Tuesday, September 25, 2007

How 'Bout a Little Rocket Science?

Technology Review has an interview with Franklin Chang Diaz, the founder of Ad Astra Rocket Company. These guys are nearing a static test of a VASIMR propulsion system.

Coincidentally, I've been reading Centauri Dreams, which is an excellent summary of the various wild schemes people have thought up when envisioning an interstellar mission.

It's not a fun time in the United States right now. In addition to the war and the political situation and the sense of fragility that we're all experiencing, it's clear that everything is changing. I'm moderately optimistic that we'll come out the other side of these changes much better off than we went into them, but there are no guarantees. Meanwhile, it's nice to see that the art of dreaming big hasn't gone out of fashion. Serendipity is our friend. When we do hard things, good stuff happens, even if it isn't the good stuff we originally envisioned.

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