Beyond Star Trek: From Alien Invasions to the End of Time by Lawrence M. Krauss

By Lawrence M. Krauss

Within the bestselling The Physics of celebrity Trek, the well known theoretical physicist Lawrence Krauss took readers on an wonderful and eye-opening journey of the famous person Trek universe to work out the way it stacked up opposed to the true universe. Now, responding to requests for extra in addition to to a couple of contemporary interesting discoveries in physics and astronomy, Krauss takes a provocative examine how the legislation of physics relate to notions from our pop culture -- not just big name Trek, yet different motion pictures, indicates, and renowned lore -- from Independence Day to superstar Wars to The X-Files. what is the distinction among a flying saucer and a flying pretzel?Why did not the extraterrestrial beings in Independence Day need to hassle invading Earth to wreck it?What's new with warp drives?What's the main most likely situation for doomsday?Are ESP and telekinesis impossible?What do clairvoyance and time shuttle have in common?How could quantum mechanics finally impact the destiny of existence within the universe?

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Product Details
Paperback: 255 pages
Publisher: 3 Rivers Press; 1st version (April thirteen, 1989)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0517572842
ISBN-13: 978-0517572849
Product Dimensions: eight. eight x 6 x zero. 7 inches
Shipping Weight: 12. eight oz.

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Well, the deceleration of the spacecraft performing this maneuver would be about 700 times the acceleration that gravity produces in a falling object at the Earth's surface. In the language of the G-forces, familiar to aircraft pilots, aficionados of space exploration, and readers of my previous book, this means that the occupants will feel a force of 700 Gs. I remind you that the maximum G-force people can experience and survive for short periods is only 8 Gs or so. Experiencing 700 Gs would be the same as having a 70,000-pound, or 35-ton, weight pressing down on your shoulders (more or less the same force you would feel from the increase in atmospheric pressure due to the visiting saucers in Independence Day).

Pretty soon, to paraphrase former Lockheed Martin rocket engineer Robert Zubrin, you end up with Battlestar Galactica! In light of this, perhaps the monstrous flying saucers in Independence Day were not all that unrealistic; they might have needed to be that big just to carry the necessary fuel! The preceding scenario more or less governed what happened when NASA first officially considered a manned mission to Mars, in 1989. The price tag for the Monster Ship? Between $400 billion and $450 billion!

The problem is that the nuclear-reactor technology required is large-scale and currently politically incorrect. However, if the political climate changes and the use of nuclear reactors in space becomes acceptable, a better option might be what is called a nuclear electric propulsion system. In this system, instead of using nuclear power to heat up gas as a propellant, one could use the nuclear reactor to generate heat which is then used to generate electricity, as we now do on Earth. One could then use large electric fields to accelerate atomic nuclei (such as the proton that forms the hydrogen nucleus), much as we now do in the large elementary-particle accelerators we've built to study the fundamental structure of matter.

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