This past week there were three diaries about the possibilities of warp drives for spacecraft. The diaries were each informative and worthy reads. In order from most recent...

The diaries discussed the concepts of powering a spacecraft using the distortion of space-time in front and back of the craft. Besides the technical aspects of the theoretical drive mechanisms, I wondered how much the kos community knew about warp speed and how it is calculated. I won't go into detail about the physics. It is hypothetical. Instead, I refer you to the concept in Star Trek.

Warp drive is a hypothetical faster-than-light (FTL) propulsion system in the setting of many science fiction works, most notably Star Trek. A spacecraft equipped with a warp drive may travel at apparent speeds greater than that of light by many orders of magnitude, while circumventing the relativistic problem of time dilation. In contrast to many other fictional FTL technologies, such as a "jump drive" or the Infinite Improbability Drive, the warp drive does not permit instantaneous travel between two points

`If you are interested, travel through the space-time continuom to the universe below.`

## Hypothetically Speaking...

First, I must offer this disclaimer. I am not a Trekkie. Although, I do live 12 miles from the future boyhood home of James T. Kirk in Riverside, IA. What I offer here is strictly from internet sources. So, it is guaranteed accurate and correct.

According to the Star Trek Technical Manual, a warp factor is a simple mathematical calculation. Your speed ν is a factor of the speed of light c. The factor is ω called warp factor. The value is cubed. Warp 1 is 1x1x1xc. Speed v = c. For Warp 2 you get 2x2x2xc or 8c, 8 times the speed of light. FYI...In the 23rd century, warp factors of 10 and higher were known as generally unsafe velocities.

A bit of algebra allows rearrangement of the equation for a calculation of ω.

So, that's it. Warp factor is nothing special. All you need to know is your speed relative to the speed of light. Divide and take the cube root. Voila...ω. If you are really interested in more...

## In the Real World...

NASA reported very recently that the Dawn spacecraft left the asteroid Vesta on the next phase of the mission to take it to the largest asteroid Ceres in February 2015. One thing which makes Dawn unique is its rocket propulsion engine. Dawn uses an Ion Engine, not a conventional combustion engine.

Dawn was placed into Earth orbit in September 2007. Conventional rockets placed it in Earth orbit with a speed relative to the surface of about 7,800 m/s. For those not familiar with the metric system, that is nearly 5 miles/sec. Dawn then needed to increase its speed to 11,000 m/s in order to move away from Earth and proceed on an interplanetary journey past Mars and then to Vesta. It used its ion engines for thrust. The graphic below shows in blue when the engines are thrusting. Red is coasting.

What about Dawn's warp factor? That's easy to show. It reached a speed of 11,000 m/s compared to light speed of 300,000,000 m/s. So...

Not such a big deal, is it? Why use an ion engine for this spacecraft? What is the advantage?

## Ion Propulsion Engines

Ion engines are about ten (10) times more efficient than conventionally fueled engines. This NASA graphic illustrates it. Dawn has a low thrust value of 90 milli-Newtons. This is comparable to the force exerted by a single sheet of paper resting on the palm of a hand. It can exert this thrust for very long periods of time. As a result, it uses much less fuel to achieve the same change in speed as a chemical rocket. Chemical rockets fire for brief times, but consume large amounts of fuel.

The key to this difference in efficiency has to do with the speed of the escaping gases at the engine nozzle. Chemical rocket exhaust speed is around 4,000 m/s. Ions escape from the nozzle at speeds approaching 40,000 m/s. This can be illustrated by the following analogy. Stand on a low friction skate board. Aim a low powered repeating BB gun horizontally so you will roll away from the direction of the fired BBs. Fire off a few seconds of BBs. You won't go backward very fast. Replace the BB gun with one that weighs the same but fires high speed BBs. The faster the speed of the exhausted BBs, the faster you will recoil the opposite direction.

Ion engines deliver much faster exhaust speeds, and can fire for prolonged times. They deliver changes in speed much greater per kg of fuel than conventional chemical rocket engines. This is called Specific Impulse. For more details about specific impulse, follow this link.

Historically, ion engines have been developed over the last 50-60 years. The principle behind the ion engine is akin to removing socks out of the clothes dryer on a dry day. They repel each other because they are electrostatically charged. Like charges repel. Ion engines charge a fluid so its atoms can be expelled in one direction out the nozzle and drive the spacecraft in the other direction. Dawn's ion engine uses xenon gas that is more than 4 times heavier than air.

When the ion engine is running, electrons are emitted from a hollow tube called a cathode. These electrons enter a magnet-ringed chamber, where they strike the xenon atoms. The impact of an electron on a xenon atom knocks away one of xenon's 54 electrons. This results in a xenon atom with a positive charge, or what is known as an ion.

At the rear of the chamber, a pair of metal grids is charged positively and negatively, respectively. The force of this electric charge exerts a strong electrostatic pull on the xenon ions. The xenon ions shoot out the back of the engine at a speed of 100,000 km/h (60,000 mph). At full throttle, the ion engine will consume 2,500 watts of electrical power, and put out 1/50th of a pound of thrust. That's far less than the thrust of even small chemical rockets. But an ion engine can run for months or even years, and it's up to 10 times more efficient. In June 1996, a prototype engine built by NASA/Lewis began a long-duration test in a vacuum chamber at JPL simulating conditions of outer space. The test concluded in September 1997 after the engine successfully logged more than 8,000 hours of operation.

`NASA`

## Try It Yourself...

Click on this simulation from NASA to try out the operation of an ion engine aboard Dawn. Notice the number 168 in the upper left corner. That is one of my best scores. Adjust the plate location and the electric energy value. Click launch for your results. See if you can beat my score.

I hope you now appreciate the concept of warp factor and the current state of some high technology of rocket propulsion. Someday we may realize the dream of warp drives as discussed in the diaries noted above. Until then, more research and development is needed.

#### Tags

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
 Unpublish Diary (The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.) Delete Diary (The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

#### Comment Preferences

• ##### Rec and Tip or else...(137+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
palantir, JeffW, se portland, bobinson, TrueBlueDem, Horace Boothroyd III, ItsSimpleSimon, Nowhere Man, Youffraita, Troubadour, The Lone Apple, kestrel9000, One Pissed Off Liberal, Black Brant, Melanie in IA, implicate order, jnhobbs, GoGoGoEverton, bythesea, jessical, slksfca, itzadryheat, Sarbec, rja, Crashing Vor, Bonsai66, mamamorgaine, cv lurking gf, Sharoney, Athenian, JanF, marleycat, semiot, SantaFeMarie, ozsea1, on board 47, Russgirl, Quicklund, greengemini, PeterHug, owlbear1, deha, pgm 01, Timaeus, terabytes, DontTaseMeBro, Aunt Pat, SherwoodB, carver, raina, roses, dewtx, Its any one guess, CA ridebalanced, sfbob, Wee Mama, mjbleo, AdamR510, Bob Novak Douchebag of Liberty, pat bunny, Michael Chadwick, jethrock, Joieau, Gordon20024, radarlady, PrahaPartizan, pat208, basquebob, Texdude50, 2thanks, Caddis Fly, anodnhajo, sgoldinger, PurpleThistles, auron renouille, ms badger, jwinIL14, Pandora, RhodaA, ParkRanger, poliwrangler, Wreck Smurfy, GreyHawk, shortgirl, bluesheep, bosdcla14, blackjackal, notrouble, eOz, Simplify, xaxnar, IreGyre, Stwriley, aaraujo, hotdamn, mconvente, Wisdumb, cyberpuggy, Pete Cortez, exNYinTX, Pithy Cherub, Flint, Mentatmark, filkertom, cybersaur, LaFeminista, greenchiledem, kerflooey, Dave1845, matching mole, enhydra lutris, PBnJ, wader, uciguy30, Harkov311, glitterscale, kevinwparker, brentbent, tonyahky, exiledfromTN, rapala, peterj911, lineatus, S F Hippie, HoundDog, Farugia, defluxion10, BigOkie, ER Doc, eeff, AoT, Buckeye54, Lawrence, synductive99, BobBlueMass, bill warnick, too many people

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

• ##### So made...(15+ / 0-)

thanks...LOL

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### Where does Keshe Foundation plasma drive fit in.(4+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
jim in IA, Aunt Pat, mjbleo, HoundDog

Best part:  They are giving away FREE ENERGY devices for space and other pursuits, home, health, etc.

Exciting times to live in...

• ##### I've never heard of them before. I visited...(7+ / 0-)

the web site. I had to agree to respect their rights before I got to enter. I tried links for more info and none of them worked.

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### Dig deeper. It is real and being released NOW.(1+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
HoundDog

Countries around this planet are on board.  USA and others are too afraid to lose their monopoly.  No matter... the rest of the world will continue to by-pass USA until we clean house of the corrupt mess!

Sorry 1%ers: progress IS bypassing your profit centers... for the health and welfare of ALL HUMANS.

Highlights from the 21st September Keshe Foundation event.

Keshe announced that those who have previously purchased the 5kW generators (there were 10,000 pre-orders available) could expect them to be available some time in December, but they would need to figure out a way to pick them up.

Keshe announced that on December 14 they will be holding a large even (6,000 seating) holding a demonstration of the technology. Three astronauts who landed on the Moon are likely to attend.

Keshe announced that on December 14, they will be holding a large event (5,000 seats) holding a demonstration:
Full Space and Energy of the Technology.

Astronauts, one of whom has landed on the Moon, are likely to attend.

Keshe privately showed me a response from one of them, dated Sept. 20, confirming that he will be attending. Keshe doesn't want the name disclosed yet.

• ##### uh huh(3+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
ER Doc, Mike Kahlow, terrypinder
This image shows five tubes (from left to right): a tube with CH4 powder,...Photo of solid CO2 at room temperature. This mastic-like substance is not "dry ice", which is the state we would normally consider solid CO2 to be. Therefore we consider it to be in GANS-state (GAs + Nano + Solid state)....The solid CO2 is at room temperature and can be squeezed or handled like chewing gum or mastic.
• ##### Open your mind. Perhaps it is not finate?(0+ / 0-)

As in everything changes... our knowledge is not infinite so we must all try to be more open to that fact?  Time will tell.

• ##### Of course not. What made me suspicious was...(2+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
ER Doc, terrypinder

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### Their web site is hard to navigate, for sure.(0+ / 0-)

I have read much from many sources that it is REAL.  Hard for us to process when we have been held down for so very long... keep the faith.  REAL positive change is happening.

• ##### I too am suspicious. (2+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
ER Doc, terrypinder

All I see is metaphysical word salad on the site. Not science.

The cheese abides.

[ Parent ]

• ##### it's 100% bunk.(0+ / 0-)

"free energy"? From what?

pseudoscience can kill

[ Parent ]

• ##### The Keshe Foundation(1+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
terrypinder

does not have free energy.  Going by the fact that they have articles on how a US drone was captured by Iranian flying saucers I wouldn't put any stock in what that site says.

The revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

[ Parent ]

• ##### I'm a doctor, not a ...(13+ / 0-)

i just baptized andrew breitbart into the church of islam, planned parenthood, the girl scouts and three teachers unions. - @blainecapatch

[ Parent ]

• ##### Alpha Centauri, here we come...(19+ / 0-)

...and be sure to kick Dr. Smith out the airlock!

Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

• ##### Let me turn this back toward politics(12+ / 0-)

It is, after all, a political site.

Once we Earthlings do achieve warp drive, we will be eligible to join Starfleet. We will be approached by nearly human emissaries who will ask us if we want to join. We will of course accept and they will then move their headquarters to Crissy Field in San Francisco. At that point we will no longer have the need for money and finally, money will no longer be a part of the American political system.

If the above never happens, we are doomed to money corrupting politics for the next millennia.

i just baptized andrew breitbart into the church of islam, planned parenthood, the girl scouts and three teachers unions. - @blainecapatch

• ##### I'm Sure the Hunter Gatherers Thought the Same(11+ / 0-)

benefits would follow once we learned to fly through the air.

We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

[ Parent ]

• ##### They kinda did.(8+ / 0-)

Life in some downtrodden Eastern European town in the 21st century is paradise compared to the lifestyle of Bronze Age kings.

Everything there is to know about the GOP: They're the Bad Guys.

[ Parent ]

• ##### The kings did ok. The peasants, not so much.(6+ / 0-)

Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? . . . and respect the dignity of every human being.

[ Parent ]

• ##### I wouldn't envy the kings.(7+ / 0-)

Their lives were in constant danger from foreign, domestic, and family intrigues; they didn't live much longer than their subjects, which means being 35 = old; and at any moment their entire family - in fact, their entire society - could be wiped out by invasion, and everything they've ever known obliterated in the blink of an eye.  Wealth and power are a major consolation to any bad circumstance, but anyone who would choose to be an ancient king rather than an average person today is pretty foolish.

Everything there is to know about the GOP: They're the Bad Guys.

[ Parent ]

• ##### Epidemics(5+ / 0-)

Terrible public hygiene and the potential for pandemics trouble me more than the potential for violence.  Enemy invasions might be bad, but the invaders would be noted long before they arrived and the potential for negotiations always existed.  Just how do you address a microbe you don't even know exists?  Bolts from the blue always terrorize more.

"Love the Truth, defend the Truth, speak the Truth, and hear the Truth" - Jan Hus, d.1415 CE

[ Parent ]

• ##### Yep. The vast majority of kingdoms(2+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
jim in IA, JeffW

that have ever existed were small and tribal, and virtually all of them were wiped out at some point by famine, plague, extermination by an invader, or enslavement.  Their rulers usually had plenty of food, wine, and women, but for most of them their known world consisted of a few valleys and the two or three domains just beyond in any direction.  Exceptions with large territories and multinational subjects - e.g., Egypt, Persia, Rome - were rare, and merely added complexity to the job of ruling without adding much to the lifestyle beyond variety.

So unless one lives in a part of the world where starvation and slaughter are routine, there aren't many people today whose lives would be improved by being an ancient king.  The closest thing we have to that lifestyle today would be a mobster, and even they probably appreciate antibiotics and having more than a few thousand people in the entire world speaking their language.

Everything there is to know about the GOP: They're the Bad Guys.

[ Parent ]

• ##### Speed Limit?(9+ / 0-)

And I don't mean c -- I mean how potentially fast can an ion rocket propel a spacecraft? Let's say you have a big enough fuel tank and just fire the ion engine constantly until the fuel runs out. What percentage of c can you attain and how long would it take to attain it?

This head movie makes my eyes rain.

• ##### Not an easy question to answer. With a...(13+ / 0-)

large fuel supply, it could operate for years. A lot of fuel means a lot of mass to accelerate taking longer.

As speeds approach larger fractions c, the vehicle mass increases as seen by non-moving observers. That makes it harder to accelerate. It grows toward infinity. Some interesting discussion here.

To make a long story short, you would never quite make it. Infinite mass can't reach c because it would take infinite energy. The scenario would also depend on the viewpoint of the observer. It is all relative, Mr. Einstein.

Thanks for the question, tho.

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### When velocity attains a substantial fraction of c (11+ / 0-)

things get relativistic.

The ion engine is generating a constant force

F=ma  — kilogram • meters / second²   (newtons)

The thing here is that at relativistic velocities the mass is a function of the velocity or more correctly the momentum (mv) is a function of the velocity which is obvious from its definition.

Anyway, the more imprecise formulation for relativistic mass is

M = m / √ ( 1- v ²c² )

As the velocity approaches the speed of light the mass M gets very large. As the mass gets very large and with a fixed force supplied by the ion engine...

a = F   M

which gets increasingly small as the velocity or mass gets large.

• ##### Thanks...(6+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
palantir, Aunt Pat, dewtx, mjbleo, ms badger, JeffW

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### that should be a = F / M(6+ / 0-)

It's what I typed, honest ☺

• ##### My brain filled it in anyway. I looked back...(4+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
Aunt Pat, dewtx, mjbleo, JeffW

to see the / wasn't there.

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### Mass of Ship or Propellant?(3+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
palantir, jim in IA, JeffW

Is the decay in the velocity increase due to the increase of the ship proper or the propellant being ejected by the ship?  As the ship system approaches c, the propellant would also increase in mass.  The engine, capable of a fixed potential, would find the ion's being ejected massing more and therefore leaving the ship at a lower delta v compared to a low c state.  If the engine possessed infinite power, it would seem to be able to maintain a pretty constant rate of acceleration, subject to relativistic effects.

"Love the Truth, defend the Truth, speak the Truth, and hear the Truth" - Jan Hus, d.1415 CE

[ Parent ]

• ##### i think in an electrostatic thruster(2+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
jim in IA, JeffW

the acceleration is independent of the mass. I'm not absolutely  sure of that however. It's due to the charge on the reaction mass and the potential difference.

• ##### Then When?(2+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
jim in IA, palantir

What is the substantial fraction of c when things get relativistic? Is it just that we don't know because no one has done it or that there actually is a point like the speed of sound beyond which relativistic aspects kick in?

This head movie makes my eyes rain.

[ Parent ]

• ##### At 0.1c(7+ / 0-)

the effects are a little less than a percent.   Depends on how accurately you want to measure it.   At 0.5c, they are about 10%, and so on.

And yes, we have gotten very close to the speed of light.   The LEP accelerator got electrons up to 0.9999999999 c or so.

• ##### This graph will show you how it behaves...(7+ / 0-)

mathematically. Beta B is a fraction of the speed of light on the x-axis. The relativistic effect gamma is plotted. It rises gently at first. The effect in our low speed world is basically almost 0. For LHC and Fermilab, they send particles near 1c. The effect is large.

Thanks, science.

`http://scienceworld.wolfram.com/...`

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### Would the effects be manageable at low % c?(1+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
jim in IA

I know I am only eyeballing that chart but it seems you might be able to get to .4 or .5c without suffering too much of an effect. Or is any effect other than close to zero unmanageable?

This head movie makes my eyes rain.

[ Parent ]

• ##### As science said above, at .5c the effect is 10%(3+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
The Lone Apple, JeffW, Lawrence

You need to get to .86c for the effect to be x2. That means a moving mass is twice as massive. At LHC with speeds .999999c etc, the mass effect is thousands. That is manageable because they are manipulating protons etc. You couldn't manage that with rocket ship masses.

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### Then .5c Might Be Feasable(3+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
JeffW, jim in IA, Lawrence

Send probes to the stars within ten light years at half the speed of light (if you could ever ramp up to that speed).

This head movie makes my eyes rain.

[ Parent ]

• ##### hydrogen atoms are lethal at relativistic speeds(11+ / 0-)

As Translator persistently pointed out in this diary linked above, "Warp Drive Just Got 2.6 Septillion Times Closer to Reality"

Shielding, deflection, Bussard ramscoop; some kind of protection will be needed.

The "extreme wing" of the Democratic Party is the wing that is hell-bent on protecting the banks and credit card companies. ~ Kos

[ Parent ]

• ##### Pretty much anything is lethal at (4+ / 0-)

relativistic speeds, no?

Doesn't that just mean you wouldn't want to stand behind an ion engine? Or is there some other drawback?

• ##### interstellar hydrogen atoms(4+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
jim in IA, atana, LeftyAce, JeffW

become ionizing radiation at relativistic speeds.

Standing behind an ion engine exhaust is not mentioned in this scenario. I hope I don't sound too snarky in observing the obvious lethality.

The "extreme wing" of the Democratic Party is the wing that is hell-bent on protecting the banks and credit card companies. ~ Kos

[ Parent ]

• ##### Apparently my snark detector is fried.(3+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
ozsea1, jim in IA, JeffW

Must be cosmic radiation damage :-P

• ##### Irony abounds(6+ / 0-)

Achieve .033 warp, build ion engine, land on mars....build game in java?

vigilant

• ##### Awesome stuff!(10+ / 0-)

The next big leap will be from VASIMR, when the 200 kW version is deployed as an interplanetary stage for probes.  Should happen at some point this decade.

Everything there is to know about the GOP: They're the Bad Guys.

• ##### IIRC, the Vasimr engine(7+ / 0-)

is projected to be able to reach Mars in 39 days.  That would change a Mars mission into a very do able effort.  6 months in a chemical rocket reeks of posible failure from life support failure to the inability of the astronauts in very close living space to maintain stability for the long trip.   39 days, OTOH, could be a cakewalk.

"A criminal is a person with predatory instincts who has not sufficient capital to form a corporation." - Clarence Darrow 8.25 / -5.64}

[ Parent ]

• ##### The big challenge to achieve 39 days(7+ / 0-)

with a manned mission is that it would have to be a megawatt-scale engine, which means a nuclear reactor with the kind of power normally seen in ground-based power plants.  But we'll get there.

Everything there is to know about the GOP: They're the Bad Guys.

[ Parent ]

• ##### How much more power(0+ / 0-)

than what a nuclear sub requires?

"A criminal is a person with predatory instincts who has not sufficient capital to form a corporation." - Clarence Darrow 8.25 / -5.64}

[ Parent ]

• ##### There were/are plans(3+ / 0-)
Recommended by:

to attach a Vasimir engine to the ISS to be used for orbit stabilization. The solar panels on the station would provided enough power for it.
It would also be a good way to test the technology.

Here's some old info from 2008.
http://dsc.discovery.com/...

I have no idea if there are plans to still do this.

• ##### The company developing VASIMR(0+ / 0-)

still lists the ISS thrusters on its mission page, so I assume that remains the plan.

Everything there is to know about the GOP: They're the Bad Guys.

[ Parent ]

• ##### The BB "Christmas Story" rocket engine!(7+ / 0-)

You could put your dwarf planet's eye out with that!!

(romney)/RYAN 2012 - Look at those clouds. It's beautiful. Just look at those things!

• ##### One of my all time favorite movies.(3+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
palantir, mjbleo, S F Hippie

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### The ship cannae take much more of this Captain!(16+ / 0-)

I remember back when I was 12 and the old Star Trek episodes were replaying every night after school--and I would imitate Scotty's brogue, making my father furious because he thought I was developing a speech defect--LOL parents can be so dense!!

Guns don't kill people; physics kills people. At least when chemistry doesn't get there first.

• ##### OT: In 1994 the Star Trek writers had no concept (10+ / 0-)

If you were writing a sci-fi scene and wanted to show a 24th Century character musing over memories of his far-away family, how would you do it?

Well, in 1994, the folks who wrote the Star Trek Generations movie did it by having Picard get weepy while leafing through a paper photo album!

We watched it on HBO last night and laughed out loud (not in a mean way!) at that scene.

FYI, the first consumer megapixel camera hit the market in 1997.

• ##### Oh..we have come so far.(4+ / 0-)
Recommended by:

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### Not really. Tablets and cellphones are toys.(0+ / 0-)

Real technology is what you're talking about here in this diary, and also things like energy generation, storage, and transmission systems, electric cars, and other future travel concepts.  Also medical tech, but that bores me when I'm not in need of it.

Everything there is to know about the GOP: They're the Bad Guys.

[ Parent ]

• ##### Don't forget, Dave and Frank had iPads in '2001'(9+ / 0-)

(romney)/RYAN 2012 - Look at those clouds. It's beautiful. Just look at those things!

[ Parent ]

• ##### How many pre-1990's sci-fi writers foresaw(4+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
jim in IA, IreGyre, Troubadour, JeffW

cellular communications? My impression is: very few indeed.

Books in Asimov's original Foundation series, set perhaps 20,000 years in the future, were glorified microfiche readers.

My AIDS/LifeCycle homepage: http://www.tofighthiv.org/...

[ Parent ]

• ##### There are cigarette dispensers on starships(3+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
SantaFeMarie, JeffW, sfbob

in the Foundation trilogy.

Everything there is to know about the GOP: They're the Bad Guys.

[ Parent ]

in the show well before 1994.

http://en.memory-alpha.org/...

• ##### Who knows it might be (1+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
JeffW

the thing to do in the future.

• ##### I was startled to see something very like(1+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
JeffW

an ipad or tablet while watching a Doctor Who episode from 1983 the other day.

The setting was late 21st century Earth, as I recall. I thought that was a pretty good guess for a usually pretty cheesy show.

(That I love.)

• ##### i always thought that scene was odd(0+ / 0-)

several episodes had electronic photos. even holograms.

but Picard generally was shown to be "old-fashioned." he had actual books.

pseudoscience can kill

[ Parent ]

• ##### It would be easier to...(8+ / 0-)

... dig up the Stargate buried in the ruins at Giza.

• ##### I'm not entirely sure but I think(2+ / 0-)
Recommended by:

my brother in law worked on this. I believe it was the subject of his PhD thesis.

"The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?" ~Orwell, "1984"

• ##### Good for him. Thanks, too.(1+ / 0-)
Recommended by:

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### score of 177(3+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
ms badger, notrouble, jim in IA

with settings of 34/100

"The only person sure of himself is the man who wishes to leave things as they are, and he dreams of an impossibility" -George M. Wrong.

• ##### Very good. (1+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
statsone

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### How does an ion drive like this avoid(3+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
auron renouille, jim in IA, wader

charge buildup?

It seems like if you're consistently throwing ions of one charge out the back, pretty soon the ship will  net charge.

Or can it alternate throwing anions and cations out the back?

• ##### Notice in the schematic diagram above...(4+ / 0-)
Recommended by:

there is a cathode above the ion flow out the nozzle. The electrons are passed along a cathode out behind the thruster and get picked up by the expelled positive ions.

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### geek(2+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
jim in IA, JeffW
• ##### Gonna hafta take your word on all this, but ...(2+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
jim in IA, JeffW

... it sounds very exciting.
I wish NASA did a better job of explaining their
accomplishments and keeping us up to date.
I was ages 6 to16 through the decade that brought us the Mercury program, followed by Gemini then Apollo. Hell, when I was 12 I could probably tell you the fueling system of the Saturn 5 rocket because it was on the front page of the paper so many times.
LEM and command module are words that still give me a satisfying chill.
But... I think the let down to NASA was the scrapping of later Apollo missions due to public apathy. We'd moved on to Watergate. They never recovered their mojo. The shuttle program was their road back, but the Challenger disaster ended that little pr boon.
Oh well ... I know the propaganda worked on me.
I have this incredible craving for Tang right now.

• ##### It does take more digging. But, there is a...(0+ / 0-)

wealth of information, educational materials, images, and support documents for each mission.

I haven't had Tang for so long. Can you still buy it?

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### Since NASA can't advertise or tout(0+ / 0-)

their accomplishments it seems like a private organization to do that for them would be a great thing to have.  Especially with things like this.  Even more so with stuff like future types of engines being developed.

The revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

[ Parent ]

• ##### "My God... Dawn's gone to plaid!"(4+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
jim in IA, wader, JeffW, ER Doc

"Four more years!" (Obama Unencumbered - The Sequel)

• ##### Speed is a multiple of c, not a factor.(4+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
• ##### Factors don't have to be integers.(0+ / 0-)

Everything there is to know about the GOP: They're the Bad Guys.

[ Parent ]

• ##### I,m just a math professor..(2+ / 0-)
Recommended by:

...with a PhD.  What do I know, eh?

The way the word was used, and the equation given indicate the word multiple should have been used.

Factor is never the word used when discussing a fractional quantity.  The only other place factor is used extensively besides with integers is with polynomials.

• ##### Fine, be that way. :p(0+ / 0-)

Everything there is to know about the GOP: They're the Bad Guys.

[ Parent ]

• ##### Simulation results(2+ / 0-)
Recommended by:

177, using 34 and 100

A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward. Franklin D. Roosevelt

• ##### That seems to be the max. You get bonus pts.(2+ / 0-)
Recommended by:

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### There seems to be another plateau (1+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
jim in IA

With 60 and 60 I got 168 and playing around that point I found 172 using 57 and 58 and using 58 and 59.

A conservative is a man with two perfectly good legs who, however, has never learned how to walk forward. Franklin D. Roosevelt

[ Parent ]

• ##### Warp Field Mechanics 101(0+ / 0-)

Looks like Dr. Sonny White's paper isn't 403'd anymore, so enjoy.

• ##### I recall thinking back in 6th grade about(3+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
jim in IA, defluxion10, JeffW

developing a propulsion system out of a scaled up CRT electron gun (this would be late fifties) and trying to visualize what would be a workable power supply since reactors were such heavy monsters. Shortly thereafter I stumbled across some articles corcerning Rocketdynes work on early ion drives and dismissed my idea. So, we take a CRT electron gun, and the grids from a old pentode ...

That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

• ##### I'd enjoy a diary on causality(2+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
jim in IA, Pete Cortez

because I really don't see how the NASA experiment, if it leads to a working spacedrive, doesn't violate it.

but i'm not nearly smart enough to do it.

pseudoscience can kill

• ##### Yea...someone besides me needs to do it.(1+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
terrypinder

Good idea.

The difference between stupidity and genius...genius has limits. ~ Einstein

[ Parent ]

• ##### Would be a great contribution.(0+ / 0-)

Put simply, there is no inherent causality violation as there is no trajectory that locally exceeds the speed of light.

• ##### yes,(2+ / 0-)
Recommended by:
Pete Cortez, bill warnick

that was the argument made in the other diary.

pseudoscience can kill

[ Parent ]