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Old October 9 2010, 05:27 PM   #1
jadzia_dax2369
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how far?

hi fellow trekkers


i was thinking the other day about the light years and was wondering how far is one light year?



any help?


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Old October 9 2010, 05:41 PM   #2
M
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Re: how far?

You're welcome.
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Old October 9 2010, 05:54 PM   #3
Mr Silver
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Re: how far?

It would take Voyager 1, 18,000 years at top speeds (61000 kph) to travel 1 light year from Earth, Proxima Centauri, our nearest known neighbouring star is approximately 4.22 light years from Earth

At 61000 kps it would take 18 years to traverse a lightyear and at the speed of light (300,000 kps) it would take 3.6 years to travel the same distance
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Old October 9 2010, 06:03 PM   #4
jadzia_dax2369
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Re: how far?

hi fellow trekkers


thanks for that i get it now. lol
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Old October 9 2010, 06:09 PM   #5
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Re: how far?

I compared a light year to the distance it appears on an astronomical map I have. It only seems to be about an inch on that map.
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Old October 9 2010, 06:10 PM   #6
sojourner
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Re: how far?

Captain M wrote: View Post

At 61000 kps it would take 18 years to traverse a lightyear and at the speed of light (300,000 kps) it would take 3.6 years to travel the same distance
I think your math is wrong here. 1 Lightyear should take 1 year to cross at the speed of light, hence the term.
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Old October 9 2010, 06:12 PM   #7
Mr Silver
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Re: how far?

sojourner wrote: View Post
Captain M wrote: View Post

At 61000 kps it would take 18 years to traverse a lightyear and at the speed of light (300,000 kps) it would take 3.6 years to travel the same distance
I think your math is wrong here. 1 Lightyear should take 1 year to cross at the speed of light, hence the term.
Yup, my bad

Was using mathematics as opposed to common sense...
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Old October 10 2010, 10:14 AM   #8
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Re: how far?

hi fellow trekkers


thanks for that guys it makes sense now, its always puzled me
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Old October 11 2010, 02:38 AM   #9
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Re: how far?

The term is used in other sci-fi - not just Trek. In other words, it isn't something Trek invented. Every now and then, you'll also find it misused to refer to a unit of time instead of distance. In fact, there is even a misuse here and there within Trek itself.
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Old October 11 2010, 03:10 AM   #10
sojourner
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Re: how far?

Aren't you confusing that with the misuse of "parsec" as a unit of time?
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Old October 11 2010, 03:18 AM   #11
JustKate
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Re: how far?

sojourner wrote: View Post
Aren't you confusing that with the misuse of "parsec" as a unit of time?
Nope. I wish!

No, really, every now and then, particularly in older sci-fi, you'll find a reference to "light year" in which the term clearly refers to some sort o' fancy space year - the exact meaning is never clear (probably because it's found in the kind of sci-fi in which the meaning of lots of stuff is never clear).

As for its use or misuse in Trek, I can't specifically remember this and I haven't seen the episode since I've been told this, but supposedly in the TOS episode "Elaan of Troilus," Elaan has a line that uses "light year" to mean a unit of time.
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Old October 11 2010, 06:11 PM   #12
YellowSubmarine
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Re: how far?

The "light year" usage in "Elaan of Troyius" was almost certainly intentional, and not a misuse.
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Old October 11 2010, 08:00 PM   #13
Mr Silver
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Re: how far?

24th Century Warp Scale

Travelling 1 Light Year

Warp 1: 1 Billion kph/Speed Of Light (1 Year)
Warp 2: 11 Billion kph/10x SOL (3 Months)
Warp 3: 42 Billion kph/39x SOL (1.2 Months)
Warp 4: 109[SIZE=2] billion kph/[/SIZE]102x SOL (3 Weeks)
Warp 5: 229 billion kph/214x SOL (11 Days)
Warp 6: 421 billion kph/392x SOL (1 Day)
Warp 7: 703 billion kph/656x SOL (15 hours)
Warp 8: 1.10 trillion kph/1024x SOL (9 hours)
Warp 9: 1.62 trillion kph/1516x SOL (4.4 Hours)

If Voyager had sustained Warp 9, it would have taken them 38 years to get home
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Old October 11 2010, 10:42 PM   #14
C.E. Evans
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Re: how far?

Ships in the Star Trek universe can't seem to sustain speeds greater than Warp 6 for extended periods of time without suffering major engine damage. Regardless of what its top sustainable speed is (which may be only sustainable for 12 hours as far as we know), most Federation starships seem to routinely hover around Warp 6 for really long trips and only use their maximum warp speed to cover a relatively short distance very quickly, IMO.

A relatively short distance, of course, depends on the imagination of the writer. In some stories it could be simply to the nearest system, in others it could be a sector, or the distance between Earth and the Neutral Zone...
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Old October 11 2010, 11:09 PM   #15
hofner
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Re: how far?

In addition to the lightyear being a handy measurement of interstellar distances, shorter time units can be handy for solar system distances. Namely lightseconds, lightminute and lighthours.

For instance the distance between the Earth and Moon is about 1.5 lightseconds. From the Earth to the sun is about 8 lightminutes and Neptune is 4 lighthours from the sun.

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