Institute of Atomic-Scale Engineering


Mesoparticle Beam Propulsion
 By Forrest Bishop

Copyright (c) 1997 Forrest Bishop, All Rights Reserved

Abstract

Between the proposals for particle beam and pellet stream spacecraft propulsion lies an immense, largely unexplored regime. Pushing a spacecraft using a collimated beam of mesoscopic particles, very roughly on the order of a nan ogram mass each (plus or minus several orders of magnitude), presents new opportunities for high speed interplanetary manned transportation. This kind of beam can be tailored in velocity, mass flow, and beam profile parameters to fit the mission requireme nts. One example of a mesoparticle accelerator is the author's "Starseed/Launcher" accelerator. By ganging many thousands of these devices together, several grams per second can be fired in a nearly continuous, collimated matter beam, at speeds from a few meters per second, to a few percent of lightspeed. The receiver onboard the spacecraft may be as simple as a pusher plate. Several novel mesoparticle accelerator designs are presented.

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