Another take on the Original Enterprise...

Discussion in 'Fan Art' started by Cary L. Brown, Apr 24, 2009.

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  1. BK613

    BK613 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    But we do that all the time. Whenever something new comes along, either new terms are invented or old terms are adapted/reinvented. Just some examples:

    -ping, which came from the operation of sonar and now is also a ICMP command for testing connectivity
    -boot, which now means "start the device" but comes from "bootstrap program" which in turn comes from the phrase "pull one up by one's bootstraps"
    -switching, which went from railroad to telephony to networking
    -aircraft, wow, do we even want to go here, with port/starboard, rudder, pilot, hull, cockpit, turret, etc. all being borrowed from nautical terminology, and some of those, like turret, were in turn borrowed and redefined from earlier times.

    So the idea that "impulse" could have a broader--or even completely different-- connotation than the classic Newtonian one is, to me anyway, entirely reasonable.
     
  2. Santaman

    Santaman Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Interplanetary Medium Power Unified Large coil Sub Light Energy drive? :angel:
     
  3. Wingsley

    Wingsley Commodore Commodore

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    RIKER: "Increase to Warp 6"

    LAFORGE: "Aye, sir. Full impulse."

    TNG - "Conspiracy"


    -
    :rommie: :rommie: :rommie: :rommie:
     
  4. Cary L. Brown

    Cary L. Brown Rear Admiral

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    I think that's a great example of the "Peter Principle!"


    Honestly, we all know that Trek is chock-full of inconsistencies. It's not actually REAL, after all, and hell, half the world doesn't even care to keep their opinions about "reality" consistent with reality. So it's largely pointless to expect there to never be anything inconsistent with "Treknology."

    Still, given all the stuff that's built up over the years, the original concepts (whether we're talking Jefferies, Chang, Minor, Probert, Sternbach, Okuda, etc) are often very well-thought-out... and the inconsistencies crop up later due to other folks not paying attention to the original, well-thought-out concepts. In those cases, I tend to disregard the "bad writing" or "bad directing" or "bad effects" or "bad production" elements and try to stick with the original idea as closely as possible. I don't totally toss the "bad stories" so much as mentally "retcon" them.

    For instance, I'm sure that in "real" Star Trek reality (ahem), "Spock's Brain" really happened. But I'm sure that the "real" events were dramatically different than what we saw on-screen. Sort of like what we saw was a really poorly-done "documentary" performed in some 24th-century kid's basement on his eyeball-top-computer. :)

    Actually, "Spock's Brain" could be turned into a decent... even very effective... story. You'd have to totally rewrite it, lose the "Robo-Spock" bit... but the idea of stealing a brain to become the central element of a computer system isn't inherently a bad one, nor is the idea of a society where knowledge has been kept away from the population and only granted... "doled out" so to speak"... when some central power decides it's appropriate.

    That would be an interesting project... especially for those here who are more prose-oriented than I am. I'm a big-picture guy and a tech guy... I can come up with great ideas and stories, and I can come up with all variety of technological concepts, but I can't write dialog if my life depends on it!

    My point... I engage in "selective mental rewriting" of elements which simply don't work, either in terms of believability or execution. I certainly don't believe that the 1701-D fires phasers from its torpedo tubes, nor that the defiant randomly changes size, nor that every single woman on the "real" TOS Enterprise got the job on some 23rd-century equivalent of Gene Roddenberry's casting couch!

    And "Warp 6"... "Full Impulse" is just one of those.

    (Either that or Geordi had been drinking... which does raise some interesting "rewriting" options, too!)
     
  5. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    You've single-handedly summarized the way I like to look at irreconcilable Trek continuity gaffs for my own 'canon.' :)
     
  6. TIN_MAN

    TIN_MAN Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    That's basically the way I see it. I like to pretend that Trek is a "dramatisation" of 23rd-24th century events, and the "real" events are classified by SFAF Prime Directive? The analogy I like to use is to consider what a TV show about the Aircraft Carrier Enterprise would be like, there's no way the sets, procedures, or behavior of charactors could corrospond to the real counterparts! Kinda like in ST:TVH when some of the scenes are supposed to be taking place an the Carrier, when they actually were shot on another ship altogether, so good luck finding those interiors on deck plans of the Carrier. :lol:
     
  7. Cary L. Brown

    Cary L. Brown Rear Admiral

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    Well, those are colloquialisms which are widely accepted, but they don't actually violate anything, because they don't require you to "delete" another definition. "Ping" makes perfect sense, because it's analogous to a sonar return, which is, in fact, a "ping." And "boot," if used regarding some computers, can mean two very different things. My first PC, a Packard Bell, got "booted" after it stopped booting, for instance. ;)
    Wrong... "Switching" has been around for a lot longer than there have been trains. You'd have to do quite a bit of studying to determine the first use of the term, but I know that the term was in during the middle-ages. The term "switch" ultimately means "to change a setting or configuration." I wonder if Roman aquaducts had cut-offs, and if they did, if the device used to cut off the flow was called a "switch?"

    Both railroad "switches" (which change the configuration of a rail pathway) and networking "switches" (which change the configuration of the path for data flowing over a network, depending on the "header" on that data) are very similar in terms of what they do, in any case.... one just handles physical "packets" (train cars) while the other handles data "packets."
    Except that they're not "redefined" at all... "port" and "starboard" mean the same thing, regardless of whether they're applied to a boat, an aircraft, a spacecraft, or a skateboard. Pilot? What's been "redefined" there, other than what's being piloted? Hull? Means the same thing all the way around (except for where it originally came from, which is actually an agricultural term, not a shipbuilding one, but which is similar and analogous to the shipbuilding term, since it's a hard, hollow shell which contains the important stuff and protects it from the outside world). Turret? It was always a location from which enemies could be observed and weapons could be fired... regardless of whether that "observation" is done with a serf with bad vision or an advanced scanning system, and regardless of whether the weapons being fired are arrows or phasers.

    No, the central meaning of those terms has NOT changed. They've simply been applied in new ways.

    Same with "impulse." We can deal with "impulses" in electrical circuits... something that Newton never envisioned... but they still meet the basic criteria. (In that case... "force" equals "electromotive potential" rather than newtonian force, but it's still effectively the same thing.)
    Ultimately, my job here isn't to train people who have no real involvement in that sort of matter on science... go watch Bill Nye for that. ;)

    I'm talking about two things...

    First, my own perspective on the "science" of Trek, and how it fits into REAL science (which is a difficult fit on occasion, but far better than is the case with most sci-fi fare out there). You can choose to believe that "impulse" is entirely non-newtonian, and that's fine... it's all fictional. If you attempt to apply that assumption into any real-world situation, you'll be dead wrong and look like a fool... but that's not my concern either. ;)

    And second... my take on the TOS Enterprise. Other people... LOTS of other people... have their own takes, and they differ from mine, sometimes only in a few details and sometimes in dramatic ways. And... again, since this is all fictional... that's perfectly OK. But this is MY take on the ship, and I will never so much as consider the suggestion that "impulse" means something other than what the word is defined as. I don't mind if other people don't agree, but I'm not gonna change my mind on this point.

    This ship... "MY take on the TOS Enterprise"... has two propulsion systems. One is a Newtonian, thrust-based system, augmented by the use of "static subspace fields" to permit limited (equivalent to ~WF4.2, old-scale) FTL travel. The other is non-newtonian, and involves the creation of a high-powered "subspace bubble" (which is generated in the sphere at the aft end of the nacelle... a sphere which was, for "The Cage" and "Where No Man Has Gone Before" was still present, but smaller and found inside the nacelle proper) which, when distorted, results in real space-time exerting "subspace pressure" on the bubble... effectively allowing the ship to "surf on subspace," while no inertial or Newtonian effects are involved or seen inside that bubble.

    Oh, and in answer to the earlier query about RCS systems... I'm still debating whether or not to make anything visible. My "gut reaction" is to go with the same approach I'm using for phaser and torpedo tubes... have them behind retractable panels, permitting them to be serviced from inside the ship and only exposed when necessary. The question is... should these "control thruster port cover hatches" be visible at all. They certainly weren't on the original model, but then again, I did add similar cover-hatches for aft phasers and an aft torpedo tube on the fantail, so I've already started down that path.

    What I DON'T plan to do is create "TMP-type" RCS clusters, complete with "warning stripes." I see the "warning stripe" for that as being equivalent to the same thing for the phasers... both were added between TOS and TMP as part of an altered design philosophy.

    If I DO add RCS thrusters, they'll be in slightly different locations than seen on the TMP ship, and will be "virtually invisible" in any case (at least so mch so that they'd never have shown up on a 1966 TV screen).
     
  8. Albertese

    Albertese Commodore Commodore

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    One currently accepted definition of "impulse" is "a pulse of electrical energy; a brief current" which can be used in phrases like "nerve impulse".

    Though not in keeping with the currently accepted physics use of the word, i.e. an accelerating force, that is, a force altering the course or velocity of a physical object, it would not violate the larger use of the word to have a non-Newtonian drive labeled thusly. In other words, the FTL and STL propulsion methods of the ship are in essence the same technology but the warp drives operate with a more or less continuous power feed while the impulse motors operate utilizing much smaller bursts, or pulses, of energy. Seeing this distinction being referred to as "impulse drive" in the next hundred years seems perfectly plausible.

    Your mileage may vary, of course.

    --Alex
     
  9. Cary L. Brown

    Cary L. Brown Rear Admiral

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    Except, that's not true. I actually specifically mentioned electrical impulses in my last post... and mentioned that such impulses are, in fact, based upon electromotive force. It's a nearly perfect parallel.

    Often, when talking about electricity (particularly DC electricity, which is an almost perfect parallel) you can use the analogy of water in pipes to represent electricity. Resistance, current... perfectly analogous. "Voltage" is often also called "potential difference" and is perfectly analogous to "pressure head."

    So, think of this water analogy. The water in a pipe has a particular pressure, and as it applies itself over a cross-sectional area, that translates into force.

    The same also applies, in a nearly perfect analogy, to DC electricity.

    And remember... an impulse isn't a force. It's a force... multiplied by the time over which that force is applied. Or, more formally:
    Get it? You can apply a very high force for a brief period of time, or a very low force over a long period of time, and still get the same specific impulse... the same alteration to the object's momentum.

    It's not a force. The force is ONE PART of this. Thrust is measured in force, sure... but a "short burst" or a "continuous burn" at the same thrust give different results, don't they?

    If you understand that... you understand what "impulse" means, and you understand why the concept is so utterly fundamental to basic physics... kinematics and dynamics.

    This is the foundation upon which all of our understanding of what we call "Newtonian physics" is based. It can't just be disregarded.

    (And you'll understand how it applies to electricity as well... a voltage applied over a short period of time does less than the same voltage applied over a longer period of time, and you can do the same amount of work with a brief pulse of very high voltage or an extended application of low voltage)
    You're welcome to use that conceptualization in your own work, if you wish, of course.
    It seems far less likely than having the word "lamp" applied to the thing you turn the knob on to get water to come out.

    Real words and real concepts have real meanings. It's fine for you to hold that idea, if you wish... that's your prerogative. But if you really want to discuss alternative meanings for the word beyond the REAL meaning... please start a new thread elsewhere.

    I think I've been pretty clear that I reject this concept, and this suggestion, and that I'm not going to change my concept to comply with this idea... an idea which I really, honestly believe to be utterly nonsensical.

    This ship is my attempt to create a "real" version of the ship. Some things are inherently going to be entirely make-believe, obviously. But this is science fiction, not fantasy. I'm not incorporating "magick" into the ship if "science" can do the job, and even if I need a bit of "magick," it's only going to be used to spackle over the holes in our knowledge of "science."
     
  10. Patrickivan

    Patrickivan Fleet Captain Newbie

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    Since when is semantics, make-believe? I don't want to de-rail your thread (you're more then capable of doing that yourself, and set the precedent by responding as you have), but the orgins of words are very hard to pin down, and their meanings change over time. Sometimes they mean more then one thing, though their root meanings are usually similar.

    Impulse has more then one meaning in the real world. I'm not going to mention it, because I think you already know- your responses really do prove that you do.

    But the fact is, that you can call things whatever you want. Just because some people come up with ideas to explain why something is called what it is, in Star Trek, does not mean you have to dump on them all the time. I really don't think you get how condecending you are.

    Words change. Sometimes, words are used to name objects without really having a specific reason. Kind of like my the Pontiac Vibe I drive. Vibe, has nothing to do with any function of the car, but that's what the mfgr decided to name it.

    Constitution has nothing to do with any function of the Enterprise (nor does the word Enterprise), but that's what it's called. It's not magic. Sometimes a title is based on something less then technical.

    You don't want suggestions or any feedback for your project. Not unless it's "good work", or something that you agree with 100%. So just keep making your "real" ship- Justify everything you do, and we'll just sit back and enjoy the ride.

    It is a nice project you're working on, and I really can enjoy your work as long as I don't read your reply to people who even remotely disagree with you. Though that's hard to do, because as the thread roles on, you become progressively more and more defensive.
     
  11. Psion

    Psion Commodore Commodore

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    Patrickivan, it's Cary's interpretation of the Enterprise, and as such subject to his preferences and predilections. In this case, he's quite determined that "impulse" has a specific astronautical meaning, and not only is he welcomed to it, but he's quite right.

    True, over 250 years, the meaning of words can change, and if you or I were building our own interpretation that used non-newtonian impulse engines and Cary came in on a hot-tempered bitch-fest, I'd tell him to bugger off, but what's the point of arguing with the man when he's repeatedly and firmly stated his opinion on the matter?
     
  12. Cary L. Brown

    Cary L. Brown Rear Admiral

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    That's exactly right... thank you for stating that.

    Patrick, please understand... there is a "Trek Tech" forum where we can discuss and argue about what this technology, or that technology "really" is. And we do so, all the time.

    So far, there are been two "suggestions" made here which I have rejected.

    One, regarding changing the lift concept from one of "tubes as railings" to what I refer as a "subway" model. I accept that the "subway" model is a valid approach, but that's not the approach I'm taking. No offense was given or taken in that exchange. Hell, I still think the most reasonably approach is using spherical cars... but that's not what we have, is it?


    The other... is a TOTAL DERAILMENT of this thread. This is not a "Trek Tech" discussion of what "impulse drive" means. I stated what my position on it is. Other people tossed out their opinions... which is fine, as long as it doesn't become an argument. And for the most part, it hasn't. But when people won't let go, well... in this case, I suggested (and as politely as possible) that THIS IS NOT THE PLACE FOR THAT ARGUMENT. I'm not going to change my mind, just because someone else has a different preference.

    Patrick, the point of this thread is to show my take on the Enterprise, and to get feedback on issues (including suggestions). But if I decide not to take a suggestion, that's not "fightin' words." That's my prerogative as the artist doing this particular bit of art. And as I've said... other people are more than welcome to have their own takes on things, and to create their own versions... and there are quite a few of those out there.

    I want suggestions, recommendations, and input. I do not want this thread to devolve into "that's not how I want it done so I'm gonna argue 'til you do it how I want it done."

    Which, so far, hasn't really been a problem... but I could easily see the "impulse" thing turning into that. And that's why I said what I said. We can continue that conversation elsewhere... preferably in "Trek Tech"... but this thread isn't the place for it.
     
  13. Santaman

    Santaman Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Less talk! more pwetty cross sections! :lol:
     
  14. Psion

    Psion Commodore Commodore

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    Seconded!
     
  15. Albertese

    Albertese Commodore Commodore

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    Thirded!

    In fact, I've decided to start a thread about this whole bothersome impulse definition. You may find it here in the Trek Tech forum where it belongs:

    http://www.trekbbs.com/showthread.php?p=2958910#post2958910

    I invite everyone to participate there so as to not hijack this thread.

    Anyway, CLB, English class aside, this project is really incredible and I eagerly await to see more updates! You can bet I'm gonna crib heavily from your project here as well as Shaw's when I ever get around to making my own 1701 interior. But that'll be a long time from now. Both of you are using ideas I had to a long time ago (though never really posted publicly, so I can be sure you didn't get any of this from me! :p ), but where things are different, they still make a lot of sense.


    --Alex
     
  16. Cary L. Brown

    Cary L. Brown Rear Admiral

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    FYI, real life has intruded for a few days, but I'll get back to installing my impulse propulsion units this weekend. Basically, what I've got is massive, squarish versions of VASIMR, heavily bolted into the superstructure, with the driving fusion reactors on either side. The three little ports on the impulse drive fairing are dump ports, for venting out the reactors (p/s) and the impulse fuel preheat chamber (c/l) if necessary.

    FYI, these ports are the ones which were left open and through which the Tycho cloud creature was able to enter the ship in "Obsession."
     
  17. Cary L. Brown

    Cary L. Brown Rear Admiral

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    Okay, back to work... ;)

    Today, I've gotten back into the whole "impulse deck" arrangment.

    To help clear things up a bit, I'll start with an outside hull view.
    [​IMG]

    What are we looking at there? Well, we see the aft impulse deck fairing, of course... we all recognize that. We see the "row of ribs" on top, going forward from that. We see the two "L" shaped hatches, and the two yellow rectangles. We also see a pair of red lines tracing forward from the rib set.

    Here's what I'm assuming about those various items.

    First off... the "L" hatches are analogous to the "T" hatch on the secondary hull underside. This is borne out by the fact that both have the same color scheme (medium-grey interior, dark grey outline). I've decided to use both as fusion-reactor access. In this case, it's a combined-access panel, however, as it will also give access to remove and replace impulse propulsion system components. Note that this is not intended to be an "in-service" repair... we're talking drydock, most likely, though in a pinch they could certainly do some work that way in the field if required. I'd say it would require pretty dire straights, as you'd be depressurizing an entire region of the primary hull, removing major support elements, etc. But it would be possible.

    The little yellow bits are covers for the fueling pumps... in a dock situation, these hatches would be retracted and you'd have direct access to the "gas cap."

    Note that I've decided, having read a bit more on the detailed functionality of the VASIMR design, that hydrogen will serve perfectly well as my thrust fuel as well as my reactor fuel. Heavier materials work better for generating thrust, but they're also heavier to carry... and with hydrogen able to harvested along the way, it's just a lot more reasonable to use that. The advantages outweigh the disadvantages.

    Now, here's the interior on Deck 6, in that region. (Obviously, this is not entirely complete, and the "energizers" and engineering workspaces, to either side, aren't there yet.)
    [​IMG]

    The fuel is normally stored in cryogenic form, in "slush tanks" which aren't seen here. Prior to use, the hydrogen is preheated for preparation - that occurs in the pale maroon tank you see in the middle of the impulse fairing. The idea is that you don't want to be pumping cryogenic slush into your propulsion units, you want pressurized gas. So this is a high-pressure tank. The tank has a "dump port... the central circular bit on the outside of the fairing, between the two impulse thrust ports.

    Forward of that, you see the termination points for the two aft-dorsal Jefferies tubes. Immediately forward of that will be a working space, the "impulse monitor room." Note that there will be a fair amount of additional structure added in there, to tie the dorsal mechanical elements to the topside "rib"... this won't just be a big empty open space. There will also be piping to carry the preheated hydrogen to the front of the impulse thrust units, and to the six fusion reactors you see along either side, outboard of the thrusters.

    The fusion reactors can be replaced at a dockyard... the "L" hatch opens over the aft-most of the three in each row (and over the aft two segments of the impulse unit). These provide power which is converted, by the energizers, into useable electrical energy, which then in turn drives the thrust units.

    The impulse propulsion units, or "thrust units," are basically a dramatically-refined version of the VASIMR engine concept currently under development. Here's a quick image of the VASIMR concept:
    [​IMG]

    The idea is that you inject gas into a magnetically-confined volume (that's what the coils you see are for), convert it into plasma, then superheat that plasma, using electromagnetic devices rather than any form of combustion.

    In my case, these impulse propulsion units are three-stage, rather than the two-stage seen with VASIMR, but otherwise fundamentally the same in concept. It's an electrically-driven propulsion system which is dramatically adjustable in terms of thrust output.

    Now, I know some folks argue "well, how do you slow down?" That's because they're (mistakenly) assuming that a ship in space must behave in the same fashion that a ship in atmosphere must. That, however, is neither supported by on-screen evidence, nor is it reasonable within the realm of real science.

    In this case, if the enterprise is moving at a high "sublight" speed, and needs to reverse thrust... how will it do it? That's very simple. You simply turn the ship around (which can be done by vectoring the thrust output of the main engines, OR by using some form of RCS thrust unit) and decelerate that way.

    We have, in the past, discussed (in the "Trek Tech" forum) the idea that you can have something like a "subspace anchor" function provided by your subspace field generator device... which effectively provides a form of drag on the fabric of space/time. I have no objection to that, either, but since that's not universally accepted, and since Enterprise doesn't have "braking engines," and since the main reason we assume that the ship DOESN'T turn around is based upon the viewscreen image (which is a computer generated image composited from all available sensor data, not a "window") consistently showing the direction of travel (which isn't the direction the screen faces anyway!).

    There's really no reason to assume that the ship doesn't "flip" to decelerate. In fact, that's what REAL spacecraft normally do... since it's far more cost-effective (in terms of dollars, AND in terms of "weight penalty" and "volume penalty") to have one set of engines than to have two. It's very simple to just turn around, after all...

    So, that's the main "braking" system this ship has. If the "subspace anchor" concept is present (and I'm leaving that as an unanswered question)... that's supplementary to the "turning around" manuever, IMHO.

    I have no clear about idea what to put out in the corners of the impulse fairing. I've actually given some consideration to putting "static subspace field generators" out there... but I'm hesitant to do so. I could put fuel slush tanks there, though I was planning on having the slush tanks outboard of the engineering spaces (so these would be "supplementary" tanks, not the primary ones). All I know is that we have a pair of "dump ports" to either side of the main impulse thrust ports which are for emergency "cooldown" for the fusion reactors, and which are how the Tycho creature entered the ship in "Obsession."

    Going down to Deck 7, you can see a lot more detail with the way that the thrust from the impulse propulsion units transfers its thrust to the ship's main structure. I have a little bit more work to do to tie these into the "dorsal interface" region. Down in this area, under the engines and reactors, will be a lot of hardware and plumbing, accessible primarily through crawlways.

    [​IMG]

    I'm thinking I'll start working on the energizers next...
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2009
  18. Santaman

    Santaman Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Heavy machinery good! Santaman like! *grunt grunt*
     
  19. CTM

    CTM Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I like your VASIMR Impulse Engines. Do you mind if I take that concept an apply them to the refit?
     
  20. Cary L. Brown

    Cary L. Brown Rear Admiral

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    Of course I don't, though thanks for asking. VASIMR isn't my invention, it's a real concept, after all... :)

    Go check it out at

    http://www.adastrarocket.com/home1.html

    (one of several places working in commercializing the concept).
     
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