A Man Is Trying to Beat NASA to a Real Warp Drive in His Own Garage

Or "Crazy Man Acts Crazy" depending on your level of skepticism.

David Pares isn’t content to just sit around and wait for NASA to create a real-world version of the warp drive theorized by NASA physicist Harold White. As crazy as it may sound, Pares is trying to Zefram Cochrane an engine in his garage that can compress the very fabric of the universe to move objects, and he says he’s close to success. If it works, that’ll make for one heck of a garage sale.

The warp drive would, in theory, allow spaceships to move faster than light by creating a bubble of undistorted space around a ship and then expanding and contracting the space around it to move it through the universe. NASA’s own concept, an adapted version of an earlier theory by Mexican theoretical physicist Miguel Alcubierre, is still far from a reality, but Pares believes he can replicate the effect by manipulating electrical fields.

Of course, not a lot of scientists, nor armchair scientist bloggers, are willing to believe that Pares could do such a thing. While Pares has submitted papers on his work to journals and made proposals at conventions, he’s not seeing any support. That’s probably because his work with electric fields is mostly based on dubious stories of pilots suddenly being moved off course while flying through storms, which Pares believes to literally be a naturally occurring version of warp drive space compression.

Meanwhile, the rest of us mostly just believe those pilots just really know how to tell a good story.

But hard as it is to believe in what Pares is doing, it’s just as hard not to root for him. He mentions in the video that he’s happy to prove that scientific advancements can still come from a lab in someone’s garage, and that’s something we can get behind. The same can probably be said of his few supporters, including retired University of Nebraska at Omaha physics professor Jack Kasher, who told the Omaha World-Herald he thought Pares’ idea was “ridiculously impossible” before he looked over the work and became a believer.

“It is so far out there, he’s not going to get funding to do it,” said Kasher. “If it’s going to be done, it’s going to be done in his garage.” So keep at it, Pares, you beautiful pioneer of science/possible insane person. Those two things are usually one and the same anyway.

(via Omaha World-Herald)

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Dan is a video game modding hobbyist and secret ninja who lives in North Carolina with his wife, Lisa Brown, and his dog, Liz Lemon, both of whom are the best.