Engineered Starships

“The best way to predict the future is to create it.”

  ~ Peter F. Drucker

 

 

1953, Engineering physics for interstellar travel, Eugen Sanger, “Eugen Sänger, Zur Theorie der Photonenraketen.” (Vortrag auf dem 4. Internationalen Astronautischen Kongreß in Zürich 1953).- Ing. Arch. 21 (1953), S. 213-226.- Probleme der Weltraumforschung, Verlag Laupscher, Biel 1954, S. 32-40.

 

Re-thinking the Antimatter Rocket

 

The Interstellar Conundrum Reconsidered

Image Credit:Young Technician

 

 

 

1958, “Project Orion” using nuclear detonation propulsion, S. Ulam, T. Taylor, & F. Dyson, “Nuclear Pulse Space Vehicle Study,” General Atomic.

 

Beginnings of the Interstellar Idea

 

An Interstellar Provocation

 

Can Project Orion Be Re-Born?

 

Looking Back at Orion

 

1960, “Bussard Ramjet” using on-the-fly-fusing of indigenous space protons, R. Bussard, “Galactic Matter and Interstellar Flight,” Astronautica Acta.

 

A Brief Window

 

Catalyzed Fusion: Tuning Up the Ramjet

 

Remembering Robert Bussard

 

Tuning Up the Interstellar Ramjet

 

Braking Against a Stellar Wind

 

 

 

 

 

1977, “Voyager 1 & 2″ using a chemical rocket, JPL et al (http://voyager.jpl.nasa.gov/spacecraft/index.html), Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

 

Voyager and the Will to Explore” 

 

Reflections on a Mythic Voyager

 

Voyager 1 Nearing Interstellar Space

 

Voyager in the Doldrums

 

The Enduring Legacy of the Voyagers

 

Credit: NASA

 

 

Credit: Alex Szames

1978, “Project Daedalus,” using a nuclear fusion rocket, Alan Bond, et al, British Interplanetary Society

 

Remembering Project Daedalus

 

Fusion and the Starship

 

Daedalus size compared to Saturn V moon rocket. 

1984, Laser-beamed sail, Robert Forward, “Roundtrip Interstellar Travel Using Laser-Pushed Lightsails,” Journal of Spacecraft & Rockets.

 

Laser Beamed Interstellar Mission: A New Take

 

Laser Beaming to Boost Solar Sails

1985, “Starwisp” using beamed microwave energy to sails, R. Forward, “Starwisp: an Ultralight Interstellar Probe,” American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics

 

The Case for Beamed Sails

 

Remembering Starwisp

1987, “VISTA” using a nuclear fusion rocket, Charles D. Orth, “VISTA – A Vehicle for Interplanetary Space Transport Application Powered by Inertial Confinement Fusion,” Lawrence Livermore National Lab.

 

Creating Stars in the Laboratory

 

Prior Visions of Star Flight

 

 

 

... Will the designer/artist of this image please contact us for due credit.

1987, “TAU (Thousand Astronomical Units)” using nuclear-electric ion propulsion, JPL, et al, “Tau — A Mission to a Thousand Astronomical Units,” Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

 

A Practical Mission to the Interstellar Medium

 

Dark Energy: Calibrating Standard Candles

 

 

Image: An earlier concept called Realistic Interstellar Explorer, a key step in refining the design for the current mission concept. 

1988, “Project Longshot” using nuclear pulse propulsion, Beals, K. A., M. Beaulieu, F. J. Dembia, J. Kerstiens, D. L. Kramer, J. R. West and J. A. Zito, “Project Longshot: An Unmanned Probe To Alpha Centauri,” U. S Naval Academy.

 

Project Longshot: Fast Probe to Centauri

 

 

 

... Will the designer/artist of this image please contact us for due credit.

1999, “AIMStar” using antimatter catalyzed nuclear propulsion, Raymond A. Lewis, Kirby Meyer, Gerald A. Smith and Steven D. Howe, “AIMStar: Antimatter Initiated Microfusion For Pre-cursor Interstellar Missions,” Pennsylvania State University.

 

Antimatter’s Advantages (and the Catch)

 

 

A Practical Positron Rocket?

 

ICAN-II a precursor to AIMStar, shown open and closed.

2003, “Innovative Interstellar Explorer” using nuclear electric rocket, Ralph McNutt, “Mission Design for the Innovative Interstellar Explorer Vision Mission” NASA (ongoing).

 

Update on Innovative Interstellar Explorer

 

Innovative Interstellar Explorer: A Response to Questions

 

 

An early Innovative Interstellar Explorer design concept. 

2009, “Project Icarus,” using nuclear fusion rocket, Icarus Interstellar (numerous papers, ongoing).

 

Project Icarus: Contemplating Starship Design

 

Icarus: Revisiting the Daedalus Starship

 

Project Icarus: Finding the Fuel

 

 

 

Icarus accelerating. 

2012, Gravitational Lens Deep Space Probe Design, 2nd Lt. Berkley Davis, Masters Thesis, US AFIT.  Based on Commercially available hardware to determine realistic baseline

 

The FOCAL Mission: To the Sun’s Gravity Lens

 

A FOCAL Mission into the Oort Cloud

 

The Gravitational Lens and Communications

 

 

 

Content Contributors

  • Brandon Vernon
  • Curtis Wilbur
  • Tatiana Covington
  • Yusif Nurizade
  • Geoff Landis
  • Marc Millis
  • Paul Gilster