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"...science fiction is sort of like a sociological genome. It's a huge range of possible futures, most of them useless; some vital. You never really know in advance."
- Peter Watts

Magship  
  A ship that uses magnetic fields to catch the solar wind for propulsion.  

"Lieutenant," Jimmy turned on the younger pilot, "how should I angle the magnetic field against the solar wind to achieve an effect of negative solar gravity?"

"Not a clue," she said cheerfully.

"...that's my whole point," Jimmy insisted. "Nothing she knows about rockets would prepare her to run a magship any better than me. And I do know the software and the theory."

From Falling Stars, by Michael Flynn.
Published by Tor in 1998
Additional resources -

See the article on the magsail for more information.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Falling Stars
  More Ideas and Technology by Michael Flynn
  Tech news articles related to Falling Stars
  Tech news articles related to works by Michael Flynn

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  - New ESAIL Video: Deploy Tethers!

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