Nuclear Energy – Stepping Stone for Future Space Exploration

A new era of space exploration is dawning through the application of nuclear energy! Everything from rovers on Mars and the Moon, power generation at future bases on the surfaces of both and soon for rockets that enable interplanetary travel, even nuclear propelled space crafts that can travel close to the speed of light!

There are many sceptics out there that believe that interstellar space travel is merely a fantasy. A sci-fi odyssey that can never happen.. Or can it.

Project Orion was a study of a spacecraft intended to be directly propelled by a series of explosions of atomic bombs behind the craft (Nuclear pulse propulsion). Early versions of this were proposed to have taken off from the ground with significant associated nuclear fallout.

A 1955 Los Alamos Laboratory document states (without offering references) that general proposals were first made by Stanislaw Ulam in 1946, and that preliminary calculations were made by F. Reines and Ulam in a Los Alamos memorandum dated 1947. The actual project, initiated in 1958, was led by Ted Taylor at General Atomics and physicist Freeman Dyson, who at Taylor’s request took a year away from the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, US to work on the project.

In my opinion, this was a monumental shift in the science of space travel. Similar projects have been theorized and the time of interstellar space travel is seemingly approaching.


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