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Declassified Pictures:Project Orion

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posted on Oct, 18 2006 @ 12:51 PM
The are some interesting pictures and documents of the United States Project Orion at the below link.

External source
"Previously "classified" documents related to Project Orion, the now-aborted plan to send nuke-propelled spaceships to Mars and other planets"

I know Project Orion has been disscussed on ATS before,
but these are well worth a look.

I wonder if this project really was shelved,or just hidden from view.(went black)
Any Ideas?

posted on Oct, 19 2006 @ 09:05 AM
Cool find, Silcone Synapse.

Orion was pretty much undoubtably shelved - check out this slide from the picture you posted to find out why. The test vehicle alone would have weighed from 50-100 tons, requiring a Saturn V (or similar class) launcher to get it into orbit. That is, unless this was intended as an SSTO, in which case they (hypothetically) would have activated the nuclear engine on the ground. Either one of these (Saturn V launch, or a small above-ground nuclear explosion) is a difficult thing to hide, and the Soviet Union (among others) would have been pissed that: (1) we were in violation of the 1963 Partial Test Ban Treaty; and (2) that we were creating something that - by its very nature - was weaponizing space.

Using Orion as an SSTO is, IMHO, just insane, but for deep-space (that is, beyond Earth orbit) applications it was an impressive concept.

posted on Oct, 19 2006 @ 09:20 AM

orion was the name of the ship in Deep Impact as well and that was nuke powered!

posted on Oct, 19 2006 @ 09:20 AM
Thanks for the reply Phloyd.
In a way,i hope the projects contents have been absorbed into other more advanced projects,at least the ideas.
With the advances in making nukes/reactors smaller,and hopefully safer(!),maybe they will eventually use some of the ideas of Orion.
I wonder if a high powered reactor could be connected to some kind of Ion propulsion drive...
Video of (amatuer) Ion Propulsion,Using a tesla coil:

Be interesting to see a 1 giga watt version,

posted on Oct, 19 2006 @ 09:41 AM
Thought you guys might be interested in this link to a fact sheet about the NERVA engines that ORION would have most likely used.

I'd bet that development has been ongoing in the dark since they were "officially" mothballed.

posted on Oct, 19 2006 @ 09:51 AM
Thanks Darkbluesky!

What a bad momma that would have been!

external source
"highest power: 4500 megawatts thermal power
5,500°F exhaust temperature
250,000 pounds thrust "

Very nice.

posted on Oct, 19 2006 @ 09:57 AM
You're welcome.

And just think, That was >30 yrs ago. If they've been working on it quietly since then, who know what kind of performence they might be getting?

I fdon't believe the Air Force and/or NASA or for that matter, any number of black ops programs would just set this kind of thing on a shelf and forget about it.

[edit on 10/19/2006 by darkbluesky]

posted on Oct, 19 2006 @ 10:20 AM

Originally posted by darkbluesky
You're welcome.

I don't believe the Air Force and/or NASA or for that matter, any number of black ops programs would just set this kind of thing on a shelf and forget about it.

[edit on 10/19/2006 by darkbluesky]

Too right,Darkblue.
I bet they have some serious tech up there already,i`m thinking this new Space Domination bill of GWs is quietly hinting at that.

posted on Apr, 26 2010 @ 05:11 PM
I wouldn't want to see or hear a launch of that monster.

This is madness!! No this is the USA!

I am glad they did that idea away.

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