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Proceedings Paper

Space propulsion and power beaming using millimeter systems
Author(s): James N. Benford; R. Dickinson
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Paper Abstract

Past schemes for using beamed microwave power for space propulsion and providing power to space platforms have used microwaves below 10 GHz. Recent expansions of the high power microwave technology domain offer fundamental reassessment of the following missions: 1) location of orbital debris, 2) supplying power to loitering high-altitude airplanes, 3) satellite battery recharging, 4) imaging of asteroids, 5) orbit raising and transfer, 6) interplanetary probe launch to the outer planets and comets, and ultimately, 7) launch into Earth orbit. This group of applications may be done by a ground-based system. The system would start small, being built for the near Earth missions, and be enlarged incrementally as the technology matures and confidence develops. Of particular interest are sources in the millimeter range where there are low loss atmospheric windows and MJ pulses are available in quasi-CW operation. A development scenario for these missions using millimeter wave technolgy is described.

Paper Details

Date Published: 8 September 1995
PDF: 14 pages
Proc. SPIE 2557, Intense Microwave Pulses III, (8 September 1995); doi: 10.1117/12.218549
Show Author Affiliations
James N. Benford, Physics International Co. (United States)
R. Dickinson, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2557:
Intense Microwave Pulses III
Howard E. Brandt, Editor(s)

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