4

You aren't missing anything. The pulsar map is fairly useless unless the spacecraft is found within the next million years, when it won't have got too far from the Sun (the probes will have travelled about 30 light years in that time). The problem is not so much that the set of pulsars won't be visible, because they almost certainly would be if you change ...


1

You can never reach the speed of light but can get very close to it. Thus, when you travel with, say, 99.99% speed of light it will take you a little more than 31 years to reach the star 31 light years away. This is, however, the time it takes seen from earth. In the spaceship, the time taken will be dilated by $$\gamma ={1\over \sqrt {1-{v^2\over c^2}}}$$ ...


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