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starship-design: Re: The Size of the Problem

Kevin Replied:

>> A few plausible ways around the problem (requiring extensions of
>> physics, however) come to mind:
>>      1. Find some process to make antimatter which does not ....
>My (limited) understanding is that unless Quarks are made up of even smaller
>particles (hints of which have been bandied about) this is not possible.

Only 2 months ago I saw a report from I believe the Fermilab that they had
some minor clues that quarks might have a substructure (it must be on the
web somewhere).

However, why is a substructure necessary? It is already known that quarks
can change flavour under influence of the weak force. Take for example:
n -> p + e- where a down-quark is changed in an up-quark

>> Let us call 293,156 Mw-yr 1 "USE."   Well, Ok.  But I do prefer round

This doesn't say 293,156 Mw PER year, but say TIMES year! (Joules instead of
Watts) So instead of a lousy 9 square kilometers of solar panels you are
talking about: 3600*24*365*9,807,191=3.1E14 m^2
That roughly means 48 weeks of robot creation. However, those robot should
create their own power supplies, so that would mean they could use no more
than about 100 to 400 Watt (pretty efficient machines!!)

>Some general notes, I would suggest mercury as a better collection site, due to
>its proximity to our star.

Unluckely mercury doesn't have a moon. While its gravity is about 2.2 moon
gravities I wonder if our robots like the climate on the surface.