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Interesting questions arise when physicists start chatting. Back in 1950, at Los Alamos National Laboratory, physicists Enrico Fermi, Emil Konopinski, Edward Teller, and Herbert York were walking to lunch when the conversation turned to a recent spate of reports of UFO sightings.

They quickly honed in on the challenge of faster-than-light travel, with Teller opining that there was a one in a million chance that science might achieve this on the scale of small material objects within the next ten years (i.e., by 1960). Fermi begged to differ; he placed the odds at closer to one in ten, making him the optimist of the merry band physicists.

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Category: Science