Originally posted by boymonkey74
reply to post by Druscilla
I saw a documentary on that, JFK went to see a model of it and the army dudes stuck a load of guns and stuff on it and JFK was horrified and cancelled
They said about 4 or 5 people would be killed by the fallout and the designer tried to sabotage the project.
Oddly enough the way the nukes were put in place came from the same design from coca cola how they move the bottles.
it's really a fascinating project that resulted from an accident that (theoretically) launched the first man-made object into space during a nuclear
containment test explosion called "Pascal B" under operation Plumbbob where a 900kg steel capping plate was possibly accelerated to 6 times escape
velocity (and never found).
Later studies on the concept did away with the idea of ground-to-space launch due the concerns over fallout, among other safety issues.
Read through the Wiki on Project Orion
. It get pretty detailed with ship
design, bomb payload requirements for trips to Moon, Mars, and I think Saturn too, with variations for high efficiency "Energy Limited" next to
"Momentum Limited" configurations.
It's even detailed with enough payload, for Interstellar travel, a Project Orion type ship could (theoretically) reach:
A nuclear pulse drive starship powered by matter-antimatter pulse units would be theoretically capable of obtaining a velocity between 50% to 80%
of the speed of light.
That's VERY fast compared to all the other solutions we currently have on the table.
That would put Alpha Centari and other close neighbors almost within traveling distance, at least feasible for robotic probes on timescales we
wouldn't simply forget about.
Of course there's other engineering hurdles to overcome before speeds like that could be safely reached, like shielding against even dust and gas that
would collide with a craft going that fast.
Anyway, apologies everyone for going tangental with something space related with the name Orion, but, not the Orion discussed in the OP.
edit on 19-11-2012 by Druscilla because: (no reason given)