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Download Beyond Star Trek: physics from alien invasions to the end of by Lawrence M. Krauss PDF

By Lawrence M. Krauss

Lawrence Krauss takes a provocative examine how the legislation of physics relate to notions from our pop culture - not just famous person Trek, yet different motion pictures, indicates, and renowned lore - from Independence Day to famous person Wars to The X-Files. sign up for him on a enjoyable, mind-bending trip in the course of the nature of alien visitation, interstellar go back and forth - together with the very most up-to-date on warp-drive structures - time, awareness, ESP, the likelihood of different lifestyles within the universe, and quantum fact.

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Extra resources for Beyond Star Trek: physics from alien invasions to the end of time

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And just as on comet Hale-Bopp, perhaps a slew of organic molecules exists there, too. Given the discoveries of life in unlikely places on Earth, it is even conceivable that self-reproducing life might exist in a hidden Europan ocean. Indeed, the numerous small moons of the outer planets appear to offer more potential niches for the development of life than their planets do. Of course, as exciting as it would be to find life on Europa or on Saturn's Titan, say, it's clear that there is no intelligence outside Earth in our own solar system.

The resolution is still the same: as long as the increment I keep adding gets smaller fast enough, even an infinite series of terms can have a finite sum. In this case, do the fuel increments needed get small enough fast enough? It turns out that the answer is yes—at least as long as one is traveling well below the speed of light; when you approach light speed, the effects of relativity begin to complicate things. Nevertheless, the final total amount of fuel required depends sensitively—in fact, exponentially—on the final speed of the ship relative to the speed at which propellant shoots out the back of the ship.

The speed with which a rocket is propelled forward depends on three factors: the speed at which the propellant leaves the back end, the mass of the expelled propellant, and the mass of the rocket and the fuel remaining on board. Thus, for example, an inflated balloon that is not tied off will fly forward if To Boldly Go . . If We Can Afford It 21 I let it go, because it expels air quickly out the back. If the balloon were not so light—say, if it were made of concrete—it wouldn't go anywhere. Similarly, if the balloon is not inflated very much, so that the walls of the balloon are hardly stretched and the air is expelled out the back very slowly, it won't go anywhere.

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