A Plug for the Tau Zero Foundation

Now we take a break from our regularly scheduled tinfoil to plug for an organization that just might literally take us to the stars, the Tau Zero Foundation.

The name is taken from a Poul Anderson tale about a starship crew, using a Bussard ramjet type spacecraft, literally approaches tau zero, relativistic light speed. It outlives the Universe actually. But anyway, the Foundation is a collection of writers, businesspeople, scientists, engineers and other volunteers who are dedicated to finding, and funding ways to build actual, realistic interstellar probes. Any and all ideas are encouraged, though ideas within actual technological reach are given first consideration ( warp drives and wormhole gates are acceptable, but laser driven solar sails are given first dibs! ).

Paul Gilster of Centauri Dreams is lead journalist and one of its first members. The Foundation is close to launching its website and since its an all volunteer group, donations are necessary to kick start this bad-boy and send it on its way! So give if you’re able.

Despite all of the pessimism that gets expressed here at times, this is one of the few things we can control, for now. Even if the Pentagon does have its own advanced military space program, a non-militaristic program is necessary to offset the war-pig B.S. Hopefully the Tau Zero Foundation can accomplish its goal of perfecting peaceful methods of exploring interstellar space and creating realistic, multigenerational projects that’ll benefit all of humanity, not just a few.

Tau Zero Foundation

Sneak Preview of Tau Zero website

4 responses

  1. Many thanks for the kind plug, Bryan! The Tau Zero Foundation is a long-term effort that will, we hope, support incremental research (via philanthropic funding) aimed at the eventual goal of interstellar flight, whether this takes fifty years or five hundred. I’ll also mention that founder Marc Millis is the former head of NASA’s Breakthrough Propulsion Physics program. The TZF Web site should be an interesting place to watch as we gradually bring it out of beta status and into a fully functioning destination. I hope anyone interested in the interstellar aspects of space flight will give it a look!

  2. The Tau Zero Foundation and Centauri Dreams are class places with class folks. The forum to discuss even esoteric propulsion ideas benefits the whole group and keeps the dream of peaceful interstellar exploration, and even local Solar System studies alive.

    Keep up the great effort Paul, Larry, Marc and the rest of this outstanding group!

  3. Travel to the stars, even the nearest one’s has always been an intriguing thought for many that fancy interstellar travel.

    Most folks are challenged though when it comes to the engineering obstacles that must be overcome.

    Unless someone comes up with an idea from the “Brow of Zeus” as to how near light speed can be achieved along with the engineering complexities then it will remain in the realm of fantasy.

    Hell, we haven’t even made it back to the moon since 1969 and the planet of the ‘fantasy island chimps’ wants to got to the stars…? :))

    It’s not that you simply look at a distant star and you decide to navigate their way. The navigation problems are immense and have many unknown issues relative to instellar dust and possibly gravitational diffraction of lightwaves passing closer, more dense stellar bodies, causing errors in stellar navigation.

    The striking of instellar particles at almost light speed would have disastrous consequences releasing virtually kilotons of kinetic energy at a ship’s surface, destroying the vessel in normal space. These interstellar particles are quite rare, but then again who knows we might find a “densepak” version of such particles and “boom” goes the first trip to Altair. : |

    Then there’s the many years of boredom aboard such a cruiser. My advice is to have plenty of nubile, sexy, tubes-tied concubines for the male crew members so they don’t get too horny during the mission… : ))

    Of course these interstellar concubines would not necessarily be the duty EEOC female officers and crewmembers that are required to staff such a craft… : |

    Interstellar space is lonely indeed. When you look out your starport all you see is the pinpoint images of stars and more stars… zzzzzuh…zzzzzzuhhhhh…..zzzzzzzz…. I-(

    So you are on autopilot most of the journey, tending to routine mainenance, or hoping to have some hot sex with your interstellar concubine/s then it would turn into a mutinous voyage for sure. Of course the ship has hot tubs, steam baths and a plenty of haute’ cuisine prepared by at least three star navy cooks… :)) As on submarines the food is very important concerning crew morale.

    My point being that simply having a hot blast of hydrogen gas beneath your ass alone will not get you to the stars and back.

    Carl Nemo **==

  4. Don’t worry Carl, the Tau Zero Foundation is a serious organization with a serious goal, the survival of the human race through interstellar exploration and colonization.

    Even if you don’t agree with their mission, check out the nascent TZF site anyway, it might be worth your time. 😉

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