17 Mar '09 06:13

I am reading a sci fi story by Michail McCollum called 'the Sails of Tau Ceti' and I am checking his math. At one point in the story, he has the intrepid hero's going out in a spacecraft and getting to "12 times the distance from pluto to the sun in 6 weeks". However, a couple pages on, he says the spacecraft reaches 4 percent of C in the same time. I think different. Anyone want to try the math to see how accurate that statement is? The craft is accelerating at a steady rate, except for short periods to jettison fuel tanks, so for all intents and purposes, it can be called a steady state acceleration.

So what do you say the craft is doing in terms of G's of accel, and what percent of C does it reach in that time. They have to get to about one light month away from Earth for the plot so after 6 weeks of accel, they coast then six weeks of decel. They spend 510 days coasting at top speed which gets them to 650 light hours from Earth according to McCollum. Will they get that far in 510 days after accel for the figures mentioned?

So what do you say the craft is doing in terms of G's of accel, and what percent of C does it reach in that time. They have to get to about one light month away from Earth for the plot so after 6 weeks of accel, they coast then six weeks of decel. They spend 510 days coasting at top speed which gets them to 650 light hours from Earth according to McCollum. Will they get that far in 510 days after accel for the figures mentioned?