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Proceedings Paper

Novel aspects in laser propulsion
Author(s): Willy L. Bohn
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Paper Abstract

After an introductory overview of different types of laser propulsion schemes a review of the corresponding laser requirements will be given ranging from low power lasers sources to inertial confinement laser facilities. A subsequent status of work reveals the impasse in which the laser propulsion community is currently engaged. Revisiting the basic relations leads to new avenues in ablative and direct laser propulsion for ground based and space based applications. Hereby, special attention is devoted to the space qualification of available laser sources using a microgravity installation. A new approach to debris removal project is discussed with respect to the use Satellite Laser Ranging (SRL) facilities. Finally, a novel aspect for direct photon propulsion in space is derived by introducing the concept of a "long" optical resonator. Potential and limits of this concept are presented opening the possibility of photon propulsion over 100 km path under realistic experimental conditions.

Paper Details

Date Published: 14 May 2008
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 7005, High-Power Laser Ablation VII, 70051C (14 May 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.785634
Show Author Affiliations
Willy L. Bohn, German Aerospace Ctr. (Germany)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7005:
High-Power Laser Ablation VII
Claude R. Phipps, Editor(s)

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