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Engine VASIMR (electromagnetic accelerator with variable specific impulse) would get to Mars in 39 days - VIDEO PDF Print E-mail
Sunday, 05 April 2015 09:00

The US space agency NASA has selected a number of companies to work on 12 projects of advanced space technologies, including the development of faster ways to travel in space.

Many of these projects are also aimed at creating conditions for living on other planets and on the development of small satellites that will study space. The projects will be implemented under the program Next Space Technologies for Exploration Partnerships, or "Next Space Technology Partnerships for further exploration" (in the English version abbreviated as "next step").

Thus, the company Ad Astra Rocket, based in Texas, has announced its work on the engine that could deliver humans to Mars in 39 days. Engine VASIMR (Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket - electromagnetic accelerator with variable specific impulse, which uses plasma as a fuel, developed since 1999. About him speak for several years, as it can reduce the travel time to Mars from a few months to a few weeks though the device may be in need of a nuclear power source.



Successful testing of the prototype took place in 2013, so now NASA is considering the use of this engine in a future mission to the Red Planet.

"We are delighted with these plans and are proud to join forces with NASA in the final stages of preparation of missions, - says Dr. Franklin Chang Diaz (Franklin Chang Diaz), executive director of the Ad Astra Rocket, physicist and astronaut. - And we look forward to successful outcome of this partnership. "

Over the next three years, NASA plans to select the company about $ 10 million to improve and bring the engine until it is ready to fly into space. It is expected that after this period will be shown a new prototype device, VX-200-SS, which will be capable of continuous operation over a hundred hours.

Previous version VASIMR made 10,000 runs at high power, but they lasted less than a minute. If the engine has run for more than 100 hours, it means that developers are on the right track, and one day they will be able to install his invention to the spacecraft, experts say.



The US space agency NASA has selected a number of companies to work on 12 projects of advanced space technologies, including the development of faster ways to travel in space.

Many of these projects are also aimed at creating conditions for living on other planets and on the development of small satellites that will study space. The projects will be implemented under the program Next Space Technologies for Exploration Partnerships, or "Next Space Technology Partnerships for further exploration" (in the English version abbreviated as "next step").

Thus, the company Ad Astra Rocket, based in Texas, has announced its work on the engine that could deliver humans to Mars in 39 days. Engine VASIMR (Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket - electromagnetic accelerator with variable specific impulse, which uses plasma as a fuel, developed since 1999. About him speak for several years, as it can reduce the travel time to Mars from a few months to a few weeks though the device may be in need of a nuclear power source.

It is expected that plasma VASIMR rocket engine will consume a relatively small amount of fuel (figure Ad Astra Rocket Company).

Successful testing of the prototype took place in 2013, so now NASA is considering the use of this engine in a future mission to the Red Planet.

"We are delighted with these plans and are proud to join forces with NASA in the final stages of preparation of missions, - says Dr. Franklin Chang Diaz (Franklin Chang Diaz), executive director of the Ad Astra Rocket, physicist and astronaut. - And we look forward to successful outcome of this partnership. "

Over the next three years, NASA plans to select the company about $ 10 million to improve and bring the engine until it is ready to fly into space. It is expected that after this period will be shown a new prototype device, VX-200-SS, which will be capable of continuous operation over a hundred hours.

Previous version VASIMR made 10,000 runs at high power, but they lasted less than a minute. If the engine has run for more than 100 hours, it means that developers are on the right track, and one day they will be able to install his invention to the spacecraft, experts say.

With this and some other technologies, NASA plans to develop the possibilities of exploration of the Moon and Mars.

"Commercial partners were chosen for their technical ability to create important technologies, as well as on their previous developments, many of which are used by the government - says the head of one of the departments of NASA William Gerstenmaier (William Gerstenmaier). - In the end, these developments will help us to develop strategies traveling man in the solar system. "

Three projects will develop innovative engines that will work with a capacity from 50 to 300 kW (for comparison, the power of electric current in the ion propulsion of spacecraft NASA is less than 5 kW).
More seven companies will develop space habitats for astronauts who will fly to Mars in 2030-ies.

Capsule Orion multipurpose spacecraft designed to deliver astronauts to Earth, but it also can support a crew of four people for 21 days.

However, as the journey to Mars, as long as expected, will take from several months to three years, astronauts have at this time to live in some other structure. NASA hopes that one of the funded projects will help to find a way to accommodate the astronauts during a grueling flight to a new world.



One of the companies selected Space Agency Bigelow Aerospace will build residential units, a prototype of which will be attached to the ISS in 2018.

And finally, the two companies chosen for the development of small satellites (the so-called kubsatov). They will be a secondary payload during the first rocket launch Space Launch System in 2019. This rocket powerful enough to give kubsatam opportunity to explore the distant reaches of space, rather than remain in Earth orbit. Most of these small satellites now operate there.


НАЖМИТЕ ЗДЕСЬ ДЛЯ ПРОСМОТРА ВСЕГО СПИСКА НОВОСТЕЙ О НЕОБЫЧНЫХ ЯВЛЕНИЯХ>>>

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