Mkoll wrote: BlackBird wrote:
We shall see. I think it's unlikely they'll make their deadline, but it's gotta happen sooner or later.
I'm more excited about Solar Sails
and the possibility for interstellar space travel. With solar sails, we have the potential to visit other stars within 20 years of a probe leaving earth, by their constant acceleration, scientists reckon a well built solar sail could reach speeds of 1/10th the speed of light. This is fantastic technology. Current models could reach Mars in a month, rather than 3 years.
It's interesting that sails using the power of natural wind were the primary way of fast travel on the seas before engines, as far as I know. And now we may be going back to sails in space using the power of natural radiation pressure and solar wind until we can build some incredible engine that outruns them.
To the best of my knowledge, the solar sail works on photons from the light of the sun bouncing off the sail, it gains momentum twice: from the photon pushing onto the sail, and pushing off, so yes - electromagnetical radiation, but I don't think they utilize solar wind.
There is however a competing technology that utilises microwaves, it would seem they will use giant dishes pointed at the sail to generate movement. They are also thinking of using giant lasers on Earth to help speed up the solar sails.
Other than that, you're quite right, it has come full circle, and the irony is not lost on us.
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven BodhesakoNanavira Thera's teachings - An existential approach to the Dhamma
| Ven. Bodhesako's essay on anicca