After reading The Physics of Star Trek
, I realized just how improbable the transporter is a piece of technology! It makes the Heart of Gold
's Improbability Drive look positively facile by comparison! When you beam up someone, are you beaming up the matter or the information about the matter (i.e. - The bits or the atoms?) If you were beaming up the atoms, then consider you'd have to have enough energy to break down every atom into pure energy (the equivalent of many, many
hydrogen bombs.) On the other hand, storing the info on 10 to the 28th power atoms in the human body is no cakewalk either! Especially on a ship utilizing tape-based computer systems...