Questions tagged [faster-than-light]

For questions about settings in which superluminal travel and/or communication is a possibility.

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56
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9answers
8k views

Are there any ways to allow some form of FTL travel without allowing time travel?

Faster than light travel is a really cool thing to have in sci-fi settings. It allows humans, in relatable time scales, to travel the galaxy and see a variety of worlds. It allows for conflicts ...
31
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9answers
4k views

Is there a scientifically plausible faster-than-light communication system?

In series such as the Hyperion Cantos and Ender's Game, there exist fictional faster-than-light communication systems allowing either instantaneous, or near-instantaneous transmission of information. ...
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3answers
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How does paradox-free FTL travel affect the details of my story or gameplay?

It is understood that a way to prevent causality violation and time-travel while still having faster-than-light travel is to introduce a specific reference frame. This is explained in detail in this ...
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7answers
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What would happen if the speed of light was fundamentally faster?

Now maybe this belongs in physics, but I want it here because I'm interested in the impacts on our society if the speed of light (c) were to be 2x faster since the big bang. My first thoughts were ...
41
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4answers
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Is there a scientifically sound faster-than-light travel system for a spaceship?

Recurringly in Sci-Fi spaceships manage to make it to lightspeed and above. Is there a scientifically plausible explanation of such capacity? How does it impact the spaceship's design and its ...
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13answers
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Science-based FTL drive

So I'm writing a story about a crew of scientists that explore the universe searching for a hidden knowledge in embed in the fabric of the space itself. More like to the Destiny's crew from Stargate ...
56
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26answers
10k views

FTL travel is impossible. How is interstellar trade possible?

Assume a universe depressingly like ours, in which special relativity holds. No hyperspace, no warp drive, no wormholes, and even the limited get-out clauses offered by real world physics either don't ...
9
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1answer
683 views

Life at faster than light

Tachyons are a hypothetical particle that constantly move at speeds in excess of the speed of light. We haven't yet proven their existence, but neither have we disproved their existence (which is, as ...
52
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11answers
14k views

If an FTL spacecraft entered Earth orbit, how long would it take for humans to build a FTL spacecraft?

It’s just another average day in the life of modern day earth. Suddenly a transmission from orbit washes over the planet! Oh no! An alien race, calling themselves the “Thull”, has suddenly arrived in ...
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12answers
2k views

How can I know where to point my spaceship?

Let's assume we have a working FTL drive and thus interstellar travel is possible, either by traveling at very high speeds or by instant teleportation (the two main subtypes of FTL drives in sci-fi). ...
4
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8answers
656 views

Using magnetic fields to prevent a weaponized warp drive?

I've been thinking of ways that an FTL-capable galaxy would prevent weaponized FTL missiles. Ignoring causality violations and paradoxes, I'm looking for a way to keep something based on an ...
61
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29answers
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What realistic way could limit an FTL drive to only travelling between stars?

How could a Faster than light drive be limited to only travelling between different solar systems, and not within a solar system? I don't really want to allow travel between planets in the same solar ...
42
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19answers
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Standardisation of Time in a FTL Universe

Here on Earth, time standardisation was enabled by the invention of accurate time pieces which allowed us to create a global constant (GMT/Zulu time) and regional offsets. If we travel outside our ...
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7answers
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Can this version of the Alderson Drive be used to violate causality?

I'm working on a simulator-type game which I want to be at least internally consistent, and which I'd like to work as close to reality as possible. That being said, it's set in space, which means to ...
5
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2answers
236 views

How to build a wormhole for FTL communication? [more Engineering than Physics question]

I came to SE WB while I was researching about space radiators for my sci-fi. I don't remember where exactly I found an answer to my question (Maybe? Idr) but I stunned with this site. You all looks ...
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9answers
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Defeating this fleet [closed]

I was watching the series called: "Once Upon a Time... Space" (I could only find the hungarian dub, which is my native language), that I want to make a fanfic about, and I ran into a problem.... The ...
59
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23answers
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How to prevent superluminal traveling idiots from wrecking half of the universe?

Linked but not a duplicate of this question. An example of the problem During the last Star-Wars movie, I was dumbfounded by the sheer stupidity of admiral Holdo's move, during this particularly ...
29
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19answers
5k views

Why are interstellar colonists lone rangers?

The time is The Future. Humanity is spreading throughout the stars, aided by the invention of Schwarzschild gates. The gates allow for FTL travel by tearing open wormholes in space. There are three ...
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21answers
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How to explain why humans weren’t encountered by alien species? [closed]

So, I’ve been writing a sci-fi novel that takes place a few centuries in the future. In the novels lore, it says that there was plenty of life throughout the galaxy, but humans were just contacted ...
50
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11answers
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How much would we learn from observing an FTL starship fly by?

On a mythical world almost identical to our own, deep space telescopes notice as an object appears out near the orbit of Jupiter. In the instance after its appearance, the light which bounced off it ...
27
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13answers
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The worlds between, the consequences of instantaneous FTL

For some time I've been working on a universe with non-instantaneous Faster-Than-Light travel, but I've decided to open a new universe with instantaneous travel. So I'm working on the differences that ...
6
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2answers
372 views

Alcubierre warp-lanes, what is the most stable way to create them?

2 informational references for Alcubierre fields can be found at the end of this question. Warp-lanes aren't a novelty in science-fiction. Space ships can use a specific route to go through a Galaxy ...
22
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13answers
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A mechanism for a level interstellar playing field

So, this is a trope common to any number of science fiction worlds: humanity emerges from its solar system to discover that there are a bunch of alien races out there, but, importantly, at least the ...
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4answers
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How could combat involving Alcubierre-drive starships occur?

In a setting with Alcubierre-drive starships (as per my answer here), it is inevitable that once the technology becomes common enough and enough different polities and organizations have such ships, ...
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5answers
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How would advanced aliens protect themselves from idiots with FTL?

Faster than light travel is Dangerous with a capital D. The main reason for this is because by the time you see something, you've already smashed into it and vaporised yourself, the target and any ...
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3answers
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What if time travel had to take into account spatial distance?

In this setting, humanity has advanced to the technological capability of extra stellar travel via faster-than-light drives. However, due to distances between inhabited areas being extremely large, ...
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6answers
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hypothetical criteria for non-paradox FTL

Many sci-fi questions here are derailed by complaints that the proposed version of FTL breaks causality. However, relativity-safe FTL concepts do exist. What range of conditions allow FTL (movement, ...
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17answers
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How to Protect Against FTL Sneak Attacks

Background: Following the development of faster-than-light technology, humanity has spread across the stars and encountered many kinds of alien life. While the galaxy is mostly peaceful, occasional ...
11
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6answers
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Mapping the far side of the galaxy

Humans got a one time ticket to the other side of the galaxy, traveling $2r$ in just a few days (where $r$ is the distance from earth to the super massive black hole: 28,000 lightyears) The stars we ...
8
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5answers
347 views

Can we safe FTL from paradoxes by using a Multiverse?

As we know, bi-directional faster than light (FTL) travel can cause paradoxical situations. One possible way to resolve this would be a multiverse theory: Whenever a paradox could arise, the universe ...
6
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4answers
466 views

Assuming Interstellar travel was feasible, what trade goods would in demand? [closed]

Assuming some kind of "warp gate" or "Space lane" that makes FTL travel between different stars feasible... What goods would be most likely to be traded? Especially, what would Earth want to import vs ...
4
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3answers
934 views

How far can space time be warped, twisted, and pulled?

In the story I'm writing, an ancient civilization once roamed the local group, traveling from galaxy to galaxy with ease. Thousands of millennia after their disappearance, humanity stumbles across the ...
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10answers
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Interstellar communcation with FTL

I am designing a world where humans have achieved FTL by means of the Alcubierre warp drive and are colonizing the stars. Originally I had communication pegged as being done with quantum entanglement ...
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10answers
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How fast would a civilization with FTL spread out?

Let's say that a civilization has access to FTL. Let's say it is instantaneous so travel time between solar systems isn't a factor. How long would it take for them to spread out from their home solar ...
0
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3answers
585 views

How can I choose and combine multiple FTL systems in my Sci-Fi story? [closed]

So, I cannot decide which FTL method should I use. I can do it easy way - just call it "Jump" and that's all. But I something more. So I want to combine some methods, like jumps with stargates or ...
9
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9answers
855 views

Can industry work on a poor import schedule?

I've been working for some time on a universe in which there is limited FTL consisting of short (up to five light years at a time) jumps between points in space. The jumps take no time at all for ...
9
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3answers
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How can I locate myself in a random point of space?

Some Context I'm creating a universe where humanity has reached the stars. They've colonized a few star systems and, obviously, FTL drives are a common thing. They basically jump you to another ...
3
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4answers
234 views

What effects would we see on Earth if the speed of light universally increased? [duplicate]

Traveling faster than light poses all sorts of physics problems, so most hard SF has had to handwave FTL. But if light were faster, then ships could be commensurately faster without violating ...
2
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2answers
808 views

What is INSIDE a Wormhole?

IF they were real, would wormholes work in the way that they do in sci-fi (for all intents and purposes "teleportation", travel without movement, FTL, immediately "appearing" at the other location), ...
2
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3answers
188 views

Would quantum entanglement allow for FTL space-travel? [closed]

An important feature of quantum technology is entanglement (i.e., two or more particles are linked, so changes applied to one particle will be applied to the other entangled particles, no matter the ...