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Robotic Space Tugs

Most cargo will be moved in space by simply pushing it into a desired trajectory and then waiting for it to arrive at the destination. The trajectory will vary according to both the start and end point and the amount of time we are willing to wait for the cargo to arrive. If we are […]

Liquid Salt Space Thruster

Over the years, the design of space thrusters has struggled with problems like pressurized tanks and expensive propellants. Small satellites don’t need much thrust, but as atmospheric drag pulls them into a downward orbit spiral, they do need some adjustment to stay in orbit. A new thruster system about the size of a pack of […]

Ionic Lifters

These ionic lifters work by moving air and have the potential to float and move light aircraft. They are quite different from the ion thrusters proposed for space propulsion. A mighty wind – [mit.edu] When a current passes between two electrodes — one thinner than the other — it creates a wind in the air […]

Space Transport

In space, the dividing line between what is considered to be a habitat and what is considered to be a vehicle will become hazy. Large habitat-like structures can be put into orbits that offer transport from one place to another and from one orbit to another. A habitat placed in an orbit that goes from […]

Propulsion

Space propulsion engines are very different from thrusting engines designed to boost an object out of a planetary gravity well. They must be more efficient, must not require large quanties of expendable supplies (either fuel or thrusting material) and must be able to operate continually. Thrusters: Chemical thrusters currently used in satellite spacecraft don’t offer […]