[FoRK] BEAMING ENERGY FOR INTERSTELLAR TRAVEL

Stephen Williams sdw at lig.net
Fri Oct 5 19:38:45 PDT 2012


Why spend all that money building beam stations on Earth?  Except 
perhaps for an asteroid deflector shield.

Create giant heliostats that concentrate sunlight, either colimnating it 
into a laser-like beam or using it to power a microwave beam.  Use 
sunlight that would be wasted on interstellar space anyway to create 
beams for pushing spacecraft.

Seems like a good job for outposts on Mercury, although a freely 
orbiting heliostat would interesting.  The problem with heliostat 
beamers or even using an asteroid is that the beam will cause exert an 
equal force.  Perhaps for asteroids, that might be a bonus: steer the 
asteroid into a closer path for mining.  For a heliostat, it could be 
used to push it into orbit or it could just be sped up and slowed down.  
Even better, power two crafts / asteroids / ground station power 
receivers in opposite directions at the same time.

http://news.discovery.com/space/beam-me-to-the-stars-scotty-120928.html#mkcpgn=rssnws1

sdw



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