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Who wants to talk about propulsion of a interstellar space ship? No one. Really people.
in Technology

By NopeNope 324 Pts
Nuclear power, Solar sails, antimatter, Black holes. Get ready to get confused or if no one wants to talk about it bored cause we are diving int to astrophysics where we talk about stuff we know nothing about. 
  1. So how wants to discus interstellar propulsion?

    5 votes
    1. No thanks
      20.00%
    2. O I do! pick me pick me
      80.00%



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  • Technically, this is a logical paradox, though minor. If I say "I don't want to talk about spaceships", I've just mentioned spaceships, and contradicted myself. But I won't speak of it in the future until this discussion gets more attention. Not really interested in rocket science.
    EmeryPearson
  • I used to like all that science fiction.
    Pseudoscience: noun; a collection of beliefs or practices mistakenly regarded as being based on scientific method.

    Scientific method: noun; a method of procedure that has characterized natural science since the 17th century, consisting in systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses.

    https://www.gofundme.com/mwmvf-is-the-earth-flat
  • NopeNope 324 Pts
    Well I tried. : )
  • NopeNope 324 Pts
    Rocket science! Does solar sails and propulsion throu black hole hoking radiation sound like rocket science. Does antimatter and nuclear fusion sound like rocket science. DOES COMBUSTION SOUND LIKE ROCKET SCIENCE! Will goof because that one should.
  • What about propulsion and or combustion in a vacuum? Impossible. Sci-fi.
    EmeryPearson
    Pseudoscience: noun; a collection of beliefs or practices mistakenly regarded as being based on scientific method.

    Scientific method: noun; a method of procedure that has characterized natural science since the 17th century, consisting in systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses.

    https://www.gofundme.com/mwmvf-is-the-earth-flat
  • Space doesn't exist
    ErfisflatEmeryPearsonBaconToes
    Retired DebateIslander, Former Earth Science Community Moderator, and ex-Flat Earther. 
  • NopeNope 324 Pts
    Solar sails use the solar winds or super and I am taking massive lasers to move. Combustion can happen with fuel and oxygen as long as you bring them both with you. Antimatter and matter are all that is needed for that kind of propulsion. Black holes are all you need for that propulsion. You don't need to be surrounded in air for any of the propulsion I mentioned. And space being a vacuum is debatable. It is not the case in many theory about the universe. : )
    EmeryPearson
  • NopeNope 324 Pts
    SilverishGoldNova Your claim is a hard one to prove. 
    EmeryPearson
  • AmpersandAmpersand 362 Pts
    edited October 2017
    @Erfisflat

    Rocket fuel is high oxygen or contains another oxidant: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rocket_propellant so it doesn't have to rely on oxygen being provided externally. There are also other forms of propulsion for orbital manoeuvres.

    I'm assuming that's what your issue with combustion is. No idea why you are against propulsion. If anything it's easier in space as you don't have to worry about slowing down.
    EmeryPearson
  • NopeNope 324 Pts
    My issue with combustion is, it out of the five forms of propulsion i mentioned, extremely not efficient.
    EmeryPearson
  • Well it's all relative. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Orion_(nuclear_propulsion) is actually super efficient in some ways but also a theoretical flying war crime on the other.
    EmeryPearson
  • NopeNope 324 Pts
    Ampersand As efficient as nuclear propulsion my be, even through it is closer to current technology, it is not as efficient as antimatter matter reactions which release like all the energy stored in the atom compared to nuclear propulsion less then 1%. Black hole are also more efficient. Combustion for Interstellar travel is just not realistic. 
  • "Rocket fuel is high oxygen or contains another oxidant: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rocket_propellant so it doesn't have to rely on oxygen being provided externally. There are also other forms of propulsion for orbital manoeuvres."

    Gun powder contains it's own oxidant, and experimentation shows that it doesn't combust in a vacuum. 



    "I'm assuming that's what your issue with combustion is. No idea why you are against propulsion. If anything it's easier in space as you don't have to worry about slowing down."

    Cars push off the road, boats push off of water, and planes push off the air. You can't push off of a vacuum. Anyone who applies basic logic will understand. 


    EmeryPearson
    Pseudoscience: noun; a collection of beliefs or practices mistakenly regarded as being based on scientific method.

    Scientific method: noun; a method of procedure that has characterized natural science since the 17th century, consisting in systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses.

    https://www.gofundme.com/mwmvf-is-the-earth-flat
  • NopeNope 324 Pts
    Erfisflat I think you don't understand. Newtons third law says for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Many of the mentioned I suggested shoot out energy. Energy goes one way and according to Newtons third law the space ship goes the other. Their is no need for for any thing ous. If anything air would cause friction that wold slow the ship down. First comparing a gun to a rocket does not prove much, and seconded Guns can shoot in space. https://gizmodo.com/can-you-shoot-a-gun-in-space-1681161226 or https://www.livescience.com/18588-shoot-gun-space.html or https://science.howstuffworks.com/science-vs-myth/what-if/what-if-shot-gun-in-space.htm
    EmeryPearson
  • NopeNope 324 Pts
    Erfisflat I think you don't understand. Newtons third law says for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Many of the mentioned I suggested shoot out energy. Energy goes one way and according to Newtons third law the space ship goes the other. Their is no need for for any thing ous. If anything air would cause friction that wold slow the ship down. First comparing gun powder to a rocket does not prove much, and seconded Guns can shoot in space. https://gizmodo.com/can-you-shoot-a-gun-in-space-1681161226 or https://www.livescience.com/18588-shoot-gun-space.html or https://science.howstuffworks.com/science-vs-myth/what-if/what-if-shot-gun-in-space.htm
    EmeryPearson
  • NopeNope 324 Pts
    Erfisflat I think you don't understand. Newtons third law says for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Many of the mentioned I suggested shoot out energy. Energy goes one way and according to Newtons third law the space ship goes the other. Their is no need for for any thing ous. If anything air would cause friction that wold slow the ship down. First comparing gun powder to a rocket does not prove much, and seconded Guns can shoot in space. https://gizmodo.com/can-you-shoot-a-gun-in-space-1681161226 or https://www.livescience.com/18588-shoot-gun-space.html or https://science.howstuffworks.com/science-vs-myth/what-if/what-if-shot-gun-in-space.htm
    EmeryPearson
  • NopeNope 324 Pts
    PowerPikachu21 Well what you say is true. You don't have to talk. In fact you probably can not talk to me. But you can type. I have not created a paradoxes. 
  • ErfisflatErfisflat 1333 Pts
    edited November 2017
    @Nope
    See, there's a big difference between saying what will happen hypothetically, and SHOWING that something can't happen. In an infinitely expanding vacuum, the energy would be lost immediately, expanding with the rest of the universe, and the rocket would remain stationary. Here's an engineer with the details, learn something.

    EmeryPearson
    Pseudoscience: noun; a collection of beliefs or practices mistakenly regarded as being based on scientific method.

    Scientific method: noun; a method of procedure that has characterized natural science since the 17th century, consisting in systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses.

    https://www.gofundme.com/mwmvf-is-the-earth-flat
  • Erfisflat My school computer won't let me watch the video. : (  I will try finding it on Ytube.
    stormyboi
  • One of my primary interests is space travel and astrophysics. While I don't agree with you on that Wormholes or Blackholes can be used as modes of travel, I am highly interested in spacecraft, and the physics that drive them.

    Reason I don't find FTL plausible: Any form of Faster Than Light Travel is time travel. Whether it be a wormhole or 'warp' drive, anything which exceeds the speed of light, may also travel in time, breaking Causality, a fundamental principle of the universe.
  • NopeNope 324 Pts
    EmeryPearson
    Black holes don't have to have you traveling faster then light. They can be used as a source of propulsion or energy. Hocking radiation can be absorbed and reused or reflected in the opposite direction you wan't to go. If you had a small rotating black hole you could surround it in in mirrors send beams of energy in and while a little bit of the energy will go in the black hole a large amount will accelerate do to a rotating black holes effects on the space around it bouncing of the mirrors then you cloud take the energy back and would have more energy then you began with. Just don't keep the energy trapped with the black holes to long or the mirror might shatter and all the powerful energy would be released.

    Warp drives don't exceed the the speed of light or more accurately the speed of causality (light travels at different speeds depending on the medium). They bend space. Going faster the causality for an object slower then causality is ridicules. : )
    EmeryPearson
  • EmeryPearsonEmeryPearson 120 Pts
    edited May 4
    @Nope

    Ah, thanks for the clarification on blackholes, I thought you were referring to FTL.

    Miguel Alcubierre: "But beware: in relativity, any method to travel faster than light can in principle be used to travel back in time (a time machine)."

    https://ccrg.rit.edu/files/FasterThanLight.pdf

    You can still create time paradoxes. Even with a single warp drive, by changing time references, you could still violate causality.    

    Detailed overveiw of the physics, and now light cones work: http://www.physicsmatt.com/blog/2016/8/25/why-ftl-implies-time-travel
  • FredsnephewFredsnephew 321 Pts
    Space doesn't exist

    Space is a reality.
  • FredsnephewFredsnephew 321 Pts
    Erfisflat said:
    What about propulsion and or combustion in a vacuum? Impossible. Sci-fi.

    Space is full of stuff.

    Therefore, space can not be a vacuum.
    EmeryPearson
  • @Fredsnephew is correct.

    There are modes of travel which would actually rely on space not being a perfect vacuum. Such as the Remjet concept.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bussard_ramjet
  • MayCaesarMayCaesar 214 Pts
    In theory, matter-antimatter engine is the most effective engine possible, as it is the only engine that can convert matter entirely into pure thermal and kinetic energy. You slap a proton against an anti-proton, they produce two gamma rays, and if you manage to direct those gamma rays exactly opposite to your desired direction of motion, then you will get the biggest acceleration theoretically possible. At least, according to the modern physics.

    As far as faster-than-light travel goes, there are many reasons for why it might not be possible. Wormholes could exist according to Einstein's equations, but even if they do, I do not believe they will in practice behave differently than the regular space around us. The explanation as to why would be bloated, but ask yourself the question: if there was a wormhole, say, 100 kilometers away from the Earth's surface, then what would be different in our observations? If you think hard enough, you might come to the same conclusion as me: nothing would be different, since humans are not able to consciously perceive wormholes and our brain projects everything into a regular Euclidian 3D space.

    EmeryPearson
  • EmeryPearsonEmeryPearson 120 Pts
    edited June 7
    And even with an Anti-Matter engine for thrust, a constant acceleration at 9.81 m/s would still be terribly inefficient compared to what you see in Sci-Fi. It would quickly take tons of fuel to maintain that rate of acceleration, quite depressing really when you consider the math. Even the Epstein Drive in The Expanse is wildly more efficient than a anti-matter engine, and that's considered fairly 'hard' sci-fi. 

    And to traverse wormholes, while theoretically plausible to exist, you would need negative mass to enter. Likewise to create the effects of a warp drive. 
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Negative_mass

    Basically all Sci-Fi concepts of FLT, or constant acceleration is nicked by physics, which is disappointing.

    Most practical mode of travel I can think of is using Centrifugal force for simulated gravity, with anti-matter for initial acceleration, with a ramjet and solar for added efficiency while traversing open space. But it would still take decades/centuries/millennia to get anywhere extrasolar.

    And of course if we are willing to give up the biological portions of ourselves, travel becomes much more practical.
  • NopeNope 324 Pts
    EmeryPearson Time is relative. The faster you travel the quicker time passes for you and the less time it takes.
    EmeryPearson
  • MayCaesarMayCaesar 214 Pts
    Ah Nope said, due to the time dilation, the actual time it takes to reach other galaxies, for example, is much shorter in the reference frame of the traveler than, say, in the reference frame of Earth inhabitants. Here is a good time calculator we can use to explore various scenarios:

    http://nathangeffen.webfactional.com/spacetravel/spacetravel.php

    For example, for travel to Andromeda (which is ~2.5 million light years away), assuming we accelerate at 9.8 m/s^2 for half the travel and decelerate at 9.8 m/s^2 for the other half, to make a stop at Andromeda - will take approximately 55 years in the travelers' reference frame. However, as we go further and further, the time required does not increase linearly, as when we travel close to the speed of light, the time dilation becomes extreme and seconds pass as we bypass multiple galaxies. Assuming we want to travel, say, 10 billions light years away by the same model (half-travel of accelerating at 9.8 m/s^2 and half-travel of decelerating), it will take us approximately 86 years.

    Now, these calculations do not take into account the expansion of the Universe, effectively increasing the required distance: the increase is insignificant when traveling to Andromeda, but might play a noticeable role when traveling 10 billions light years away. However, given the time dilation, it is safe to say that we can reach anywhere in the observable Universe within 100 years, if we manage to maintain this acceleration. Whether we can maintain it or not is an open question, but I do not see any obstacles in theory, other than engineering difficulties. And since our technology develops exponentially, it is very possible that such a travel will become realistic in 1000-2000 years. Anti-matter fuel is extremely, unbelievably, efficient, and 1 ton of it will likely be more than enough to allow a small private spaceship to operate for thousands years without having to resupply.

    If we take one step further and consider the genetic engineering and cybernetic advancements that will allow us to endure much harsher conditions, then travel across the Universe becomes fairly trivial. Assuming that we can eventually endure, say, 100 m/s^2 for long periods of time, the travel to Andromeda now takes merely 6 years; not very significant for advanced species with life expectancy of millions/billions years. There are likely millions alien civilizations across the Universe right now who routinely execute such trips.

    ---

    The only problem here is that the time dilation effectively cuts you off from the known world. If you travel to Andromeda and back within 12 years, on Earth 5 million years will have passed. Everyone you knew is so long gone, there is no historical record of them any more, and likely humanity itself has changed so much, you will be treated as a very primitive animal by it. So practically speaking, if you embark on the extra-galactic journey, it is a one-way journey, and you better not plan on coming back.


    EmeryPearson
  • EmeryPearsonEmeryPearson 120 Pts
    edited June 7
    @Nope @MayCaesar
    I am taking into account time dilation. Even with Anti-matter, constant 1G acceleration would eat too much fuel. You would end up requiring tons of anti-matter and matter for the reaction.

    You can run the math here: http://nathangeffen.webfactional.com/spacetravel/spacetravel.php

    For instance, say I have 1 ton ship. It would take me 34 tons of matter/anti-matter fuel to maintain 1G for 4 light years distance. And 3.4 years would still pass for the crew.

    You will always require multiple times more weight in fuel than your ship. Doesn't add up. If you sacrifice acceleration and time, it becomes more practical. But we would still need decades, or more likely, more than a century to cover the span of 4 light years.
  • MayCaesarMayCaesar 214 Pts
    @EmeryPearson

    Interesting. I have never considered the actual amount of fuel we would need, assuming that for the anti-matter engine it would be negligible - however, it does not seem to be the case for years-long travel.

    One problem with that calculator in this regard, however, is that it assumes that you are maintaining the acceleration throughout the whole travel. It does not have to be the case. You can reach, for example, the velocity of 0.999c and then stay at that velocity for the duration of the travel, until the very end, when it is time to start decelerating. Let us consider this scenario.

    From the calculator, we get that the fuel needed to accelerate from 0 to 0.9999c at 1g (and it does not seem to depend on the acceleration overall; it is the overall change of speed that matters) for a 1 ton ship with 1.0 fuel conversion rate is ~20,000 ton. Indeed, it is hardly negligible, but not impossible to generate in the future - in theory.

    Now, let us calculate how much time will pass if we travel at that speed from Earth to Andromeda (2,500,000 light years). Using the time dilation equation of t = 2,500,000*sqrt(1-v^2/c^2), we get the result of ~35,000 years. Hardly short, but with some kind of stasis to put the passenger(s) in, it could be plausible.

    ---

    The major problem here is that the acceleration becomes more and more expensive as we approach the speed of light, while the travel time does not decrease as fast. To accelerate at 1g, let alone more than that, consistently for the duration of the whole ship, we, indeed, will require billions ton of gas, which probably will never be feasible to contain in a light spaceship. 

    The situation changes dramatically (for the better), if we have some way to obtain fuel from the sources along the way, rather than having to fill the tank before the trip and to never resupply. I suppose, with a cleverly planned route, going through gas clouds and dwarf mini-galaxies along the way to resupply, we could indeed reduce the travel time to dozens years with a reasonably sized fuel tank - but it is not very clear how realistic this scenario is, as we only have a very rough idea of what the intergalactic space looks like and what its resource abundance is.

  • "From the calculator, we get that the fuel needed to accelerate from 0 to 0.9999c at 1g (and it does not seem to depend on the acceleration overall; it is the overall change of speed that matters) for a 1 ton ship with 1.0 fuel conversion rate is ~20,000 ton. Indeed, it is hardly negligible, but not impossible to generate in the future - in theory."

    This describes the same problem. Your fuel would weigh 20,000 times more than your ship. 

    "The situation changes dramatically (for the better), if we have some way to obtain fuel from the sources along the way, rather than having to fill the tank before the trip and to never resupply"

    After a lot of reading, the only practical way to take advantage of this is to:

    Use a Ramjet to collect stray hydrogen.
    Use solar to collect stray photons.
    Use beamed propulsion. 

    But you'd likely still need to combine it with an Anti-matter engine, and even then, you'd still need literal tons of fuel to get anywhere fast. Not sure how to get around it practically, but I guess that's why interstellar travel doesn't exist in the first place.


  • NopeNope 324 Pts
    edited June 7
    Solar sails require no fuel. Making a laser on a planet and using it to propel a space ship requires no need to bring fuel with you. Magnetic fields that gather surrounding materials seen as space is not a perfect vacuum. You don't need to bring fuel with you.
    edit: oops it looks like i posted when you posted. 
  • searsear 41 Pts
    External propulsion might seem to solve one problem, but creates others.
    In LEO it might be charming. But for interstellar space travel, complications are involved.

    Asteroids and other debris could interrupt the laser energy stream.
    Gosh forbid an Earth-killing asteroid happened by and split Earth in two, that would strand and doom the occupants / ship / remotely powered mission.

    Let's cut to the chase.
    One logically persuasive argument against the feasibility of such interstellar travel is: where are they?
    If such travel were practical, why wouldn't such traveler have stopped by? Left an e-mail address?
  • @Nope

    No matter what form of propulsion you come up with, you are still stuck with the light speed barrier. You can go anywhere you like, but it's going to take a looooooooong time to get there.
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