One engineer hopes the answer to that question is “yes.” He has submitted a proposal to the White House through the “We The People” channel that promises that anyone who can get at least 25,000 signatures will get a response.
He calls himself BTE Dan and has detailed plans for a real life-size Enterprise on his website. He believes that we have the technology or are close to it for such a venture.
The petition has just over 3,000 signatures right now.
This is not just some idea of a fan who wants to copy his dream starship, but someone who believes it can advance space exploration. He sees the ship as functional to allow people to explore other stars outside the solar system.
According to his plans, it would use artificial gravity and could house one thousand crew members on board at one time. The problem for this project is that artificial gravity does not currently exist and less than 20 people have been sent to space at one time.
BTE Dan is not the only one looking for a way to advance the exploration of space. An organization named 100 Year Starship is striving to establish the needed technologies to move to interstellar flight. They started with money from NASA and the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.
He sees other uses for the starship right in our galaxy, such as taking people to Mars and constructing a permanent base on the planet. While we aren’t at the point of exploring other galaxies yet, many people believe it is possible to develop the technology to achieve that goal and part of that starts with an improvement from the current spacecraft being used.
Will we see the Enterprise in the next few years? Probably not. In the next 100 years? Anything’s possible if you believe in it.