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Updated: NASA Shows Off Gorgeous Concept for a Real-Life Enterprise

| 13 Jun 2014 15:40

Yes, the theoretical warp-ship is actually named the IXS Enterprise.

Update: Now for your viewing pleasure, a Redditer by the name of Oldnumber007 has recreated the IXS Enterprise inside Kerbal Space Program. He had to use a few mods to do it, but it looks pretty impressive.

Original Story:Despite some arguments to the contrary, NASA is set on keeping its eyes on the stars. With current propulsion technology, placing a man on Mars is a huge endeavor, and anything past that is almost unthinkable. There's a team inside NASA who thinks that that "next step" requires a warp drive. Not only have they started building one, but they've also designed a ship for it.

Dubbed the IXS Enterprise, the concept ship replaces the sci-fi standard warp nacelles with huge rings that projects the warp field. This concept was created by artist Mark Rademaker, who worked closely with NASA to design a ship that fits all our current theories on warp technology.

It's no secret that NASA has been working on a warp drive for many years now. The current theory involves bending space in a way that doesn't actually move the ship so much as all of time and space around it. According to researcher Dr. Harold White, this works by exploiting a possible loophole in the universe. While no objects break the speed of light, the universe around the ship is expanding and contracting at ridiculous speeds. Pulling that off requires astounding amounts of energy, but White and his team think they've found a way to do it more efficiently.

If everything works as planned, the IXS Enterprise could make the 4.3 light-year trek to Alpha Centauri in only two weeks. Since the ship doesn't actually accelerate, NASA doesn't have to worry about turning the crew into chunky salsa, which is always a plus.

If you're interested in learning more about how this warp drive is supposed to work, you can watch this talk by Dr. Harold White, where he goes into all the gritty details.

Source: Mark Rademaker via Gizmodo

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