View Single Post
Feb9-12, 12:34 PM
Ryan_m_b's Avatar
P: 5,459
Quote Quote by SHISHKABOB View Post
this may be a misunderstanding on my part, but wouldn't it take a looot of energy to change the course of something moving extremely fast?
Kind of, by engaging in any kind of thrust you change the velocity. Simplistically think of two objects on a grid: A and B with the top being North, bottom South etc.

A is travelling north at a speed of 1 square per second. B is travelling north at a speed of 10 squares per second. Both of them apply thrust so that they are moving west at 1 square per second. For A this means that for every square it travels north it travels 1 west (creating a 45 degree angle if this grid were a graph). For B it travels 1 square west for every 10 north.

However you only have to nudge a tiny bit to be very off course over long distances. Let's posit B (a RKV now) travelling at 150,000,000 mps (~0.5c) and at some point it thrusts to one side (let's say port) so that it is travelling 1 metre to port for every 150,000,000 metres it travels forward. Over the course of a light hour (two hours of travel) it is now 3.6 km off course to port. Over a light year it would be 62,000 km off course!

And that is only supposing it sticks to the measly thrust that generates 1mps to port!