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starship-design: Lightcraft


I wonder if this helps any, there was an article in a british science journal
called the New Scientist in Jan this year which discribed some work being
done at HELSTF in America on what are called lightcraft. The system
is in the very early stages of being flight tested. It uses Lasers to turn
explosively turn air into a kind of plasma which provides propulsion.

If you haven't heard of it before I can write a quick summary for you,
however from my very rough calculations to move a starship the size
of your proposed Exlporer class with an inital acceleration of 2m/s per
second you'd need a laser capable of 100,000 Gigawatt pulses, the best
laser I've heard of can do 1MW.

But then in fifty years time who knows how far this work may have advanced.


Grab your X-Wing and your R2 Unit and head for Plymouth Colony.
The hyperspace jump co-ords are http://ds.dial.pipex.com/s.harley/