NASA’s warp drive program at the Johnson Space Center is developing technology that will significantly increase the speed of space travel. Helmed by Dr. Harold “Sonny” White with help from artist Mark Rademaker, NASA has designed a 3-D rendering of a concept star-ship that looks remarkably like something from the mind of Gene Roddenberry.
Dubbed the IXS Enterprise, the experimental star craft has been designed to travel near the speed of light and reach distances incomprehensible to man. According to Rademaker during an i09 interview, the preliminary design includes “a sleek ship nestled at the center of two enormous rings, which create the warp bubble.”
In Einstein’s theory of relativity, no object can move faster than the speed of light and Dr. White and his team have no intention of breaking this rule. Instead, the Enterprise is designed to bend and fold space-time around it, thus warping the spacecraft to different locations while reducing travel time.
“In terms of the engine’s mechanics, a spheroid object would be placed between two regions of space-time (one expanding and one contracting). A “warp bubble” would then be generated that moves space-time around the object, effectively repositioning it — the end result being faster-than-light travel without the spheroid (or spacecraft) having to move with respect to its local frame of reference.”