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You might not believe any of this stuff. But suspend your disbelief for a moment and make space for something incredible.

Let’s start this past summer, when a NASA scientist named Harold “Sonny” White unveiled an artist’s rendering of a spacecraft capable of shooting across the galaxy.

The spacecraft was theoretical, but the research behind it was real. For years White has been exploring the possibilities of actual “Star Trek”-like travel. He even named his ship the IXS Enterprise.

There are obstacles, such as forms of energy that might not exist. That’s a problem.

For NASA, yes, but also for the world’s scientists and Trekkies and time-travel obsessives (not necessarily mutually exclusive groups) for whom “warp drive” technology — once the stuff of science fiction but now generally accepted as a mathematical possibility — hangs like the most delicious carrot on the most spectacular stick in the cosmos.

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