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Thread: Black Hole Starship! a way to the stars

  1. #1 Black Hole Starship! a way to the stars 
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    i read this article on newscientist.com which says that recent studies show that we can build starships which use black holes as fuel to reach light speed in a few years.even if that achieved is it possible to manintain the spacecraft's integrityat light speed :? ? b/c i think the physics tells us that at light speed every thing is a photon, virtually massless.


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    Geo
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    Nothing with mass can travel at the speed of light.


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    Hi... I'm not a Astronomer and so I'm a little ignorant in this matter but I'd like to know if the idea to the time travel which could be possible by using the acceleration that come by crossing is just a fantasy, an invention... or it is a theory that come from theorical interpretation of data recorded...

    I mean: is there a possibility that this strange idea might be real?

    My point of view is actually that an object that is attract by the gravity which is very high near a black hole... could cross this wide area but that after the passage... well it should be on the opposit place then before the crossing...

    thank for anyone could reply and help me to understand easily this great issue!!
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    It is difficult to understand, what you actually mean. Are you saying that, if you get close to a Black Hole, you will be accelerated by the gravitational force that is acting upon you, so that you can reach velocities close to the speed of light and encounter relativistic effects?

    It is a frequent misconception that Black Holes necessarily have a strong gravitational field. This is not true. A star collapsing to a Black Hole does not increase its mass - and the mass is what produces gravity. But, the tidal forces are much higher, because the spacetime has a stronger curvature and hence the mass is packed more densely. So, it can very well be that you would have to cross the event horizon in order to gain a considerable amount of speed. But then it is too late. :wink:

    Anyway, time travel will still not be possible, because the only effects that might occur at very high velocities are time dilation and length contraction, just as Special Relativity predicts. However, those phenomena are only valid for constant velocities. In the end, this is just another example of the twin paradox. So, I suggest you read this:
    http://www.thescienceforum.com/Speci...mer-19044t.php
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    I read the original article also.

    http://www.newscientist.com/article/...mg20427361.000

    The idea is to use a mini black hole both as a source of energy and a source of reaction mass. The energy is from Hawking radiation, and it is directed to leave the vessel in one direction, thus providing thrust. According to the article, the 'sweet spot' is a black hole of one million tonnes mass. About the size of an atom.

    If such a black hole can be discovered, or created, and if the technology for harnessing it is in place, then in theory, as the black hole evaporates, the energy discharge is used to propel the starship.

    Of course, there is no suggestion of reaching light speed. However, the article suggested that, in theory, such a craft could reach a high fraction of light speed - possibly even enough for time dilation effects to become significant and useful.
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    Thanks for your answer...

    I'm sorry but I have to be a bit clearer...

    The question was and is: Where do you think an object that is going to cross a black hole will go...? only to the opposite part of it...? or it could be possible that it can reach an other space in an other part of the universe because of the great energy that it met...

    I mean is it like when you cross a tunnel...? or is it possible that in that black tunnel it could happen something strange so that in the opposite space there is nothing because the object by crossing the hole.. did a sort of "space-time jump"?
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    gius

    Re crossing a black hole.
    The highest probability is that passing the event horizon of a black hole leads to the object (or space ship) simply being absorbed into the black hole and basically being destroyed. Any person aboard is then dead.

    There is another possible outcome of very low probability. Some calculations (do not ask me to reproduce or explain them. I cannot) suggest that in one specific case, another outcome is possible. That is, if a galaxy sized black hole is spinning, the event horizon becomes toroidal. If a spaceship enters the centre 'hole' it may leave elsewhere. Elsewhere might be elsewhere in our universe. In another time. In another universe.

    However, bear in mind that this is an area of great uncertainty in our knowledge, and the reality (if anyone ever tried it) may be quite different.
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    Thanks a lot skeptic...

    Your explaination has been absolutely clear and very interesting...

    I've never thought about the destruction's version of an object crossing a black hole... which is of course the most likely!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geo
    Nothing with mass can travel at the speed of light.
    Does this mean that we cant tavel at light soeed even if we have a machine that can do the job?
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic
    I read the original article also.

    http://www.newscientist.com/article/...mg20427361.000

    The idea is to use a mini black hole both as a source of energy and a source of reaction mass. The energy is from Hawking radiation, and it is directed to leave the vessel in one direction, thus providing thrust. According to the article, the 'sweet spot' is a black hole of one million tonnes mass. About the size of an atom.

    If such a black hole can be discovered, or created, and if the technology for harnessing it is in place, then in theory, as the black hole evaporates, the energy discharge is used to propel the starship.

    Of course, there is no suggestion of reaching light speed. However, the article suggested that, in theory, such a craft could reach a high fraction of light speed - possibly even enough for time dilation effects to become significant and useful.
    fractions of light speed was waht it said tnx for briefing the article.
    theoretically what would happen to a human body if it were accelearated to the speed of light? i mean physically
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    No one knows what would happen if something with mass (a person for instance) was accelerated to the speed of light. With our knowlege as it currently is, it is IMPOSSIBLE to make something with mass, travel the speed of light.


    Another thread in the physics section dealt with this same situation. I'll take an excerpt from it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Janus
    I know you said not to mention that it was impossible, but that very fact is important to the question.

    Here's why:

    Everything we know about the universe says that a material object can never reach the speed of light. So when you ask what would happen to an object that reaches the speed of light, you are asking what would happen if what we knew about the universe were not true. But if what we know about the universe is not true, it can not be used to answer your question.

    IOW, if we accept the premise of the question, we have to throw out the rules that disallow it and replace them with new rules that allow it. However, since we don't know what the new rules should be, we still can't answer the question. The new rules might have the matter turning to energy, disappearing altogether, nothing happening to it at all, or turning into invisible pink elephants for all we know.
    http://www.thescienceforum.com/theor...ion-21529t.php

    A link to that post.
    "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster...when you gaze long into the abyss the abyss also gazes into you" - Friedrich Nietzsche

    Semper Paratus
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    Is it possible to create artificial black holes? Are people working on it? Some people thought the Cern hadron collider might give rise to black holes.
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    Quote Originally Posted by arde987
    Quote Originally Posted by Geo
    Nothing with mass can travel at the speed of light.
    Does this mean that we cant tavel at light soeed even if we have a machine that can do the job?
    There is no such machine that "can do the job", because it is impossible. It is against the laws of physics.
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  15. #14  
    Geo
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    Quote Originally Posted by arde987
    theoretically what would happen to a human body if it were accelearated to the speed of light? i mean physically
    The problem is the acceleration part, but for this theoretical situation we'll forget it. Lets say you're travelling at some fraction of light speed on your space-ship, it will be no different to sitting on the couch at home, that is, for you inside the ship, nothing's different. That is until you hit something, which in all likelihood will happen pretty quickly.
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  16. #15  
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    It appears that only massless particles can travel at light speed. However, in theory, it should be possible to create something with mass that is already travelling at greater than light speed. Such a particle is called a tachyon, and has never been detected.

    As said before, the problem is acceleration. As any object with mass approaches light speed, the mass increases exponentially, in such a way that light speed would involve infinite mass. This would appear impossible.

    However, if a particle is created already going faster than light, it does not have to ever be doing light speed, and the light speed barrier does not apply. A Nobel prize is waiting for anyone who can detect such a particle.
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  17. #16 whats the problem 
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    so why does mass increase as speed gets closer to the speed of light?
    just wondering
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  18. #17  
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic
    I read the original article also.

    http://www.newscientist.com/article/...mg20427361.000

    The idea is to use a mini black hole both as a source of energy and a source of reaction mass.

    Despite what most believe, black holes are "messy eaters" and lose maybe 95% of their "infalling matter" as jets of energy which I suppose might be harassed. There is the problem of the mass of a black hole and I suspect that a minimum mass BH is several solar masses, which means no good since you can't move that mass about. I suspect that mini-BH's won't work because fundamental particles like electrons and quarks do not crush inside a black hole but remain as they are.
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