Polywell Visions: Transprotation

If polywell fusion is developed, in what ways will the world change for better or worse? Discuss.

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cksantos
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Postby cksantos » Wed Jun 23, 2010 9:22 pm

That doesn't even include the 100-200 tons of polywell and weaponry, the said dreadnought would contain.

That said, three hindenburgs worth of volume in with a lifting body shape, could provide such a lift capacity.

Also armor for lasers may not consist of actual armor, but instead heating the surrounding atmosphere of the dreadnought causing distortions in the beam(perhaps even heating into a plasma state).

If you knew exactly where and when you were being hit you could fire particulates (water,dust, micro uav's) into the air as absorptive material.

Or if one dreadnought was being attacked, another could attack the aggressor.

GIThruster
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Postby GIThruster » Wed Jun 23, 2010 9:28 pm

. . .or for strike aircraft, you could build a real aircraft instead of a silly airship, just as everyone has known to do for about 100 years.

I'm grinning each time I post on this issue so don't get upset, but honestly, you have a really, Really, REALLY bad idea here.

:-)
"Courage is not just a virtue, but the form of every virtue at the testing point." C. S. Lewis

cksantos
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Postby cksantos » Wed Jun 23, 2010 9:50 pm

GIThruster wrote:. . .or for strike aircraft, you could build a real aircraft instead of a silly airship, just as everyone has known to do for about 100 years.

I'm grinning each time I post on this issue so don't get upset, but honestly, you have a really, Really, REALLY bad idea here.

:-)


I have been going into hysterical fits of laughter over these postings.

The thing is its not my idea. Its what USAF plans on doing, minus the polywell and cool weapons, but not the lasers and recon equipment.

http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/generic/ ... 0606p2.xml

I was just trying to make it worthwhile by adding some apocalyptic weapons and a polywell.

How realistic is it to put this on a strike aircraft when a polywell could weigh 25 to 100 tons.

Another justification for the soundness of the dreadnought idea is aircraft carriers. They are vulnerable to submarines, but do people take potshots at a multi billion dollar US carrier? Hell no! Its a vehicle of mental oppression. I think thats why the dreadnought name is very appropriate.

The mere idea of a dreadnought unleashing its maser, laser, railgun, hypersonic missiles, nukes, bunkerbusters, metal storm etc. is terrifying and assumes non-peacful development as the primary use of polywell.

I hope your 3rd world one time use only laser hits my super death blimp on the first shot.....

And what about the supercavitating polywell sub, is that just not cool enough to talk about?

On a somewhat more sane note, how about polywell on trains? It could provide mobile backup power nationwide(like nuke subs can) as well as powering the train itself.

ladajo
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Postby ladajo » Wed Jun 23, 2010 10:01 pm

CVN's are not that exposed to Submarines. There are very few countries with real enough submarines to give it a go, and even then they would have to get a little lucky for a shot. Even if they take the shot, CVN's are built to have a chance to survive it.
Speed rules in the Ship verses Sub game. Ships can go faster than subs during the engagement, add aircraft support, and you have a chance.
It is not as one sided as it seems on the surface.
Case in point, critics of BB's said they were easy victims to Anti-Ship Missiles. I say that's crap, BB's were the only ships we really had that were built to take a hit and keep fighting other than CVN's. CVN's are just as at risk as BB's were for missile hits. But BB's were built to absorb hits better. The real issue was propulsion systems operational costs. If they had spent the money upfront and retro'd them with a nuke plant or gas turbines, we would still be dropping 16inch rain on annoying people today. Oh well.

GIThruster
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Postby GIThruster » Wed Jun 23, 2010 10:07 pm

No one shoots at US aircraft carriers because the US has not been in a shooting war where that might happen since WWII. I promise, if we were to go to war with China, those carriers would be the prime targets for the largest Fast-Tac sub fleet in the world, owned by the Chinese.

The DPF approach is probably a better one for small aircraft but the MHD studies done show the Poly will work in aircraft too, ref. the link at the beginning of this thread and the various USAF studies done the last decade or so by Miley, Mead, Bussard, etc.

I only skimmed the link above but I didn't see anything about lasers or making blimps into attack craft. They're being considered for recon only because they can stay up for very long periods of time.
"Courage is not just a virtue, but the form of every virtue at the testing point." C. S. Lewis

ladajo
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Postby ladajo » Wed Jun 23, 2010 10:13 pm

The rules I stated apply the same. The Chinese would have to get a sub within the limiting lines of approach, and to do that, they would have to get VERY lucky.
even if they did, the CVN could more than likely absorb the hit (if it did).

GIThruster
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Postby GIThruster » Wed Jun 23, 2010 10:23 pm

True, and true, but of course, we would need to know more details of such a conflict and it is pretty distasteful to give it heavy consideration. Certainly though, it's fair to say a Ford class carrier cannot absorb a tactical nuke strike. Sub, air to surface missile, shore batteries, trained dolphins. . .doesn't matter. Aircraft carriers are only safe so long as we don't get into a conflict like WWII.

Peeps, just to say again, there is a reason we no longer trust to the main battle tank type strategy. Weapons have grown so quickly compared to armor that armor is a very bad idea. Far better is mobility, concealment and cover. If you can't make it hide or disappear, it's a prime target.
"Courage is not just a virtue, but the form of every virtue at the testing point." C. S. Lewis

93143
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Postby 93143 » Wed Jun 23, 2010 10:41 pm

cksantos wrote:How realistic is it to put this on a strike aircraft when a polywell could weigh 25 to 100 tons.


Depends what you mean by a strike aircraft.

[warning: handwaving ahead]

500-700 tonnes might get you a 6 GW power plant, including full shielding for the gamma rays, if you use really strong magnets and try really hard to limit the necessary physical size of the vacuum chamber (I believe power output actually goes up as the reactor gets smaller, if the superconductors are operated at an unchanging magnetic field limit, since the effective B field rises as the magrid shrinks...). Shadow shielding, with minimal 360x360 coverage to protect hardened equipment and minimize thermal effects, could perhaps cut that mass roughly in half, but logistically it might not be worth it. High-voltage superconducting motors driving ducted fans could obviate the need for massive amounts of power conversion equipment, while avoiding the inefficiencies inherent in the Brayton cycle. Assuming 100% engine efficiency, at an exhaust velocity of 300 m/s, 6 GW gives you more than 4000 tonnes of thrust. Even flying at Mach 3, and adding 300 m/s to the airstream, you still get 1500 tonnes of thrust. Of course, you won't get 100% efficiency, but if you want more thrust, just take the exhaust velocity down (you'll need bigger intakes...).

With appropriate engine and airframe design, this gives you a 3000-tonne VTOL capable of outspeeding the SR-71. While packing multiple free-electron lasers driven by the high-voltage power supply. Oh, and it can keep up either the hovering or the supersonic flight more or less indefinitely, limited only by fusion fuel supplies. Heck, it could probably carry several fighters, or a much larger number of combat UAVs, in an internal hangar...

Let's see a blimp match that.

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Postby MSimon » Wed Jun 23, 2010 11:41 pm

cksantos wrote:Is this 1st generation estimates or theoretical minimum weights. Or do we not know sh** and are making everything up.

What possible unforeseen development could enable tiny reactors, ie 1000T coils, nanotechnology composite structures, and other such hypothetical advancements could affect this estimate. What is the limiting factor (assuming we have any idea at all).


SWAG - i.e. ignorance abounds.

1000T coils would be nice. We await some new kind of SC material.

So far for SCs about 100T is the theoretical maximum (wire limit). With actual coils of a reasonable size (1 m say) coming in at around 10T. This has to do with temperature of operation and the wire magnetic field limit. i.e. the wire may be able to do 100T at aprox. 0 K but coils will run at higher temps and the field at the center of the bore will be considerably reduced from the field at the wire.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

KitemanSA
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Postby KitemanSA » Wed Jun 23, 2010 11:58 pm

Getting back to the tread TOPIC (transportation, not weaponry):

Seems plausible that every semi-large+ ship in the world would become Polywell electric. Azipods are becoming the norm and all that remains is to power them with a Polywell rather than some other X-generator (X= turbo, diesel, ...).

Seems plausible that the fuel requirements of the world could be met with CO2 +2H2O > CH4 + 2O2 ... which has been done for years, but not economically. With CH4 one can get to (CH2)nH2 with some ease if you REALLY want liquid fuel.

Thus, you have provided energy for all the sea going and ground and air going vehicles. Space vehicles have been covered ad-nauseum.

EoI.

cksantos
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Postby cksantos » Thu Jun 24, 2010 12:20 am

KitemanSA wrote:Seems plausible that every semi-large+ ship in the world would become Polywell electric. Azipods are becoming the norm and all that remains is to power them with a Polywell rather than some other X-generator (X= turbo, diesel, ...).


Seems like an easy conversion since your drive train is electric, ala azipods.

KitemanSA wrote:Seems plausible that the fuel requirements of the world could be met with CO2 +2H2O > CH4 + 2O2 ... which has been done for years, but not economically. With CH4 one can get to (CH2)nH2 with some ease if you REALLY want liquid fuel.


H2O to H2 and O2 would also be plausible as well if you can deal with gaseous fuel.

KitemanSA wrote:Thus, you have provided energy for all the sea going and ground and air going vehicles. Space vehicles have been covered ad-nauseum.


ill give you sea without argument. without maintaining the liquid fuel infrastructure how can you do ground? It seems only trains would have the payload capacities. Air seems to be on the threshold of "too big to be practical", especially with the municipal airport point to point travel ie jetblue.(VS hub architecture)

hanelyp
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Postby hanelyp » Thu Jun 24, 2010 4:21 am

MirariNefas wrote:
Regarding laser weaponry, if I were expecting someone to use it against me I might surround likely targets with corner cube retro-reflectors.


I thought the whole mirror as armor against lasers things was a myth? High powered lasers would heat up the dust and gasses around the mirror enough to warp its optical properties and quickly overcome reflectivity, or something like that.

The point being to direct the greater portion of the laser energy back at the laser or surrounding equipment. The laser is already facing a problem of disposing of more heat than the light it's directing at the target.

If air between the laser and target is getting heated to the point of diffusing the laser, the reflected light may not get to the laser, but it would enhance the atmospheric distortion, further shielding the target.

93143
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Postby 93143 » Thu Jun 24, 2010 4:55 am

cksantos wrote:
KitemanSA wrote:Thus, you have provided energy for all the sea going and ground and air going vehicles. Space vehicles have been covered ad-nauseum.
ill give you sea without argument. without maintaining the liquid fuel infrastructure how can you do ground? It seems only trains would have the payload capacities. Air seems to be on the threshold of "too big to be practical", especially with the municipal airport point to point travel ie jetblue.(VS hub architecture)


Sounds like you missed the part where you can make liquid fuels out of methane (this technology currently exists, though it could doubtless be improved), which you make out of carbon dioxide and water on an industrial scale using Polywell power.

No one said you had to dismantle the liquid fuel infrastructure... it just becomes "carbon-neutral" and dependent on a much less localized and (except for the fusion fuel) completely renewable resource...

DeltaV
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Postby DeltaV » Thu Jun 24, 2010 7:57 am

93143 wrote:With appropriate engine and airframe design, this gives you a 3000-tonne VTOL capable of outspeeding the SR-71.

Hopefully, Polywell air-space vehicle mass/volume can be reduced by (speculation) integrating radiation shielding (foamed tungsten with gadolinium- and boron-doped polymer cell-filler plus optimized layers of other materials) with direct-conversion structure (metal-ceramic composite) with vacuum chamber, propulsion ducting/impeller, thrust load, crew compartment, aeroshell and thermal protection structures (boron nanotube, graphene and metal-ceramic composites) to the point where a Polywell SSTO VTOL will fit in my garage, or at least in my back yard, without sinking towards China. Seriously. I want my own space hopper.

93143
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Postby 93143 » Thu Jun 24, 2010 4:29 pm

Well, I suppose the vehicle doesn't necessarily have to be quite that heavy...

What you're talking about might be plausible with large advances in magnet technology combined with x- and gamma ray optics to reduce the radiation shielding requirements. I'm sure there are other technological hurdles to jump over in order to get a 25-tonne 1 GW power plant, and you'd still have to be fairly rich to afford a vehicle based on it...


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