saddogmobile wrote:ANTIcarrot, <snip> Your numerous objections and negative feelings on everything are duly noted, and ignored.
This sounds more and more like pseudoscience
every time people like you express such sentiments. Polywell is a really neat idea, but really neat ideas (from Mr Bussard and/or nuclear energy in general) tend to come with hidden problems that the advocates dislike to acknowledge. What I've said to others I'll now say to you: Pretending that a problem you do not like does not exist does not help anyone; least of all yourself.
In the 50's and 60's the US government did more than a little research on nuclear powered Aircraft/spacecraft, they stoped due to two factors "Nuclear Pansies" and the nuclear "trident"
And also predictable factor C: Nuclear powered jet engines didn't work as well as people thought they would.
Trident won out against nuclear bombers because, in the given application of putting nukes on target half a world away (which is damned close to getting into orbit) nuclear technology could not compete with chemical technology
. Isn't that an interesting lesson? Nukes aren't always best. Well gee golly gosh, what an amazing surprise that is.
Project Pluto would have been the lasting deterrent.
was a neat idea, but it would never have been a lasting deterrent. Reasonably simple early ground and air based early warning radar would spot them. As would russian destroyers. Then they could have been shot down by reasonably conventional russian SAMs and AAMs.
the basic limit to any "way out there" idea is power supply,
Plus, you know, little things like material science, safety, reliability, scalability, cost, etc.
first thing to develop would be a suborbital spaceplane the marine's SUSTAIN would be a good candidate project, I wonder what carrier launch and recovery and a range of anywhere In the Hemisphere and back would do for force projection.
It's hardly a new concept. Back in the 60s Icarus was the same thing on a much larger scale, and with slightly better engineering. But the concept is still one of a large slow unmanouverable blind target sitting way up in the sky shouting KILL ME in infrared for minutes at a time. It could be done, but it's still skirting close to being a solution in need of a problem; given that US troops are already stationed five minutes from most major world trouble spots already.
Nuclear power also seems a poor choice for this application. Again the whole pesky radiation thing. Most marines want to have healthy kids at some point; good luck calling them
Some light reading material: Half Way To Anywhere, The Rocket Company, Space Technology, The High Fronter, Of Wolves And Men, Light On Shattered Water, The Ultimate Weapon, any Janes Guide, GURPS Bio-Tech, ALIENS Technical Manual, The God Delusion.