[ RadSafe ] [RadSafe]Mission to Mars---Fission Propulsion
JPreisig at aol.com
JPreisig at aol.com
Mon Sep 29 16:16:49 CDT 2008
This is from: jpreisig at aol.com .
Hello Again Radsafers:
Hope you all are well today and don't require a US Federal Bailout....
I've been thinking about space travel to Mars again using fission
propulsion. I refer you to several articles by Freeman Dyson in the beta
volume of the book "Adventures in Experimental Physics" --- Bogdan
Maglich, editor. I hope you can find it in your library. In one of the
Dyson indicates that one can use fission propulsion (without resorting to
bomb propelled rockets> to achieve exhaust velocities that are twice as
large as the velocities that can be reached via chemical propulsion.
I infer that a readily achieveable fission propelled rocket can
designed which can go twice as fast as chemically propelled rockets (at
least>. This would reduce the round trip time to Mars from 3 years to
about 1.5 years. This is helpful if one is living in a spaceship for
long time. Further additional techniques used to reduce the total
time to Mars would also be desirable.
So, considering use of Uranium to power such a trip, how could such
trip be safely made? For takeoff, the fission reactor propelling the
(or whatever> would largely contain Uranium (and not so much Cesium
or Strontium which are produced via fission>. So, let's assume a safe
launch can be made.
The rocket and astronauts (hopefully not Chimpanzees???!!!> would
fly to Mars, land on the planet's surface, and do whatever science and
tasks which need to be done. If necessary, a chemically propelled
lunar/Mars type lander could be used to get to Mars surface from the
original rocket or Mother ship. Upon completion of their time on Mars,
the astronauts would direct their spaceship towards Earth, to return to
However, instead of returning directly to Earth, the spaceship
land on the Moon, not using a lunar/Mars type lander. The spaceship
land directly on the Moon's surface, not to return to Earth anytime soon.
The spaceship would be left on the Lunar surface, complete with its
reactor intact. There's not much weather or wind storms on the Moon, so
spaceship could stay there a long time without dispersal of any fission
products or the original Uranium fuel.
So, this leaves the astronauts on the Moon with the scientific
stored data on computers, etc. What happens next??? A second
chemically propelled rocket is sent to the Moon, and using a Lunar
the astronauts are picked up and return to Earth in the second
Mission accomplished. I didn't say the space mission would be
In 200 years (a fair number of half-lives) the original fission
could be picked up from the lunar surface and returned to Earth for
processing and/or storage.
If we ever perfect a fusion propelled rocket system, much of the
described effort becomes unneccessary.
Just something to think about. I think such a fission propelled
system could be built in the relatively near future. Oh my, jobs for
Health Physicists and/or Nuclear Engineers in space.
The airplanes/jets which takeoff vertically are called Harriers.
Another few years of relatively few (named> hurricanes and/or
tropical storms like 2008 (so far> and I'll have to say that the
warming hypothesis is fizziling out.
Now, get back to work????
I hope you have a wonderful week.
Regards, Joseph R. (Joe> Preisig, Ph.D.
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