Physics idea


Active Member
Physics idea

I was reading about how long it takes radio waves to travel through space. Or how long it takes light to travel, for example. Even though it's incredibly fast, it still takes time to get to it's destination. Let's say you wanted to send a radio transmission from earth to Mars. It takes about 8 minutes according to wikipedia.

Now this is when I had a crazy idea. Lets forget for a second that the all planets are orbiting around the sun and instead for the sake of argument we'll say that they remain in perfect alignment. If they did we could run a metal rod or stick from the Earth to Mars. With pulls or pushes on the stick you could communicate a basic morse code, seeing how the other end of the stick would move at the exact same time as you pushed or pulled it.

I just solved FTL communication.

Seriously though, would this be possible? Would both ends move at the same time?
Re: Physics idea

I never heard of such a thing before, that's strange and genius at the same time. It couldn't be done, but the idea is awesome in itself. If you could make a wire that long, it might work. There's not that much gravity in space, the energy required to pull and move the wire would be very small.

How the hell did you think about this !?! lol

That's great!

Re: Physics idea

I saw this wikipedia page and it gave me the idea. Followed it from some link site.

But I posted about it on over on the Conspiracy Cafe and Starlord made me think about it a little differently. At first it does seem a little ridiculous so let's look at it again.

Let's say there's an very thin but dense metal object 1 light year across in the void of space. Point A and Point B, This way we dont have to worry about effects any planets would have on it or the mass of the object. If you push one end of it does the other end move at the same time?

What if it were a row of individual atoms?

Re: Physics idea

It seems ok, but I'm thinking of the pressure the wire would need to endure if you pull it. Even if there's no gravity in the void, so the wire wouldn't weight anything, there would still be pressure on each atom of the wire if it gets moved.

We create a galactic phone system with that kind of hardware. Star Trek didn't even think of that!

Re: Physics idea

It would take an enormous amount of energy to move it.

Maybe all mass at the atomic level behaves like waves in a ripple of water. You would push on one end but it would take time for the atoms to react on the other end regardless of how dense or close together the atoms are. Don't atoms never actually touch each other? I remember Sagan saying something about how you can never actually touch another object.
Re: Physics idea

Yep, atoms don't touch each others, they aren't perfect solid spheres. They are like a tiny solar system with electrons all around, wich prevents them from being in direct contact one with an another on the atomic level. I guess the ripple you sugges might apply here.
Re: Physics idea

I really want to do do history rather than maths but is that a bad idea. I want to do History, Biology, Chemistry and physics.
Re: Physics idea

Some english probably wouldn't hurt.

Seriously though, do whatever you're most interested in.

In the United States, the highest paid profession on average is anesthesiologist. That might be something to consider.
Re: Physics idea


It wouldn't be possible to move the thing because of it's mass. If you did get it moving, you couldn't make it stop.

Hopefully you were pushing it and not pulling or you'd be impaled.

EDIT: and, oh yeah, the object would have to be perfectly rigid, wouldn't it? What is perfectly rigid? Nothing.

Re: Physics idea

The way I see it, both ends of the wire end up in some kind of huge space morse code machine. To communicate, it pulls or push the wire just a little bit, like 0.1 mm or less. It would take as much energy to make it stop than to make it move, right ? The wire needs to be made out of a perfectly rigid material, that's a problem. It should be one atom wide as well.

If we have the technology to create such a wire in space, I'm gessing here that we'd have enought power to make it move a little bit, and then stop it.

I don't know if it makes sense, I have no idea what's the mass of a light-year long wire.