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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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2
votes
2answers
173 views

Space travel without knowledge of relativity

A civilization has begun its space program without any knowledge of general or special relativity. How would this affect the program? Would this establish any limits on where/how they could travel? ...
3
votes
2answers
57 views

Using spin gravity only for stationary activities?

For a spacecraft cruising without thrust it is my understanding that the sort of spin gravity utilized in the film 2001, for instance, would actually be debilitating to the crew due to the coriolis ...
4
votes
3answers
122 views

Properties of a new engine

In my story, I need a spaceplane, that is, a shuttle which can fly in an atmosphere as well as in space. It needs to be able to land from space, and then take off and go to space without refuelling on ...
5
votes
5answers
940 views

Perils of having a moon consisting of valuable material

In the 1960s we were disappointed to find that the moon is a pile of dust and rubble with no easily accessible valuable materials. Well, we kind of knew it before that, but we weren't sure. Anyway, ...
2
votes
2answers
135 views

Can a human crew handle cyclic extended high relativistic speed operations?

This question hopes to make a space tug crew's life tolerable. A supply pipeline links two civilizations. Due to the long travel time between the ends, cargo is "thrown" at the other side in unmanned ...
5
votes
6answers
141 views

Locating rogue planet in deep space based on astronomical observations from its surface?

Assume that you have a Rogue Planet hurtling through deep space. Somehow, an alien civilization from, say, 1,000 ly away acquires astronomical data from this planet. This data is in the form of high ...
7
votes
3answers
236 views

1g Acceleration Spaceship Design

In my story, a ship is built in orbit around Earth, designed for a 20-person scientific expedition to a planet 11.4 ly away. It will accelerate at 1g for half the distance, then flip around and ...
10
votes
3answers
248 views

Hurricane-force winds or gentle breezes in an O'Neill Cylinder?

Let's consider an O'Neill cylinder with a radius of 3.2km and length of 20km. In the classic O'Neill design, we have three large axis-aligned windows in the shell, alternating between purlins of ...
8
votes
1answer
344 views

Do Alcubierre Drives Mandate Time Travel, or Just Allow it?

So, I've heard that while Alcubierre drives might present a semi-plausible way of getting around the light speed limit (if you can get ahold of negative energy), they do so at the expense of creating ...
2
votes
1answer
98 views

The solar system is open for exploration. What fundamental research will we do first? [closed]

In the near future, technology and budgets for space flight have advanced considerably, with lots of uncrewed probes around and crewed missions as far as Mars. Notably, there's a significant ...
4
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1answer
137 views

Metallic hydrogen powered vehicles

Let’s say metallic hydrogen becomes an economically viable resource that we are able to either make ourselves or mine from a gas giant, how would we use it as a power source for vehicles both ...
35
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19answers
10k views

Are dead worlds a good galactic barrier?

In my fictional universe there are two galactic civilizations that have never interacted until recently and thus have developed different cultures, science, etc. From a technological standpoint, one ...
31
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6answers
4k views

What could possibly power an Alcubierre drive?

I understand that in order to compress and expand spacetime, an Alcubierre drive would require some sort of "exotic matter" with a negative energy density. Is that sort of exotic matter purely ...
3
votes
2answers
150 views

Explain the rotation and positioning of O'Neill cylinders to me

I have seen Isaac Arthurs video of O'Neill cylinders and read through many descriptions, but it still is not clear to me how exaclty the two counter-rotating cylinders are placed in regard to another ...
5
votes
3answers
334 views

How fast could our modern-day world build a rocket to the moon if we threw our resources at it?

For some reason, all the nations in the world have banded together. Their goal? Go to the Moon. Their budget? As much as the planet and humans can throw at it. How fast could we build a reliable and ...
2
votes
2answers
163 views

How would time dilation affect a fleet moving through a black hole's event horizon?

In a game scenario I am developing, one option for a fleet to infiltrate an enemy is to use ftl to "hard burn" through a black hole's event horizon. Their ftl drives use a "warp bubble" principle to ...
9
votes
1answer
197 views

What is the fastest an earth-like planet can spin and still support life, and would it be possible to launch space-craft from it?

I was wondering, if a planet in similar size and mass to earth would have, from its creation, been spinning at this hypothetical planet speed limit (with it somehow staying in once piece) could life ...
0
votes
3answers
125 views

Need advice for a sci-fi Scylla and Charybdis [closed]

I want to set up a "Scylla and Charybdis" pair of hazards to space navigation. My idea is to have them blocking the end of a galactic arm that needs to be reached. I had a few ideas for both, but am ...
11
votes
2answers
442 views

How large would a space station have to be to hold one million people indefinitely?

A moon-sized asteroid approaches Earth in the near future, where space tourism has become normal. The Earth has a few satellite structures above Mars conducting research, as well as successful ...
22
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13answers
7k views

How could a self contained organic body propel itself in space

How could an organic, plant-like, intelligent organism move around space? Assuming that the body is inside a small meteoroid and that outside of the meteoroid is covered in tessellating leaves to ...
8
votes
3answers
296 views

If an Alcubierre Drive is possible, can you communicate FTL without a vessel?

Assume that an Alcubierre drive is feasible. In fact, assume that one has been built. A superluminal starship can propel itself through space by distorting space in front of it and behind it. However, ...
3
votes
3answers
170 views

(Semi) Scientific way to explain fast space travel

I am looking for a (if only semi or even the tiniest bit) scientifically explainable way to make a spaceship travel fast enough that interplanetary travel (take the average distance between any 2 of ...
5
votes
4answers
247 views

Could one use Air Pressure as a form of stealth Propulsion in Space?

This is my first question here so I would like to apologize if this is sloppy or in the wrong place or the like. I have searched and found nothing that answers the exact question I think, so thought ...
-1
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2answers
112 views

Spaceplane simulating winged flight in the vacuum of space?

If a spaceplane were to try to simulate the look of aerial flight in the vacuum, would it be difficult or easy for the pilot to manually simulate aerial maneuvers, using just a contemporary reaction ...
-3
votes
1answer
124 views

How to calculate time to reach fractions of the speed of light when accelerating at 1g

Currently writing a scifi novel and am trying to do the math to establish time frame of the lore. The main points are that in 2068 CE Earth sent a generation ship to colonize Proxima Centauri. They ...
8
votes
3answers
287 views

What gases could be present in a viable atmosphere for humans?

I'm working on a story involving humans looking for another habitable planet, and I have been scouring the net for days, finding lots of info on varying levels of oxygen and nitrogen, but none that ...
6
votes
7answers
3k views

If there were no space agencies, could a person go to space?

I'm writing a story and I was thinking about the ending in advance. I posted a question about how the population would be wiped out. I have developed from that and thought about the virus having no ...
16
votes
8answers
3k views

Does it make sense to occupy open space?

I was thinking about space as a measured and marked series of boundary lines to denote ownership and governance. The problem is that I'm having trouble seeing that as useful. If there's no particular ...
5
votes
3answers
152 views

Using an Asteroid's Momentum for Spaceship Propulsion

There's a lot of talk on futurist blogs about mining asteroids for propellant and other resources for space travel, but I have something else in mind. Could a spaceship, starting out in geocentric ...
2
votes
6answers
270 views

How can a twin on Earth grow old slower than his/her twin sibling?

I understand it might happen in a weak gravitational field. If I have twins on Earth, but one of them suddenly gets transported to intergalactic medium (without any great mass nearby), then the ...
10
votes
6answers
4k views

What is a plausible power source to indefinitely sustain a space station?

I'm allowing for approximately 150 years of technological advancement. This is in Earth's future, so I want to be realistic based off of what we are capable of now and projections for declining ...
3
votes
4answers
180 views

Mobile/Deployable Space Elevator? [closed]

Would it be possible to have a space elevator that could be coiled up stored in a ship during transport and then deployed from orbit down to a planet upon arrival? Additionally, About how much ...
1
vote
2answers
103 views

Required RPM for a Hamster wheel style Habitation ring on a spaceship to generate roughly Earth-ish gravity [duplicate]

I'm looking at a ship that is pretty big. About 720 feet from nose to tail, with two stonking big rockets on the sides, these will flip for deceleration. At roughly the same rotational pivot point, in ...
3
votes
5answers
195 views

How does targeting teleportation work without a pad or something?

So, I've got an idea for galactic travel involving some fancy particle physics and the Higgs-field, but I've just discovered I don't know how teleporting really works. Or any of that kind of stuff, ...
3
votes
3answers
279 views

How would Army units be deployed efficiently by a spacefaring civilization against multiple threats?

First off, I'm talking about a true, professionally trained army. Humans also learned, very early on, that they are not alone and the universe is very Darwinian. Also, human nature doesn't change, ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

How to get the speed of my spaceship?

I have a spaceship that can get to speeds very close to the speed of light. How can this ship measure how fast it is going near the speed of light? I would think one would measure how fast other ...
8
votes
2answers
306 views

Space ship deceleration from speed of light

A space ship travels (almost) at the speed of light. When it nearly reaches its destination it starts decreasing the speed. What would be the most appropriate deceleration for human body in such ...
12
votes
5answers
2k views

In order to successfully have 3 orbital rings around a planet how do you have to orient them?

I am writing a short story about an overworked planet whose civilization has achieved space elevators and orbital rings. The planet, which is earth-sized, has three complete orbital rings in stable ...
9
votes
2answers
328 views

Intragalactic velocity past the central black hole

In my story people are traveling from somewhere beyond the opposite side of the galaxy to Earth. The distance traveled is approximately 66 million light-years. I would like the travelers to ...
8
votes
2answers
300 views

Wings for orbital transfer bioships? - The ascent

I've been looking at the altitude boosted SSTO designs from the 90s that were designed to be lifted to launch altitude by modified jetliners and thinking about bumblebees and wondering if bioships ...
1
vote
0answers
176 views

Possible FTL travel methods for hard(ish) sci-fi? [closed]

I'm working on a story that requires travel at about convenient* speeds (see below). I want to keep this story as hard sci-fi as possible and I've heard about stuff like Alcubierre drives which sound ...
10
votes
4answers
3k views

How fast can a ship with rotating habitats be accelerated?

Alright so I'm not really a physics person by any stretch so forgive me if I butcher some physics jargon on this post. So I'm making this hard sci-fi interstellar ship with a rotating habitat that ...
4
votes
6answers
270 views

Depopulating the Earth in an Ethical Manner [closed]

In my novel, an alien species has defeated Earth and its sister planets, but rather than outright slaughter, subjugation or slavery, they want to remove all (or effectively all) Humans from Earth so ...
6
votes
1answer
240 views

Acceleration/Deceleration equation for travel within a solar system

Basics: There is a wormhole in a fixed position within a solar system. It is roughly 40 million miles from the orbit of the habitable planet, which kind of mimics Earth (roughly 12 month solar orbit ...
0
votes
3answers
132 views

How might wizards figure out how to walk on the moon? [closed]

A group of wizards is currently planning a trip to the moon to study why it makes werewolves happen. They plan to teleport to the lunar surface, do a few hours of investigation (e.g. watch samples of ...
4
votes
4answers
307 views

How can I measure the distance between two stars? [closed]

So I am doing a write-up for a world setting set in our galaxy. I know the distance from Earth to the different stars in Light Years. However I am now trying to figure out how to measure the distance ...
43
votes
10answers
7k views

Electricity free spaceship

Assume there's a spaceship in earth orbit that its crew of 24 want to get to Mars, the crew are all humans and possess all of modern day knowledge and equipment, is it possible for said ship to make ...
30
votes
10answers
6k views

Non-aqueous eyes?

I am trying to create an organism that can survive in space for short periods, but I realized that I can't have its eyes be similar to those of most animals and humans because they would boil in space....
5
votes
1answer
164 views

Traversal of creatures in space (hydrogen metabolistic processes)

For a space-based story I am writing, I was hypothesising about how to have organisms that can thrive the vacuum of space. Ignoring plausibility of such a creature evolving, I realised a few problems ...
1
vote
3answers
176 views

What safeguards are in place on a seedship fleet to ensure that all eventual crew members are interested in the mission? [closed]

Knowing that a journey to Some Star would take too long for a fully trained crew to survive, and in the absence of suspended animation, we have decided to send a ship with embryos on board. Once they ...