On Thu, 22 Apr 1999 02:11:43 -0400 "Michael S. Lorrey" <email@example.com>
>Ross A. Finlayson wrote:
>> Does shooting a laser from a laser generator not generate opposite
>> of the beam output?
>It generates a reaction. Laser propulsion is NOT reactionless
An ordinary pocket laser pointer produces a beam of about 2 milliwatts power. That's the actual electromagnetic power of the light itself, not the electrical power drained from the batteries which power the laser. A 2 milliwatt beam would produce a reactive force on the the emitting laser of about 6.7 trillionths of a Newton. If the beam were to strike a perfect black body and be absorbed, the force on the black body would be the same. If the beam were to strike a perfect mirror perpendicular to its surface, the force on the mirror would be twice that. A Newton is a metric unit of force, equal to the weight at sea level of about 102 grams or about 3.6 avoirdupois ounces.