Ion Engine Breakthrough

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Metal Soldier, Jan 15, 2006.

  1. Metal Soldier

    Metal Soldier The Robot

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    More at Physorg.

    Cool stuff, I hope things go well in the extended trials. I want to see more space travel.
     
  2. FreshDebesh

    FreshDebesh <b><font color=brickred>oye chak de phatte!</font> Veteran

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    I'm still waiting on the Warp Engine.
     
  3. thefrozenred

    thefrozenred 4 8 15 16 23 42

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    Found a prototype of the first NASA spacecraft to use the new engine:



    [​IMG]
     
  4. Greyryder

    Greyryder Kitbashed

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    So, how long before I can buy an ion cannon?
     
  5. Gigatron_2005

    Gigatron_2005 President of Calendars

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    Thats the next generation Twin Ion Engine model. ;) 
     
  6. Aaron

    Aaron Master of Crystalocution Moderator Content Contributor

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    Looks cool enough. Might increase the odds of manned missions to Mars etc...
     
  7. llamatron

    llamatron Shut up, Nigel. TFW2005 Supporter

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    Well you could buy one now, but it would probably be damn expensive and somewhat impractical. ;) 

    It's good to see some progress being made in that field. Although to be honest I would much rather see the effort and resources being poured into something more worthwhile. I do love space exploration but there are just too many problems here on Earth that require attention and funds. You know, some climate change, a bit of aids, perhaps a few starving nations...
     
  8. Gigatron_2005

    Gigatron_2005 President of Calendars

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    I say its easier to start Earth over. Mars #1!!!! :rock 
     
  9. MegaMoonMan

    MegaMoonMan www.megamoonman.com TFW2005 Supporter

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    Space travel and exploration could lead to discoveries that could help alleviate those very problems, so I don't find the effort and resources put into these endeavors a waste at all.
     
  10. llamatron

    llamatron Shut up, Nigel. TFW2005 Supporter

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    To a degree yes. The technologies and processes developed while trying to further our space capabilities can have applications to things here on Earth. However, we have many problems that need urgent attention. Going and sending a crew to Mars is probably not going to help us out too much - there's no chance we can colonize it within the immediate future, however there is a very real chance that millions of people will die from potentially preventable diseases, poverty, hunger, etc in the *very* immediate future.

    I do have a very real interest in space and those areas of science and I realise that advancement in that field is a good idea and can be very necessary.
     
  11. Aaron

    Aaron Master of Crystalocution Moderator Content Contributor

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    So you don't see how the ability to feed a crew with no resupply line for the year and change that a trip to Mars would take doesn't have application to Earth based problems. Or how said astronauts will be able to recieve medical help with the nearest MD a few million miles away might make Earthbound medicine any better?
     
  12. Streck

    Streck <B><FONT COLOR="#FF0000">QED</B></FONT> Veteran

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    If we waited until everything was fixed here before going out into space, we'd never fucking leave.
     
  13. llamatron

    llamatron Shut up, Nigel. TFW2005 Supporter

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    In further answer, it's much more effective to just solve these problems directly rather than just let them come as a by-product of a mission to mars. But if (due to various reasons - funding, government, etc) that's what it takes before these advancements are made, then it's good that at least that might happen. It may be 20, 50, 100 years before we can actually seriously think about sending a crew to Mars. So, it'll be that long before those mentioned technologies are developed for the mission. However, if enough effort was put into it, we could probably solve those problems within the next few years.

    That is very true.

    Like I previously stated - I love me some space exploration and advancement. There are many important things that come out of it (ie satellites and global communication) - BUT - there are *more important* things to be done. Things that could use the huge amount of money and resources that go into some space research. I am not saying that we should go and shut down NASA, ESA and shoot the HST out of the sky (although to be fair it's not much use anymore...) - those things are all useful and important - I just think that sometimes our priorities are a little out of order.
     
  14. King Starscream

    King Starscream <b><font color=blue>The Royal Seeker</font></b> Veteran

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    Just be patient. The Vulcans will arrive in the 2060's and all our problems will be taken care of.
     
  15. llamatron

    llamatron Shut up, Nigel. TFW2005 Supporter

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    Unicron didn't show up last year, so I just don't know anymore...
     
  16. Greyryder

    Greyryder Kitbashed

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    But, we already have all of that stuff. :p 
     
  17. King Starscream

    King Starscream <b><font color=blue>The Royal Seeker</font></b> Veteran

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    That's cause he took a trip to Cybertron and it's bite sized moons. Earth was never on the menu . . . er . . itinerary. So hope is not lost.
     
  18. Streck

    Streck <B><FONT COLOR="#FF0000">QED</B></FONT> Veteran

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    Hell, it might be longer than that, especially if we're always diverting resources away from the pursuit of space. The only way that those technologies and our eventual colonization can come about is if we see them as a constant priority - problems to be attacked with as much vigor and determination as any other international goal. It is not necessary that alleviating hunger and disease must entail a scaling back or abandonment of our space programs, especially since, as I see it, the problem has never primarily been about money or resources. It's about the attitudes and methodologies with which people and governments approach those issues. (Unfortunately, I can't say much more on that without turning the discussion political.)
     
  19. llamatron

    llamatron Shut up, Nigel. TFW2005 Supporter

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    Streck I believe you are pretty much correct - politics unfortantly do play a role...
     
  20. Dark_Convoy

    Dark_Convoy Old Bastard Veteran

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    So true.

    From what I understand the Ion Engine is very fuel efficient, but also on the slow side, requiring a good amount of time to build up speed. The advance I am excited about is the plasma engine, which are just as fuel efficient, but much more powerful:

    Plasma Engine Could Open Up Space Exploration from Universe Today
     

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