The visions of a few directors have stuck with NASA to an extent that NASA has recently invested in making them a reality including an interstellar thrust creator, a Martian farming kit and an artificial gravity lift for deep space travel. The space agency has also shown keen interests in funding 22 other projects that could help astronauts venture further into space than ever before.
Out of these new 22 projects, one is a fuel-free propulsion system. While conventional spacecrafts rely on ejection of propellant, the proposed thrust harness will generate thrust without using moving parts. This is termed as ‘mach effects’.
Heidi Fearn from the Space Studies Institute explained in a NASA blog that such kind of thrusters can pave the way deeper into space to Planet 9 or beyond. If we use the MET thrusterfor this project, it would take 20 or more years. This type of interstellar travel will help travel to the nearest planet on the outskirts of our solar system within 5-9 light years’ distance. Fearn added that the nearest exoplanet is around 14 light years’ away; more Earth-like planets are being discovered daily.
The concepts that have ignited in a mind somewhere and represented in the form of a movie, has got NASA in a box where they are contemplating the possibilities of these theories to maybe pan out well and provide answers to the Unknown. NASA is working towards designing these concepts into reality. Work has been initiated and maybe that figment of imagination could solve a part of the puzzle to build one final backdrop.
The engineers now have nine months and around $ 125,000 to flesh out their concepts before moving on to the next phase where they will invest $ 500,000 more. The engineer has even conceived of a star ship Enterprise-like craft that could be propelled by the thrust generators. We might get fuel-free thrust generators to ease these risky experiments.