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Speed of light as an impossibility

  1. Mar 5, 2009 #1
    why is it that despite that relativity says that you cannot reach the speed of light scientists are still discussing the possiblity of reaching such a speed. have they modified the theory to reach the speed or is it something else??????????
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 5, 2009 #2


    Staff: Mentor

    Which scientists and where are they discussing it?
  4. Mar 7, 2009 #3
    i was referring to scientists in general. its just that i have read some articles on reaching the speed of light like warp drive and other FTL methods
  5. Mar 7, 2009 #4

    Vanadium 50

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    Can you give us their names, then? Where are you reading this?
  6. Mar 7, 2009 #5
    Watch more discovery channel.
  7. Mar 7, 2009 #6


    Staff: Mentor

    Warp drive is not FTL. It is about taking a shortcut; it is not about going fast.

    You will have to be more specific about "other FTL methods".
  8. Apr 13, 2009 #7
    actually what a warp drive does, in a nutshell, is that it creates a bubble by deforming the space-time so that the distances are (much much much much) shorter - within the bubble you would still travel at speed less than c and you would actually be in a state of free fall thus dealing with a potential problem of inertia dampening <- it'd be quite ingenious if we could pull it off

    read more here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alcubierre_drive
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2009
  9. Apr 13, 2009 #8
    Short answer: No. To all of that. No modifications allow for such a thing. Also, no real scientists are working on such a thing. Hypothetical space travel, like warp, etc. have nothing to do with approaching/exceeding the speed of light, they have more to do with the topology of spacetime.
  10. Apr 14, 2009 #9
    If we could get the Alcubierre drive to work, would there be any time dilation effects?
  11. Apr 16, 2009 #10
    You can read about the Alcubierre drive in Wikipedia at


    Keep in mind that while SOME of mathematics applies to the physical world, much of it does NOT. A big piece of science is figuring out what mathematical formulations might apply to the real world...how to solve those.....and when something unexpectedly pops out, how to interpret the result.

    The expansion of the universe was rather plainly a result of Einsteins general relativity, yet he missed that physical interpretation....he refused to believe it.....Similarly many formulation results explained aspects of black holes and appeared for years before leading scientists understood what they were looking at...Kip Thorne has some fascinating explanations of the latter in BLACK HOLES AND TIME WARPS
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