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Science and Technology "Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known." - Carl Sagan.

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Old July 14 2011, 03:58 AM   #46
MANT!
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Re: The DARPA 100 Year Starship

Brazil has no freight trains..it does alright..it wouldn't be much of a stretch to redo the distribution network to do trucks..after all the trucks can go to where the trains load up..and drive to those same distribution centers.. maybe a week for the government to do it..and prices would increase..but certainly not enough to bring civilization down..
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Old July 14 2011, 04:41 AM   #47
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Re: The DARPA 100 Year Starship

So comparing a nation that has never used trains for distribution to one that looses the trains it uses massively for distribution? Yep, that's a fair comparison. There aren't enough trucks in the U.S. to move the volume. People would start to starve in that week. Look what happened with New Orleans. Imagine if New York went without food for a week. Civilization might not end, but it would be one hell of a disaster. Ever hear the saying "Every society is 3 meals away from revolution"?
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Old July 14 2011, 05:14 PM   #48
John O.
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Re: The DARPA 100 Year Starship

sojourner wrote: View Post
So comparing a nation that has never used trains for distribution to one that looses the trains it uses massively for distribution? Yep, that's a fair comparison. There aren't enough trucks in the U.S. to move the volume. People would start to starve in that week. Look what happened with New Orleans. Imagine if New York went without food for a week. Civilization might not end, but it would be one hell of a disaster. Ever hear the saying "Every society is 3 meals away from revolution"?
Ordinary people all over South Texas during Ike, Rita and Katrina went without 3+ regular meals and didn't revolt because the average American has more integrity than the common looter. I was down there for part of it and I knew plenty of ppl who kept their shit together.
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Old September 23 2011, 08:29 AM   #49
John O.
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Re: The DARPA 100 Year Starship

Bump.

This conference is coming up in about a week, just putting the final touches on my presentation. The paper's already been submitted and accepted. When publication rolls around in a few months I'll see if I can upload/attach a copy into this thread.

Incidentally I have better data now for the 'sweet spot' ideal operating condition. I'm not sure how much I kept this thread apprised of how my concept design changed but it advanced into a new variation of potential fusion propulsion. We call it the "Viper Pulsed Fusion Rocket". Viper evolved as an inside joke attempt to meld together "PFR" and "HIIPER" into "PFHIIPER" (Viper). I'm gonna summarize extremely briefly and you guys can read the paper later if you want. We feed a helicon plasma into an IEC, get fusion through some breakthrough technologies (some of which have been invented, 1 or 2 haven't), we get power production (~140 MW), and thrust by magnetically collimating the alpha particles that come out of the reaction, putting them through a direct energy conversions cycle to syphon off enough power to run the system (~24 MW IIRC), and then comes the interesting part. People have theorized about something called "Diluted Fusion Product" propulsion whereby you essentially convert the "nuclear thermal rocket" idea of a fission reactor into a fusion reactor. We take the alpha particles which are extremely energetic, and mix them with a neutral gas like hydrogen, in a magnetically confined chamber, and exhaust the mix. Assuming various efficiencies (many allowing for significant losses), we get pretty good numbers:

Thrust: 660 N
ISP: 30 million

Operating off-optimal you can actually get thrust up to about 3 kN and it only brings your ISP down to.... idk, 1-3 million I think. Pretty awesome.

On a 2-month low thrust transfer to Mars, with about 1000 kg of propellant, the engine could pull about 460 MT of cargo. Beast eh?
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Last edited by John O.; September 23 2011 at 08:48 AM.
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Old September 23 2011, 06:40 PM   #50
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Re: The DARPA 100 Year Starship

Amazing...
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Old October 8 2011, 04:44 AM   #51
John O.
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Re: The DARPA 100 Year Starship

Thought you guys might enjoy this... line art schematic of the Viper engine I designed.

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Old October 8 2011, 05:22 AM   #52
RAMA
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Re: The DARPA 100 Year Starship

John O. wrote: View Post
Thought you guys might enjoy this... line art schematic of the Viper engine I designed.


Cool, Hope to hear more of this soon.
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Old October 13 2011, 01:51 AM   #53
John O.
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Re: The DARPA 100 Year Starship

Typo earlier, btw - ISP - 300k, not 30m.
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Old October 22 2011, 06:18 PM   #54
publiusr
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Re: The DARPA 100 Year Starship

Pretty nice. I keep hoping we we see a Nuclear Salt Water rocket one day--but how to deal with the heat...
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