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Use of magnetic sails for advanced exploration missions
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Author and Affiliation:
Andrews, Dana G.(Boeing Aerospace Co., Seattle, WA., United States);
Zubrin, Robert M.(Martin Marietta Aerospace, Denver, CO., United States)
Abstract: The magnetic sail, or magsail, is a field effect device which interacts with the ambient solar wind or interstellar medium over a considerable volume of space to generate drag and lift forces. Two theories describing the method of thrust generation are analyzed and data results are presented. The techniques for maintaining superconductor temperatures in interplanetary space are analyzed and low risk options presented. Comparisons are presented showing mission performance differences between currently proposed spacecraft using chemical and electric propulsion systems, and a Magsail propelled spacecraft capable of generating an average thrust of 250 Newtons at a radius of one A.U. The magsail also provides unique capabilities for interstellar missions, in that at relativistic speeds the magnetic field would ionize and deflect the interstellar medium producing a large drag force. This would make it an ideal brake for decelerating a spacecraft from relativistic speeds and then maneuvering within the target star system.
Publication Date: Apr 01, 1990
Document ID:
19910012840
(Acquired Nov 07, 1995)
Accession Number: 91N22153
Subject Category: ASTRONAUTICS (GENERAL)
Document Type: Conference Paper
Publication Information: NASA. Lewis Research Center, Vision-21: Space Travel for the Next Millennium; p 202-210
Publisher Information: United States
Financial Sponsor: NASA; United States
Organization Source: Boeing Aerospace Co.; Seattle, WA, United States
Description: 9p; In English
Distribution Limits: Unclassified; Publicly available; Unlimited
Rights: No Copyright
NASA Terms: INTERPLANETARY SPACE; INTERSTELLAR MATTER; SOLAR MAGNETIC FIELD; SOLAR SAILS; SOLAR WIND; SPACE TEMPERATURE; SUPERCONDUCTORS (MATERIALS); AEROBRAKING; DECELERATION; DRAG; ELECTRIC PROPULSION; LIFT; MAGNETIC FIELDS; MAGNETIC SAILS; PROPULSION SYSTEM CONFIGURATIONS; PROPULSION SYSTEM PERFORMANCE
Imprint And Other Notes: In NASA. Lewis Research Center, Vision-21: Space Travel for the Next Millennium p 202-210 (SEE N91-22139 14-12)
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