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From my warp project:

Publicly, the thought of traversing the stars began many years before Einstein’s theories, however before those theories it was thought to be impossible. Many ideas were created in the aftermath of Einstein’s equations, although few of them gained any popularity in the scientific community. It wasn’t until a young scientist, named G. Wesley Roddenberry, came up with the concept of “warp drive,” which he coined in his first publication of the subject in 1964.

            Warp drive, he explained, would create a sort of electromagnetic field at specific points in space that would create a distortion effect to essentially expand space around the vessel, allowing this expansion to push the vessel through space. Theoretically, the ship could travel faster than the speed of light.

            At first, these ideas were rejected, however after careful consideration, much of the mathematical information was sound, and this soon became the leading theory on FTL travel. Many other theories were developed over time, and with the thought of FTL actually being possible, many gained popularity, however none were ever able to completely debunk Roddenberry’s theory from mainstream. The problem, however, was trying to figure out how this could be applied as a viable technology. The answer, as it turned out, came in the form of energy.

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