May 16, 2016

Interstellar Space Travel? Not likely.

  
      I'm not a rocket scientist. But my diet of SciFi books and movies over the years has left me with the impression that sometime, long after I am gone, earth-people will develop fast enough propulsion systems to travel pretty much anywhere, Alas, that is not true. Like a quart of milk, we are time limited. Here's the bad news:
An article in Forbes argues that it is impossible for us to visit most of the Universe, no matter what kind of warp drives we develop. 

   That's because most of it is expanding at a rate that, the article concludes the rest of space is moving away so fast we'll never be able to catch up..or even see it:

"After enough time goes by, even the nearest galaxies beyond our local group will have sped away from us so far and for so long that they’ll be invisible to us in any wavelength of light, even with the most powerful telescopes we’d ever be able to build. The leftover glow from the Big Bang itself would fade into obscurity, and all we’d be left with were the stars within our own galaxy.

     Then again, maybe, just maybe, advanced civilizations far far away from us started traveling in this direction a million years ago, and they'll get here before we even pack our bags.

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