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Voyager There's coffee in this forum!

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Old June 4 2009, 07:14 PM   #1
Anticitizen
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Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

I was thinking about Voyager's plight of being 70,000 light years from home.

Not being a mathematician myself, I posed the following question over at physicsforums.com:

My question: what if the crew forgot about the prospect of getting back in a timely fashion as far as Earth is concerned, and just wanted to get back home in their OWN lifetimes... and thus switched off the warp drive and accelerated normally, in order to rely on time dilation to make the trip?

Since the starship has magical gizmos called 'inertial dampeners,' let's assume they can accelerate at a solid 10 G's without the crew being pancaked. Let's ignore deceleration time by saying that can use their warp drive to stop suddenly without killing everyone aboard.

So my question is, how long would a journey of 70,000 light years take with a constant acceleration of 10 G-units for the entire journey, relative to the crew's POV? Secondarily, what sort of acceleration would get the crew back home in their own lifetime, if any?

Oh, and what sort of time would pass on Earth in the meantime?
The thread is here: http://physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=317655

Plugging in x=70 000 ly, a=10*1.032 ly/y^2 and c=1 yields:



Realize that this means you're accelerating with 10g all the way to earth and then instantly decelerating to zero once you reach earth so I hope those inertial dampeners work properly.

Using equation 17 we can calculate the time that has expired on earth.

So Voyager can get back to Earth in only 1.38 years of their own time by NOT using warp drive, assuming they can keep a constant acceleration of 10 g's using impulse! Unfortunately, 70,695 years will pass on Earth. But hey, slingshot around the sun or a black hole a few times before you make the trip, and problem solved!

I guess there wouldn't have been a series though.
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Old June 4 2009, 08:45 PM   #2
TigerOfDarkness
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Re: Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

Most interesting!
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Old June 4 2009, 08:47 PM   #3
JB2005
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Re: Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

...well that'd have been easier...
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Old June 4 2009, 10:15 PM   #4
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Re: Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

Could they navigate through relativistic perspective?

there was an episode of Andromeda which covered this. Andromeda was broke down between star systems when it bumped into a ship from earth travelling at relativistic speed under the command of Tony Todd. They all wore uniforms that looked trek. I think they were taking the piss.
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Old June 5 2009, 03:52 AM   #5
thedude
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Re: Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

Yabbut...

Then they wouldn't have had 7 years of TV show... DUH!

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Old June 5 2009, 06:47 AM   #6
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Re: Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

How fast do the impulse engines go though? I thought that full impulse was like 1/4 the speed of light.
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Old June 5 2009, 08:34 AM   #7
Zameaze
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Re: Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

Anticitizen wrote: View Post
So Voyager can get back to Earth in only 1.38 years of their own time by NOT using warp drive, assuming they can keep a constant acceleration of 10 g's using impulse! Unfortunately, 70,695 years will pass on Earth. But hey, slingshot around the sun or a black hole a few times before you make the trip, and problem solved!

I guess there wouldn't have been a series though.
Am I missing something here? Wouldn’t a constant acceleration of 10 g's, or 322 ft/sec^2, take us past the speed of light and make any results obtained from such an equation meaningless?
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Old June 5 2009, 08:44 AM   #8
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Re: Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

Zameaze wrote: View Post
Anticitizen wrote: View Post
So Voyager can get back to Earth in only 1.38 years of their own time by NOT using warp drive, assuming they can keep a constant acceleration of 10 g's using impulse! Unfortunately, 70,695 years will pass on Earth. But hey, slingshot around the sun or a black hole a few times before you make the trip, and problem solved!

I guess there wouldn't have been a series though.
Am I missing something here? Wouldn’t a constant acceleration of 10 g's, or 322 ft/sec^2, take us past the speed of light and make any results obtained from such an equation meaningless?
No it won't 10 g's = 322 ft/sec^2 only works on low velocities.
You can accelerate indefinitely (assuming an unending fuel supply) and still never reach the speed of light.
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Old June 5 2009, 09:31 AM   #9
Bill Morris
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Re: Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

Thrusters, not impulse engines, which are basically a sublight version of warp drive, using driver coils instead of true warp coils.

But Janeway had the chance to get Voyager home early on, just by agreeing to explore with Q, just as Vash did. And since Q had the ability to let her be in two places at the same time, she could have stayed with the ship and explored strange, new worlds simultaneously, not to mention do as she pleased with the Borg, the Dominion, etc. just by nagging Q whenever she wanted something.
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Old June 5 2009, 01:43 PM   #10
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Re: Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

wut
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Old June 5 2009, 02:35 PM   #11
TheGodBen
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Re: Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

Anticitizen wrote: View Post
Unfortunately, 70,695 years will pass on Earth.
So by the time they got back to Earth the human race would have evolved into orange lizards? Ironic.
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Old June 5 2009, 07:33 PM   #12
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Re: Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

Zameaze wrote: View Post
Anticitizen wrote: View Post
So Voyager can get back to Earth in only 1.38 years of their own time by NOT using warp drive, assuming they can keep a constant acceleration of 10 g's using impulse! Unfortunately, 70,695 years will pass on Earth. But hey, slingshot around the sun or a black hole a few times before you make the trip, and problem solved!

I guess there wouldn't have been a series though.
Am I missing something here? Wouldn’t a constant acceleration of 10 g's, or 322 ft/sec^2, take us past the speed of light and make any results obtained from such an equation meaningless?
Nah, you'll get within 99.9% of the speed of light... and then 99.99%... then 99.999%.... and so on. Time will dialate more and more, but the 'light barrier' will never be crossed.
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Old June 6 2009, 01:39 AM   #13
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Re: Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

Anticitizen wrote: View Post
Zameaze wrote: View Post
Anticitizen wrote: View Post
So Voyager can get back to Earth in only 1.38 years of their own time by NOT using warp drive, assuming they can keep a constant acceleration of 10 g's using impulse! Unfortunately, 70,695 years will pass on Earth. But hey, slingshot around the sun or a black hole a few times before you make the trip, and problem solved!

I guess there wouldn't have been a series though.
Am I missing something here? Wouldn’t a constant acceleration of 10 g's, or 322 ft/sec^2, take us past the speed of light and make any results obtained from such an equation meaningless?
Nah, you'll get within 99.9% of the speed of light... and then 99.99%... then 99.999%.... and so on. Time will dialate more and more, but the 'light barrier' will never be crossed.
Thanks for the answer, Anticitizen. However I’m still confused--if Voyager is accelerating in the direction of motion at 322 feet per second per second, the ship would never reach the speed of light because of time dilation?

At around 186,000 miles per second, would it seem to the crew that they were still constantly accelerating at 322 ft/sec/sec?

If they passed Earth while traveling at 99.9 per cent of the speed of light, how fast would they be traveling from the frame of reference of the people of Earth? I'm guessing not as fast since they would be very massive.

Now, this brings another question to mind--Voyager can’t reach the speed of light because she would obtain infinite mass--does this mean she would be infinitely large or just infinitely dense? And can she become infinitely dense without becoming infinitely large?
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Old June 6 2009, 11:17 AM   #14
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Re: Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

This is the craziest cool shit I've read in a while!! Sorry for the slang.
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Old June 6 2009, 06:45 PM   #15
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Re: Voyager can get home in 1.38 years!

shatastrophic wrote: View Post
This is the craziest cool shit I've read in a while!! Sorry for the slang.
That's really not slang...
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