Broadcast 1214 (Special Edition)

28 Aug 2009 Dr. Leik Myrabo
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Guest: Dr. Leik Myrabo. Topics: Lightcraft, Beamed Energy Power, low cost space access. Dr. Leik Myrabo returned to The Space Show for this program to discuss beamed energy propulsion (BEP) as well as his new book recently published by Apogee, "Lightcraft Flight Handbook LTI-20." This book is available at http://www.amazon.com/dp/1926592034?tag=onegialeafou-20 . The book is co-authored by Dr. John Lewis. Your purchase through Amazon partners using the URL above helps The Space Show. During the first segment, we discussed the Lightcraft Technology Company and the basics of BEP. This led us to a discussion about possible weapons in space issues and Dr. Myrabo said that there would have to be international regimes and policy in order to regulate BEP and account for every joule of energy transmitted this way. You do not want to miss this discussion. Toward the end of this segment, Dr. Myrabo discussed the boost phase, the need for a sunbelt location and the beamed energy range at White Sands. In the second segment, Dr. Myrabo said that a million watts of energy was needed to lift one kilo off Earth. This is another discussion you will want to hear. We also talked about the costs of going commercial which he broke down as $10-20 million for Phase 1 and $50-60 million for Phase 2. Listen to his discussion for the full details on these costs. A listener asked him about scaling up BEP to do large scale projects. He responded that there were engineering challenges, but all of the challenges used today's physics, nothing futuristic, and that engineering challenges can be met. He cited some examples you will want to hear. I also asked him about his work with the U.S. Air Force and the Brazilian Air Force. Leik received listener questions about some of the futuristic human factors mentioned in the book and Dr. Myrabo pointed out that much of this came from student contributions as more than 200 students have worked on this project from 1992-96. In the third segment, we talked about crew safety for the Lightcraft vehicle in his book and possible methods to allow humans to sustain very high G loads. The subject of using purified water for cooling came up regarding the cooling required for the rectennas and the outside perimeter of the vehicle modeled in the book. One listener suggested lithium and this led us to a green discussion and a more technical exchange about rockets and the air breathing engine that Dr. Myrabo focuses on for his research and book. In the fourth segment, we continued the coolant discussion. I asked Dr. Myrabo about the feedback and reception his ideas receive at space conferences and elsewhere. His response was very interesting and you won't want to miss it. Toward the end of the program, I asked him about SUSTAIN. STEM education and inspiring students was a topic of discussion given the vast experience Dr. Myrabo brings to the table involving teaching graduate and undergraduate students. For more information, please visit his website, http://www.lightcrafttechnologies.com . If you have a comment or question for Dr. Leik Myrabo, email him through the website or at lmyrabo@lightcrafttechnologies.com .

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