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Plasma Rocket Could Travel to Mars in 39 Days

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posted on Oct, 6 2009 @ 08:47 PM
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Last Wednesday, the Ad Astra Rocket Company tested what is currently the most powerful plasma rocket in the world. As the Webster, Texas, company announced, the VASIMR VX-200 engine ran at 201 kilowatts in a vacuum chamber, passing the 200-kilowatt mark for the first time. The test also marks the first time that a small-scale prototype of the company's VASIMR (Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket) rocket engine has been demonstrated at full power.


www.physorg.com...



 
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[edit on Wed Oct 7 2009 by Jbird]




posted on Oct, 6 2009 @ 09:00 PM
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Now that they may destroy the Moon we have to hurry up and get to Mars so they can destroy them next.



posted on Oct, 6 2009 @ 09:48 PM
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reply to post by Aquarius1
 


Thats great news. Looks like space travel just got simpler, if the plasma rocket actually works in space. According to the speed of the thing, and how long it takes to accelerate to reach max speed, it could take about 2 hours to get to the moon. Think of what could be done in a time frame like that.

Though I doubt we will be seeing any man mission to mars, for a while. They still haven't factored everything about the planet's surface, and how humans would be able to survive.

If things don't go horribly wrong, I can see humans colonizing the moon, and maybe even establishing a base on mars by the end of this century.



posted on Oct, 6 2009 @ 10:00 PM
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Originally posted by Aquarius1
Now that they may destroy the Moon we have to hurry up and get to Mars so they can destroy them next.


Hey I am also interested in the demise of the entire universe . I believe I read that the crater will be around 30 meters if I am correct. Going to be one of the smaller craters on the moon I'd think. I'm sure one of the more well read members will correct me if I am wrong. Thanks for the thread


If it could take 39 days to get there,how many days would have past on earth? I know when years are concerned the difference at first isn't big. Well now you got me interested. I'd better go read up on it. Thanks again



posted on Oct, 6 2009 @ 10:04 PM
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if it takes 39 days to reach mars 39 days wold have passed on earth, duh

its a long ways from reletavistic speeds.


and why are people so worked up about lcrosse?, in the scheme of impacts and craters on the moon it is NOTHING.
It likely happens on a nearly daily basis



posted on Oct, 6 2009 @ 10:05 PM
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reply to post by Aquarius1
 


ahahahaha funny



posted on Oct, 6 2009 @ 10:18 PM
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reply to post by punkinworks
 


So it only come into play at light speed? What about airplanes loosing (very very very)slight time? Time I go give Einstein a read. Well thank you punkinworks for showing me I know nothing



posted on Oct, 6 2009 @ 10:23 PM
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reply to post by Trams
 




Though I doubt we will be seeing any man mission to mars, for a while. They still haven't factored everything about the planet's surface, and how humans would be able to survive.


Assuming the 39 day estimate is accurate in both directions, a 78 day roundtrip time would make it reasonable to send a manned mission without any intention of staying.



If things don't go horribly wrong, I can see humans colonizing the moon,
and maybe even establishing a base on mars by the end of this century.


Simply a matter of choosing our priorities. We could have begun colonising the moon at any point over the last 40 years. The technology has been there for a long time, but space exploration hasn't been politically important for just as long, so there hasn't been much drive to get anything done.

According to the article in the original post, they're planning on a live test of a same-size engine in 2013. Think about that. Right now we have a functional prototype that should be able to get us to the moon in two hours, or Mars in 39 days...but we're not even planning on testing it in space for 4 more years? It took only eight years for the Apollo Program to be created from scratch and land a man on the moon.

Surely with a formal space program already in place and a functional engine, we could be landing men on Mars in eight years. Personally I think we could do it in one or two if we really wanted to.

But again...priorities. *shrug*



RankRancid
If it could take 39 days to get there,how many days would have past on earth?


Roughly 39.00000001 or so, I'm sure. The speeds involved aren't nearly close enough to relativistic to make much difference.



posted on Oct, 6 2009 @ 10:29 PM
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reply to post by RankRancid
 




So it only come into play at light speed?


Time differential will come into play at any non-zero relative velocity. If you wave your hand around, it will be experiencing the passage of time at a different rate than your body. But the amount of difference doesn't become significant until the speed is a significant percentage of the speed of light. How much of a percent just depends on how much time differential you care about.

According to wikipedia:



Content from external source:
The boundary is not sharp. Corrections to Newton's laws go like (v/c)^2, so to get answers to 1% accuracy, a particle becomes relativistic when its speed is more than 10% of the speed of light.



posted on Oct, 6 2009 @ 10:48 PM
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reply to post by LordBucket
 


EDIT: corrected math, I think

Assuming the 39 day estimate was earth to mars at their shortest point, that would be roughly 36 million miles miles in 39 days. Assuming an acceleration for the first half and deceleration for the second half rather than a constant speed...that works out to an acceleration of approximately 100,000 miles per day per day, and a peak speed of roughly 1.9 million miles per day at the midway point of the trip.

1.9 million miles/day ~= 22 miles/second

22 miles/second ~= .0000001% of the speed of light

So...barely one hundred millionth of the .1c speed required to have a 1% time discrepancy.


Incidentally, that 100,000 miles per day per day acceleration is roughly equal to zero to 60 in 52 seconds. So looks like the real value of the engine is its fuel effiiciency rather than its raw power.


[edit on 6-10-2009 by LordBucket]



posted on Oct, 8 2009 @ 01:02 AM
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So if you built a plasma rocket with two or three plasma engiens would the rocket go double or three times quicker than with one plasma engien



posted on Oct, 8 2009 @ 01:17 AM
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reply to post by GORGANTHIUM
 


If you have two plasma engines as opposed to one, the craft will travel two times faster, as there is two times as much(and so forth for 3, etc amount of engines) thrust to propel the craft. Although the acceleration/deceleration time is still an apparent issue.



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