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andrew123

What is the most likely future method of FTL

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For example, is it something resembling a Slipspace drive, or the Alcubierre drive. Post your evidence and arguments here.

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The most likely future is slower than light travel :/
I'm still holding onto hope... although it is most likely a futile wish. I really do hope that we find some way to break the laws of physics for ftl travel. Edited by andrew123

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You never know what science will accomplish, but FTL travel will certainly not be within our lifetime.

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It's hard to say. All FTL concepts that I know of require the existence of some sort of "negative mass" that has an effective mass of <0 (although it still has positive mass... I still don't understand it).

  • Alcubierre drives need some sort of technology to warp space in front and behind the craft (apparently it abides by physics, but nobody has a clue as to how to do it).
  • Wormholes need some way of knowing where the other end is (if that is even possible)
  • Hyperspace/subspace/nexus concepts need such things to exist... not to mention a way to get their reliably.

I'd put my money on the wormhole idea though, but with the catch that even though it would be the easiest to make, it might be impossible to utilize for any purpose aside from sending probes to random parts of the universe.

P.S. If Einstein is right, you can't actually go faster than light. All of the aforementioned concepts are pseudo-FTL drives. They don't make you go faster than light, they just allow you to travel great distances in reasonable periods of time.

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I don't really think there are any ideas for FTL travel that qualify as being very likely. They all rely on exotic physics or material that have flimsy evidence at best supporting them. Even if they were possible, the energy requirements for travel at those kind of speeds would be immense, it's unlikely to be practical or economically viable to move any significant mass at those speeds. On top of that, the fact that the universe doesn't appear to be swarming with interstellar civilisations seems to suggest that interstellar travel is extremely difficult.

IMO the best option for practical travel at those speeds is to ride a beam. Photons are cheap and quite happily move at light speed, you can encode a lot of information in them (such as an AI or a digitised human mind) and the "passenger" doesn't require any life support or perceive the passage of any time while in transit. Zooming around in tin cans full of meat is a bit of a silly idea for long distance space travel.

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the abuculer drive relies on energy representing matter, the phenomenon that allows photons to be affected by gravity, and would somehow concentrate huge amours of energy on one spot to create a gravitational pull. it could also use negative energy, which should have anti gravitational properties. (only observed in insanely small amounts, but it does exist. the way i understood it it that it would be like having a gravity well in front of you and a negative one behind. may be wring though.

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You never know what science will accomplish, but FTL travel will certainly not be within our lifetime.

Don't be so pessimistic,people thought nothing heavier than air cannot liftoff until in 1903 the wright brothers finally lifted off the ground,63 years later we landed on the moon.

the abuculer drive relies on energy representing matter, the phenomenon that allows photons to be affected by gravity, and would somehow concentrate huge amours of energy on one spot to create a gravitational pull. it could also use negative energy, which should have anti gravitational properties. (only observed in insanely small amounts, but it does exist. the way i understood it it that it would be like having a gravity well in front of you and a negative one behind. may be wring though.

I think it's because the space in front of the ship is getting smaller and the one behind the ship is getting bigger.

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Alcubierre drives work by expanding space behind a ship and contracting it in front.

Wormholes would most likely be achieved via enlargement of pre-exisisting wormholes in what is known as the quantum foam (quantum foam is at the subatomic level, named because its particals pop in and out of existance like bubbles in soapy water). Both of these FTL drive (technically 'translight drives' as there is no real need to increase velocity, they just bypass the lightspeed limit).

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Don't be so pessimistic,people thought nothing heavier than air cannot liftoff until in 1903

I doubt that, anybody with a basic grasp of school physics would tell you that all you need is a sufficient force opposing gravity. There's no physical principle opposing heavier than air flight. There is one opposing FTL travel. The only ideas we have for getting around that obstacle rely on things that have never been observed in the universe. Different kettle of fish.

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Don't be so pessimistic,people thought nothing heavier than air cannot liftoff until in 1903 the wright brothers finally lifted off the ground,63 years later we landed on the moon.
None of those achievements had proven physics laws saying that they were impossible. When people point that science and technology advancements will make any idea a reality usually ignore that those same advancements have the same chance of completely wrecking it, just like the development of thermodynamics put an end to perpetual motion machines.
I'm for the Alcubierre Drive.

Miguel Alcubierre himself says that it can't be done though.

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Don't be so pessimistic,people thought nothing heavier than air cannot liftoff until in 1903 the wright brothers finally lifted off the ground

Heavier-than-air flying toys have been around for the best part of 2500 years.

Engine powered "heavier than air flight" predated the Wright brothers' by more than 25 years.

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Miguel Alcubierre himself says that it can't be done though.

he just said that he doubts that it could be done in the century, and that it MIGHT not be possible at all.

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Heavier-than-air flying toys have been around for the best part of 2500 years.

Engine powered "heavier than air flight" predated the Wright brothers' by more than 25 years.

so whe could have rudimentary warp drives/wormholes/subspacedrive/phaseshifters that are not capable of anything more that being used as simple toys for a few centuries then the first prototype would be available, then 63~88 years after whe will be colonising Andromeda.(hystory has a tendency to repeat itself after all)

as for me i am putting my money on the warpdrive because NASA is allready researching into it and it seems the most versatrille

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he just said that he doubts that it could be done in the century, and that it MIGHT not be possible at all.

He said that it can't be done unless there's breakthrough in fundamental physics, not that "it might not be possible".

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Some physicists theorise that smaller alcubierre bubbles could be made using realistic ammounts of energy. These would be at a sub-atomic scale. Also it is possible that Slower Than Light alcubierre drives could funtion without absurd ammounts of energy. In my opinion alcubierre drives appear promising, even if very far off.

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Don't be so pessimistic,people thought nothing heavier than air cannot liftoff until in 1903 the wright brothers finally lifted off the ground,63 years later we landed on the moon.

Nobody said that. For god sake, what about birds? Paper planes? Leaves in the wind? Hot air balloons?

Lifting winged machines into the air was a technological problem. No physical laws were in front of it as obstacles.

FTL is in the exactly same category as perpetual motion. There's exactly zero things that promise anyone will witness it, ever.

It seems as a technological problem because we're all brainwashed by science fiction movies.

What I think might be accomplished is FTL communication. That would be great.

Edited by lajoswinkler

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The most likely future method of FTL?

Traveling Faster Than Light, like it has been since the term was invented.

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Personally I think the easiest way to achieve FTL travel is to simply redefine the question. Light has been recorded going as slowly as 38mph, so my most likely method for achieving it is: a car.

In fact I'm going to go do some FTL travel on the way home from work right now!

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Personally I think the easiest way to achieve FTL travel is to simply redefine the question. Light has been recorded going as slowly as 38mph, so my most likely method for achieving it is: a car.

In fact I'm going to go do some FTL travel on the way home from work right now!

Yeah, but you'd have to drive through a cylinder made of solid crystal. :P

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Alcubierre Drive. But I see that as a long long way off. We will likley use slower than light speed antimatter drives that can get near speed of light. At those speeds time dilation will make the trips shorter than what they catually are.

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What I think might be accomplished is FTL communication. That would be great.

AFAIK quantum entanglement cannot be used to relay information faster than light. Unless the current theories are wrong to some extent, of course...

@OP: At any rate, we can't "break" the laws of physics. We can only find ways to make them work in our favour :)

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