On April 13, Facebook founder Mark Zukerburg announced that he, along with world-famous cosmologist Stephen Hawking and Russian internet billionaire Yuri Milner, is starting a $100-million revolutionary space programme Breakthrough through which they envisage sending ultralight nano crafts
to the nearest star system Alpha Centauri.
Stephen Hawking and Yuri Milner at ‘Breakthrough’ Event Getty
Though Alpha Centauri is nearly 25 trillion miles away and will take world’s fastest spacecraft nearly 30,000 years to get there, the trio pan to do it in record time of just 20 years.
To achieve their objective, they now seek none other than Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to complete the project.
Mark Zukerburg with Yuri Milner at ‘Breakthrough’ Event Cnet
The news about ‘Breakthrough StarShot’ wanting India’s collaboration was broken by the project’s Executive Director S Pete Worden:
Worden, who is also a former director of NASA’s Ames Research Centre also added that the group is interested in working closely with both Indian experts and the general public in India.
He then went on to add:
With ‘Breakthrough StarShot’, the trio not only plans to turn sci-fi into reality, but also open new avenues when it comes to space exploration.
If they are able create ‘nano crafts’ that will use light-beamers to travel at light speed, speeds will go up to 100 million miles an hour, which means a craft that at present takes around eight to nine months to reach Mars will reach in just 30 minutes and be able to reach Pluto, (at present 10 years), in just 72 hours.