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BOUNCE starship-design: Non-member submission from ["Kevin 'Tex' Houston" <hous0042@email.umn.edu>]

>From stevev@darkwing.uoregon.edu  Mon Jul 21 20:18:37 1997
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Date: Mon, 21 Jul 1997 21:59:50 -0500
From: "Kevin 'Tex' Houston" <hous0042@email.umn.edu>
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To: Starship design group <starship-design@lists.uoregon.edu>
Subject: Solutions to some of the beaming problems and a new idea
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Timothy van der Linden wrote to Jim:
> You touched the subject beaming (of either a probe or the starship itself).
> I'd like you to read a rough summary of all the problems that this group has
> come up with so far.
> You should be able to find it here:
> http://www1.tip.nl/~t596675/sd/beaming/beam.html

Nice job Tim.  here are some solution ideas for your problems list.

#9  redshift causes the momentum to decrease:
#15 doppler shift changes reflectivity:

Sweeping the beam into higher frequencies, and then back down, as the
mission prgresses; would allow the ship to receive it energy at a near
constant frequency.  Any slight deviations should be within tolerance.

#14. communication:

Using different wavelengths of EM for engine, comm.

for example, if you are using Maser for power, then you should use a
laser to communicate.  The laser guide beaming messages back to earth
could be made of plastic or glass which would be totally immune to

#16 acceleration means limited beaming time.

As we say in the Computer Biz, "That's not a bug, that's a feature."

This reduces the amount of time the puclic needs to think about all that
energy being poured out into space, and decreases the likelyhood that
someone will turn the beam off halfway through the mission.  either by
activly flipping the switch or slow politically motivated starvation. 
also, since the time rate of the crew slows down near turn-around, they
should preceive constant power (J) (providing the beam also sweeps up in

18 could be solved by moving several large asteroids (or lots of smaller
ones) into a proper orbit around the sun.  (one that is normal to the
line connecting the two suns.)
since we'll have to build this thing out in space, I'll bet we have a
lot of slag/waste that could be used to 'anchor' the transmitter in
place.  a conventional rocket or ion engine would be much better for
conteracting the beams thrust.

---------start new idea -------------------

Each transmitter could be a stationary fusion rocket with the beam
pointed in one direction, and the fusion exhaust (at very low speed)
pointed in the other.  Since the whole thing is stationary, it could be
refueled periodicly by robot tenders.  The fusion motor could tap most
of the kinetic/thermal energy of the fusion products to provide
electricity to power the transmitter, with a little left over kinetic
energy and a fair amount of mass to provide a counter balancing force.

---------end new idea -------comments?-----

Kevin "Tex" Houston 		http://umn.edu/~hous0042/index.html
Webmaster			http://www.urly-bird.com/index.html
"Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and
Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the gods." A. Einstein