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Re: <Two bits worth
> Kevin wrote:
>>>I think this system is worth studying. IF both parts leave Sol by maser
>>>sail, and separate at the halfway point. with the decellerator keeping
>>>the maser sail (using it as an antenna converting the maser to elec) and
>>>blasting (new twist) fusion fuel right down the Explorer's throat, i
>>>think it might work.
>> Tim says:
>> I've thought several times about this solution. I think the problem is
>> the thing cannot blast the stuff accurately enough to the mouth of the
>> I always assumed the fly-away part needed some control from people and
>> those were doomed to die flying at near c velocities between the stars.
>It doesn't need to be very accurate, a (relatively) small ram scoop could
>be used. since the decellerator would be increasing the local denisty of
>hydrogen (actually it would be nice 2H and 3He or 6Li or 11B) a ram scoop
>of only a few kilometers could do the trick. We'd only have to calculate
>the time difference between the decellerator portion and the crew section
>then see what a reasonable sideways component to the decellarator's
>exhaust is. then we have a good guess for the ram-scoop size.
As I said elsewhere, I'd be worried about just how much the ion stream being
fired at the Asimov would diverge. We've got to figure that we are trying
to keep things focused for several hundred AUs. The solar system is only 30
AU. out to Neptune.
>There is one reason I would not like this Solution, it throws away the
>big tanks and the lineac core, both of which could be very useful to the
>exploration crew. But seeing as this seems to have a good chance of
>working, I suggest that we explore this option a little bit farther to
>see if we run into any violations of the Laws of physics.
Who says you have to throw away your ion drive or the tanks. Even empty
tanks could make for added shielding during the interstellar cruise. And if
the tanks are damaged en route, they shouldn't be too difficult to patch up.
Having an ion drive for the trip would let us collect the ion particles
from the declerator and throw them right back toward TC for added thrust.
Then when we get to TC we can use what little RM we have on had to find a
small solid object to fill our tanks with more RM. Then we go cruising