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Light propulsion

 
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pfunk



Joined: 09 Aug 2007
Posts: 9
Location: Suburbs of Detroit

PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 4:57 am    Post subject: Light propulsion Reply with quote

From "How stuff works"
Laser-propelled Lightcraft
Light-propelled rockets sound like something out of science fiction -- spacecraft that ride on a laser beam into space, require little or no onboard propellant and create no pollution. Sounds pretty far-fetched, considering we haven't been able to develop anything close to that for conventional ground- or air-travel on Earth. But while it may still be 15 to 30 years away, the principles behind the lightcraft have already been successfully tested several times. A company called Lightcraft Technologies continues to refine the research that began at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y.

http://science.howstuffworks.com/light-propulsion.htm
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bivia



Joined: 25 Sep 2004
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2007 10:12 am    Post subject: Space elevators Reply with quote

This is actually the leading candidate for powering space elevators, in a way. Once someone figures out how to make a 20,000 mile cable that won't break under its own weight (and all the wind stress!), then the next step is to climb it. By offloading all of the weight of the fuel and engine to a laser site, the elevator cab can be much lighter.
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