If we ever hope to become a true spacefaring society, we must wean ourselves away from chemical rockets. This premise will be proven through an examination of Tsiolkovsky's Rocket Equation where it will become apparent that adding fuel achieves diminishing returns, but increasing exhaust gas velocity offers rapid transits to Mars, the outer planets, and eventually the nearby stars. There is an upper limit to the exhaust gas velocity of chemical rockets. To improve on this we must revisit nuclear thermal rockets, and eventually, fusion rockets, and finally antimatter rockets. Each of these technologies is feasible although considerable engineering and infrastructure development remains to be done. This technological evolution will be presented in Fulsang's series of hard SciFi novels in the Galactican Series. This lecture will be delivered at the high school physics level.
Speaker: Ejner Fulsang
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