February 2006

The Felber ‘Antigravity’ Thesis and Cosmology

February 16, 2006

Those interested in reading the controversial paper by Franklin Felber recently presented at the STAIF meeting in Albuquerque can find it here. The summary is concise: “The Schwarzschild solution is used to find the exact relativistic motion of a payload in the gravitational field of a mass moving with constant velocity. At radial approach or […]

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Interstellar Travel: Just a Hyperdrive Away

February 15, 2006

by Ian Brown Centauri Dreams’ discussions of a foundation to support research into interstellar flight caught the eye of Edinburgh-based science writer Ian Brown. As far as I know, the article that resulted is the first appearance of the new foundation in the mainstream media, and it is reprinted here with the permission of its […]

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A Close Look at Proxima Centauri

February 14, 2006

Greg Laughlin’s systemic site, indispensable for those studying exoplanet detections, now offers a close look at Proxima Centauri, at 4.22 light years the closest known star to the Sun. Intriguing facts include these: While holding about 11 percent of the Sun’s mass, Proxima has an average density several times that of lead (the Sun’s average […]

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On Travel Close to Lightspeed

February 13, 2006

In a paper to be delivered tomorrow at the Space Technology & Applications International Forum (STAIF) in Albuquerque, Franklin Felber of Starmark Inc. (San Diego) will present research on the gravitational field of a mass moving close to the speed of light. Without seeing Felber’s work, Centauri Dreams is reluctant to comment on his assertion […]

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An Extragalactic Probe of String Theory

February 13, 2006

I wouldn’t dream of trying (nor would I be able) to explain string theory — for a popular treatment of that, see Brian Greene’s The Fabric of the Cosmos (Knopf, 2004). But I do know that ideas like string theory and supersymmetry arose to help us unify the world of quantum mechanics and that of […]

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Funding Terrestrial Planet Finder

February 12, 2006

A fascinating post by Anthony Kendall cites the reasons why Terrestrial Planet Finder is such an important mission and goes on to call for NASA’s being broken into separate entities, to make missions like this more likely to launch. From the Anthonares weblog: Gradually, constructing, launching, and operating missions in Earth orbits or in Lagrange […]

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Changes Ahead

February 12, 2006

Nothing major, but I do have to do some necessary software upgrading, and beyond that, Centauri Dreams will probably switch to a new theme (which will affect its appearance) some time down the road. The new theme is needed to upgrade the search function, which works much better with the K2 theme than the older […]

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New Data on Dark Matter

February 11, 2006

The first data from the Radial Velocity Experiment (RAVE) have just been released, marking the first of what promise to be numerous contributions from this extraordinary project. The study of dark matter in particular will be immeasurably enhanced by this spectroscopic survey that measures the radial velocities and stellar atmosphere parameters (temperature, metallicity, surface gravity) […]

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Listening for Pioneer 10

February 10, 2006

Centauri Dreams is following the Pioneer 10 story with great interest, and not just in terms of the anomalous effects that continue to keep this mission in the news. Ponder that Pioneer 10 was launched in 1972 and consider that even with the technologies of its day, the probe may still be able to communicate […]

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An Enormous Planetary System?

February 9, 2006

The key lesson of exoplanetary science is surely humility. Over and over again, starting with the discovery of the first ‘hot Jupiters,’ we’ve been brought face to face with the fact that assumptions long enshrined in our thinking have to be reevaluated. Thus it’s no surprise to learn of a new study identifying what appear […]

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