# Acceleration time to light speed with ion engines

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#### reimk4526

##### Guest
I've read on another post that a ship could be propelled to 99.99999999% light speed using conventional ion engines. I was wondering how long it would take to accelerate to 99.99999999% light speed using a cluster of, say, 10 of the most powerful ion engines available to us today.

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#### origin

##### Guest
reimk4526":39ie8r6i said:
I've read on another post that a ship could be propelled to 99.99999999% light speed using conventional ion engines. I was wondering how long it would take to accelerate to 99.99999999% light speed using a cluster of, say, 10 of the most powerful ion engines available to us today.

This is off the top of my head but I would say probably the lifetime of the universe or there abouts.

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#### michaelmozina

##### Guest
reimk4526":gctomn0a said:
I've read on another post that a ship could be propelled to 99.99999999% light speed using conventional ion engines. I was wondering how long it would take to accelerate to 99.99999999% light speed using a cluster of, say, 10 of the most powerful ion engines available to us today.

The two formulas you'll need are:

Vf= Vo + at (Final Velocity = Starting Velocity + (acceleration * time)
f=ma (force = mass*acceleration)

It won't "necessarily" help much to cluster the thrusters together in the final analysis because the thrust to mass ratio is what you're after, and the ability to carry fuel. The bottom line is it would take nearly forever.

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#### origin

##### Guest
michaelmozina":1oqaazof said:
reimk4526":1oqaazof said:
I've read on another post that a ship could be propelled to 99.99999999% light speed using conventional ion engines. I was wondering how long it would take to accelerate to 99.99999999% light speed using a cluster of, say, 10 of the most powerful ion engines available to us today.

The two formulas you'll need are:

Vf= Vo + at (Final Velocity = Starting Velocity + (acceleration * time)
f=ma (force = mass*acceleration)

It won't "necessarily" help much to cluster the thrusters together in the final analysis because the thrust to mass ratio is what you're after, and the ability to carry fuel. The bottom line is it would take nearly forever.

It would help to cluster the engines, but the problem is that he wants to go 99.99999999% the speed of light so the relativistic mass would be so high and the thrust is so low that you would essentially stop increasing in speed.

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#### neilsox

##### Guest
Yes, a million times a million years. Worse that assumes you can replace the ejection mass frequently with negligible energy penalty many times during the acceleration period, and that your equipment will survive collisions with sub microscopic particles. Neither assumption is likely even with massive advances. If you want to accelerate to 1/10th c, perhaps 100,000 years is realistic. Neil

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