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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.

2
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2answers
79 views

Can artificial general intelligence live forever? [on hold]

Suppose some advanced civilization has created some AGI. AGI, i.e., strong ai, could successfully perform any intellectual task that a human being can and also carry massive knowledge databases. ...
14
votes
1answer
553 views

Scaling Up Internal Mass Drivers?

Internal mass drivers are a potentially useful space drive, due to the ready availability of reaction mass (you can use anything from spare parts to literal dirt as propellant). However, on long ...
0
votes
1answer
139 views

What will it cost me to travel through Time? (Part 1: Travelling forwards in Time - Time Dilation)

There are many questions on Worldbuilding about what item(s) a time traveller should take back in time in order to alter past events or even simply to survive. There has never as far as I know been ...
49
votes
22answers
12k views

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 ...
-4
votes
1answer
82 views

What do you think about pulsed ntr as a low end torch drive [closed]

Can pulsed ntr be a good torch drive. Atomic rocket says that with some development it can be a low end torch ship. Suppose extraction of hot fission fragment is possible and and also better cooling ...
5
votes
5answers
423 views

Artificial gravity as an engine

I have seen some people talk about the idea of ships using their magical anti-gravity systems in a story in order to not only give ships a standard floor layout and inertial dampener systems, but to ...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

How would FTL travel appear through window of ship?

How would faster-than-light travel appear through window of a space vessel? All the movies and TV shows like Star Trek and Star Wars seem unrealistic: Star Trek credits: passing stars get bigger and ...
1
vote
2answers
97 views

How Long Would Interstellar Expansion Take at Our Current Population Growth in This Circumstance?

FTL (Faster than Light) travel exists,taking around 88 hours 48 seconds to travel 1 light year. FTL communications also exists and takes only 53.28 seconds to travel 1 LY (Light Year). Jumps longer ...
4
votes
9answers
609 views

Why would a group of non-astronauts be sent on a space mission? [closed]

Question (inspired by this question, and of course the 1998 classic Armageddon) Is there a conceivable reason that NASA or any equivalent space agency (ESA, Roscosmos, etc.) would need to send non-...
-2
votes
2answers
107 views

How to physically force a remotedly controlled cannon to shoot? [closed]

Imagine there is an advanced spaceship. It's huge, and it's equipped with cannons operated by some kind of advanced energy source (atomic and upwards). This source is located in the same room as the ...
5
votes
3answers
534 views

Ideal size for a relativistic generation ship?

Assuming the ship has access to fusion power, a large volume of solar panels, and crude antimatter power generators (say maybe 1 gram a day per generator, or whatever is reasonable for technological ...
6
votes
4answers
574 views

Why should astronauts grow and eat Caulerpa taxifolia, the world's biggest single-celled organism?

Caulerpa taxifolia, an algae species popular with aquarium owners, is the largest single-celled organism known to us as of today. It is notable for being able to regenerate from any part of the body ...
13
votes
3answers
317 views

Could you carry a wormhole through another wormhole?

Okay, let's assume that travel between star systems is done through stable, stationary wormholes on the outer boundaries of each system. This alone is slightly magic for now, of course, but let's roll ...
9
votes
13answers
1k views

How can a highly advanced sub-luminal galactic empire minimise the effects of speciation?

The Humern Empire (no relation) spans the galaxy, using a variety of methods to move from place to place and planet to planet. One thing all of their modes of transport share is that they are not ...
9
votes
11answers
2k views

Harvesting automated war machines

Let`s say there is a planet on which fully automated machines capable of self replication, once belonging to several factions of highly advanced aliens, now extinct, are waging war against each other. ...
0
votes
2answers
80 views

Effects of long term exposure to a non-earth like rich atmosphere

Imagine that humanity found a rocky planet with earth like gravity, atmospheric pressure, and temperature, orbiting a sun-like star. The only problem is that the planets atmosphere is that it is ...
6
votes
9answers
594 views

Without having to deal with the gravity well, at what tech level could you build spaceships?

Let's say we have a society that for some reason (a MacGuffin, Unobtanium, Handwavium, whatever) have found a way to travel off the earth without having to fight gravity along the way. They can travel ...
13
votes
2answers
3k views

Square thrusters on spaceships

My question is pretty basic, would square thrusters and RCS ports have any real drawbacks over round ones? I know that angles on windows for airplanes is a problem because of the pressure, so I don't ...
4
votes
1answer
309 views

Interstellar Propulsion for Hard Sci-fi Novel

Hypothetical: Hundreds of years into the future. Humanity needs to travel to exoplanets quickly. I'm aiming for hard sci-fi. What kind of propulsion can travel people at 0.1 - 0.9 lightspeed? Is it ...
17
votes
4answers
2k views

Would a sleeper ship need artificial gravity?

If all of the crew and passengers of an interstellar craft were in suspended animation except prior to Earth departure and just before destination arrival, would they need artificial gravity (through ...
5
votes
3answers
463 views

The Colonist - Part I: Construction

This is the first part of a series of questions I'll ask about a self-sustaining colonization ship. I'll keep editing this post as things unfold. Part II - Landing Edit 1: Added two movie references ...
4
votes
4answers
214 views

How long would it take a matter-antimatter GeV gamma ray laser photon rocket to get to Ross128b (11 light years away)?

I'm writing a colony story, and I want my ship to colonise Ross128b, which is 11 light years away from Earth. I need the characters to be alive when they get there, but it's okay if they've aged ...
21
votes
9answers
7k views

Could common people be ready to go to space in a matter of days?

Let's say that suddenly NASA needs my characters, a party of scientists without prior experience, to go to space with a Space Shuttle-like spacecraft for a seven days mission. They only need to do ...
14
votes
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). ...
41
votes
32answers
10k views

Why would a previously spacefaring civilization become unable to build another interstellar ship?

I'm writing a story in which a civilization previously capable of (firmly technobabble-based) FTL travel has become stranded, orbiting an isolated star with no rocky planets. (There was a planet, but ...
3
votes
5answers
258 views

Why would people living inside a nebula go into space?

Assuming a sci-fi style nebula, like the thick clouds seen in Star Trek, extending several light years and hosting star systems inside, one of which gave rise to intelligent life up to current human ...
9
votes
9answers
1k views

The Colonist - Part II: Landing

This is the second part of a series of questions I'll ask about a self-sustaining colonization ship. I'll keep editing this post as things unfold. If you can, check out the other questions of this ...
6
votes
4answers
818 views

Potential system to system travel?

So one of the ideas I've come up with for system to system travel, in the early colony stage of my world, is using fuel boosters to start the journey and then to reach the required speed for the ...
19
votes
2answers
2k views

Is it possible to place a permanent probe on Uranus?

Before anyone points the finger saying this is a tasteless joke, there are some actual good reasons to pick that specific planet for exploration among the giants in our solar system: Smallest mass ...
7
votes
4answers
212 views

Is it possible to hide a base in the Kuiper Belt?

With the Kuiper Belt being composed of well over 100 million objects - some grand, some insignificant - is it possible to hide an asteroid base from enemy sensors within its confines, combined with ...
9
votes
6answers
3k views

Would this design be useful for surviving relativistic impacts?

Let's say that I've developed a new engine that can accelerate at 1G continuously. Within about a year, I'm nearing the speed of light. Naturally, I recognize the danger of collisions with gas and ...
7
votes
3answers
302 views

Let's plot a course between Earth and Gor

We know that Gor, or Counter-Earth, is not stable in a long-term sense. Let's handwave that away, or assume that we are dealing with a temporary span of time in which the instability is immaterial. ...
6
votes
3answers
107 views

Anchoring a Deimos base

Some astronauts have just arrived in Mars orbit! They're fixing to set up a small refueling station/outpost on Deimos. One problem, how might they keep their small habitat and associated structures ...
0
votes
1answer
85 views

Semi-Brachistochrone, Is It Possible?

Would it be possible for there to be an almost torchship (essentially a very, very weak one) which could fly almost brachistochrone trajectories? So instead of a full on brachistochrone, where you ...
5
votes
7answers
1k views

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 ...
9
votes
6answers
804 views

Are fly wheels a valid means of energy storage for powering a large space station?

This is something that was just offhandedly mentioned in a Sci-Fi book I read once and as I am now writing one myself I thought I might use it. The scenario is that I have a ship approaching a warp ...
10
votes
2answers
941 views

What sort of acceleration would I need for my space ship to reach Eris in 3 months

I have been working on a sci-fi story for a little while now, and have recently discovered that I made a very big error in assuming the position of Eris. The main issue is that I had forgotten to take ...
5
votes
10answers
2k views

What material to use for a near-future armoured spaceship?

In a setting with (mostly) near future technology what material would a top end naval spaceships hull be made out of? The hull must follow the following requirements: Able to withstand the strains ...
9
votes
7answers
2k views

Ways to detect lasers from afar

In my sci-fi universe, spaceship shields are generated by capturing plasma between two electromagnetic fields. Projectiles are evaporated by the heat of the plasma, and charged particles are deflected ...
56
votes
26answers
8k 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
votes
5answers
2k views

How would a real modern day space shuttle operate without satellites or any kind of communications signals?

What role do satellites, communication towers, GPS, etc, play in the operation, and specifically the landing, of a space shuttle? If those and any other human-made things suddenly disappeared, could ...
27
votes
12answers
9k views

Would gas giants work as waste disposal sites?

In my novel, the many moons of Jupiter and Saturn have been colonized, but I'm running into some logistical problems - namely, waste disposal. My first instinct was to dump it on-moon; while this is ...
-2
votes
1answer
148 views

Time travel only possible when we go behond light's speed [closed]

Friends here are my views on Time Travel: I think with every past second the light rays of that particular second travel in a different dimension & therefore the light rays of next second travels ...
2
votes
2answers
102 views

Asteroid material that can cause signal distortion

I'm making a hard-ish sci-fi universe where humans colonized nearby star systems and found not one but two civilizations in Alpha Centauri, each at home on a planet orbiting one of the two main stars. ...
70
votes
26answers
17k views

Why would any interstellar starship still bother with streamline body design?

Let's not debate whether is there any friction while traveling inside vacuum space and assume all ships can brave a perfect storm brewing inside the giant molecular cloud. OK let's get down to ...
17
votes
8answers
4k views

Software that shows space travel accurately in 3d from a physics point of view

An answer to the following question mentions a free online calculator for long-distance space travel. Software to ease my interstellar travel calculations I'm looking for a 3d simulator that ...
77
votes
7answers
11k views

Spiders In Space: How to design a space suit for an arachnid?

In my stellar empire, the sapient life of the home world are arachnids. Due to an oxygen-heavy world with certain evolutionary characteristics, spider-like beings developed intelligence and formed ...
67
votes
16answers
15k views

How can I move a planet?

There are a lot of answers on Worldbuilding about how to destroy planets - just as an example - and they seem to be the method of choice for many people intent on destroying the world. My objection to ...
6
votes
5answers
528 views

Could a 19th century space gun be of any use today in space exploration?

In 1869 a giant space gun was built, with the intent of firing a projectile at the Moon, just to prove that they can do it. Of course, the ludicrous idea to put people inside it was never even taken ...
9
votes
4answers
486 views

What torch-ship engine requires the least complex control system?

A side shot from my series on a computer-less future; see here, here, and here. Project Rho defines a torch-drive as an engine with both high acceleration and high exhaust velocity. A torch-ship is a ...