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Old June 30 2010, 05:28 AM   #23
Crazy Eddie
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Re: battles at warp speed

Brandonv wrote: View Post
newtype_alpha wrote: View Post
As for beams, the answer is simple: light always travels at the speed of light in all reference frames. So even if you're moving at warp five and the other ship is moving at warp five, a beam of light still moves as a beam of light back and forth between you.
I don't think this explanation works, because if a ship cannot outrun it's own light cone while at warp, then warp speed is no longer FTL, because the ship will not be able to outrun a beam of light in any reference frame.
Sure it can. Just not in its OWN reference frame. That's the thing about relativity: all objects are stationary in their own reference frame, the theory only predicts that an object cannot travel faster than light in other frames. Warp drive gets around this by warping space itself, literally changing the parameters of that frame so it becomes a non-inertial one and the normal laws of special relativity only apply locally.

I think it is best to ignore relativity when dealing with warp speeds.
True, but it offers a convenient explanation for why a phaser beam fired forward doesn't instantly loop around and hit you in the face. Since there's no such thing as a "true" reference frame, then by extension there's no such thing as "true" velocity, only relative velocity, so a phaser beam always moves at the same velocity relative to whoever's looking at it.
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