Electrostatic Lift Vehicle?

  • Thread starter x_engineer
  • Start date
44
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Except for railguns every space launch method we have (at least partially) built has been based on the rocket engine.

But with the Earth Moon system we have an opportunity to use another method.
Put a 6GeV ion beam accelerator on the Moon, and transfer 400000C of charge to the Earth.
This sets up an electrostatic field between the Earth and the Moon, that does not significantly change the force between them, but which you can use to propel a ship between them. The breakdown field of the Earth's atmosphere/ionosphere would prevent this being used
for a ship launching off Earth, but might be useful for ships launching off the Moon without using rockets.

But what would happen to the Earth's atmosphere? Would it transfer to the Moon?

Niket Patwardhan

BTW - 400000C is approximately the charge of the solid/liquid Earth with respect to the ionosphere...
 
Last edited:

256bits

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which you can use to propel a ship between them
Have you considered whether or not you have to put a charge on the space ship for this to work?
 

Vanadium 50

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Have you considered how long you are going to be able to keep the earth and moon charged?
 
44
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Have you considered whether or not you have to put a charge on the space ship for this to work?
Yes, the spaceship will have a charge.
The charge can be bled off to control the force on the ship.
 

berkeman

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The charge can be bled off to control the force on the ship.
Are there going to be doorknobs placed along the path between the Earth and the Moon to help with that? 😉
 
44
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There will be no need for any doorknobs or wiring or any material structure between the Earth and Moon.
 
44
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Have you considered how long you are going to be able to keep the earth and moon charged?
I guess this is part of the question I asked, because I foresee leakage through action on the charged ions in the atmosphere.
 

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