Cube Shaped interstellar spacecraft – Nuclear Ion Drive


The following article makes a big case to building a hydrogen based ion drive:


There are signs of technology suppression by global powers of the dual grid 2 stage ion drive technology that was being jointly developed between ESA and Australia. The lead scientist has mysteriously passed away over suspicious circumstances just when the team was making head way.

The numbers supplied by wikipedia:

Power: 250kW

Isp: 19,000s

Diameter: 2.5m

The theoretical scaled up numbers above if valid would mean significant capabilities for space travel in the future. I came up with a cubic shape configuration for an interstellar space craft to maximize the surface area of any ion drive exhaust either as a single gigantic engine or a grid array of smaller units. Solar would also be able to take advantage of the nature of the cube to maximize solar radiation intake to maximize solar power.

These numbers would mean that a space craft such as my design only 17m by 17m with conservative numbers for a gigawatt reactor would be able to get to Mars in weeks and Titan in months. The greatest challenge to this design would be to minimize the weight of a 2.5gigawatt reactor and make it be 5-10 tons. This is the greatest challenge. The surface sides of the cube will be able to house panels that can efficiently radiate the reactor waste heat.

Alternatively we can completely eliminate the reactor and just rely on solar which definitely will make this endeavor possible for Mars alone. Without the reactor the entire ship will be 5-10 tons lighter boosting it’s acceleration capabilities and bringing it’s entire mass down to 10 tons.


Lighter than air building 30km height

I had this crazy idea that’s been kicking around in my head for years now of building that is half building and half airship. Ideally it would be flooded with helium which would make it a perfect candidate in the middle east where mega projects are a norm there and helium is in abundant supply. However if we use hydrogen balloons in a room filled with an inert gas such as helium or nitrogen(which is slightly lighter than air, we can then eliminate the risk of explosion. Ignore the red dot, it’s just a non scaled reference marker.

The cylindrical shape and the large 2.5 km radius will gently deflect winds. There is a second design with a hollow center that will allow the launch of small rockets to escape velocity at 11km/s using compressed air gas and maglev combo.

People will ideally live in the sides of this cylindrical super structure (marked in green) but it is possible for them to dwell further in where the upper atmosphere of the cavity is nitrogen/helium.



Orbiter Re-entry Path

We ran the CFD from Mach 0 – 25 and altitudes 0 – 105 km and plan to do ascent and reentry optimization next.  We are planning no greater than 20 degrees to stay stable.

Meshmixer loads the STL with colors and is a tiny installation compared to Blender. Blender only shows the colors on the PLY import, which is an even bigger file than the STL with colors embedded.

We uploaded the PLY file and added it to the ‘Files’ page with HTTP instruction to download rather than open the file.

With a simple switch in Blender you can display STL in color but it doesnt understand Vertex Color when loading STL so we use a PLY file for that.

Micro Climate Crater on Mars

According to our calculations Martian Scale Height of 11.1km means that we are only 30km away from reaching 0.7 bars of air pressure from the Northern Basin or Hellas Planitia. Can we deflect a comet or more to the same spot on such an elevation on Mars to excavate 30km? Then the water from the comet can produce a liquid water lake for us since it will be within the Armstrong Limit now and we can introduce algae and plant life in cheap greenhouses to slowly terraform Mars as a micro climate via photosynthesis to convert the CO2 to O2 slowly. The comet the size of Hailey’s would also contribute 1% to the Martian atmosphere with gas. While negilgible on it’s own if this becomes a regular occurance, 100 comet strikes will double the Martian atmospheric pressure and air density. This also means the future Micro Climate Craters can gradually be shallower and shallower eventually only needing to be 15km deep in the future.

Could we deflect enough comets to excavate 30km from the Northern Basin where it’s-7km from the datum? Or maybe Hellas Planitia. We could settle at the bottom of such a cavity and use airships for transportation without risk of explosion in the CO2 atmosphere, we could also live without the need of airlocks at our doors to maintain an air pressure bubble within the Armstrong Limit and we will have supply of drinking soda water and water for rocket fuel via electrolysis producing both breathable oxygen gas as well as hydrogen for rocket fuel and airships. We wont need full pressure space suits just flimsy stratapause type ones.