#34 – Time Travel Part I: The Classics

Time travel had a long history in science fiction, but it noticeably ramped up beginning in the 80s. In this episode, we explore some of the classic and iconic time travel stories of recent decades.

Book recommendation: To Say Nothing of the Dog by Connie Willis.

Other works discussed:
Timescape by Gregory Benford
Eon by Greg Bear
Back to the Future
The Terminator
Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure
Doomsday Book by Connie Willis
Blackout/All Clear by Connie Willis
The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

See also the Jimmy Kimmel Back to the Future sketch.

Check out this episode!

About Alex R. Howe

I'm a full-time astrophysicist and a part-time science fiction writer.
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2 Responses to #34 – Time Travel Part I: The Classics

  1. misomiso82 says:

    I’m leaving a comment here relating to your ‘Project Hail Mary’ discussion on fuel and travel time which I found very interesting, but I think comments are turned off for that post? Apologies I I just can’t work the blog correctly…
    My question is this:
    IF (big if i know), we assume Hail Mary and Blip A accelerate at 1.5G and 2.2G, what is the travel time between all three star systems, and what is the relativistic time on all three star systems if a ‘return’ trip is made?
    The Reason I ask is in the book I don’t think it is made explicit how much time passes on ‘Rocky’ home world for a full round trip as they don’t know about special relativity. Equally we are not told the distance between Sol and Rocky’s system and how long a return trip would take if a rescue mission came.

    Apologies if these are easy questions however I am not an Astrophysicist!

    It’s all very confusing.

    • Alex R. Howe says:

      Yes, I think comments automatically close after three months or something.
      Constant acceleration can be handled in special relativity with hyperbolic functions. Wikipedia article here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyperbolic_motion_(relativity).
      Rocky’s home system is 40 Eridani which is known to be 16 light-years from Sol. This is also hinted at with how much time Grace says has passed in the Epilogue. (I believe 40 Eridani and Tau Ceti are about 11 light-years apart.)

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