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RE: starship-design: LINAC efficiency
L. Parker writes:
> > Let's say your scoop can pick up on average 1 hydrogen atom per cubic
> > centimeter. Over a distance of 4.3 light years, you can pick
> > up about 7
> > * 10^-5 kilograms of hydrogen per square meter of scoop area. So to
> > pick up 10^9 kg of hydrogen during that trip, for example,
> > you'd need a
> > scoop with an area of 1.5 * 10^13 m^2, or some 2000 km in radius.
> Did I miss something? I thought the local interstellar medium had been
> determined to be thinner than once thought - like only 0.1 atom per cubic
I have to admit the density figure of 1 atom H per cm^3 came off the top
of my head and may be old and inaccurate.
If it's 0.1 atom per cubic meter, then yeah, ramscoops will have huge