I have been watching the “Enterprise” TV series using Netflix, and I am in the middle of the second season.
Several questions have come to mind; one of them Absolutely Mind Boggling.
First, anyone who has, at least, advanced to Junior in high school should know there is no atmosphere in space, and sound needs an atmosphere to travel. Sound can also travel through water and even faster than in a gas.
So, question #1: Since there is no atmosphere in outer space, how is it that space travelers in any space movie or TV show can hear the sound of a space ship exploding, a meteor being hit by a phase cannon, etc?
Question #2: Since there is no atmosphere in outer space, there is no friction to oppose travel, so why do spaceship engines have to be running all the time? Shouldn’t the engines be used only to get to a certain speed then shut off? Once any object is in motion, it is going to stay in motion unless some force opposes it, but since there is no atmosphere, there is nothing opposing its travel. Right?
Question #3: Anyone who knows anything about inertia should know that if a spaceship suddenly accelerated to “warp” speed, everything not tied down, i.e., crew members, would be splattered against the rear walls as flat as a coat of paint. Conversely, suddenly coming out of warp speed should throw crew members into the forward walls; also as flat as a coat of paint. So–how can their inertia change so suddenly and yet no one feels any “G” forces?
Lastly, just how far is a light year? Okay, let’s get out our calculators. We know, or should know, light travels at 186,000 miles a second:
186,000 miles a second times 60 seconds per minute = 11,160,000 miles
11,160,000 miles per minute times 60 minutes per hour = 669,600,000 miles
669,600,000 miles per hour times 24 hours a day = 16,070,400,000 miles a day
16,070,400,000 miles per day time 365 days = 5,865,696,000,000 miles per year
11,160,000 is more than 11 million
669,600,000 is almost 670 million
16,070,400,000 is more than 16 billion
5,865,696,000,000 is almost 6 trillion
So, if the Enterprise travels at the speed of light for exactly one year, it’s traveled almost six trillion miles. SIX TRILLION, my friends!
If we drove a Formula One race car at a steady 200 miles an hour (and assuming we never needed to stop to put gasoline in it):
200 mph x 24 hrs = 4,800 miles
4,800 miles per day x 365 days = 1,752,000 miles in one year
5,865,696,000,000 miles divided by 1,752,000 miles in a car in one year = 3,348,000 years to travel the same distance Enterprise would travel.
3.3 million years to travel the same distance! More than three million years!
I am not even going to ATTEMPT to figure out how many generations that would take!
ABSOLUTELY MIND BOGGLING!
- Engineer Thinks We Could Build a Real Starship Enterprise in 20 Years (mbcalyn.com)
- How to Build the USS Enterprise and Fly It to Mars (bigthink.com)
- National News: ‘Warp speed’ planets could be travelling through space at speed of light (coventrytelegraph.net)
- Amazed on Terra Firma (jlthomson.wordpress.com)
- Runaway planets zoom at a fraction of light speed (eurekalert.org)