Diamagnetic Cavity Shield For Spacecraft?
A spacecraft could be protected from radiation with a dipolelike magnetic field and plasma; it could surround a spacecraft like a ’mini magnetosphere.’ Reseachers in the UK, Portugal and Sweden announced the work in this month's Plasma Physics and Controlled Fusion.
Spacecraft venturing to the planets will need to be outfitted with some sort of protection against radiation like that associated with the solar wind, a low-density plasma that constantly flows outward from the sun.
(Diamagnetic cavity could protect spacecraft [pdf])
dHybrid simulation results showing the appearance of diamagnetic-like cavity... In particular, the characteristic
scale lengths of the transport barrier (apparent from the brighter regions of higher density) are well
matched with experiment...
Initial laboratory experiments seem to hold out the possibility that the solar wind could be deflected around an appropriately equipped spacecraft.
Visible light imaging of the system indicates that the plasma beam is deflected into a thin annular shell, the interior of which appears to be devoid of plasma...
Initial hybrid modelling of the system with the dHybrid code shows very good agreement with the experimental results, reproducing well the measured ‘stand-off’ distance and the overall spatial scale of the diamagnetic cavity. In addition the scale length of the transport barrier region is consistent with experimental results...
Force shields, also called deflector shields, have long been a science fiction staple. The general idea was described in such early works as E.E. 'Doc' Smith's 1934 Triplanetary; see the entry for protective shield. The general term shield for a protective energy barrier was probably first used by Smith.
The rise of special effects images in films has also given the public imagination much to work on; take a look at this depiction of a force shield from Star Trek: The Next Generation.
(Force shield protection against the Borg)
An early representation may be recalled by older fans; take a look at the Martian shield from the 1953 movie version of H.G. Well's 1898 novel The War of the Worlds.
(Martians protect themselves with shields in 1953 movie version)
See also the "Star Trek-like shield" picture in an earlier article Deflector Shields For Spacecraft?. From The interaction of a flowing plasma with a dipole magnetic field: measurements and modelling of a diamagnetic cavity relevant to spacecraft protection [pdf]; thanks to Moira for pointing this one out.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 11/6/2008)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion (Back On) ( 2 )
Related News Stories -
The Interplanetary Internet, Vint Cerf Speaking
'This was the center of Interplanetary Communications.'- George O. Smith, 1942.
30-Day Trip To Mars?
'The Federation Ship Champion... made the crossing under Lyle Drive in only nineteen days.'- Robert Heinlein, 1961.
The Atacama Large Millimeter Array - And Fred Hoyle
'Scientifically it would all make a lot more sense in Chile.'- Sir Fred Hoyle, 1973.
Students! NASA's Space Radiation Challenge Is On
'The rocket-water tanks - all around us... that saved us?'- John W. Campbell, 1936.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
MIT Robot Cheetah Video Shows Gait Transition
'The legs are long, curled way up to deliver power, like a cheetah's.'
TrackingPoint Smart Rifle
Not your typical 'smart bullet' approach.
'Hello, Computer!' Google Now Highlighted at IO13
Sky City's 220 Stories Are Go
'It rested among green parklands and... stood in total isolation, a glittering block of whites and flashing windows dotted with colors.'
CARMAT Bioprosthetic Total Human Heart Replacement
'George Walt's corporate existence proved the workability of wholly mechanical organs...'
Personal Sniffer Robots
'...The ticking combinations of the olfactory system of the hound.'
Physical Exam? We've Got Apps
See the future of handheld, personal medical devices.
The Interplanetary Internet, Vint Cerf Speaking
'This was the center of Interplanetary Communications.'
Drosophila Robotica, The Mechanical Fly
'... the Scarab [flying robot] buzzed into the great workroom as any intruding insect might...'
Robo-Raven Flapping Wing Robot Bird
'When he had first built them, they had been crude indeed, flying mechanisms with little more than a reflex-response unit.'
Japan's Nursing Home Robot Plan
Let's make the Roujin Z-0001 Robotic Bed!
Samsung Smart TVs With Gesture Control
'He waved his hand and the circuit switched abruptly.'
Swiss HCPVT Giant Photovoltaic 'Flower'
'...leaning against one of the slender stalks of a sunshade-photocell collector.'
Mini-Livers Made By 3D Printer
Organleggers may experience an employment downturn.
Smartphone Sensor System Tracks Gunfire
'Sound trackers on the roof could zero in on weapons action...'
Bacteria Now Make Biofuel Like Oil
'They have ... germs that eat pretty near anything, and produce oil as a waste product.'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories