Tuesday, November 18, 2008

USS Barack Obama

Though many believed that he’s destined for greatness by winning the US Presidency through his promise of hope. Would a US Navy aircraft carrier someday be named after President Barack Obama?

By: Vanessa Uy

Even though it is still quite presumptive given that the 20th of January 2009 inauguration day is still a couple of months away. The thought did came across our minds after receiving free brochures about how to reserve for guided tours on board one of the US Navy’s most advanced aircraft carriers, the Nimitz-class USS Ronald Reagan super-carrier. After all, if the former President Reagan’s doctrine of “Peace Through Strength” brought to us the glorification of the Military-Industrial complex by Hollywood. Remember the naval aviation movie Top Gun, it heavily draws inspiration from then President Reagan’s “Cowboy Diplomacy” and managed to make Hollywood action heroes like Sylvester Stallone, Chuck Norris, and Arnold Schwarzenegger gain an air of “sensibility”, then the Obama presidency could be comparable in greatness; Right?

It was just recently announced that a new Nimitz-class super-carrier named after the former president George H.W. Bush – outgoing President George W. Bush’s dad - or “President Bush, Senior” as he is more affectionately called has just been completed and ready for sea trials. Plus a new series of Ford-class aircraft carriers / supercarriers named after former US president Gerald R. Ford are already on the planning and pre-production stage. The “Howls of Protest” can now be heard of some Americans old enough to have lived through and remembered the Ford Administration. Given that President Ford was never elected and worst of all he pardoned then President Nixon over the Watergate debacle raised questions whether to name a series of the US Navy’s next generation of aircraft carriers after President Ford.

Given that someone like President Ford whose somewhat “marginal” – even controversial - influence of the history of the US Presidency gets an aircraft carrier – even a series of them - named after him, then surely the “expected” greatness of President Obama deserve some speculative prognostication. But since there won’t be an aircraft carrier named after President-elect Obama anytime soon, then it’s safe to assume that the vessel will be radically more advanced than existing ones.

Probably it’s safe to assume that the plane-launching system on the USS Barack Obama might use superconducting electromagnet or rail-gun technology as opposed to existing systems that uses a system of steam-driven piston and pulleys to accelerate high-performance jets to take-off speeds. The ship’s propulsion system might work using nuclear fusion, thus ending the problem of long-lasting radioactive wastes. Or it might employ a yet undiscovered technology that works on the principle of entropy-manipulation through a cyclical time-loop. This could give the term “ Groundhog Day” a whole new meaning if an unforeseen accident ever happens. Or what about a really exotic but might be feasible top-secret propulsion technology based on the workings of Sam Cohen’s “enhanced radiation weapons system”. Like the ballotechnic “red mercury” superfluid that mimics that of the “primordial superfluid” that originally permeates throughout the early Universe a few moments after the Big Bang. A newfangled “steam ship” if you will, only this time the working “steam” might be our exotic “ballotechnic superfluid” with a working temperature of trillions of degrees centigrade.

Also, if the now President-elect Obama’s kids choose to have naval careers, they might gain a command posting on a ship with their father’s namesake sometime in the future. Given that our hypothetical super-carrier USS Barack Obama won’t be underway any time soon. But still, given the proposed technology, this vessel might be a proof of concept that might be used as a basis for large volume space travel in the foreseeable future.


Veracruz said...

It's increasingly hard to differentiate between science and politics these days. Even the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists had fallen into this trap back in the days when the journal's main concern was the "politics" behind nuclear weapons proliferation.
Speaking of the superfluid properties of the early universe, current research concentrate more on the superfluid properties of supercooled liquid helium or are the scientists involved in this research calling it ultracold "Fermi Gas" or Fermionic Atoms?
If the advanced technology you theorized be used on the yet unbuilt USS Barack Obama, and assuming the US Nayv completes it during the next 40 years or so, I think the ship might become a floating laboratory as opposed to a well-armed sovereign US territory. Does this remind you of the Us Air Force's XB-70 Valkyrie project back in the 1960's about their design concept of a long-range - Mach 3 capable or faster - strategic bomber with the capability to outrun surface-to-air missiles then in use by the former Soviet Union?

WAR CHILD said...

President-elect Obama's kids, either Sasha or Malia won't be getting their Officers Commission in the US Navy anytime soon, but imagine one of them commanding a futuristic named after their father gets much easier. given the advances of social equality in the US.
Aren't we following the way of the Bulletin of the Atomic scientists with their somewhat uneasy mix of science and politics? The "Bulletin" used to concern only with nuclear weapons proliferation, but over time, the editors did cover "world peace endangering issues" like small-arms proliferation, climate change, etc.
Most current superfluid related research deals more on extremely low temperatures / cryogenics. the ultra-cold Bose-Einstein Condensate is classified as a superfluid. Imagine a mathematical construct used to describe the quantum-mechanical effects of individual atoms has now become a "tangible" material entity.
Ballotechnic materials might be only confined to neutron bomb rrelated research of Sam Cohen. Since superfluids have theoretically infinite entropy, does this mean they contain infinite ammounts of potential energy whichever they lie in the temperature extreme?

Sherry Rashad said...

I too agree with the previous two posters. I don't know much about the existing rules on naming US Naval Vessels. Maybe there's some "politics" involved. Can any of you ask the US Navy's secretary on this?
Maybe the USS Barack Obama will use Higgs Field manipulation technology to reduce it's inertial mass to zero that even an electric toothbrush motor can propel "her" to fantastic speeds.

Kathryn said...

The science of ballotechnic materials / energy souces is still described as speculative in most related blogsites. It does seem like when it comes to the monopoly of science in the military, the US Air Force and the US Navy are very close rivals. Remember the Philadelphia Experiment - the lesser known cousin of "Area 51"?
I think the US Navy's Secretary is still busy with that NRDC v. Winter US Supreme Court case.
Also, the scheduling tours on the USS Ronald Reagan might be fully booked for the foreseeable future, giving instead priority to High School student group tours and the like. I think your yet to be built USS Barack Obama is already on the US Navy's future plans.
On the topic of theoretical physics, please check out G. Fraser's book "Cosmic Anger: Abdus Salam - The First Muslim Nobel Scientists". This very interesting Oxford University Press publication is what me got interested in the latest of theoretical physics as of late. To me, it is a bit more accessible to neophytes compared to Prof. Stephen Hawking's "A Brief History of Time".

Mischa said...

Compared to that dubious "Cold Fusion", I think Ballotechnic Superfluid is the only way for us to practically extract useable energy from nuclear fusion in the foreseeable future given that we are still centuries ahead from synthesizing a star small enough to be enclosed inside a typical power generating building.

May Anne said...

Will there be a "Ramanujan Coefficient" - i.e. a number that serves to measure some property or characteristic as if of a device or process - the "viscosity" of tha Ballotechnic Superfluid, perhaps?