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Scientists at NASA's Johnson Space Center are testing the concept of a warp drive (but without dilithium crystals), like the ones used on the starship Enterprise in Star Trek, for possible travel in the far future at many times the speed of light.

The newspaper for the NASA Johnson Space Center (Houston, Texas), the Roundup, provides an interesting story on the possibility of a warp drive; that is, the ability to travel faster than the speed of light.

The July 2012 Roundup article is entitled "Daydreaming beyond the solar system with warp field mechanics." Find it on page 8 of the pdf file.

It states, "The space warp. It’s the same space, and the same standard of time, but if we can theoretically manipulate it for our purposes, interstellar flight could be an option on a future technology roadmap."

So far, such speeds have been only possible for spacecraft on the fictional TV show Star Trek (and other science fiction exploits), where the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise commonly travels at speeds exceeding the speed of light.

In fact, the above video illustrates their travels around the galaxy on the journeys to explore strange, new worlds.

The YouTube video is called "Star Trek's Warp Drive: Are We There Yet?". Its caption states, "The former head of NASA's Breakthrough Propulsion Physics Project, Marc Millis, explains how physicists approach the intriguing possibility of faster-than-light travel." (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A0jrjhTt8YY)

For more information on this story, the Space.com article Warp Drive May Be More Feasible Than Thought, Scientists Say states that such speeds are not as improbable as they used to be due to some creative manipulation by physicists.

It states, "Now physicists say that adjustments can be made to the proposed warp drive that would enable it to run on significantly less energy, potentially bringing the idea back from the realm of science fiction into science."

Please read this interesting Space.com article for more on this story of possible space travel at speeds greater than the speed of light.

So, buckle up and tell Scotty to initiate the warp drive engines.


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William Atkins

William Atkins completed educational degrees in science (bachelor’s in physics and mathematics) from Illinois State University (Normal, United States) and business (master’s in entrepreneurship and bachelor’s in industrial relations) from Western Illinois University