That means that the ship would arrive at its destination faster than a beam of light traveling the same distance, but without violating Einstein's relativity, which says that it would take an infinite amount of energy to accelerate an object with mass to the speed of light, since the ship itself isn't actually moving.
The fabric of space has moved faster than light before, says Cleaver, right after the Big Bang, when the universe expanded faster than the speed of light.
"We're recreating the inflationary period of the universe behind the ship," said Cleaver.
While the theory rests on relatively firm ground, the next question is how do you expand space behind the ship and contract it in front of the ship?
Cleaver and Richard Obousy, the other coauthor, propose manipulating the 11th dimension, a special theoretical construct of m-theory (the offspring of string theory), to create the bubble the ship would surf down.
If the 11th dimension could be shrunk behind the ship it would create a bubble of dark energy, the same dark energy that is causing the universe to speed up as time goes on. Expanding the 11th dimension in front of the ship would eventually cause it to decrease, although two separate steps are required.