Here I’ve tried to collect a series of resources on the scientific basis for interstellar travel. This is a subject that has fascinated me since I was a teenager reading science fiction books.
While the science behind making the interstellar leap is currently very daunting and interstellar travel itself is currently limited to science fiction alone, nonetheless there is active reseatch going on in this subject area. If we begin laying the groundwork now for this undertaking, our descendents may reap the benefits of seeing the distant sunset on an alien world.
You’ll notice that I have deliberately ignored some very speculative resources, mostly those dealing with faster-than-light travel as well as those dealing with extraterrestrial intelligence. I’m trying to stick closely to what as is currently thought of as possible given our current level of scientific understanding.
And while there are some good resources concerning extraterrestrial intelligence, SETI, first contact, etc., separating the good from the truly out there can be difficult and, regardless, it is beyond the scope of this page.
- Space Exploration: Crazy Far from National Geographic
- Starflight without Warp Drive - a transcript of a discussion between David Brin, Robert L. Forward, and Jonathan Vos Post on real potential starflight.
- Centauri Dreams: Imagining and Planning Interstellar Exploration - plotting how we might launch an unmanned mission to Alpha Centauri.
- Deep Space Propulsion: A Roadmap to Interstellar Flight - great book focusing on specifically on interstellar propulsion.
- The Giant Leap: Mankind Heads for the Stars
- Interstellar Travel & Multi-Generational Space Ships - a collection of papers on interstellar travel and, specifically, generation starships.
- The Starflight Handbook: A Pioneer’s Guide to Interstellar Travel - A bit dated, but still a good introduction to the subject.
- Starsailing: Solar Sails and Interstellar Travel - Dated, but still good.
- Starship Century: Toward the Grandest Horizon - a great approachable book produced by the 100 Year Starship project (see link below in Organizations). A collection of papers intersperced wtih some great stories by science fiction authors.
- Interstellar Spaceships on Google+
- Tennessee Valley Interstellar Workshop - a conference very near my own home. I plan on attending the 2016 worshop.
- 100 Year Starship Symposium - a confrence sponsored by the 100 Year Starship organization.
- Cosmic Journeys: Interstellar Flight - a short documentary on interstellar travel.
- The 100 Year Starship - An organization with an audacious mission to build a starship within 100 years. Holds a yearly symposion on the subject.
- Icarus Interstellar - An International Organization Dedicated to Starship Research and Development.
- Initiative For Interstellar Studies - British organization dedicated to Interstellar Travel.
- Tau Zero Foundation - Pioneering Interstellar flight. Has a great Facebook group.
- The Astronomical, Astrobiological and Planetary Science Case for Interstellar Spaceflight
- Design for minimum energy in starship and interstellar communication
- Fission Thrust sail as booster for high Δv fusion based propulsion
- Hyperfast Interstellar Travel in General Relativity
- Interstellar Spaceflight Using Nuclear Propulsion And Advanced Techniques
- Interstellar Travel - The Wait Calculation and the Incentive Trap of Progress
- Is Interstellar Space Travel Possible?
- Limits and Signatures of Relativistic Spaceflight
- On the maximum sufficient range of interstellar vessels
- Organizing and financing interstellar space projects - A bottom-up approach
- Starship Sails Propelled by Cost-Optimized Directed Energy
- Use of Mini-Mag Orion and superconducting coils for near-term interstellar transportation (PDF)
- Atomic Rockets - an absolutely amazing resource on spacecraft design.
- Centauri Dreams - a blog dedicated to the subject.
- Real Spaceships - a blog with lots of illustrations of scientifically-accurate spaceships. Not all are starships, but some are.
These are very useful for getting up to speed on Interstellar Travel.
- 100 Year Starship
- Antimatter Rocket
- Buzzard Ramjet
- Embryo Space Colonization
- Enzmann Starship
- Fusion rocket
- Generation Ship
- Icarus Interstellar
- Interstellar Probe
- Interstellar Travel
- Nuclear pulse propulsion
- Project Orion
- Project Daedalus
- Project Icarus
- Project Longshot
- Project Valkyrie
- Sleeper Ship
- Solar sail
- Space travel using constant acceleration
- Starseed launcher
- Wait Calculation