Warp Speed, Mr. Sulu!

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When you grow up with Star Trek, you tend to dream of all sorts of things.  I’ve commented before that my preference would be a phaser.  Alas.  And I do wish I had understood the potential economic benefits of developing communicators.  Alas x 2. 

Not too far down the list, though, is warp drive.  What’s the point of exploring strange new worlds if everyone you know is dead before you get there? And by the time you get there, you’re dead and it’s your kids doing the exploring?  You need to get there fast. Einstein and his inconvenient observations on light, mass, and energy.

Enter warp drive.  To heck with Einstein’s inconvenient observations on light, mass and energy.  I’d rather appeal to a higher authority.  Since Star Trek got so many things right, it’s fair to use the warp speed guidance from the official Star Trek Technical Manual.   


Note note the y-axis grid.  That’s a logarithmic scale.  That means Warp 2 isn’t simply twice the speed of light, but 10 times the speed of light, and that’s just Warp 2.  Now we’re getting places.  Fast. 

It’s not like this should be shocking news.

Consider all the alien ware housed in Area 51 and UFO's sighted around the world.  It’s obvious that beings from all those strange worlds have obviously already figured this out.  We’re just slow, pun intended, getting there.

It’s somewhat disappointing that current modeling won’t allow for a USS Enterprise or a Millennium Falcon shaped ship.  But I’ll take a Space Football, even with a ring around it.


You can read about it HERE.

And, so what if the energy required would be the equivalent of converting the mass of Jupiter to energy.  That, of course, is well within the specs of dilithium crystals.

1 comment :

  1. Warp factor grows by a cubic scale, not logarithmic. Warp 2 is 8 times the speed of light, warp 3 is 27, warp 4 is 64, etc. And anyway what you described would be called exponentional, not logarithmic.