NASA Helical Engine

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by Dryson, Oct 14, 2019.

  1. Dryson

    Dryson Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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  2. XCV330

    XCV330 A Being of Pure Caffeine Premium Member

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    read the paper. it's light on theory, heavy on what if. you need more than that to overturn physics
     
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  3. Dryson

    Dryson Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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  4. Asbo Zaprudder

    Asbo Zaprudder Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Horribly inefficient even if it works like all such drives - EM, Mach etc.
     
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  5. Cyanide Muffin

    Cyanide Muffin All hail Doctor 13 Premium Member

    Pipe dream
     
  6. XCV330

    XCV330 A Being of Pure Caffeine Premium Member

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    if Mach Effect works those inefficiencies would be offset over time + acceleration. Apart from some some gigantic laser/reflective sail type craft it's the only thing I can imagine right now to get to a decent fraction of c and make interstellar travel practicable (and open up the outer solar system to mining and settlement within our lifetime. Who needs Mars?)

    This hellical engine seems to be an attempt to modify Woodward and Fearn's work on MEGA drive. IF (big gigantic if) MEGA proves valid then i would imagine we'd see a lot of those attempts, one to circumvent what would be one of the most important patents in the history of anything, and two just humanity's natural need to hotrod anything it makes.
     
  7. Asbo Zaprudder

    Asbo Zaprudder Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The general belief is that such drives won't work in the absence of a frictional medium to push against in a ratchet-like manner. I believe that it's worth trying them out in a free-fall vacuum environment just to establish whether there is anything to the proposed drive mechanisms. Unfortunately, it isn't practical to eliminate interaction with magnetic fields and only partially to eliminate radiation pressure but any experimental test should be designed to take these factors into account.
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2019
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  8. Cyanide Muffin

    Cyanide Muffin All hail Doctor 13 Premium Member

    Why not build a HUGE really high vacumm chamber fire one of these engines up at the top and drop it it to see if you can control its fall.
     
  9. Asbo Zaprudder

    Asbo Zaprudder Vice Admiral Admiral

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    We're talking really tiny thrusts from these drives - something like milliNewtons. The drive would likely smash itself to pieces. Tests on Earth have been beset with problems from interaction with the immediate environment, thermal effects, magnetic fields and so on, which has led to unexpected or counterintuitive results in some cases. There sometimes appears to be an effect but it's hard to establish the cause.
     
  10. Cyanide Muffin

    Cyanide Muffin All hail Doctor 13 Premium Member


    OK what about a test chamber in space?
     
  11. Asbo Zaprudder

    Asbo Zaprudder Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Perhaps. While you might be able to shield against EM fields, photonic, and thermal effects to some extent, it would be quite expensive. It might be easier just to "thrust" in different directions and measure the relative accelerations.
     
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  12. XCV330

    XCV330 A Being of Pure Caffeine Premium Member

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    I think they need to build a much larger version or clusters of them, to overcome possibilty of thermal or lorentz effects.
     
  13. Asbo Zaprudder

    Asbo Zaprudder Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I'm really talking about testing if they work at all.
     
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  14. Dryson

    Dryson Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    https://www.pppl.gov/news/2018/07/a...-are-described-quest-pppl’s-research-magazine

    There are physicist's who are now saying that chemical rocket fuel will not be the best choice for outer solar and interplanetary travel. Chemical rockets are good for escaping the Earth's gravity and getting probes and lander's into space, but other than that chemical rockets are useless due to the amount of fuel that is consumed.

    Accretion onto a black hole is the most efficient process for emitting energy from matter in the Universe, releasing up to 40% of the rest mass energy of the material falling in. ... Furthermore, the hot accretion disc becomes ionised (electrons spearate from atoms) meaning that magnetic fields are 'frozen in' to the disc.

    If a way could be developed to mimic the process of the black hole ionising atoms, then small magnetic field arrays around a cylinder for example could be turned on and off to allow for an attraction pull towards an object while creating a repelling field against another object.

    Basically the arrays on the front would pull the object while the arrays in the back pushed the object with the arrays along the side being used for minor course corrections.

    They are two different fields with nearly the same characteristics. Therefore, they are inter-related in a field called the electromagnetic field. ... Without the electric field, the magnetic field exists in permanent magnets and electric fields exist in the form of static electricity, in absence of the magnetic field.

    One array would would be tuned to allow for the greatest pulling interaction while the other array would tuned for the greatest repelling interaction.

    Why the name change?