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Space Exploration/Trave to Keppler 22b

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Question
What is the max speed a spacecraft built today can travel? How long would it take to reach the planet kepler 22b?
Thanks

Answer
Hi, Elaine, thanks for writing.  The maximum speed depends on gravity, payload weight, and gravity assists available (such as other planets).  The fastest spacecraft now in flight is the New Horizons, now on its way to Pluto at 37,260 miles per hour (over 10 miles per second).  It can reach Kepler 22B in about 11 million years.  If we can get a significant fraction of the speed of light (nothing can reach or exceed that speed), that can be reduced to around 600 years.  Write anytime!

Space Exploration

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Kenneth Renshaw

Expertise

Answer basic space flight questions, research info on specific space flights. Answer questions on astronomy

Experience

Amateur astronomer and avid astronomy/space flight fan for 31 years.

Organizations
Official NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador for Arkansas and Missouri (one of about 300 nationwide). (http://www2.jpl.nasa.gov/ambassador/profiles/Kenneth_Renshaw.htm)

Publications
Numerous local and area newspapers.

Education/Credentials
AA/BME/MME

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