long as our universe is free of Generation Ships.
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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #69 on: September 25, 2012, 02:26:47 AM »

Regarding Archduke:


Well, i can't remember the article that i got this from, but theoretically, it should be able to keep a wormhole open for a long enough time to send a drone through it. The signal from the done would probably never reach us, considering that wormholes lead to all kinds of different sectors in the universe. So, i think that, even if we did get some unknown material to keep a wormhole open, i doubt we could ever use it, as they are far too random.
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Gothars

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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #70 on: September 25, 2012, 04:54:51 AM »


"The Einstein–Rosen bridge was discovered by Albert Einstein and his colleague Nathan Rosen, who first published the result in 1935. However, in 1962 John A. Wheeler and Robert W. Fuller published a paper showing that this type of wormhole is unstable if it connects two parts of the same universe, and that it will pinch off too quickly for light (or any particle moving slower than light) that falls in from one exterior region to make it to the other exterior region.

The motion through a Schwarzschild wormhole connecting two universes is possible in only one direction."


If we should discover a stable, suitable Einstein–Rosen bridge that leads to another universe, who is to say it would be worse there than some unknown place in our own? We just need more habitable space, it doesn't matter where that space is. I read a short story (Asimov I think) a few weeks ago about a future in which long distance space travel was found out to be impossible. Instead mankind utilized dimensional portals and settled on million different versions of alternate universe earths. If we discover a way to artificially generate those bridges before we figure out FTL it might really be a good option.




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Upgradecap

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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #71 on: September 25, 2012, 05:34:19 AM »

Speaking of which, that kinda me of the combine, which also never used any spaceships, but instead utilized some special tech to user instant-travel portals to other planets and dimensions.
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LordHerpDerpington

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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #72 on: September 25, 2012, 08:24:55 AM »

@gothars - The only problem is that most universes would have completely different reality structures, so nothing from our universe could exist there. Nothing.
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It sounds as reasonable as the rest of quantum mechanics, so why not? 

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Gothars

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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #73 on: September 25, 2012, 08:42:22 AM »

@gothars - The only problem is that most universes would have completely different reality structures, so nothing from our universe could exist there. Nothing.

According to the multiverse theory there is possibly a infinite number of universes, necessarily containing a infinite number of universes that are very similar to our own. So, if constructing a bridge, we would had to have a way of measuring the divergence. Then we could make sure to access a habitable universe.
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LordHerpDerpington

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Re: Warp drive more feasible than first thought
« Reply #74 on: September 25, 2012, 09:52:20 AM »

I know about that, I just summed up my post quickly because Iwasrushed for time and typing on a really small tablet.

Yes, it would be possible to find one of the habitable universes, but the chances of that are infinitesimally small, given the fact that, there are more universes without our reality structure than with. Even if we did find one, there could be very big problems - The primary gas could be cyanide gas, or chlorine. Non-Euclidean geometry could be in effect. If we're really unlucky, we could find Cthulu.
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It sounds as reasonable as the rest of quantum mechanics, so why not? 

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