Science fiction inspires inventors, it is not necessary to forget about it
What has long been considered science fiction is today commonplace. So, recently in real time, the whole world watched the spectacular space show – the launch of manned spacecraft Crew Dragon to ISS. Today it may seem that the first manned flight into space was very long, but if you look at the speed of technology, it is staggering: the first ever rocket to explore the parameters of the air environment, was launched 83 years ago! During this time, the world had the Internet, and even rocket Falcon9 from that come back and sit automatically. So maybe future technology will make the reality of space travel?
Who of us in childhood did not dream of interstellar travel? Yes there is, I don't know about you, but I still dream that one day near the house will land a flying saucer and invited for a tour of the vast Universe. Is it any wonder, after all, interstellar travel is a staple of the sci-Fi series. Anyway, with the development of technology – from the famous pasela Boston Dynamics and to more advanced rockets and space probes, the question arises: is it worth to hope that someday we colonize the stars? Or, if we ignore this distant dream, if we send to alien planets, space probes and using them to see what is happening there?
The Truth is that interstellar travel and exploration is technically feasible. There is no law of physics, which is expressly prohibited. But this does not mean that humanity will soon invent a similar technology. Interstellar travel — it's a real headache, and in our lifetime people will not fly to colonize other stars. But there is good news – we have reached the status of an interstellar research. Several spacecraft move to the edge of the Solar system, and leaving it will never return. NASA missions Voyager, Pioneer and New Horizons began its long journey outward.
Agree, sounds great: we have interstellar space probes that work. But the problem is that they are not in a hurry. Each of these intrepid interstellar explorers is moving at a speed of tens of thousands of miles per hour. They are not heading toward any particular star, because their mission was designed to study planets inside of the Solar system. But if some of those spacecraft were sent to our nearest neighbor, Proxima Centauri is only 4 light years from Earth, they would reach it in about 80,000 years.
the people will Soon return to the moon, but I'll put this the end of the lunar conspiracy theories?
This is All very nice, but it is unlikely that the NASA budget is calculated on such dates. In addition, by the time when the probes reach something interesting, their devices will stop working and eventually will just fly through the void. In fact it is a kind of success: human ancestors were not similar to guys that can launch into space with robotic machines .
To make interstellar flights more «reasonable», the probe needs to move very quickly. Approximately one-tenth the speed of light. At this speed the spacecraft could reach Proxima Centauri in a few decades, and in a few years, send back pictures – and all this in the limits of human life. Is it so silly to want the same person who started the mission, completed it?
But the movement at such speeds require huge amounts of energy. One of the options is to contain that energy on Board the spacecraft as fuel. But if so, the extra fuel adds mass, which makes it even more difficult for the acceleration to the desired speed. There are projects and sketches of the atomic spacecraft that try to achieve this goal, but if we don't want to begin to build thousands of nuclear bombs just to put them in a rocket, we need to come up with something else.
Probe Voyager 2 has moved beyond the heliosphere
As the publication Discover, perhaps one of the most promising ideas is to keep energy source of a spacecraft fixed and some way to transport this energy to the spacecraft as it moves. One way to do this is by using lasers. Well radiation carries energy from one place to another, especially across vast distances in space. Then the spacecraft can capture this energy and move forward.
But when it comes to how to make the space ship move with the required speed, the laser power of 100 gigawatts, many orders of magnitude more powerful than any laser that we have ever designed. And spacecraft, the weight of which shall not exceed the mass of the paper clips should include a camera, a computer, power supply, scheme, shell, antenna for communication with the home and is reflecting the lightsail. The real journey starts after accelerating to one-tenth the speed of light. For 40 years, this little spacecraft will have to endure all the trials of interstellar space. Although such technologies today seem to be something from the category of science fiction, there's no law of physics that forbids its existence. The question is: are we willing to spend enough money to find out whether you can build such a ship?
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