[FoRK] Relativity drive: The end of wings and wheels?

Stephen D. Williams < sdw at lig.net > on > Sat Sep 23 20:38:53 PDT 2006

If it works, we now have a prototype for "Impulse Drive".  I wonder what 
the minimal functional size is?  We still need nano propulsion...

We're hit with lots of microwave all the time with no ill effect.  It's 
non-ionizing, especially in the case of a microwave oven, so the main 
danger is just cell injury due to hotspots.  At small leakages, you 
should be able to react before that happens.

Anyway, leakage can be managed and detected.

We all get scanned by lots of microwave at all kinds of frequencies, 
including the WiFi in your laptop.  I believe that the unlicensed 2.4Ghz 
frequencies are about the same as a microwave oven for about the same 
reason: the resonant frequency of water causes moisture to absorb the 
energy quickly, rendering the frequencies useless for long-distance radio.

To name just one source of high-energy microwaves:

> The radar used by the National Weather Service is called the WSR-88D, 
> which stands for Weather Surveillance Radar - 1988 Doppler (the 
> prototype radar was built in 1988). As its name suggests, the WSR-88D 
> is a Doppler radar, meaning it can detect motions toward or away from 
> the radar as well as the location of precipitation areas.
> There are _155 WSR-88D Doppler radar_ 
> <http://www.srh.weather.gov/ridge/> in the nation, including the U.S. 
> Territory of Guam and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, operated by the 
> National Weather Service and the Department of Defense.
> The WSR-88D's pulses have an average transmitted power of about 
> 450,000 watts. By comparison, a typical home microwave oven will 
> generate about 1000 watts of energy. However, because of the very 
> short period the radar is actually transmitting, when the time of all 
> pulses each hour are totaled (the time the radar is actually 
> transmitting), the radar is "on" for about 7 seconds each hour. The 
> remaining 59 minutes and 53 seconds are spent listening for any 
> returned signals.

Almost 80 million watts of microwave power irradiate the US for weather 
monitoring alone, albeit at low duty cycles.


Albert S. wrote:
> But seriously, that's pretty cool. Although the
> possibility for microwave radiation leaks causes me
> concern for passenger applications. Call me paranoid,
> but I don't even like to stand next to a microwave
> oven when it's on. Might be just the ticket for
> satellites and other autonomous space craft.
> Air cushioned hover craft have been around for some
> time but have attained only limited use.
> Albert
> --- "Albert S." <albert.scherbinsky at rogers.com> wrote:
>> Interesting, but can you heat up your frozen dinner
>> in
>> the microwave engine as you commute home from work.
>> That would be a real time saver. :)
>> Albert
>> --- "Stephen D. Williams" <sdw at lig.net> wrote:
>>> Umm. Wow. Self-contained, non-Newtonian (or
>>> semi-Newtonian?) force. 
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