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Originally posted by fatpastyhead
so we would get to the moon using this technology pretty quick?
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Originally posted by andy06shake
I think we also need to consider the fact that space is not empty!
When and if we begin to travel through said medium at velocities in the 100s of miles per second range any type or size of particulate matter is going to be like hitting a brick wall if its in the space crafts flight path!
We need to design some type of magnetic forward shield like the navigational shields in Star Trek before we can go that fast.
edit on 7-4-2013 by andy06shake because: (no reason given)
Originally posted by CJCrawley
Intriguing news item, but I think highly unlikely.
The heat produced would vaporise the rocket.
Besides, if they can build a fusion-powered rocket, why not a fusion reactor?
They need to haul ass to the moon and get mining that there Helium-3.....
The second i read the post headline i thought the same thing.
Originally posted by tothetenthpower
Yeah, this will be the last time we hear of this.
Fusion power is not something they want the average guy to think is doable, cheap or renewable.
Originally posted by Zaphod58
reply to post by KuhNate
You still have to get the mass moving. That requires a constant thrust. Once it's moving then there's no friction to slow it down, but that doesn't mean that a short burst of thruster is going to suddenly jump your speed 1000 mph.
Originally posted by ChuckNasty
Think his point is... The govt has and will keep hushing new tech if it poses a problem to national security. They'll classify the patents and file it away out of fear. They did this during the cold war era and they'll do it now. China has the financial backing to take any new idea and do it. Imagine if the rocket does work...who'd you think will get to mars first? Won't be American, more likely a joint Russian & China mission.
Even if you develop something that is a game changer - odds are there is a patent already. That pat would likely be top secret, you'd be asked to stop and there would be nothing you can do about it. You'd then die from a freak medical complication from a standard procedure.
Originally posted by pheonix358
reply to post by Bedlam
Yes you can, but if there are people on board it would be a bit uncomfortable. Gravity/no gravity/gravity/no gravity............
It would also provide additional and constant stressors to the craft itself.
NERVA is an acronym for Nuclear Engine for Rocket Vehicle Application, a joint program of the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission and NASA managed by the Space Nuclear Propulsion Office (SNPO) until both the program and the office ended at the end of 1972. NERVA demonstrated that nuclear thermal rocket engines were a feasible and reliable tool for space exploration, and at the end of 1968 SNPO certified that the latest NERVA engine, the NRX/XE, met the requirements for a manned Mars mission. Although NERVA engines were built and tested as much as possible with flight-certified components and the engine was deemed ready for integration into a spacecraft, much of the U.S. space program was cancelled by the Nixon Administration before a manned visit to Mars could take place. NERVA was considered by the AEC, SNPO and NASA to be a highly successful program; it met or exceeded its program goals. Its principal objective was to "establish a technology base for nuclear rocket engine systems to be utilized in the design and development of propulsion systems for space mission application". Virtually all space mission plans that use nuclear thermal rockets use derivative designs from the NERVA NRX or Pewee.
The Rover/NERVA program accumulated 17 hours of operating time with 6 hours above 2000 K. Although the engine, turbine and liquid hydrogen tank were never physically assembled together, the NERVA was deemed ready to design into a working vehicle by NASA, creating a small political crisis in Congress because of the danger a Mars exploration program presented to the national budget. Clinton P. Anderson, the New Mexico senator who had protected the program, had become severely ill. Lyndon B. Johnson, another powerful advocate of human space exploration, had decided not to run for a second term and was considerably weakened. NASA program funding was somewhat reduced by Congress for the 1969 budget, and the incoming Nixon administration reduced it still further for 1970, shutting down the Saturn rocket production line and cancelling Apollo missions after Apollo 17. Without the Saturn S-N rocket to carry the NERVA to orbit, Los Alamos continued the Rover Program for a few more years with Pewee and the Nuclear Furnace, but it was disbanded by 1972. The most serious injury during testing was a hydrogen explosion in which two employees sustained foot and ear drum injuries. At one point in 1965 the liquid hydrogen storage at Test Cell #2 during a Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory Test was accidentally allowed to run dry; the core overheated and ejected on to the floor of the Nevada desert. Test Site personnel waited 3 weeks and then walked out and collected the pieces without mishap. The nuclear waste from the damaged core was spread across the desert and was collected by an Army group as a decontamination exercise. An engine of this type is on outdoor display on the grounds of the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville Alabama.
The RIFT vehicle consisted of a Saturn S-IC first stage, an SII stage and an S-N (Saturn-Nuclear) third stage. The Space Nuclear Propulsion Office planned to build ten RIFT vehicles, six for ground tests and four for flight tests, but RIFT was delayed after 1966 as NERVA became a political proxy in the debate over a Mars mission. The nuclear Saturn C-5 would carry two to three times more payload into space than the chemical version, enough to easily loft 340,000 pound space stations and replenish orbital propellant depots. Wernher von Braun also proposed a manned Mars mission using NERVA and a spinning donut-shaped spacecraft to simulate gravity. Many of the NASA plans for Mars in the 1960s and early 1970s used the NERVA rocket specifically, see list of manned Mars mission plans in the 20th century.