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‘Travel at speed of light’: Is NASA really close to developing a Warp drive?

For the time being, warp drive are only used in science fiction, but they may soon become a reality. NASA is working hard to figure out how to make warp drive work, according to a story from The Brighter Side.

They are not the only ones attempting the impossible; several scientists are also looking into the possibilities, as is a man by the name of Elon. But there are some significant obstacles to overcome.

Anything that tries to travel faster than the speed of light is physically unable to do so, according to Einstein’s Theory of Relativity. Even still, there remain several obstacles in the way of NASA scientist Dr. Harold Sonny White’s attempts to push the boundaries of physics rules and accomplish a feat like warp drive.

Miguel Alcubierre, a theoretical physicist, presented a proposal in 1994 wherein a “bubble” is produced in space-time that might “twist” distances, cutting the distance between two far spots, in order to avoid the high energy required to move mass near to the speed of light.

According to Dr. White, a football-shaped starship may potentially travel at the speed of light using a ring-shaped warp engine (according to Alcubierre’s hypothesis). The ring’s form might be altered to provide enough energy to transport mass across space. A ring-shaped warp engine is used by Obi-Wan Kenobi’s spacecraft to go to a different planet in Star Wars, which is an interesting example of this idea in action.

Elon Musk is attempting to make the idea a reality as NASA continues to develop it. For this decade’s Mars mission, SpaceX founder Elon Musk is actively considering the possibility of using a warp engine to fly to the red planet.

The issue with going quickly may be traced back to Einstein’s theory, which states that increased velocity results in an increase in the mass of an object, and there is not enough energy available to propel anything that is so heavy at such a high speed.
Warp Drive
That is why Alcubierre’s warp drive’s “space bubble” idea is so interesting and practically vital. Theoretically, if you concentrate on warping time and space rather than propulsion, you won’t require the energy to transfer mass as Einstein suggests.

With a tool called the White-Juday Warp Field Interferometer, which might lead to a warp drive, Dr. White leads a team of engineers and scientists working at NASA to attempt to achieve exactly that. The technology could possibly produce a small warp bubble that would greatly accelerate travel, but not to the speed of light.

However, if it is successful, it may transform space travel. Here is a video highlighting the obstacles SpaceX is encountering with its warp drive idea.

The timing of the research’s intensification as humanity approaches the imagined period when warp drive was created in Star Trek history is an odd coincidence.

In 2063, Dr. Zefram Cochrane built a spacecraft with a warp drive, according to Star Trek, which is when the warp drive was developed. The Vulcans saw his test flight at warp speed and realized that humans had created the capability to reach other worlds.

The first “warp flight” is shown in a sequence from Star Trek: First Contact, which may not be too far off from how it might truly occur in the real world. It seems genuinely terrible.

Source: Giantfreakinrobot

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Written by Alex Bruno

Freelance space writer Alex Bruno specializes in covering China's quickly expanding space industry. In 2021, he started writing for SpaceXMania. He also contributes to publications including SpaceNews, IEEE Spectrum, National Geographic, Sky & Telescope, and New Scientist. When Alex was a small child, he first experienced the space bug after seeing Voyager photographs of alien planets in our solar system. When not in space, Alex likes to go trail jogging in the Finnish countryside.

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