Here's how we might visit another star with laser-propelled robots
Famed physicist Stephen Hawking and tech billionaire Yuri Milner just announced a radical plan to send tiny, blazingly fast space ships to the nearest star system to our own, Alpha Centauri.
The core concept of the project, called Breakthrough Starshot, is to shoot powerful lasers at thousands of palm-size "nanocraft" equipped with light sails.
This should propel the small robots upwards of 20% the speed of light, helping them reach our neighboring star (which is about 25 trillion miles away) in a couple of decades.
Here's how these tiny celestial sailboats might work.
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