Fusion Powered aircraft

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phavoc
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Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby phavoc » Thu Mar 01, 2018 2:39 am

An interesting article. Not currently practical (fusion, yanno), but interesting.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/ ... plane.html
Sigtrygg
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby Sigtrygg » Thu Mar 01, 2018 8:36 am

Compact fusion reactor in fifteen years...

nope
ShawnDriscoll
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby ShawnDriscoll » Thu Mar 01, 2018 2:15 pm

Dailymail? Nothing good comes from that click-bait.
Condottiere
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby Condottiere » Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:08 am

Experts Aghast At Russian Claim Of Nuclear-Powered Missile With Unlimited Range

March 1, 20185:39 PM ET
GEOFF BRUMFIEL

Russian President Vladimir Putin discussed the new missile during his annual state of the nation address in Moscow on Thursday.
Alexander Zemlianichenko/AP
In his annual state of the nation address on Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin unveiled a nuclear-powered, nuclear-armed cruise missile that he claimed could fly indefinitely and deliver a warhead to any point on the earth's surface.

The weapon seems so fantastical that some analysts simply didn't believe the initial reports of the missile that appeared on social media early Thursday.

"I had my doubts," says Pavel Podvig, who runs the Russian Strategic Nuclear Forces blog.

Podvig thought that perhaps something was lost in translation. But after watching the speech for himself on YouTube, he realized Putin had really made the claim: "Apparently, that's what he said."

According to Putin's prepared remarks to the Russian Federal Assembly, he said that "in late 2017, Russia successfully launched its latest nuclear-powered missile at the Central training ground. During its flight, the nuclear-powered engine reached its design capacity and provided the necessary propulsion."

An accompanying video appears to show a cruise missile launching into the sky and hurtling through the air. An animation then shows how such a weapon could dodge terrain and missile defenses while flying for thousands of miles around the tip of South America and toward the U.S. West Coast.

"I'm still kind of in shock," says Edward Geist, a researcher specializing in Russia at the Rand Corp. "My guess is they're not bluffing, that they've flight-tested this thing. But that's incredible."

Nuclear propulsion is used on large ships like aircraft carriers and submarines. It allows these vessels to operate for years without refueling, dramatically extending their range and endurance.

In the early days of the Cold War, both the U.S. and the Soviet Union looked into nuclear-powered aircraft as well. Both nations tried installing a nuclear reactor into a strategic bomber. But the reactors were heavy, and the crews faced risks from radiation exposure. Both countries quickly gave up on the idea.

The U.S. did go on to investigate the idea of a nuclear-powered missile, Geist says. Known as the Supersonic Low Altitude Missile, the idea was more like a nuclear-powered drone aircraft. "It was actually supposed to fly around autonomously and drop nuclear gravity bombs," Geist says.

The nuclear reactor that would keep SLAM aloft would also spew radioactive exhaust, Geist says. At the time, that was advertised as a feature, not a bug, because it would have had the added benefit of polluting the Soviet countryside.

"It was supposed to be really, really dirty," Geist says.

https://www.npr.org/sections/parallels/ ... mited-rang
baithammer
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby baithammer » Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:16 am

Sounds like Putin is ripping off Project Pluto from the 60s US.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Pluto
Gentleman John
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby Gentleman John » Fri Mar 02, 2018 4:37 pm

All I see in that video is a standard chemical-assisted launch for a missile. I recall that the Soviets pulled a similar stunt in the 1950s by declaring that they had flown a nuclear-powered bomber.

It will be interesting to see if they have solved the problems of hardening the flight electronics against the high-energy gamma flux from the reactor, as well as retrieving the used test article. That thing will be hot, and it must have landed somewhere. Lithobraking is not recommended for any nuclear plant, even one on the scale of a TORY-variant.
Condottiere
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby Condottiere » Sat Mar 03, 2018 12:58 am

An atmospheric electro magnetic pulse would be both less politically destructive and more economically consequential.
Gentleman John
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby Gentleman John » Sat Mar 03, 2018 12:40 pm

And if you do it right, you can always blame it on a Vela-style incident.
Condottiere
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby Condottiere » Sat Mar 03, 2018 10:27 pm

North Korea, but that requires that people who would feel threatened and have their fingers on big red buttons are stable geniuses, who won't just retaliate on impulse.
Condottiere
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby Condottiere » Sun Mar 04, 2018 2:24 am

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9XLGjV_7b6s

Using Realism Overhaul you too can create the most ridiculous cold war nuclear weapons concept. Project Pluto & SLAM (Supersonic Low Altitude Missile) would have a cruise missile flying propelled by a nuclear ramjet.
baithammer
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby baithammer » Sun Mar 04, 2018 2:42 am

Condottiere wrote:
Sat Mar 03, 2018 12:58 am
An atmospheric electro magnetic pulse would be both less politically destructive and more economically consequential.
EM at weapon scale has the same signature of a nuclear strike so would be like firing a bb gun at someone with a shotgun under 10m.
Gentleman John
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby Gentleman John » Sun Mar 04, 2018 12:34 pm

Condottiere wrote:
Sun Mar 04, 2018 2:24 am

Using Realism Overhaul you too can create the most ridiculous cold war nuclear weapons concept. Project Pluto & SLAM (Supersonic Low Altitude Missile) would have a cruise missile flying propelled by a nuclear ramjet.
Ah, I love the madness of KSP. But it's the staging that I have problems with.
Gentleman John
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby Gentleman John » Sun Mar 04, 2018 12:41 pm

baithammer wrote:
Sun Mar 04, 2018 2:42 am
EM at weapon scale has the same signature of a nuclear strike so would be like firing a bb gun at someone with a shotgun under 10m.
If you're talking pure EM, then yes but minus the heat, pressure and radiation effects.

If you're going nuclear, what you really want is an exo-atmospheric burst to generate an EMP pulse. Compton scattering doesn't work well if the detonation is below a certain altitude. The electrons will have enough material to recombine and you'll just get a standard air-burst.

Of course, you can get an EMP without going nuclear. Explosively-pumped flux compression generators are a thing.
baithammer
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby baithammer » Sun Mar 04, 2018 9:27 pm

The biggest signature of a nuclear strike is the EMP as that can be detected from a long ways away, so EMP blasts are often treated as a potential nuclear strike with all of its ramifications. In order not to trigger nuclear defenses the emp device would have to be a much smaller devices and would require being closer to the target.
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby Condottiere » Mon Mar 05, 2018 12:20 am

Image
Gentleman John
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby Gentleman John » Mon Mar 05, 2018 6:01 pm

baithammer wrote:
Sun Mar 04, 2018 9:27 pm
The biggest signature of a nuclear strike is the EMP as that can be detected from a long ways away, so EMP blasts are often treated as a potential nuclear strike with all of its ramifications. In order not to trigger nuclear defenses the emp device would have to be a much smaller devices and would require being closer to the target.
Depends on the circumstances of use, really. With ground bursts the major detection methods are seismic and overpressure. With airbursts below a certain altitude, the effect radius of the EMP will be less than the effects of flash, heat and radiation. It is only above certain altitudes that the EMP effect exceeds the damage zones. I believe that 50 km altitude is the optimum altitude for EMP effects.

Indeed, according to DNA-EM1 (http://www.survivorlibrary.com/library/ ... part_1.pdf), a ground burst only gives limited fields of 1600 V/m for a large groundburst, which are quickly absorbed due to the presence of an electrical earth. Get above 30 km, and you get fields generated in excess of 100,000 V/m. Chapters 7 and 8 are particularly useful.

But I agree that if you don't want to invite nuclear retaliation, then use a flux generator. No radiation, no heat flash, and minimal concussion effects.
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby Gentleman John » Mon Mar 05, 2018 6:23 pm

Although I'm sure they will paint it any colour you like!
Condottiere
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby Condottiere » Tue Mar 06, 2018 7:17 am

I wonder if you can coat it with some material that will multiply the effect?
baithammer
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Re: Fusion Powered aircraft

Postby baithammer » Tue Mar 06, 2018 12:33 pm

Talk to BAE about there adaptiv tech.

https://youtu.be/kxC3ecGVIgo?t=31

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