Ep. 507: From Fiction to Fact : Ion Drive

Ion engines are a mainstay of science fiction, featured in both Star Trek and Wars. But this is a very real technology, successfully used on several missions out there in the Solar System right now. How do they work and what are the limits?

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Show Notes

Ion thruster
Electrically powered spacecraft propulsion
Dawn Mission spacecraft
Dawn Mission
Ion drive meets drone, as small plane flies with no moving parts
Ionocraft
Air-breathing electric propulsion
Experimental Study of Air Breathing Ion Engine Using Laser Detonation Beam Source
This new ‘ion drive’ airplane flew straight out of science fiction

Transcript

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