The main problem with developing working warp drive apparently isn’t the math. We’ve figured that part out. What we need, though, is an unimaginably monumental supply of energy to power the thing.
The spokesman for CERN’s ALPHA experiment—Jeffrey Hangst of Aarhus University, Denmark—says that trapping these atoms was a bit of an overwhelming experience:
What’s new about Alpha is that now we’ve managed to hold on to those atoms. We have a magnetic bowl, kind of a bottle, that holds the antihydrogen […] For reasons that no one yet understands, nature ruled out antimatter. It is thus very rewarding, and a bit overwhelming, to look at the ALPHA device and know that it contains stable, neutral atoms of antimatter.
Well now we’re one step closer. At CERN, scientists have successfully captured antihydrogen and can hold atoms of it for study in a magnetic bottle. They know they’ve got antihydrogen, because when they release it, the expected annihilation takes place.
You’ve just gotta see this.
Because I feel that Humanity is reaching for its future with both hands, and that if we can solve the mysteries of the universe, it’ll make it easier to solve the problems of your everyday garden variety human beings as individuals. It is an exciting time to be alive. We are on the verge of a new frontier, and it all begins right here, right now. Our perspective and perceptions are shifting as our awareness and understanding of the very nature of reality itself expands.
On seeing the Enterprise’s warp engine while visiting the set of Star Trek: The Next Generation (where he would briefly play himself in the 1993 episode Descent, Part I), Stephen Hawking smiled and said: I’m working on that.
I feel like a kid on Christmas morning. I can hardly wait to see what’s under the tree.
— Gene Turnbow