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In The Expanse, spacecraft use magical technology called Epstein Drives to travel at constant 1g acceleration (and deceleration), subject to real world physical constraints. This is in contrast to the current approach of traveling at essentially 0g (between maneuvers).

I understand that the current approach results in travel paths that are essentially (solar) orbits (at least for interplanetary distances); and I understand basically what constraints that places on what travel paths must look like.

Since these (real world) constraints apply to the in-world physics of flight paths in The Expanse, I wonder what real world physics has to say about what flight paths in The Expanse look like.


All I've found is one relatively old and unhelpful post on Physics SE. But it's unclear from that whether it resents a general form for travel paths.

closed as off-topic by Valorum, Jason Baker, Skooba, Adamant, Rand al'Thor Aug 29 '16 at 20:43

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From the visual information we are given, which isn't a lot, we can see flattish curves as would be expected and some almost S shapes (as indicated in your question).

Pretty much the only representation is from Season 1, Episode 5 "Back to the Butcher" when Miller is checking the flightpaths of the Scopuli or Anubis

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  • Part of the question is whether those would be accurate representations of 1g spaceflight trajectories. – orome Aug 29 '16 at 17:16
  • I'm asking whether there are "generalizations ... can be made about what a constant 1g travel path looks like". – orome Aug 29 '16 at 17:31
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    The technology is magical. The resulting physics of a constant 1g path are not. – orome Aug 29 '16 at 17:34
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    @raxacoricofallapatorius - Questions about whether they're real-world accurate are off-topic. What they look like in-universe is on-topic. – Valorum Aug 29 '16 at 19:30
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    @raxacoricofallapatorius - Which would be off-topic, as decided in our current policy on science questions. Asking whether something is “accurate” or could “really work” is off-topic. It did happen on the show. What we can ask on this site is what the paths looked like. It would be fine to mention what they “should” look like in an answer, but that can’t really be the basis of a question. It would tend to to solicit answers based entirely on orbital mechanics, without a hint of connection to the actual series. – Adamant Aug 29 '16 at 20:14

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