Humanity is One Step Closer to Travel Through Space Faster Than Light, Physicist Claims

Humanity is One Step Closer to Travel Through Space Faster Than Light, Physicist Claims
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The minimum distance separating our planet from Mars is over 54 million kilometers, meaning over 100 times more than the distance to the Moon. With our current technology, it would take a few months to reach Mars if the Red Planet is at its closest approach to Earth.

That means humanity needs to go back to the drawing board, and it has already done it, thanks to the work of physicist Erik Lentz from the Göttingen University in Germany. In a study published last year in Classical and Quantum Gravity, the man stipulates that traveling at speed even faster than light might become possible one day, but there’s a massive catch. If humanity will indeed achieve something like this, going to Mars would be possible in just a few minutes, and going to other solar systems would be achievable in just a few years.

Surpassing the speed of light doesn’t (necessarily) violate Einstein’s claim

When Albert Einstein brought the magnificent work of general relativity to the world about a hundred years ago, it resulted that nothing could possibly surpass the speed of light in the scientist’s view. But it seems that he might have been wrong, or there might be some sort of scientific gimmick to bypass the rule.

Erik Lentz claims in his work that solitons, meaning quantum or quasiparticles, might find a way to travel faster through spacetime than light. Lentz even believes that there could be a way to exploit solitons in a way to make them allow time-like observers to travel faster than light.

Even so, there’s no use getting too excited, at least not yet. Here’s an important statement issued by author Erik Lentz himself:

This work has moved the problem of faster-than-light travel one step away from theoretical research in fundamental physics and closer to engineering. The next step is to figure out how to bring down the astronomical amount of energy needed to within the range of today’s technologies, such as a large modern nuclear fission power plant. Then we can talk about building the first prototypes.

Anybody dreaming of visiting Mars during a break from work?

 


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Cristian Antonescu

Even since he was a child, Cristian was staring curiously at the stars, wondering about the Universe and our place in it. Today he's seeing his dream come true by writing about the latest news in astronomy. Cristian is also glad to be covering health and other science topics, having significant experience in writing about such fields.

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