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> well, I think it was more like 40.  ;)  But it does blow the
> assumptions of
> needing a full eco/fam system all the time.

You don't really think I bothered to go back and look it up do you? <VBG>

> Given any near future trip would take decades of ship time,
> is a ship that
> small practical?  Could that few people do any real survey of
> a star system?

Well, I was assuming that IF we went at all, it would be possible to go
CLOSE to c. Given that, and dilation effects, I think trips lasting a few
years (ship time) are feasible. Depending on the dilation coefficient, that
could get us out to as far as several hundred light years within a few
centuries without ever needing FTL.

Of course, if we change the assumptions to something like .3 c, you are

> Why send separte frieghters?  Its easier and simpler to
> maintain, to just
> integrate the stuff in one ship.
> I used to like the redundancy of multiple shipsm but given
> the size one ship
> would need to be, multiples started sounding crazy.

I was expanding upon the carrier group resupply paradigm that was mentioned
earlier. If the freighters are capable of higher velocities than the
expedition, or are launched FIRST, then it might make things easier. No
sense shutting out options unnecessarily.

> Hum?


I was alluding to refinement of existing technology leading to greater
levels of performance, as in first generation makes it to 0.3 c, second
generation can reach 0.6 c, third generation can reach 0.9 c, etc. No REAL
major discovery, just refinement of the same design. That is a brute force
approach, as opposed to a new design, such as inertial nullifiers allowing a
jump from 0.3 c to 0.999999 c overnight.