Wired physics writer Rhett Allain goes about estimating the crew compliment of the Death Star from “Star Wars”… needless to say figuring out how many people could be aboard a vessel the size of a small moon isn’t that simple, so Allain started out by analysing the size of far smaller naval craft:
I went through the list of US Navel Wessels and tried to get one of each class. In order to calculate the volume, I had to make a couple of guesses. First, I had to guess the height of the ship. Wikipedia seems to list the draft (which would be the depth of the ship below water level – I think). So, I just kind of guessed at the height. Really, in my mind I pictured the ship as a rectangle. So, the height listed is my approximation of how tall the ship would be if it were squashed into a rectangular cube.
A revolutionary reinvention of the long-running BBC series made in the late 1970s, Blake’s 7 tells the story of seven criminals – 6 guilty and 1 innocent – on their way to life on a prison colony in space, who together wrestle freedom from imprisonment. They acquire an alien ship which gives them a second chance at life and become the most unlikely heroes of their time.
It’s something that has been talked about for quite a while, but now it seems definite.
Essentially, did Darth Vader engineer the destruction of the otherwise virtually unassailable Death Star in A New Hope? The ambitions he voiced in The Empire Strikes Back really leaves little doubt if you ask me.
Laser, or energy guns, called phasers, were often carried by the starship crews seen in sci-fi TV/film series “Star Trek”, and now it looks like we’ve finally caught up following the arrival of an actual phaser. The purpose, and more crucially, the way these phasers work, somewhat differs from what we’ve seen up until now however:
Using a nanoscale drum, scientists have built a laser that uses sound waves instead of light like a conventional laser. Because laser is an acronym for “light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation,” these new contraptions – which exploit particles of sound called phonons – should properly be called phasers. Such devices could one day be used in ultrasound medical imaging, computer parts, high-precision measurements, and many other places.
HENRi is a short sci-fi film about a derelict spacecraft drifting through space that is controlled by a human brain, named, you guessed it, Henri. Yearning to be able to moved independently though, Henri builds a mechanical body from parts lying around the ship.
Henri is voiced by Keir Dullea, who portrayed astronaut David Bowman in 2001: A Space Odyssey, and, if you ask me, gives the brain a sound not dissimilar to that of “2001” super-computer HAL.
I doubt we’ll ever stop analysing events of the Star Wars film saga, and now I read that Han Solo’s recording breaking Kessel Run trip, in the Millennium Falcon, makes him a time traveller:
Because the shortened Kessel Run spans 12 parsecs (39.6 light-years), a ship traveling nearly light-speed would take a little more than 39.6 years to get there. Factoring in time dilation, anyone watching the Kessel Run would see Solo speeding along for almost 40 years, but Solo himself would experience only a little more than half a day. If you haven’t picked out the potential pitfall for the Star Wars timeline I’ll spell it out: In the time it takes Han to complete just one Kessel Run, the rest of the galaxy battles, negotiates, and force-chokes its way through almost 40 years – and pushes the date of Solo’s birth 40 years further into the past.
It has to be remembered though that Solo made a number of unspecified special modifications to the Millennium Falcon, I’d say one of these somehow restores order to the space/time continuum, making all of his jaunts, Kessel Run or not, happen in real time.