Re: SPACE: Lunar Warfare

Mark Grant (
Thu, 16 Jan 1997 19:24:58 +0000

On Wed, 15 Jan 1997, James Rogers wrote:

> I think you misjudge sensor technology. Military IR sensor satellites in
> geosync orbit (~40000 km) can detect fractional degree changes at
> resolutions of something like 10 meters on the planet surface.

The question would be, how large an area are they scanning at any time? A
one degree temperature difference over a ten meter square should give you
maybe 500W at the surface. So that would imply that those satellites could
detect my warhead at about the same distance.

So if they're scanning the whole sky at once and still getting that
resolution, then that's a problem, but if they're only scanning a few
square kilometers at a time then it will take them a significant amount of
time to spot the warheads and they'll be unable to track more than one;
Even radar would work if you already knew where the warhead was to within
a few kilometers. Imaging something you already know the location of is
much, much easier than finding something in trillions of cubic kilometers
of space.

> Also, decent signal processing will be able to pick out small, weak,
> differential IR sources against the backdrop of a spinning earth, since its
> behavior would distinguish itself from an earth based IR sources.

*If* they know roughly where it is.

> (unqualified) theory is that when you have a flux overload, the
> superconductor would start to heat up. At a certain temperature point, it
> would resume an entirely ceramic nature, which would then be unaffected by
> EMP.

Yeah, I don't know what would happen either. However, all that energy
would have to go somewhere, and it would probably end up in heat. Even if
that didn't happen, having gigavolts running unexpectedly through the
control hardware would be annoying, to say the least.


|Mark Grant M.A., U.L.C. EMAIL: |