Re: Project Orion

From: Chuck Kuecker (
Date: Sat Jun 17 2000 - 07:01:08 MDT

At 09:41 AM 6/17/00 +0100, you wrote:

>Yes, I'm familiar with this one. This being a very feasible idea, and
>possible with current technology, the restrictions placed on atomic
>explosions in space seem somewhat... annoying, to say the least,
>especially since they only exist because the test ban treaty doesn't
>bother to state any minimum acceptable range.
>Of course, we'd probably have to settle for building the craft in orbit,
>which somewhat detracts from its advantages in feasible weight, but
>there are ways to deal with that... a certain idea of mine in this area
>I will be documenting soon.
>PS - even the old Tintin book 'Destination Moon' recognised the benefits
>of atomic propulsion! :-)

I remember reading, in relation to Soviet Topaz reactors, that the reactor
in orbit trailed a plume of energetic particles that could destroy or at
least damage satellites in orbit behind the reactor. Possibly this was
because the Topaz ran totally unshielded, to save weight. Perhaps a similar
effect to the Van Allen belts that trap Solar wind particles?

Orion launches would have to be in orbits arranged to avoid dosing
commercial satellites with the "exhaust". What effect would this have on
the useful trajectories available?

Chuck Kuecker

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Thu Jul 27 2000 - 14:13:27 MDT