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NASA-backed fusion rocket aims for human Mars

fusion spaceflight nasa

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#1    DieChecker


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Posted 09 April 2013 - 05:00 AM



The team has created a system in which a powerful magnetic field causes large metal rings to implode around the plasma, compressing it to a fusion state, to power the rocket. The converging rings merge to form a shell that ignites the fusion, but only for a few microseconds.

The fusion reactions quickly heat and ionize the shell. This super-heated, ionized metal is ejected out of the rocket nozzle at a high velocity, the university explained. This process is repeated every minute or so, propelling the spacecraft at high speeds.


If the research team can build components for a fusion-powered rocket, Slough said it could lead to both 30- and 90-day expeditions to Mars.

Not sure if this is covered in another thread. I did not see any fusion related drive threads.

If this works, I wonder how fast this engine could reach Alpha Centauri?

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#2    Render


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Posted 09 April 2013 - 07:25 AM

View PostDieChecker, on 09 April 2013 - 05:00 AM, said:

If this works, I wonder how fast this engine could reach Alpha Centauri?

This technology would be a real game changer.
But Alpha Centauri would need something else, like warpspeed. With current technology it takes about 165,000 years to get there. So if my calculations are correct it would still take about 43 000 years to get there with this new technology.

Also tagged with fusion, spaceflight, nasa

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