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Russia: Nuclear Powered Spacecraft

 
 
georgeob1
 
  2  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 01:04 pm
@BillRM,
I don't think that Mr. Dyson would appreciate the association of "your physics" with his.

It is true, your understanding of physics is not up to mine. Your grammar and use of the language is nothing to brag about either.
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 01:12 pm
@georgeob1,
Well dear heart it was good old Prof Dyson who was one of those men who develop and public what you now claims is not real physics not me.

You are amusing and if you can sell a bill of good to Farmerman that you are an expert I am going to trade my ownership of a New York bridge for his farm.
parados
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 01:28 pm
@BillRM,
Efficiency is a relative term. I doubt even Dyson would expect to be able to use 50% of the energy. In reality, you might be hard pressed to use 10% of it since the shielding to capture and direct energy would add mass you wouldn't have with an ion propulsion. That means ion propulsion would be more efficient.
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 01:50 pm
@parados,
Parados this is indeed a brute force means of traveling in space however as nuclear bombs/devices had power to throw away it does not matter as long as the efficiently does not drop too low and it is George who had claimed here that once out of the atmosphere it efficiently does indeed drop to the point it is a worthless means of getting very large payloads around the solar system.

This is not Dyson position and the others scientists that did work on the project for many years or even others scientists who had look at their works over the following decades.

Here is some of the non-real physics references dealing with the subject.



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Orion_(nuclear_propulsion)





References
^ a b Cosmos by Carl Sagan
^ Ross, F.W. - Propulsive System Specific Impulse. General Atomics GAMD-1293 8 Feb. 1960
^ Dyson, George. Project Orion - The Atomic Spaceship 1957-1965. Penguin. ISBN 0-140-27732-3
^ Dunne; Dyson and Treshow (1959). Dimensional Study of Orion Type Spaceships. General Atomics. GAMD-784.
^ a b Dyson, George (2002). Project Orion: The True Story of the Atomic Spaceship. New York, N.Y.: Henry Holt and Co.. ISBN 0-8050-7284-5.
^ "Nuclear Pulse Propulsion: A Historical Review" by Martin and Bond, Journal of the British Interplanetary Society, 1979 (p.301)
^ "The Starflight Handbook" by Mallove and Matloff, John Wiley & Sons, 1989, ISBN 0-471-61912-4 (page 66)
^ Bond & Martin, page 302
^ Cosmos series, Episode 8
^ "Antimatter Space Propulsion at Penn State University (LEPS)". Engr.psu.edu. 2001-02-27. http://www.engr.psu.edu/antimatter/documents.html. Retrieved 2009-11-15.
^ Teichmann, T. - The angular effects due to asymmetric placement of axial symmetric explosives: GAMD-5823, 26 Oct 1963
^ David, C. V. Stability study of Nuclear Pulse Propulsion (Orion) Engine System. GAMD-6213, 30 Apr 1965
^ 6 augustus 2007. "Project Orion". YouTube. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E3Lxx2VAYi8. Retrieved 2009-11-15.
^ a b Disturbing the Universe- Freeman Dyson
^ "Operation Plumbbob". July 2003. http://nuclearweaponarchive.org/Usa/Tests/Plumbob.html#PascalB. Retrieved 2006-07-31.
^ Brownlee, Robert R. (June 2002). "Learning to Contain Underground Nuclear Explosions". http://nuclearweaponarchive.org/Usa/Tests/Brownlee.html. Retrieved 2006-07-31.
"Nuclear Pulse Propulsion (Project Orion) Technical Summary Report" RTD-TDR-63-3006 (1963"1964); GA-4805 Vol. 1, Reference Vehicle Design Study, Vol. 2, Interaction Effects, Vol. 3, Pulse Systems, Vol. 4, Experimental Structural Response. (From the National Technical Information Service, U.S.A.)
"Nuclear Pulse Propulsion (Project Orion) Technical Summary Report" 1 July 1963"30 June 1964, WL-TDR-64-93; GA-5386 Vol. 1, Summary Report, Vol. 2, Theoretical and Experimental Physics, Vol. 3, Engine Design, Analysis and Development Techniques, Vol. 4, Engineering Experimental Tests. (From the National Technical Information Service, U.S.A.)
"Dynamic America; a history of General Dynamics Corporation and its predecessor companies", John Niven, Courtlandt Canby, and Vernon Welsh Designer, Erik Nitsche, 1960 Page Image
General Atomics, Nuclear Pulse Space Vehicle Study, Volume I -- Summary, September 19, 1964
General Atomics, Nuclear Pulse Space Vehicle Study, Volume III -- Conceptual Vehicle Designs And Operational Systems, September 19, 1964
General Atomics, Nuclear Pulse Space Vehicle Study, Volume IV -- Mission Velocity Requirements And System Comparisons, February 28, 1966
General Atomics, Nuclear Pulse Space Vehicle Study, Volume IV -- Mission Velocity Requirements And System Comparisons (Supplement), February 28, 1966
NASA, Nuclear Pulse Vehicle Study Condensed Summary Report (General Dynamics Corp), January 1964
Problems with the Orion project a somewhat negative opinion on the project.
[edit] External links
Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Project Orion (nuclear propulsion)
Freeman Dyson talking about Project Orion on Peoples Archive
Project Orion: Its Life, Death, and Possible Rebirth
parados
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 02:08 pm
@BillRM,
George wrote:
The only thing that could be "captured" is the momentum of a small fraction of the released radiation and nuclides. That can be far more economically and efficiently done with an ion engine.


Quote:
A collimation factor of nearly 0.5 can be achieved by matching the diameter of the pusher plate to the diameter of the nuclear fireball created by the explosion of a nuclear pulse unit.
That means we are starting with a 50% loss before we do anything else. By the time you add in the mass required to use this method it becomes less and less efficient.

Yes, George missed this part..
Quote:
Reaction mass for Orion would have been built into the bombs or dropped between 'pulses' to provide thrust. Polyethylene masses, garbage and sewage were all considered for use as reaction mass.
But the ship would have to carry that mass before it ejects it. More mass means less efficiency.

The other point you missed Bill is the sheer size required to make the system work at its best efficiency. Unless you built crafts that large they would be very inefficient.
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 02:59 pm
@parados,
I did not miss the sheer size as the very idea of Orion is to move hundreds and even thousands of tons around the solar system from the surface of one inner planet to another with the same ease as a surface cargo ship now move cargo across the world oceans today.

There is no known method other then Orion that could give us this ability in the foreseeable future and yes you would not used such a ship to move a small space probe around but instead a whole ready to go Mars or Moon base for example.

The physic and to a lesser degree the engineering is rock solid and does not come out of a popular science magazine as our friend the expert George so stated.

As for George claimed that this is not a workable system due to his far superior understanding of the poor coupling between the pusher plate and the bomb energy in space he happen to be completely wrong.

His understanding of physic need to be re-tune along with his willingness to tell others that his understanding of science is in any way superior to their a fact that also in this case happen to be dead wrong.

farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 03:01 pm
@parados,
a critical mass of highly enriched whatever will overcome themetallurgy that we are able to develop at the near future. Id seen some extreme Mag Silicates with a heat tolerance of 2200 C (BUT) then it melts , that would be a real problem in a constant detonating engine. If I understand Bill's claim, it is possible to keep detonations goiung with separate critical masses in sequence? Whats to keep all the critical masses from going off when enough Neutrons are propogated?
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 03:29 pm
@farmerman,
Farmerman it is hundreds of tiny nuclear bombs/devices somewhere in the range of .05 kilton or so and they are taken from the ship and place one at a time behind a large a very large metal plate and then exploded.

There are shielding more for the crew health then preventing all the bombs from going off together and the science and the engineering details can be look up on the net Farmerman. See my long list of reference to start with.

This had been work out by some of the most important scientists and engineers of the 1950s and 1960s and the same people who design our nuclear weapons in the same time period.

So unless you are of the opinion that they did not know their business in nuclear design the bombs would not be set off by neutrons from earlier explosions.

I am not sure if those kind of details had been release from the secret classification however.
parados
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 03:46 pm
@BillRM,
Quote:
There is no known method other then Orion that could give us this ability in the foreseeable future and yes you would not used such a ship to move a small space probe around but instead a whole ready to go Mars or Moon base for example.

Which points out the economic question george raised

The size of the ship, let alone the cost of thousands of tons of payload makes it economically questionable. Who would be willing to put up the money?
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 04:38 pm
@parados,
You are of the opinion that setting up a moon base and suppling it or going to Mars with a man mission both the US government claim to wish to do in the future is going to be cheaper by using chemical rockets instead of Orion?

Second our friend George did not bring up the economic question he instead told me that such a device/ship would not work and my understanding of science was lacking it I did not know that.

Some expert indeed.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 04:59 pm
@BillRM,
Quote:
See my long list of reference to start with.
Most of the refs that youve relied upon are from the late 1950's. Weve come a loong waysince then. Weve stopped these programs and have gone on to others. Whats the critical mass needed to achieve a fission bomblet?
Ive seen these aqrtist sketches that shoqwed a concept of the Nuclear space ship in which the engine section is quite a distance from the cabin and command center. Ion propulsion seems much ,more realistic and less of a safety problem when deployed.

BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 05:13 pm
@farmerman,
Oh we had come a long way and the law of nature had change since the 50s and nuclear devices do not work in the same manner?

And all the scientists that had look at the design since and not found any problem with it are somehow in error also?

And you are not going to take a thousand tons of cargo off the earth surface and land on the Mars surface with IONS rockets!!!

Quote:
Whats the critical mass needed to achieve a fission bomblet?


I had a strange feeling that information is part of the Orion project that is still classify
parados
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 09:42 pm
@BillRM,
Did you miss this statement by George?
Quote:
That can be far more economically and efficiently done with an ion engine.
parados
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 09:44 pm
@BillRM,
BillRM wrote:

Oh we had come a long way and the law of nature had change since the 50s and nuclear devices do not work in the same manner?



Actually, we have come a long way. No 1 is we wouldn't want to explode 800 nuclear devices in the atmosphere.
roger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Jan, 2010 09:53 pm
@parados,
parados wrote:


Actually, we have come a long way. No 1 is we wouldn't want to explode 800 nuclear devices in the atmosphere.


There was once a serious (I think) plan to produce an alternative to the Panama Canal involving nuclear devices. It died for similar reasons.
0 Replies
 
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Fri 22 Jan, 2010 02:25 am
@parados,
And once more that is complete nonsense as you can not move a few thousand tons off earth with an Ion rockets so must for him being an expert.
0 Replies
 
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Fri 22 Jan, 2010 02:29 am
@parados,
Quote:
No 1 is we wouldn't want to explode 800 nuclear devices in the atmosphere
.

Why not we are talking far less then the harm done by setting off one average test in the 1950s and getting the benefit of a Mars or moon base at the same time?

Seem like the cost/benefit ratio is for all those tiny and I mean tiny nuclear devices is in favor of the project.

I had not done the numbers but I would bet off hand the radiation that would be release compare to the radiation released from burning coal in the coal fired power planets in the world for a year.
0 Replies
 
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Fri 22 Jan, 2010 02:44 am
@parados,
Quote:
No 1 is we wouldn't want to explode 800 nuclear devices in the atmosphere.


Second note do you think that launching a hundred or so large chemical rockets to build a moon base and therefore placing many tons of chemicals in the upper atmosphere that is not good for the ozone layer heath is free of environmental harm?
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 22 Jan, 2010 06:59 am
@BillRM,
Quote:
,
Oh we had come a long way and the law of nature had change since the 50s and nuclear devices do not work in the same manner?
Dont try to miscast what I said. Our UNDERSTANDINGS of how nuke devices and nuke science works has lept ahead. In my area, we had several radioisotopic methods useable since the 50's but we didnt know that ratios of daughter products affect the answers and the science of detection has come light years since then.

Also, I never said that we go from earth to space with an ion engine. I stated clearly that an ion engine would be built in space , probably in low orbit , so that the necessary impulse of liftoff wouldnt be a problem. I see an even more significant problem of lifting a device that is mostly radiation containment from the earth. ALSO, with the safety concerns, I dont think that wed even consider this option as feasible, too much risk of a catastrophic failure. The nuke deivers would have to be working from the erth surface so its not like we could keep them in a safe mode. If there were an accident and a "nuclear rocket" would crash back to earth, it would be like a "Dirty bomb" spewing radiation products all over a significant area of therad site.

I worked at the Nevada TEst site on a ground water cleanup years ago and we all visited the "plutonium valley" where a small "appliance" detonated accidently, leaving a minimum of 1200 acres of desert roped off to future development.
parados
 
  1  
Reply Fri 22 Jan, 2010 09:45 am
@BillRM,
Quote:
many tons of chemicals not good for the ozone from a hundred chemical rockets?


What chemicals would those be Bill that would be in the "tons"? My understanding of the space shuttle is it uses hydrogen and oxygen to get it's thrust. While there may be impurities and odd chemicals, where are the tons you refer to?
 

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