Monday, 18 Aug, 2008 Science

Faster than the Speed of Light


Gerald Cleaver (Associate Professor in the Department of Physics at Baylor University) and Richard Obousy (graduate student) are the names of the two physicists who are currently working on a new scheme to move faster than the speed of light. The two scientists hope to create a warp drive which would be able to travel faster than the speed of light, while maintaining the laws of physics.

Cleaver and Obousy say that a starship could distort space in a way that it will shrink ahead of the ship and expand at the back.

The warp drive would eventually push the departure point several light years back and at the same time bring distant stars closer, thus effectively shipping the starship from one point to another at a speed faster than the speed of light. Researchers mentioned that they need to explore the dark energy, a cosmic antigravity force which is considered to influence the speed of the expansion rate of the universe.

Einstein's relativity theory says that matter cannot travel through space at a speed faster than the speed of light, estimated at 300,000 km/sec. However, this theory is only applied to flat space.

Speed has no limit when space moves. Thus the starship will in fact remain static, being stored in a bubble of space, which in its turn will travel faster than the speed of light through normal space. This is due to the fact that the fabric of space and space time is stretching. Cleaver says that in order to create the bubble they will need to use dark matter.

"Think of it like a surfer riding a wave. The ship would be pushed by the spatial bubble and the bubble would be traveling faster than the speed of light," the scientist was quoted as saying. The research also focuses on the "string theory" that states that the universe is created of multiple dimensions. Till now people knew of four dimensions but researchers consider that there are 10 dimensions.

If the 10th spacial dimension could be altered in front of the starship, scientists believe that they could change the power of the dark energy in a way to push the ship faster than the speed of light.


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