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A Proposal for The First Crewed Interstellar Spacecraft


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In this paper it is presented the concept and design of a new type of spacecraft that could be used to make the first manned interstellar travel. Solar one would integrate three near-term technologies, namely: compact nuclear fusion reactors, extremely large light sails, and high-energy laser arrays. A system of lenses or mirrors to propel the sail with sunlight is suggested as an alternative to laser propulsion. With a mile-long light sail, Solar One could reach an average of 22% the speed of light, arriving to the closest potentially habitable exoplanet in less than 19 years with the help of a Bussard scoop producing reverse electromagnetic propulsion. Key challenges are reducing the weight of continuous-wave lasers and compact fusion reactors as well as achieving cryo-sleep and artificial gravity.

 

Source: https://commons.erau.edu/ijaaa/vol7/iss4/6/

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All of these are devices that don't exist, of course.

Kind of amusing to list: "Key challenges are reducing the weight of continuous-wave lasers and compact fusion reactors as well as achieving cryo-sleep and artificial gravity." I mean, yeah, those are kind of key challenges.

Edited by mikegarrison
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1 hour ago, mikegarrison said:

All of these are devices that don't exist, of course.

Kind of amusing to list: "Key challenges are reducing the weight of continuous-wave lasers and compact fusion reactors as well as achieving cryo-sleep and artificial gravity." I mean, yeah, those are kind of key challenges.

 

Those are show stoppers...impossible for us as of now.

Compact fusion: The only compact fusion we know of involves our nukes. Controlling that compactly involves machines...which are anything but compact. High heat does not like compact...it WILL vaporize everything.

Cryo-sleep: Perhaps I mentioned it before but frogs do this because their blood won't freeze over. Ours does. To make us do cryosleep and survive you have to reengineer our body so that is no longer a Mark I human. That is how far you would have to go. Bears hibernate, but I don't think they freeze over. Only cold blooded animals freeze over and live that  I am aware of.  And humans who do have cold blooded disorders have a whole host of health issues anyway.

Artificial gravity: Easier, but requires a lot of range.

 

Other key challenges: Food. Relationships.

Conclusion: Like I have said before, we are NOT ready. 

Even if we were, as far as I can tell the only sensible reason to go that far is if Earth is dying and it is not going any where.

Even if it did...by then we should have better options than the OP proposal I would hope.

Something that does not involve reengineering human bodies to be cold blooded.

 

 

 

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7 hours ago, Spacescifi said:

Even if we were, as far as I can tell the only sensible reason to go that far is if Earth is dying and it is not going any where.

It's almost always easier to fix Earth than go interstellar.

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33 minutes ago, Bill Phil said:

It's almost always easier to fix Earth than go interstellar.

 

Actually to be honest, it is easier to live off our own solar system than go interstellar

 

The only good reason to mount a manned interstellar mission of the OP, even of we could (we cannot), is if our sun will go nova.

 

Even then there is distinct possibility that that won't be enough. Since last I checked the safe distance from a supernova is 100 LY. That is death rays moving at the speed of light!

A nova should have a shorter safe range that, but if it is measured off in LY then a STL ship of ours has precarious chances to escape to say the least. A headstart would be it's only chance, and the next system over may be too close.

That's a LOOONG haul to the next system or however many it takes to be safe from a nova.

 

Edited by Spacescifi
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36 minutes ago, Meecrob said:

I find it delightful that our resident Sci-Fi guy just read a proposal for an interstellar craft and said "that's a bit far-fetched"

 

Translating scifi tropes into reality I do not really support unless we CAN do it and it is worth the cost.

Scifi is and was for me merely wish fullfillment, an escape, and to be anything more than that an author adds idealogies he supports as well as frowns on. May even teach a lesson or truth that crosses cultural bounds that everyone can agree on.

It is not prophecy.

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1 hour ago, HebaruSan said:

Odd that old ideas from sci fi are being repackaged and shopped around with clickbait headlines. I wonder what's going on.

These ideas came from somewhere, often before they were used in fiction. Lots of people have gotten ideas for these things and published them. I'm not sure how original this is -- skimming the paper it seems to be pretty much just tacking together stuff other people have proposed and then saying "if we can solve all these problems simultaneously, we could send people to another star".

My guess is that nothing is "going on." Alberto just wrote a paper and now wants to tell people who he thinks would be interested in it.

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