Would Star Trek’s Transporters Kill and Replace You?
schwit1 quotes Syfy Wire:
There is, admittedly, some ambiguity about exactly how Trek’s transporters work. The occasions of some episodes subtly contradict occasions in others. The closest factor to an official phrase we have now is the Star Trek: The Next Generation Technical Manual, which states that when an individual enters a transporter, they’re scanned by molecular imaging scanners that convert an individual right into a subatomically deconstructed matter stream. That’s all a fancy-pants approach of claiming it takes you aside, atom by atom, and converts your matter into power. That power can then be beamed to its vacation spot, the place it is reconstructed. According to Trek lore, we’re meant to consider this can be a steady course of. Despite being deconstructed and rebuilt on the opposite finish, you by no means cease being “you….”
[Alternately] the truth that you’re scanned, deconstructed, and rebuilt nearly instantly thereafter solely creates the phantasm of continuity. In actuality, you’re killed and then one thing precisely such as you is born, elsewhere. If the particular person constructed on the opposite finish is similar to you, right down to the atomic stage, is there any measurable distinction from it being truly you? Those are questions we won’t start to reply. What appears clear — regardless of the technical handbook says — is you die once you enter a transporter, nevertheless briefly.
The article additionally cites estimates that it will take three gigajoules of power (about one bolt of lightning) to disassemble any person’s atoms, and 10 to the 28th energy kilobytes to then maintain all that info — and 2.6 tredecillion bits of knowledge to transmit it.
“The estimated time to transmit, using the standard 30 GHz microwave band used by communications satellites, would take 350,000 times longer than the age of the universe.”