Known Universe: The Fastest

2009 ,    »  -   77 Comments
Ratings: 6.89/10 from 9 users.

Known Universe: The FastestSpeed's the key to unlocking the mysteries of space, yet the faster we go, the stranger and more exotic the universe becomes.

In the vast expanse of space, nothing matters more than speed. Whether we're venturing out to the farthest reaches of our solar system or exploring the mysteries of time travel and wormholes, speed is the key.

With riveting footage, Known Universe: The Fastest explores interstellar travel, wormholes and black holes and re-examines Einstein's theories which might hint at the existence of portals that could reach through the very fabric of space and time.

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77 Comments / User Reviews

    Teddy Mcd
  1. Teddy Mcd

    A Sunday morning treat. I'll watch it after 'mon petit-déjeuner'.

    An aside - I hope that the ramifications of quantum entanglement are correct because I need to be in myriad locales to even watch a fraction of docs I wanna - not to mention books to be read, and such.

    Thanks Vlatko - for driving me insane dude.

  2. Tanzanos Eleytheros
  3. Tanzanos Eleytheros

    Good documentary!

  4. tariqxl
  5. tariqxl

    Is stewie from family guy narrating this why does he put so much emphasis on the h

  6. princeton
  7. princeton

    so true...

    this sites regular visitors probably represent the wisest among humanity for the vast amount of true life experience we see on a regular basis and let simmer in our unconscious..

    this is a monumental leap forward for humanity and i for one feel very privileged and honored to be given the chance to experience life here and now that all this information is at our fingertips..

    learning from other's mstakes to the tenth power. use it wisely and i am proud to be among you torches in a world bent to keep us in the dark


  8. qais_prince
  9. qais_prince

    In order to travel wormholes,and speed of light , will take us 400 years may be. If we stop fighting and spending so much money in wars that have no meaning I thing we can travel in to star's in our time.

  10. PavolvsBitch
  11. PavolvsBitch

    Ahem. Excuse me for intruding upon this light fantastic fantasy, but wouldn't our resources be better deployed on ensuring healthy, natural abundance on Earth first? You keep looking at the stars, directed by your enemies, whilst they pull the ground from under your very feet. Tragic.

  12. IIE_Nath
  13. IIE_Nath


    So what happens in 500 years when a resources are gone and nothings changed, you quite obviously don't realize how much Space sciences has given you and your modern life.

    We could keep spending money on problems we have made for ourselves or we can stop being deluded, have some foresight and go out to the stars and find out that when we do this and really embrace technology all current issues will resolve themselves. Yes there will be sacrifices but if it is so our species can survive then so be it.

  14. drinker69
  15. drinker69

    This was such an informative documentary. It's really astounding to me how the likes of Einstein must've viewed the world with all of their lateral thinking and gifts of high intelligence. The Universe is truly a wonder and a mind boggling one at that. That Degrasse-Tyson dude is another one of these super minds whose intelligence is naturally drawn skyward into the stars because the issues of Earth are probably boring to him. I'm on mushrooms.

  16. Evan Jones
  17. Evan Jones

    I have never understood the concept of speed and distance when in space. What is it relative to if space is empty?? even if you are at rest in our solar system you are in fact moving with the expansion of the universe right? can anyone tell me what speed is?

  18. ramindeja
  19. ramindeja

    The content is interesting but it's no where close to the quality of BBC documentaries without the cheap music and the over excited narrations and redundant FX. What happened to all the good American documentaries?! This one has a real reality-show feel to it!!!

  20. Guest
  21. Guest

    The speed of thought has to be faster than the speed of light. The speed of light is verified by our eyes when we look at experiments and the results we have conclude by observing the reality that surrouds ys. In other words the speed of light was determined by our physical senses analazing research.
    The speed of thought could defy gravity, time, space.
    The wormhole could be crossed by a mind in motion through spacetime over matter.
    If one could stop it's mind from thinking about the reality of life, perhaps one could accelerate cognition speed beyond physic.

    Just a thought...
    Good doc but old...ya 2009...old by the standard of the speed of life.

  22. Guest
  23. Guest

    You actually make a lot of sense when on mushrooms.
    Drink less mush more! lol

  24. Mike Jones
  25. Mike Jones

    In layman's terms, speed is the pull from gravity. The smaller you are the faster you are being pulled from things larger than you.

  26. Jeremy
  27. Jeremy

    Shrooms, a clear summer night, a grassy field, a sky free of artificial lights, a friend, and a small campfire. Prepare to ascend!

  28. Achems_Razor
  29. Achems_Razor

    Az...the speed of thought is way, way slower than the speed of light, thoughts have to travel down a lot of pathways, synapses, nerves, etc: people that have fast reactions tend to more healthier and smarter, scientists have tried to measure speed of thought for a long, long time. Differs for each individual.

    But one thing that may be faster than the speed of C is quantum entanglement.

  30. drinker69
  31. drinker69

    I don't really drink that much. It's just a name. I only mention mushrooms because I don't think whoever runs this website allows it. They've removed some of my comments because some losers are born to flag other people's comments I guess. Which is why I'm not wasting my time here anymore and going to make my own website.

  32. dewflirt
  33. dewflirt

    That's too funny, you're a real fungi ;)

  34. norlavine
  35. norlavine

    The speed of 'the tongue' is faster than the speed of thought in many instances! I myself have proven that many x

  36. Achems_Razor
  37. Achems_Razor


    I wholeheartedly agree, a woman's tongue is definitely faster than speed of thought, and the speed of C and even faster than quantum entanglement.

    Yep, it has been proven many times not only by you as you say, but by all women!

    Sure is easy to get off topic, I blame the women! hehe.

  38. dewflirt
  39. dewflirt

    Almost right Mighty, a woman's tongue is faster than the speed of Man thought ;)

  40. norlavine
  41. norlavine

    Aha,yes, getting back onto the subject... quantum mechanics indicate that the possibilities of location, location, location are infinite in regards to the way always oppositely charged 'twins' behave in entanglement experiments.
    The sub atomic world appears to conform when we are peeking, and does something else when we are not.
    Thought may not be limited to the realm of carbon creatures, perhaps evolution has allowed the quantum world to create it's own venue. x

  42. drinker69
  43. drinker69

    I like your last line for sure. I've got no problem with what people say. It's fun to hear peoples views from around the globe. It's the cowardly little bums that flag my stuff and then a moderator has it taken down. Whats up with that? It's harmless banter for corn sake and it's a double standard or something and childish. It's akin to running to the playground supervisor and telling on me for giving someone an atomic wedgie. I mean come on. Ahh I don't really care I just like to exercise my free speech is all. Schucks.

  44. Achems_Razor
  45. Achems_Razor

    norlavine...Close, but quantum has allowed the evolution world to create its own venue.

  46. Sieben Stern
  47. Sieben Stern

    pluto in two years! sign me up! I'll break the news of its demotion personally (/^w^)/

  48. Jamie
  49. Jamie

    Even before I watch this I know the photons from my screen have already lived and died, yet they are still viewable.
    Mind=blown, Keep up the good work guys.

    Az, you use 'could' too much ;)

    Peace 'n' love peeps

  50. John Asher
  51. John Asher

    The speed of thought is not faster than the speed of light. Your thoughts are carried out through electrons interacting with one another. Photons and electrons are very different. One has mass, the other does not. Electrons, having mass, will gain infinite mass if it were to reach the speed of light. Therefore, the electrons bouncing around your neural network are not traveling at the speed of light. If they were your head would collapse the universe onto itself.

  52. Philio
  53. Philio

    Yes the speed of the “thought process” is slower than light but the thought itself can transport you, with the proper data, knowledge and some imagination to anywhere you want to go faster than light can travel there. Cosmologists do it every day. When the thought is processed the travel time is almost instantaneous.


    A quick hello form the screen name formally known as Aristotle. I’ve missed bantering with the old crew. Since the change I’m unable to retrieve my old screen name. I’ve been off the sight writing a book. Haven’t seen comments from CryingKate, Epicurean_Logic or Charles either are they still around?

  54. Durrs Shahini
  55. Durrs Shahini

    When they said about the wormholes and travelling in times example 5 years in the past, that kind of doesn't make sense..? Could someone explain that to me

  56. Achems_Razor
  57. Achems_Razor


    Yes, how are you? this is way off topic but your previous comments were a boon to TDF. discussions. You had some very good posts.

    The only ones that seem to still be around that you have mentioned are Charles...C_and _N.

  58. Guest
  59. Guest

    It's a defense mechanism against the sharks.

  60. Guest
  61. Guest

    I meant the speed of awareness. I write in English and i think in French, sometimes they disconnect.
    I do agree with Philio's take on it.

  62. Guest
  63. Guest

    I came here 2 yrs ago, Epicurean_Logic was still around, the guy sounds like a good brain on legs, I miss his input.
    I think Charles got burnt, even mentionned on one of his last post (that was moderated off the thread) that he was loosing faith and was worrying his wife (my guess had to do with his participation on TDF and the straight response he got constantly from participants).

  64. marios katsaros
  65. marios katsaros

    The speed of time and light are egual to eachother while they are going at the same speed. If you were to travel of a speed greater the the speed of light you will see darkness because light would not reach you fast enough, thus you would see darkness.

  66. marios katsaros
  67. marios katsaros

    Time is differnet in space than on earth. When you go in a warmhole time changes and becomes slower compared to earth and everything around you.When you come back out of the wormhole you will find youself in the future because earth time is faster.

  68. John Asher
  69. John Asher

    When you imagine traveling from one point in space to another you are not traveling any distance. You are merely creating an imaginary world that is outside reality. The thought cannot transport you anywhere but inside this imaginary construct. You cannot compare the speed at which you travel in your mind to the speed of light because the speed which you think you are traveling in your mind isn't real.

  70. Philio
  71. Philio

    Just for a little exercise......> The easiest part to imagine is viewing the past. We do that now. As stated in the document, the light we see from far away stars is from emissions in the past. The light we see and feel from the sun is 8 minutes old. The light from the next nearest star, Proxima Centauri, is a little more than 4 years old so we are seeing its past activity. Communications with far ranging space craft are all communications from the past both at the home base and the craft.

    In each case mentioned above there is a present separated by space/time all communications are past reports. The space dimensions are smaller and all clocks are slower for the craft. That would include atomic clocks. So space/time is malleable with speed.

    Astronauts travel into the future in a fashion. They age slower because time slows as speed increases. So if one had an identical twin when they left on the space journey they would be younger than their twin, who remained stationary, when they returned. The traveler would age slower.

    Physically moving your body between the past, present and future brings up a sort of mystical idea, as in, every thing that has or will happen is happening now. Space/time would have to be physical separator with access points or stated otherwise, all NOW’s are a function of space/time dimensions and exist simultaneously.

    There is a big BUT in that idea. Time as we experience it so far has a non-reversible directional arrow that only moves toward the future and not the past. Another big BUT is that the math in the theory predicts that the time arrow is reversible.

    Once you get past the present reality time arrow hurdle it becomes a simple problem of manipulating space/time, the fabric of the universe, and finding enough energy to do so! That amount of energy is enormous, possibly all that there is. Did I say simple?

    Somehow or other one would enter a wormhole or tunnel in folded space and leap from one part of the galaxy to another. That is traveling without moving or just moving the distance between the entrance and the exit. Have you ever read “Dune”? You in essence have then traveled MUCH faster than light but not really.

    At the end of your journey you would be viewing the now in that space/time dimension and from the viewpoint of where you started it would be a future. Notice is said “a future”. You would have out paced the light leaving your solar system and if you could view it you would be viewing the past in your solar system. If you did a reverse trip to the same coordinates you would arrive back where you started.

    If you have managed to manipulate the space/time fabric there is one more problem. If you wanted to intercept a future or past space/time dimension, you would have to calculate its position in the history of the universe. The universe is expanding (or wrapping around a torrid which is another interesting thought). The past would be located somewhere in a smaller universe and the future would be somewhere in a larger universe (or some other position within the toroid). The past would seem safer to a point but the future could be a whole different problem. It might be a problem to exit into a future beyond the event horizon of the universe.

    That was fun….

  72. Achems_Razor
  73. Achems_Razor

    Good stuff, seems like you have never left, that should give some food for thought to our Azilda, she seems to be garnering all the science stuff like a blotter.

  74. Philio
  75. Philio

    Einstein would disagree with you. He managed the creation (or understanding) of a whole new universe simply thought experiments. All the math came after his mind “saw” the problem and the solutions. He worked out the math later.

    Then there is Stephen Hawking, almost totally disabled, he does what he does in his mind. In both examples they managed to describe realities relatively well after seeing it in their minds eye.

    Did they miss the mark? Stephen admits that there are problems with his theory and Einstein had problems with his but what have those mind journeyers given us?

    Being there is one perspective and imagining is another. If you can’t physically go, then why not work with and enjoy the mind trip? It is much faster and less taxing. Furthermore if the math works why not trust what they invision?

    I choose to see their imaginings as real as do others that have spent their lives working with those imaginings. There are those who’s mental vision is very clear and detailed.

    The physical brain alone doesn’t know the difference between reality and fiction. It takes the reasoning mind to tell the brain it’s not real. So if the imagination, the source of creativity, is dismissed as unreal why bother with the math?

    Of course we could wait until we can physically make the trip, record the data and then do the math.

  76. dmxi
  77. dmxi

    you gotta stay're always good at making me smile!
    i enjoy your comments;short,sharp & witty !regards..............d.

  78. drinker69
  79. drinker69

    That's very righteous of you to say bro-ham. God speed to you.

  80. bornix n
  81. bornix n

    use of anti-matter to fuel the technology is the only way we can achieve the speed of light and beyond! I know this but i also know that we dont have the technology yet as it is still theoretical... I love the imaginations and aspirations we have at the moment though.

    However, one thing is for sure, if we cant use technology to fuel spiritual development (since its the helm of human evolution), i dont see our technology reaching that level anytime soon...

  82. Karenwasherefirst
  83. Karenwasherefirst

    I am not convinced one would age slower because the length of time the journey takes would be the same amount of time the other twin is waiting for you. Only your perspective of events is slowed.

  84. Guest
  85. Guest

    Is that why every time i go travelling/backpacking, i feel younger?

  86. dmxi
  87. dmxi

    see?thats what i did it again!>smirk<

  88. Marvin
  89. Marvin

    Itis so jerky. Spends half the time catching up/ watch... wait... watch... wait. don't like

  90. bud oracle
  91. bud oracle

    To think that some of these collections of amoeba like colonies that have coalesced into a single entity organism with a pineal gland as a connector/receptor to a larger consciousness, can look at the universe as well as itself and come up with these concepts. Amazing!

    And yet the other end of the spectrum of humanity is still mired in religious mysticism afraid of knowledge and analytical thought itself.

  92. SmoTh
  93. SmoTh

    If a photon are born at c, travel at c and die at c, never varying from it, and time stands still at the speed of c. How old is the photon? Zero age? Can you even say in a literal sense that it exists when it's birth and death is both at the same instance of time then?

  94. francuccio
  95. francuccio

    The lack of writing skills evidenced in these comments is very disconcerting. It's no wonder the world laughs at us.

  96. francuccio
  97. francuccio

    Ikhnaton was a monotheist nearly a thousand years earlier.

  98. Achems_Razor
  99. Achems_Razor


    Yes, time is relevant only to the observer. At a photons perspective, there is no time, everything is static, by us observing and collapsing the wave form sets time into motion, therefore when a photon travels 186,000 miles, equals one second in time. (quantum mechanics)

  100. SmoTh
  101. SmoTh

    You just made me understand the concept of time better, thank you sir!

  102. Philio
  103. Philio

    That explanation is right on and we could enter an old conversation beginning with that comment…….no observation, no wave collapse, no matter, no time……. Didn’t we do this one before?

  104. Achems_Razor
  105. Achems_Razor


    Yeah,I think we have done the whole gamit actually, unless you can think of something new? lol

  106. Philio
  107. Philio

    Ok here’s a pitch…. In the LHC they’re speeding protons or lead nuclei up to near the speed of light and causing them to collide. Then they more or less take pictures of the collision looking for evidence of a hypothetical boson aka the Higgs with no success.

    When they take the picture aren’t they in effect measuring everything in the collision? What happens when you measure or determine the position of any of either the particles being accelerated or the products of the collision? So when does “mass” happen? Do waves collide?

    Maybe there looking in the wrong place. They may have to change their paradigm. LOL

  108. Guest
  109. Guest

    Although i am nowhere close to you guys knowledge in science, i find it fascinating, i'm enjoying having you here bouncing ideas with Achems.

  110. Paulo D
  111. Paulo D

    Can anyone help me understand the concept of speed and time dilation?
    Let us say you travel to a galaxy 25 light years away at speed of light. My physics book says you only age 3-4 years while an observer from earth ages 25 years (as expected). Why doesn't the guy in the spaceship age 25 years as well?

  112. Achems_Razor
  113. Achems_Razor

    As an analogy, when they take pictures of the subatomic particles flying apart after the collision what in effect they are doing is say akin to watching the pieces of a pocket watch fly apart and then try and determine by looking at the pieces to what is was to begin with, there may not be any higgs boson to define mass, just as there is no matter basically energy, called quantum jitters in an atom, basically empty space, empty because atoms flickering in and out of existence as in string theory.

    A vibration, off and on as we are every Planck sec. as you know cannot go any faster then a Planck sec. or it would not make sense.

    I guess that is where Hugh Everett 111 many worlds theory comes into play, when we are off in this reality we are on in another, and so on, 10^500.

    Do not know when mass happens, I suppose no one does, not now anyway, as is the same with dark energy.

  114. Tristan Rentz
  115. Tristan Rentz

    Why is it that American documentary makers:
    a) by and large consult and feature only Americans?
    b) throw scenes together as a dizzying collage, often including images that have no pertinence to what's being said?
    As with so many American media productions, they give the distinct impression that Americans think that America IS the world, and yet Americans wonder why the rest of the world is so full of anti-American sentiment...
    End result: a clear preoccupation with appearance at the expense of quality. Exemplifies a common American tendency to disregard their own credibility and give an impression of possessing little or no self-respect!
    Jeez I must sound cynical, so on the lighter side: Mars in 39 days - bring it on!!

  116. Tristan Rentz
  117. Tristan Rentz

    I struggle with that notion - although I don't doubt that you're informed - in that it is only the light behind you that is failing to reach you... What of light emitting objects in front, ie towards which you are headed?

  118. Jamie
  119. Jamie

    /quote As an analogy, when they take pictures of the subatomic particles flying apart after the collision what in effect they are doing is say akin to watching the pieces of a pocket watch fly apart and then try and determine by looking at the pieces to what is was to begin with...

    As you no doubt know Achems, it wouldn't be a pocket watch that was collided though..the bits that came away yes.

    but everyone knows you need lollipops to make watch bits :P

    Definitely some weird stuff going on at CERN atm, (when hasn't it been) and only just above half power iirc. Fun times ahead :)

  120. Brian Dady
  121. Brian Dady

    That's not how GPS works, Nat Geo! There's a reason they are called GPS receivers...

  122. lakotahope
  123. lakotahope

    Ironically, the British documentaries aren't allowed to be shown in America thru most web sites. Seems they are blocked by the BBC or whoever owns them. Of course, those that make it into torrents aren't disqualified, but just streaming shows off of these sites from Britain just doesn't work. So, back to American shows for American audiences. It does limit our horizons. But, remember, if America sneezes, the rest of the world catches a cold.

  124. Jonathon Drake
  125. Jonathon Drake

    so theoretically on the quantum level would it be possible to send and receive information electromagnetically faster than the speed of light? (of course relative to our currant position in space and gravitational time dilation) but interesting!!!

  126. pouyan derakhshan
  127. pouyan derakhshan

    what if there are universes in things like atoms and in turn universes in smaller scale relative to that. if math is infinite then why shouldn't that be possible. what if the universe was just a tiny particle to something bigger and that it went on in infinity ?

  128. Purnell
  129. Purnell

    Wow, American documentaries are so ADHD. Give me a British doco any day. So much whizz bang and very few facts. I have a headache.

  130. *I
  131. *I

    If light is relative to speed,then we only perceive light to take 8 minutes to reach earth from the sun,but when you travel at the speed of light,it wouldn't even take you more than 30 seconds to reach earth,that's because time slows down when you achieve near light speed,possibly 99.99% the speed of light,so travelling throughout the cosmos would mean travelling in hundreds or even thousands of years,when in reality it would only take a year or so,to achieve that.

  132. Achems_Razor
  133. Achems_Razor


    Resting mass can never travel at speed of C, would become an infinite singularity, say for instance that you could, would still take you 8 min to reach the sun, time will slow down but not for you, you will still be merrily traveling at 186,000 miles per sec. if an observer could see your wrist watch it will be ticking slower to the observers eyes, an observer will see you slow down in movement and forever stop in time at speed of C, but you would still be traveling. But if traveling at close to the speed of C you would be aging much slower than the observer. Time dilation.

  134. DonaldWCameron
  135. DonaldWCameron

    "Black Hole Firewalls Confound Theoretical Physicists"

    General relativity may fall into the dustbin of history.

    I find the bowling ball/rubber sheet analogy quite irritating.

    Also if light has no mass then it can have no energy.

  136. fireworshiper
  137. fireworshiper

    if you travel at the speed of light, time stops for you and you will not percieve the passage of time. One prime example is a photon, it never gets old,just tired and that's because of expansion that streches its wavelenght.

  138. megatron_mcdaniels
  139. megatron_mcdaniels

    the photons become lonely too.

  140. astromann
  141. astromann

    NASA ought to take a leaf out of Lance Armstrong's book and finally admit to the fake moon landings. We need to come to terms with our real limitations

  142. Gerry S
  143. Gerry S

    oh come on astromann take your head out of your ass - they've been to the moon more than once and back - get over yourself

  144. Daniel Robinson
  145. Daniel Robinson

    when did he admit to that?

  146. Brett Tuttle
  147. Brett Tuttle

    i think you mean Neil Armstrong dude, if you wanna sound credible..

  148. Richard MK
  149. Richard MK

    Yes , 15,000 people have kept a 40 year secret. Lol

  150. Guest
  151. Guest

    On the off chance it was fake, I humbly offer the evil cabal the mad props they deserve. Yall are some serious head trippin baddies.

  152. me
  153. me

    exploring space with chemical rockets is like trying to start a fire rubbing two sticks together.

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