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Questions tagged [ftl-drive]

FTL-drive (Faster Than Light drive) is a theoretical device that would allow travel at faster than the speed of light (299,792,458 m/s).

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1 answer
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Faster than light ship is doomed, captain keeps log anyway

Looking for a short story I read in a second-hand book in the 1990s. Humanity has a faster-than-light drive that is mostly reliable, but occasionally a ship simply vanishes without trace. I think the ...
Pastychomper thanks Monica's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
280 views

How does faster-than-light travel work in the Metroid universe?

I'm a big fan of the Metroid prime games. I was reading about the technology in that universe and found I couldn't find anything on how they achieve faster than light travel. Is there anything saying ...
Aaron Abel's user avatar
11 votes
1 answer
578 views

What is meant by the term 'spinship' in Dan Simmons' Hyperion Cantos series?

I am halfway through Endymion, the 3rd book of Dan Simmons' Hyperion Cantos series. In his universe, he basically differentiates between two types of starships, namely torchships and spinships. While ...
NullAndVoid's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
250 views

Novel where FTL causes a centrifuge to attract towards center

Looking for a novel, who’s title I thought was ‘Barnard’s Star’, but the hits with this name didn’t seem to fit. The novel is about an expedition to a star (could still be Barnard’s). Plot points I ...
user108131's user avatar
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24 votes
1 answer
1k views

1950's novel about FTL engine and the rare mineral that makes it possible

I'm trying to identify a 1950's (NB: 1970 as it turns out) "pulp" sci-fi novel I read long ago. The cold war is still happening in its timeline. A very rare mineral is discovered that ...
Kurt Fitzner's user avatar
9 votes
1 answer
2k views

Book featuring a specific method of FTL travel which involved tachyon pulses and made a lot of people sick

I’m looking a for a book that I read that contained a specific type of FTL travel method. It involved tachyon pulses and when the transition was complete a lot of people would get sick. I can’t ...
Curious Sci-Fi Fan's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
177 views

Is the Star Wars galaxy in danger of running out of coaxium and tibanna?

Coaxium is the fuel that powers a hyperdrive. It is described as rare but thousands if not millions of beings use it to all the time to power their hyperdrives. Tibanna is also very important and it ...
Aaron's user avatar
  • 11
14 votes
1 answer
3k views

Novel about a teenage female protagonist on a FTL spaceflight in a deterministic universe

Looking for some help, please, finding a novel I read in the '90s (I think mid-'90s). I have the vaguest memories of a hot pink border on the cover. The plot involved a teenage female protagonist ...
NOPE's user avatar
  • 143
20 votes
2 answers
8k views

Why is it called 'Lightspeed' if the ships aren't traveling at the speed of light?

In the Star Wars franchise, they can travel through hyperspace to other systems and planets. But Han in Star Wars: A New Hope said they needed to make the jump to lightspeed. And there have been ...
Firestryke's user avatar
  • 1,516
8 votes
1 answer
260 views

A novel about a spaceship race in a faster than light race course

Protagonist is a young underdog racer competing against others. Much of the story is about competition, and takes place in the pit spaceship hangars. The racers each have ramjet ships. The race course ...
Rick Fleischmann's user avatar
6 votes
2 answers
783 views

Can the warp drive be run in reverse? [duplicate]

Most modern motorized vehicles are capable of both forward and reverse motion. In the Star Trek universe, can an unmodified warp drive also be used to move backwards? I realize that pretty much ...
Psychonaut's user avatar
  • 2,164
7 votes
0 answers
544 views

Book where an ancient space ship run by an AI was discovered

I read a book once where humans discovered an ancient space ship. The spaceship was run by a very advanced AI. To travel to distant places, it froze all the humans in place and disconnected itself ...
JasonK's user avatar
  • 171
7 votes
1 answer
450 views

60s (or earlier) SF short story with FTL Travel using electron psychology aka addiclenendar technology

My question is about an old SF short story from a compendium of them which I had as a child back in 1965/1966. Story is about a sleeper ship traveling to a nearby star with two guys on board who ...
ucnick's user avatar
  • 189
4 votes
1 answer
446 views

Why wouldn't Cylon Raiders immediately send at least one by FTL to report contact with military enemies?

In Season 1, Episode 9 "Tigh Me Up,Tigh Me Down" it is very clear that Cylon Raiders have FTL capabilities (since part of the main storyline is about that fact). Now one can wonder why that Raider did ...
ScottS's user avatar
  • 3,580
8 votes
1 answer
413 views

Slow starship passed by FTL starship. Upon arrival finds society has evolved past them

Probably read 30+ years ago. The book's plot is VERY similar to "Far Centaurus" by A. E. van Vogt. But when I saw it was a possible duplicate when asking the question, I read it and it is NOT the ...
NJohnny's user avatar
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4 votes
2 answers
269 views

Initial uses of the term "ultradrive" as a faster FTL drive?

This question about an early story about an FTL drive with unfortunate side effects for which the answer was Randall Garrett's 1954 "Time Fuze" and the use of "ultradrive" left me pondering the ...
jeffronicus's user avatar
  • 4,182
18 votes
1 answer
1k views

Short story about the maiden voyage of an FTL capable ship

I am looking for a short story about a group of space explorers aboard an FTL-capable ship. The very first jump takes them near a dying star, so they have to flee immediately. On their way back to ...
balage26's user avatar
  • 181
6 votes
1 answer
1k views

Most modern sci-fi with FTL that really is FTL [closed]

It seems almost every form of faster than light travel in sci-fi is technically not faster than light, but rather a loophole - for example, a warp bubble, hyperspace, subspace, wormhole, jump drive, ...
Conrad Bennish Jr's user avatar
10 votes
1 answer
381 views

Looking for the title of a sci-fi book on FTL network

Read a book, probably about 20 years ago now, and I cannot recall the title, nor the author... and honestly, I only have sketchy details. The book about humanity in a galaxy where they had found a ...
NepoThom's user avatar
  • 103
18 votes
1 answer
2k views

Short story about scientists that stumble across an FTL drive

I'm looking for a short story that was published in Analog in the late 60s/early 70s. It deals with a group of scientists that are examining the remains of an alien craft that was shot up in space. ...
Aaron Gullison's user avatar
7 votes
2 answers
1k views

Can warp drive be used to travel at sublight speeds?

The answer and discussion around this question Can warp drive allow for light speed? make me wonder about the following: Warp drive works by warping space so that the ship need not "travel faster ...
ThePopMachine's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
255 views

Is there a minimum distance required to use FTL? [duplicate]

Within several sci-fi universes (Star Wars and Star Trek in particular), when a ship jumps to FTL speeds, it's to traverse across galaxies. But is there anything that says you must travel a certain ...
DCOPTimDowd's user avatar
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0 votes
0 answers
150 views

Why had no one jumped? [duplicate]

I'm rewatching the Battlestar Galactica miniseries and I spotted something odd: Tigh: Munitions depot confirmed, but we have two problems. One, the Ragnar station is at least three days away at ...
Liath's user avatar
  • 12.8k
2 votes
0 answers
174 views

How does the Death Star travel in hyperspace? [duplicate]

Is there any reference in Canon or Legends on how the hyperspace travel of the Death Star is performed? Is it in anyway similar to the hyperspace travels performed by other starships in the Star Wars ...
CPHPython's user avatar
  • 231
6 votes
5 answers
1k views

Which science fiction universe holds the title of furthest distance travelled in one voyage?

I'm curious as to which work of science fiction can lay claim to furthest distance travelled in one trip by non-Wormhole, non-space shortening, non-teleportation means. So stuff like Q or the ...
TonksM's user avatar
  • 169
7 votes
2 answers
4k views

How do they get to Andromeda so fast?

So this has been bothering me since I saw the teaser trailer yesterday, in the teaser they said it took 600 years to get to Andromeda from Earth. This just sounds WAY too short a period if time. So I ...
LexieStark's user avatar
5 votes
4 answers
3k views

What happens when 'spooling' an FTL drive? [closed]

I often hear the term 'spooling' used in connection with preparing various FTL drives for operation in space science fiction; e.g. "spooling FTL drive - prepare for jump" (or warp, etc.) This seems a ...
Brad's user avatar
  • 537
8 votes
1 answer
765 views

What are travel times of Andromeda's Slipstream?

I was wondering if anyone knew how long on average it took a ship to travel from place to using the Slipstream. In the show things seem very subjective, I am trying to develop an FTL system for a ...
Trismegistus's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
595 views

What is the maximum speed possible without hyperdrive?

This question: How do you go from Naboo to Tatooine without the hyperdrive? seems to be making an assumption about the speed of travel for mainstream craft in the Star Wars universe without using ...
ThePopMachine's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
768 views

What is the nature of the Guild's superluminal travel?

In Frank Herbert's Dune, all faster-than-light travel is under the Spacing Guild's monopoly, leading to some interesting political situations. How do they travel through space? The miniseries made it ...
Azor Ahai -him-'s user avatar
8 votes
3 answers
1k views

Is the Star Trek warp drive canonically the Alcubierre drive?

The Alcubierre drive is frequently referred to in any and all discussion about FTL travel as "the Star Trek drive", but is there any in-universe evidence to suggest that the principles are at all ...
jernaumorat's user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
432 views

Story ID: FTL communication

In this story, faster than light communication exists but every message is preceded by a long tone. An operator uses his free time to investigate the tone, discovering it's comprised of every ...
heptapod's user avatar
  • 911
2 votes
3 answers
3k views

What exactly are Sublight Engines?

In a number of Science Fiction Series such as Battlestar Galatica, Star Wars and Stargate spaceships are mentioned to have something called a Sublight Engine. in an episode of Dark Matter i remember ...
Memor-X's user avatar
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10 votes
3 answers
1k views

In which Science Fiction (probably Star Wars) story is FTL used to jump to other side of a planet?

Introduction I remember experiencing (reading, I think) a science fiction, or space opera, story in which the main characters are on a ship, perhaps fleeing from someone, and the use a Hyperspace jump ...
Gunnar Södergren's user avatar
4 votes
4 answers
412 views

Which SF Universe Was the First to Have Multiple Forms of FTL?

Most SF universes have only one form of FTL, but a few, such as the Honorverse, may have more. Other than naturally occurring wormholes being used (especially if wormholes in that universe are mostly ...
Tango's user avatar
  • 107k
68 votes
18 answers
16k views

Which Sci-fi universe uses the most forms of FTL (Faster Than Light)?

This question about the Honorverse brings up an interesting point. I’m not familiar with the Honorverse, but from the question, it looks like there is, essentially hyperdrive (involving gravity waves) ...
Tango's user avatar
  • 107k
12 votes
1 answer
1k views

Which Sci-Fi work introduced the idea of "FTL Travel"?

Faster than Light travel (beating ultimate speed limit of nature) is common to Sci-Fi, especially Space Opera. Other names can be warping etc. Which Sci-Fi work introduced this idea? Note: It's ...
user931's user avatar
  • 116k
6 votes
1 answer
476 views

Aliens plan to invade Earth but hero, scientist, and girl friend stop them [duplicate]

I read this before 1992 or so. It was more of a 'B' novel. Humans make contact with aliens who begin invading. A human hero, I think he's a military officer (US Navy?), gets to a human scientist ...
Jim2B's user avatar
  • 5,616
4 votes
2 answers
1k views

In Farscape, what exactly is Starburst?

Starburst appears to be a method of traveling great distances over a short time. It seems to be able to jump a Leviathan between planets and systems almost immediately, implying that it facilitates ...
Polynomial's user avatar
  • 1,855
6 votes
2 answers
266 views

FTL combat in Newton's Wake

Some setup is necessary before I can get to asking my question. In Ken MacLeod's Newton's Wake, FTL is possible. There is a form of chronology protection: Say ye try tae send a signal intae the ...
MackTuesday's user avatar
  • 1,935
5 votes
0 answers
258 views

Two Created Races. One had copper-based blood and the other iron-based blood

I once read a sci-fi-story about a group of scientist that used a Feinberg space drive with the aim of terraforming a planet and creating a new race. The group however was divided on how they wanted ...
Mike I's user avatar
  • 51
10 votes
2 answers
496 views

Story involving young female space travelling escapee with multiple personalities

I'm looking for a story about a youthful (late teens?) female protagonist who begins the story by making an emergency escape from an orbital habitat. The protagonist is actually host to multiple ...
bright-star's user avatar
33 votes
1 answer
1k views

1980s story with telepathic boy who makes janitor feel younger

So randomly over the years I've tried to find this book using all sorts of keywords, reading release lists by decade, and nothing seems to click. I'm pretty sure I read it in 1987, give or take a ...
user33605's user avatar
  • 331
41 votes
11 answers
14k views

Why do calculations need to be made before jumping into hyperspace?

This question was inspired by this answer concerning rebels escaping at the battle of Endor The answer references this piece of dialog from a new hope: BEN How long before you can make the ...
overactor's user avatar
  • 767
11 votes
1 answer
1k views

What is hyperspace in Stargate like?

In the Stargate franchise, what is hyperspace supposed to be like ? By that I mean, is the hyperspace reality/ universe like hyperspace in Babylon 5. Is it a "open" reality/ universe where ships can ...
Bubba's user avatar
  • 1,675
4 votes
6 answers
6k views

Why do people traveling FTL using Mass Effect Relays not experience time dilation?

I have a limited understanding of the physics of it, but as far as I know time dilates at higher velocities. Meaning that time essentially passes slower for objects moving at higher velocities. Why ...
Scrotinger's user avatar
10 votes
2 answers
2k views

Sublight Starship "passed" by FTL

I'm a huge fan of SF from the golden age of SF, so this could be a fairly old book. It was a story about a "generation" starship or sublight starship. I believe most of the story was about their ...
Just4Fun's user avatar
  • 417
11 votes
1 answer
829 views

A novel about a man left behind by his family's spaceship who helps discover a warp drive

This is a book I read 40 years ago. I remember the plot but haven't a clue as to the title. A young man misses the takeoff of his trader families’s spaceship and is marooned on a planet. He has no ...
John's user avatar
  • 203
10 votes
3 answers
1k views

Can't remember sci-fi novel with loner female cargo pilot carrying contraband technology

Sorry to be so vague; The book I'm trying to find was from the POV of a female cargo pilot transporting some sort of technology that is banned from humans by the other races of which one race are fish ...
ABM's user avatar
  • 103
5 votes
3 answers
1k views

A Fire Upon the Deep: how come the refugee ship goes so fast to the Tines' world?

It takes Ravna and friends months on a damaged, but modified bottom lugger (the OOB2) to reach the Tines' world. Yes there is a Zone storm happening, but it seems that it took the Orlsnot refugee ship ...
0x6adb015's user avatar
  • 151