IanHoldsworth
Looks more promising than Project Orion https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Orion_(nuclear_propulsion)
windykites
What realistically is the point of sending men to Mars? Is there anything valuable there? Robots seem to doing a good job of exploring.
juanhollisDS4E
There is noway a space craft/ship can be propelled in space it has to be impelled i.e impulsion where the NTI Engine produces an energy pulse behind it that pushes the craft/ship forward, better yet is to develop EMGD (ELECTRO-MAGNETIC GENERATED DRIVE) so instead of moving thru space you make space move so a voyage to mars would take a mere sixy seconds!
EZ
I am convinced that the military, including NASA, already have anti-gravity technology and can extract electrons from the "Ether." They just don't want anybody to know it, so they keep the facade up that they still need to spend more money. I base this on what I've seen and what others have experienced. No BS. This is interesting.
Douglas Bennett Rogers
It is almost as if Mars were put there for human occupation. The .3 g gravity is much more suitable for the human form. The 50% insolation is more tolerable by humans. Space is much more accessible by rail gun or elevator. There is a huge supply of nitrogen in the outer solar system for terraforming. The absence of magnetic field is not as important as people think. Water appears to be fairly common. The land area is about the same as Earth.
Robert Bernal
About time someone takes nuclear propulsion seriously. It doesn't have to be just for manned missions, either, assuming that astronauts don't have to deal with nuclear engines, anyways. Low enriched is the key, as that should be good enough to ward off anti nuclear hysteria. Perhaps this new cermet tungsten fuel could work at home, should the molten salt reactor prove more cumbersome than the paper versions. The object here is not to go back to the Moon or, to Mars, just to set for and then leave. No, the object is to build a Dyson swarm complete with a few billion spinning space cities at least a few kilometers in diameter, and up to 5 thousand miles in diameter when graphene gets common. Unlimited clean energy and unlimited space around Earth and sun. That's the future (then we could afford to tinker with Mars)!
HoppyHopkins
Even with this low enriched Uranium fuel, the Nerva design was inefficient, which is why it was abandoned, not the risk problem of highly enriched Uranium. The more promising design was the Dumbo reactor with its more efficient thermal transfer design. But for deeper space exploration, variants of the Orion/Medusa Nuclear explosion impulse bomb system give enough velocity for interstellar voyages. However, the EM drive being tested and the reports of the Bose-Einstein gravitation negation experiments show promise of actual Faster Than Light drives on the horizon.
DomainRider
@HoppyHopkins - no, the Bose-Einstein condensate 'negative mass' experiment was referring to 'effective' mass, not fundamental mass. It's not some kind of anti-gravity or inertia-less breakthrough, it's just the way excitations in the condensate behave. The atoms in the condensate (and the BEC as a whole) still couple to the gravitational field like ordinary mass and have inertia.
Nygaard
Earth is becoming unlivable quick everyone to Mars its lovely there. Well just have to figure out how to "TeraForm" that isn't far off. But we could always just stay here and TeraForm Earth every few thousand years. We could hold a world wide vote on the theme for every reform! If the sky isn't falling we will lose funding (Theft of our tax dollars.)
PrometheusGoneWild.com
With the successful launch of a US aircraft carrier with electromagnetic launch capabilities, I am hoping NASA would figure out that with a rail system run up the side of a mountain, chemical rockets could be built much safer. The rail would expensive. But only one would be needed. An atomic engine would make more sense in space, where there would be little chance of nuclear contamination from an accident....