Space & Astronomy
EmDrive space engine test passes peer review
November 22, 2016 | 19 comments
EmDrive has the potential to send humans to Mars within 70 days. Image Credit: NASA
NASA's 'impossible' propulsion system continues to intrigue as it receives its first peer-reviewed paper.
The research, which we wrote about back in September, has now finally been published, thus paving the way for further investigation in to the unusual properties of the mysterious EmDrive.
The perplexing propulsion system, which was first developed back in 2001 by aerospace engineer Roger Shawyer, works by bouncing microwaves around inside a canonical chamber.
Somehow the drive appears to generate thrust without producing any sort of exhaust, something that scientists argue is in direct violation of Newton's Third Law of Motion.
In the new paper, researchers from the NASA-affiliated Eagleworks lab confirmed that the drive was producing thrust and maintained that they had accounted for all possible errors that could explain how it was managing to do so without emitting anything.
While their research isn't conclusive proof that the drive really does work, it is an important step forward and is likely to lead to further investigation in the near future.
"NASA is looking forward to the scientific discussions with the broader technical community that will occur based on the publication of the Eagleworks team's experimental findings," said Jay Bolden at NASA's Johnson Space Center.
"This is part of what NASA does in exploring the unknown, and the agency is committed to and focused on the priorities and investments identified by the NASA Strategic Space Technology Investment Plan."
"Through these investments, NASA will develop the capabilities necessary to send humans farther into space than ever before."
Source: Astronomy Magazine
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