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starship-design: On the balloon thing...

>From Space Daily, back in early 1999....

"A near-term demonstration was designed that will demonstrated photon
propulsion and verify assumptions about the physical properties of thin
films for this purpose. Implementation has already been funded and should
result in the first laboratory demonstration of levitation by microwave
radiation pressure using RF buildup that will produce the electromechanical
conversion efficiency necessary. This will develop principles and techniques
for future laser- propelled spacecraft.

Also, a concept system was proposed for developing an enclosed active region
of designer-molecules whose function is to efficiently convert incident
sunlight into a coherent, retrodirective microwave or laser beam. The
designer-molecules consist of engineered nanostructures having band-gaps
that 1) receive solar spectrum photons; 2) nonlinear devices providing
charge switches that mix frequencies to provide output photons at laser or
microwave frequencies; and 3) resonant-idlers that efficiently store energy
at Manley-Rowe Relation frequencies to provide wave shaping with properly
phased harmonics that promote efficient energy conversion."


"They make a desert and call it peace."