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Questions tagged [space-travel]

For questions about the process of traveling through space, including in orbit around a planet or moon. Consider also [spaceships]. See also the tag information (click "info") for more details on when this tag applies.

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12 votes
2 answers
2k views

Using a planetary flyby to reduce speed

At the end of my novel, the surviving crew of a spaceship is hurtling past a Dyson swarm that encloses the sun where the asteroid belt used to be. They are traveling too fast for orbital insertion and ...
K. M. O'Connor's user avatar
3 votes
7 answers
2k views

Is it possible to use thermal pumping for power generation in space? [closed]

There's this one component that exists in real life that uses the thermoelectric effect to pump heat, basically, by creating a temperature differential using voltage. Is it possible to use this in ...
Colonel Cabbages's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
306 views

Is there any version of an ion drive, fictional or not, that would be able to create torchship-like acceleration for interplanetary travel? [closed]

Im trying to find a way to get a torch-ship up to some 0.x % of lightspeed with a ion-thrust like engine. Let assume power is a non-issue, unless its becoming absurd (it makes no sense to propel a ...
BigDumb's user avatar
  • 179
5 votes
3 answers
189 views

Would the discovery of a room temperature superconductor with a high critical current improve ion drives?

I'm just an optimistic, uneducated bum, so if any of the terminology or ideas are wrong I apologize. So I understand that ion drives are very economical but very low thrust. Partly because powering ...
BigDumb's user avatar
  • 179
0 votes
3 answers
135 views

How to create a network of stable traversable wormholes, how those WH behave when interacting with gravity and vessels, and how they look [closed]

first time poster on the world building site, and I have several questions about wormholes and how they work. I've been reading through the other questions tagged "wormholes" and researching ...
caprlk's user avatar
  • 17
-5 votes
1 answer
84 views

How much energy would you need to open a portal and maintain it? [closed]

How much energy would you need to open a portal and maintain it? And more importantly, what would the infrastructure look like? For example: Would a single nuclear reactor be enough, or would you need ...
supremechad's user avatar
3 votes
6 answers
340 views

What would the societal effects be, generally of inhabited worlds having time pass at significantly different rates [closed]

Thousands of years in the futures space was colonized, planets terraformed, history happening upon those planets and so forth. But it's not quite as was predicted, for in the initial foray of ...
MegatheriumMegafauna's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
135 views

Is it possible to use the tech behind Project Daedalus as an asteroid defense system?

Assuming that all requirements are met, is it possible to use the gigantic Project Daedalus fusion propulsion to move large "Planet-Killing" asteroids at a meaningful pace, be it asteroid ...
Vexorr's user avatar
  • 81
11 votes
4 answers
3k views

What would be easily missed, but undeniable, proof of life from non-advanced detectors?

I need a way for a spacecraft to detect absolutely irrefutable proof of organic, but not intelligent, life on a planet, most likely through spectroscopy or another similar concept. The spacecraft is ...
FlightDeck0112's user avatar
10 votes
2 answers
2k views

Engine most likely to be available in the next 80 years to accelerate a craft at 1g for 4 weeks

I posted this in Space SE, but someone suggested I also post it here. So here it is! I am wondering what type of engine would most likely be available in the next 80 that can constantly accelerate a ...
Tom's user avatar
  • 203
8 votes
7 answers
4k views

How fast is too fast for travel inside the solar system?

I'm looking past the science of fuels and star ship engine details at this point because I'm trying to establish speed limits around our solar system. My initial idea was to use TIME TO DESTINATION as ...
HelloHiHola's user avatar
12 votes
12 answers
10k views

Why isn't the Solar System infested with space pirates?

In the universe in question, interplanetary travel has just about been perfected: a type of fusion reactor that doubles as an engine can produce large thrust on account of the extremely high exhaust ...
controlgroup's user avatar
  • 3,706
2 votes
0 answers
74 views

Moving people and goods between spinning and non-spinning parts of a space station [closed]

I'm thinking of three possibilities - all of which have the user experience of elevators and don't require space suits. involves a programmed pod that moves a short distance in space between docking ...
dsanford0's user avatar
17 votes
22 answers
6k views

Why can't escape pods be opened from the inside?

Set in the near future Space tourism is a thing, all commercial and non-military spaceships must come equipped with multiple escape pods. The minimum specs for each escape pod are as follows: min ...
user6760's user avatar
  • 47.9k
11 votes
11 answers
3k views

What would space equivalent of trucks look like? [closed]

I'm writing a story and the peoples' given profession is basically "space truckers": delivering small-to-medium containers of cargo across long distances in the galaxy. Because the journeys ...
E. Delaney's user avatar
2 votes
5 answers
292 views

How large a mass could a spacecraft tow between solar systems?

For the purposes of this question, let's assume space travel does not involve 'shortcuts' through other dimensions (like so-called hyperspace) and that 'tractor-beam' technology exists. Provided the ...
king of panes's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
134 views

Could laser collisions be used as an interstellar dust deflector?

What inspired this question is this : I was once reading that a real effort is underway to dream up a 0.2c spaceship (0.2c means one fifth the speed of light). Another story I read tells that ...
HelloHiHola's user avatar
7 votes
15 answers
8k views

How could a Renaissance level feudal society get into space?

My story features Renaissance-era feudal society with working space travel. Humans are able to travel around the Solar System (Earth, Mars, asteroid belt, moons of Jupiter) in spacecrafts fitted with ...
Amadán Dubh's user avatar
10 votes
3 answers
1k views

Iron drive: does this fusion superengine require clarketech? [closed]

For context: this is a very far future sci-fi setting, dozens of millenia from now, where dyson swarms and interstellar travel are commonplace, bioengineering and tech are so advanced they merge ...
Kugelblitz's user avatar
3 votes
3 answers
272 views

How would you get a ship out of a gravity well?

Context I'm helping a friend with a hard sci-fi story and we ran into an issue. In this setting the technology for absurdly powerful and efficient fusion drives which seem not to have heat managment ...
Shift_register's user avatar
7 votes
10 answers
4k views

Avoiding time travel or causality stuff

How to avoid blatantly time traveling or breaking causality in a big way when getting my characters to places quickly (Faster than light)? The method used is a tunnel in some sort of different space ...
Woli's user avatar
  • 415
2 votes
1 answer
112 views

Effect of molecular clouds on space travel and civilization

To What Extent are Molecular Clouds Geographic Barriers in Space? In a sci-fi universe I've been working on for quite a while, I have different civilizations that are initially unaware of each other's ...
EldritchEntity's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
186 views

Could a creature which evolved in space using sunlight and gas for energy and propulsion, glide in our atmosphere?

I'm imagining roughly human-sized creatures which have 'sails' that they use to absorb solar energy and steer themselves around the solar system. I'm trying to think of a feasible way such a being ...
Michael Thompson's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
208 views

How much liquid hydrogen is required to veer a manned probe off course into an escape trajectory in deep space?

I am working on this horror-scifi story based on the lost cosmonauts theory, where the Judica-Cordiglia brothers detected an SOS from a manned probe veering off into space before Yuri Gagarin ahem... ...
Alastor's user avatar
  • 3,402
9 votes
3 answers
3k views

What would it take for a spacecraft to travel to the sun's nadir and stop?

In a science fiction future universe, spacecraft routinely travel from a distance "above" a star's north or south pole to rendezvous with planets orbiting in the star system's orbital plane. ...
Scottoooooo's user avatar
3 votes
3 answers
852 views

Internal Mass Driver Engines in Cislunar Space

An internal mass driver engine uses electrical power to accelerate reaction mass in a mass driver and to accelerate a spacecraft that way. Some designs assume relatively large exhaust particles (dust ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 115k
8 votes
3 answers
764 views

Could this hypothetical Sub-Earth support human life?

The Question Is a theoretical 2/3rds - 7/10ths Earth big enough to have the magnetic field, atmosphere and plate tectonics to do this, or will I wind up geologically killing the planet? I have been ...
DangItBilly's user avatar
3 votes
3 answers
746 views

The late-victorian nuclear-thruster

Nuclear fission! How hard can that be? Nuclear reactors have been quietly humming under the earth's surface only a few billion years ago after all. It's very convenient then, that my planet's quite a ...
NimRad's user avatar
  • 1,120
10 votes
8 answers
5k views

Space-ships and stations...made from cast-iron?

If there's two things i love, it's space-flight, and late 19th century technology, and i hope to implement as much of the latter into as much of the former in my current setting. And one thing that ...
NimRad's user avatar
  • 1,120
15 votes
17 answers
4k views

How can we meet aliens in an underpopulated galaxy?

I am designing a hard sci-fi universe where humanity is confined to the Solar system and travels using fusion. One of the obstacles I am facing is how to make humans meet one alien race which is ...
FrogOfJuly's user avatar
  • 1,148
4 votes
2 answers
1k views

Amount of antimatter needed to propel large spacecraft?

Okay, So i'm not really into physics or mathematics but i'm trying my best to learn some bit of how the calculations needed for the amount of antimatter needed to propel a spacecrafft to relativistic ...
Ashimix's user avatar
  • 567
4 votes
2 answers
745 views

Spacecraft Design of a Cold-Blooded Humanoid Race

I was talking with a friend recently and he reasoned that a cold-blooded race would take longer to get to space, but survive more easily once the technology progressed enough. The rationale was that a ...
hjk321's user avatar
  • 195
6 votes
2 answers
949 views

Communication between a stationary observer and a spaceship traveling at near lightspeed

I was wondering about the possibilities of communication between a stationary observer and a spaceship traveling at near light-speed(lets say 99.99%). If the observer can send out signals at a certain ...
user934098's user avatar
14 votes
4 answers
3k views

How stable would a rogue star system be?

By some means, artificial or naturally occuring, a human inhabited star system has been flung from the Milky Way. Prior to being ejected from the galaxy, the system bears at least one Earth-like ...
WasatchWind's user avatar
  • 3,207
10 votes
5 answers
599 views

Would a star's spectroscopy be stable enough on approach to use it as a navigational reference from a great distance?

NOTE: The offered "duplicate" question IS NOT WHAT I AM ASKING. Alternative methods of navigation ARE NOT ACCEPTABLE as answers. I am specifically asking whether or not a ship traveling in ...
JBH's user avatar
  • 123k
4 votes
3 answers
2k views

Birds flying or swimming in space

I had a dream. Imagine the Moon as a bird nest the size of a dwarf planet. Flocks of adult birds travel through space to Earth in order to hunt their prey. (imagine gannet birds swimming in space) ...
lollo259's user avatar
  • 433
8 votes
3 answers
322 views

Preexisting wormholes: How to find aliens?

Setting The future, but not too far. No antimatter and no teleportation. Space travel is relatively reliable, but it's not cheap and it's powered by fusion. Space travel outside of the solar system is ...
FrogOfJuly's user avatar
  • 1,148
0 votes
6 answers
1k views

Best female underwear for rocket travel [closed]

Rocket-based travel must minimize the amount of mass that is carried. At the extreme end, this would include eliminating mostly non-functional systems such as clothing Not all clothing is without ...
Ichthys King's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
252 views

Seeking chart of nebula particle density vs. ship velocity

The traditional Sci-Fi nebula is thick as ketchup (I'm lookin' at you Star Trek!) but the reality of nebulae we know about is that a pilot wouldn't even notice that they're in one due to particle ...
JBH's user avatar
  • 123k
24 votes
24 answers
6k views

What would stop a large spaceship from looking like a flying brick?

In the far future, galactic space travel is now a common reality, and spaceships reach sizes of over 1 kilometer in length. Any capital ship in existence would therefore be designed for functionality, ...
WarpPrime's user avatar
  • 1,009
1 vote
2 answers
287 views

What could Kaiju do to stop us from travelling into deep space?

The world's overrun with Kaiju but, while they kill many and cause much destruction, our civilization continues, migrating inward, away from the coasts where the Kaiju typically occupy. Question is ...
Luke Duffy's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
309 views

Interstellar travel via a moving walkway of dust

The "moving walkways" pass close to local solar systems fairly far from their suns. They are very small, and thus hard to detect. Each "walkway" consists of two columns: dust and ...
futurebird's user avatar
  • 1,029
2 votes
1 answer
137 views

Alt-history continuation of Dynasoar program

Just hopping over from SpaceExploration I'd like to know how realistic a use-case the DynaSoar spacecraft would be for a Titan descent craft, in terms of in-universe realism. I'm assuming no far-...
Anti Elon Guy's user avatar
3 votes
4 answers
766 views

Is there a reason for Rocket-style vertical takeoff craft when you don't need to bring reaction mass?

Reactionless Drives? I have a sci-fi setting that takes place very far in the future. I like to think it tends toward the harder side of sci-fi, so I'm trying to minimize the number of Clarketechs (...
EldritchEntity's user avatar
5 votes
4 answers
467 views

How small can a nuclear weapon get?

Context I am writing the section following a critical space battle where a rogue UNN Pearl of the Stars is taken down, and its CIC, reactor and, most importantly, its payload of 4 planet buster 15-...
Sam Kitsune's user avatar
  • 1,994
-1 votes
2 answers
151 views

How does a Person survive an intergalactic voayage?

Intergalactic voyages are long, they go over quite large distances, but you, a human in the Milky Way, want to see a galaxy beyond our own with your own eyes and live there. At 99% the speed of light, ...
skout's user avatar
  • 2,068
4 votes
2 answers
707 views

How Much of the Universe Could Humanity Conquer?

Imagine that less than a million years from now, probably in the hundreds of thousands, humanity has spread throughout the galaxy. There are afew aliens here and there, but that is insignificant, they ...
skout's user avatar
  • 2,068
4 votes
1 answer
188 views

Maximum acceleration of minimally modified humans in acceleration fluid

I've been looking into viable accelerations for minimally modified humans in an acceleration-gel-type chamber. Minimally modified means no permanent or significant changes to the human body. Examples ...
chase leffers's user avatar
2 votes
10 answers
2k views

Is it possible for rockets to exist in a world that is only in the early stages of developing jet aircraft?

More specifically, is it possible for rocket engines comparable to those of the mid 1960s to exist in a world where in atmosphere jet engines are only in their early stages of development? This world ...
OT-64 SKOT's user avatar
  • 4,486
1 vote
1 answer
216 views

Would this design for a generational star ship be realistic for traveling to Alpha Centauri?

https://www.tinkercad.com/things/6hFXA0L0dOW I am writing a story with where the main character discovers this ship traveling to Alpha Centauri because our solar system has been devoured by a black ...
user11937382's user avatar

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