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Old 12-02-2008, 05:57 PM   #93
bill_mchale
Wizard
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Jordan View Post


True, but the "speed limit" of light, while varying depending on the region in the universe, is still considered inviolable by moving objects within that region. In other words, wherever you are, the limit is the limit, and you won't pass it. (I really need Stephen Hawking now!)
The speed of light is constant in a vacuum regardless of where you are. If you find a region of space where the speed of light is different in a vacuum then you have probably just disproved special relativity (and by extension, general relativity as well) .

The basic issue is that space itself is expanding. Relativity limits the speeds that objects with positive rest mass can accelerate to. It does not limit the rate that objects can move apart nor the rate they can approach each other.

Quote:
I don't demand "verified results." But I consider some things to have limits which we, as humans, are simply not likely to reach... such as the amount of energy that would be required to push anything more than a few atoms past the speed of light, or through a wormhole to exit at another point in time, which has been suggested by many physicists to be the equivalent of multiple suns' energy output, at best.
Well since the amount of energy to accelerate a single atom past the speed of light is the same as the amount of energy needed to accelerate a planet past the speed of light (i.e. infinite) I am not really worried about that . FTL that relies on acceleration will almost certainly remain implausible.

Quote:
If, by "non-mainstream solutions to mainstream theories," you are talking about circumventing a physical law... say, using a tesseract to jump from point to point without traversing physical space... I'm willing to entertain such ideas. But only to the extent that there is some reasonable expectation that such a possibility even exists, and that it is conceivable that it could be deliberately utilized.
Check out Alcubierre Warps.

Granted, I am not saying that time travel or FTL is likely. But I think the ideas are ingrained enough in real physics to be fair game for Hard SF writers to play around with.

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Bill
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