SciFi Q of the Day: Leaving the Solar System

SciFi Question of the Day: If you accept the principle that a spaceship must leave the solar system before jumping to FTL speed, how much time is plausible between leaving orbit and jumpting to FTL?

Facebook Answers:

  Christopher Dorda 8 years, at 0.5c. 😉

  Christopher Dorda 6 years, at 0.75c.

  AmyBeth Fredricksen Would it help if I got out and pushed?

  Christopher Dorda Ooops… Sorry, wrong math!

  Christopher Dorda 50AU before you could jump. 1 AU is the distance between the earth and the sun. About 8 light minutes. 50×8=400. Answer, 400 minutes at the speed of light, 800 minutes at 0.5C.

  Gwendolyn Wilkins Remember, one can always go “up” or “down” (perpendicular to the orbital plane); you don’t necessarily how to go “out” (following the orbital plane)

  John DeChancie The solar system is mostly empty space. There’s no compelling reason you can’t make the jump while still within its confines. Otherwise you’d have to go through the Kuiper Belt and the Oort Cloud to really get outside the system. And then there’s the heliopause…you don’t wanna mess with all that.

  Christopher Dorda Assuming you could go from 0 to 0.5c instantly, and assuming the end of the solar system is at the Kulper belt and not the distance to the heliopause. Gwen, if I’m not mistaken, you can’t really go up or down if you want to reach other planets in other solar system in our own Galaxy (We’re on the edge of one of those spiral arms, there’s nothing up or down), remember how our galaxy looks like, it’s kinda flat? You mostly travel on a plane. 🙂 Ah, science!

  Daniel Beard well, the question is not so much time, but how far of a distance would you need to go? and then it would bring about the question of how fast you are moving at sublight.

  Gwendolyn Wilkins So you’re say something along the lines of: Fast than light, no left or right? 😉  (Meaning making a turn to double back and head towards one’s destination would be out)

  Daniel Beard Never mind, I actually need to fully read the initial question.

  AmyBeth Fredricksen My head hurts.

  Daniel Beard Then you must define where the solar system end. If we go with one of the two debated definitions, at the heliosheath, we are talking between 80-200 AU from the sun, depending on which direction you are going. In the direction of the bow shock (the direction the sun is moving in relation to the galactic core) you would be looking at about 80-100 AU, which to put in perspective, is approximately where the two Voyager spacecraft are now. and they are getting interesting data about this area. more to come in the next few decades.

  Branli Caidryn love this!

Google Plus Answers:

  Gregory Lynn  Far enough to make the effect of gravity negligible.

  Jason Fisk  +Gregory Lynn The Suns gravitational influence is about 2 light-years out, that’s about 1 light-year beyond what we might call the edge of our solar system, the Heliosphere.

So that would be, more then a year at the Heliosphere, and more than 2 years to escape the Sun’s gravity totally. If you were travelling at a speed just under the speed of light (300,000 kps or 187,411 mps).

Seems kinda pointless doesn’t it (If i’m right). But surely you’d point“North” or “South” to avoid the planets, stop at the Oort cloud, pass through that, then kick in the FTL again.

I would love to hear what you think! Even if you are reading this post a year or more after publishing, I hope you will leave a comment with your own ideas on this topic.

The previous SciFi Q of the Day is The Mayans Were Right

The shortlink for this post is

The next SciFi Q of the Day will be up next Tuesday.

About AmyBeth Inverness

A writer by birth, a redhead by choice.
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3 Responses to SciFi Q of the Day: Leaving the Solar System

  1. Pingback: SciFi Question of the Day: The Mayans Were Right | AmyBeth Inverness

  2. Working the late shift in your Starship’s engineering area, which sound causes you the most stress: 1) Hisss….ssst…sst…st 2) Boing (pause) plop 3) Ooga Chacka…ooga ooga

    Your team of 50 mostly military personnel has been unexpectedly stranded on the planet you were studying. You know there are dangerous animals, as well as one species that some argue may be intelligent. Knowing that rescue could be months away, how large an area do you attempt to reinforce and defend? Just your small quonset-hut camp, or something larger?

    What reasons are there to argue that it is more feasible to travel backwards in time than to travel forwards, or vice versa?

  3. Pingback: SciFi Q of the Day: Forwards or Backwards | AmyBeth Inverness

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