EU sending mission to Moon via an Ion drive

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by Stelliform, Sep 26, 2003.

  1. Stelliform macrumors 68000


    Oct 21, 2002
    I thought this was interesting...

    Anybody know if the ion drive has been used before?

  2. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

    Nov 1, 2001
    Yeah, NASA has used it before. Newer technology for propulsion, but its also been around for well over a decade - used to adjust the orbits of large satellites....

    Cool though, about the Moon mission...

  3. wdlove macrumors P6


    Oct 20, 2002
    I wish the EU will on there mission to the Moon using the SMART-1. Glad to hear the someone is going to return to exploration of the Moon again. It has an advantage in cost. The disadvantage is time, that it will take over a year for the craft to reach the Moon!
  4. Vector macrumors 6502a


    Feb 13, 2002
    I wonder if the overall cost of the mission is still cheaper than it would be with a traditional powered craft. It seems, at least to me, that the costs of a 2 year mission would exceed the costs of a mission with a more expensive and quicker power source. Think of all the manpower required at mission control to make sure everything goes just right for such a long time.

    It would be a two year mission right? Assuming, as you said, that it takes a year or so to get there.

    What is the longest a person has ever stayed in zero gravity? I ask because two years seems like a long time without gravity even with excersizing to keep muscle mass.
  5. alphaone macrumors 6502

    Aug 12, 2003
    That seems kinda stupid. Ion drives take forever to accelerate. I believe they (the one on DS1 did) put out a force of like .012 Newtons. I don't know... Basically a little more than half the time you would be accelerating and the other half you would turn around and decelerate.

    Ion drives can get up to almost infinite speed though if you leave them going for long enough. DS1 is already almost as far away from the earth as Voyagers 1 and 2. DS1 has only been out there for a few years too.
  6. irmongoose macrumors 68030


    Dec 3, 2001
    Sometimes Tokyo, sometimes California
    At last someone is going back to the Moon. I hope they take some HD video cameras with them and release the footage as a DVD... I'll definitely buy it.


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