Nasa's 'impossible' fuel-free thrusters DO work: German scientists confirm viability of super-fast space travel that could slash a journey to the moon down to 4 HOURS
- Martin Tajmar presented his work at the American Institute for Aeronautics
- His results confirm thrusts from EMDrive as previously claimed by Nasa
- Claims his findings could revolutionise space travel with increased speed
- When first proposed the EMDrive baffled physicists as it appeared to violate the law of conservation of momentum
A controversial design for a new, advanced type of space travel received a boost as German scientists confirmed that it does in fact work.
The EMDrive propulsion system would permit travel at speeds until now only seen in science fiction.
When the concept was first proposed it was considered impossible because it went against the laws of physics.
But subsequent tests - further backed up by this announcement - have shown that the idea could revolutionise space travel.
Martin Tajmar, professor and chair for Space Systems at the Dresden University of Technology confirmed that the EMDrive would work. Pictured is the first device created by Roger Sawyer
Researchers say the new drive could carry passengers and their equipment to the moon in as little as four hours.
A trip to Alpha Centauri, which would take tens of thousands of years to reach right now, could be reached in just 100 years.
The system is based on electromagnetic drive, or EMDrive, which converts electrical energy into thrust without the need for rocket fuel.
Martin Tajmar, professor and chair for Space Systems at the Dresden University of Technology, presented his work at the American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics' Propulsion and Energy Forum in Orlando yesterday.
The website Hacked obtained a copy of Tajmar's Propulsion and Energy Forum paper.
'Our measurements reveal thrusts as expected from previous claims after carefully studying thermal and electromagnetic interferences,' wrote Tajmar in the paper, according to the website.
'If true, this could certainly revolutionise space travel.'
NASA'S BIGGEST EVER ROCKET
The Space Launch System (SLS) is set to usher in a new era of exploration to destinations beyond Earth's orbit.
When it's built in 2018, it will launch astronauts in the agency's Orion spacecraft on missions to an asteroid placed in lunar orbit, and eventually to Mars.
Now, engineers are one step closer to that goal after last week completing a major design review for what will eventually be the world's biggest and most powerful rocket.
The in-depth review – the first in almost 40 years for a Nasa exploration class vehicle - provides a final look at the design of the rocket before full-scale construction begins.
While there has been some scepticism surrounding the EMDrive, in April Nasa released results of their own test which showed that the EMDrive did in fact create thrust.
'Thrust measurements of the EMDrive defy classical physics’ expectations that such a closed (microwave) cavity should be unusable for space propulsion because of the law of conservation of momentum,' announced NasaSpaceFlight.com in April
The site has become an unofficial source of EMDrive news, with Nasa engineers reportedly posting on its forum.
The announcement will add momentum to developing a working EMDrive, as Tajmar is considered an ideal candidate to test the controversial system due to his 'well-equipped lab and a strong background in tracking experimental error,' according to Wired.
Tajmar wrote: 'Additional tests need to be carried out to study the magnetic interaction of the power feeding lines used for the liquid metal contacts.'
'Nevertheless, we do observe thrusts close to the magnitude of the actual predictions after eliminating many possible error sources that should warrant further investigation into the phenomena.
'Next steps include better magnetic shielding, further vacuum tests and improved EMDrive models with higher Q factors and electronics that allow tuning for optimal operation.'
According to classical physics, the EMDrive should be impossible because it seems to violate the law of conservation of momentum.
The law states that the momentum of a system is constant if there are no external forces acting on the system – which is why propellant is required in traditional rockets.
'Our measurements reveal thrusts as expected from previous claims after carefully studying thermal and electromagnetic interferences,' wrote Tajmar in the paper. Pictured is an illustration from the paper
Researchers from the US, UK and China have demonstrated EMDrives over the past few decades, but their results have been controversial as no one has been exactly sure how it works.
But earlier this year, Nasa built an EMDrive that works in conditions like those in space, according to users on forum NasaSpaceFlight.com.
A number of those discussing the plan on the technical forum claim to be Nasa engineers who are involved in the project.
While there has been some scepticism around the EMDrive, in April Nasa released results of their own test which showed that the EMDrive did in fact create thrust. Martin Tajmar has said the findings could revolutionise space travel. Pictured is his experimental set-up to test the system
The concept of an EmDrive engine is relatively simple. It provides thrust to a spacecraft by bouncing microwaves around in a closed container.
Solar energy provides the electricity to power the microwaves, which means that no propellant is needed.
The implications for this could be huge. For instance, current satellites could be half the size they are today without the need to carry fuel.
Humans could also travel further into space, generating their own propulsion on the way.
When London-based Roger Sawyer came up with concept in 2000, the only team that took him seriously was a group of Chinese scientists.
In 2009, the team allegedly produced 720 millinewton (or 72g) of thrust, enough to build a satellite thruster. But still, nobody believed they had achieved this.
Last year, Pennsylvania-based scientist Guido Fetta and his team at Nasa Eagleworks published a paper that demonstrates that a similar engine works on the same principles.
Their model, dubbed Cannae Drive, produces much less thrust at 30 to 50 micronewtons - less than a thousandth of the output of some relatively low-powered ion thrusters used today.
On the NasaSpaceFlight.com, those allegedly involved in the project claim that the reason previous EmDrive models were criticised were that none of the tests had been carried out in a vacuum.
Physics says particles in the quantum vacuum cannot be ionised, so therefore you cannot push against it. But Nasa's latest test is claimed to have shown otherwise.
'Nasa has successfully tested their EmDrive in a hard vacuum – the first time any organisation has reported such a successful test,' the researchers wrote.
'To this end, Nasa Eagleworks has now nullified the prevailing hypothesis that thrust measurements were due to thermal convection.'
However, Nasa's official site says that: 'There are many 'absurd' theories that have become reality over the years of scientific research.
'But for the near future, warp drive remains a dream,' in a post updated earlier this year.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-3177449/Nasa-s-impossible-fuel-free-thrusters-work-German-scientists-confirm-viability-super-fast-space-travel-slash-journey-moon-4-HOURS.html#ixzz3hKurbekE