posted by Kostas Konstantinidis on April 30, 2014

Enceladus, only about 500 km in diameter and once believed too small to be active, has been found one of the most geologically dynamic objects in the Solar System. An icy moon of Saturn, it is considered along with Jupiter’s Europa one of the prime targets for the search for life in the solar system....

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Icarus Kick-Sat in Space

posted by Pat Galea on April 23, 2014

  Back in 2011, Icarus Interstellar backed a Kickstarter program run by Zac Manchester to launch a number of tiny ‘sprite’ satellites into Earth orbit. Each sprite has a small bit of electronics, a battery, and an antenna. It broadcasts a flight code selected by the backer.   The sprites are contained within a cubesat,...

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A Plumber’s Guide to Starships Part 2: Gases in Pipes

posted by Michel Lamontagne on April 15, 2014

  In this section, we will mainly be looking at gases in pipes from the heat transfer point of view.  Although there are plenty of other reasons to move gases around in a starship, starting with fuel feed, for example, heat transfer covers the most complicated cases. The information will be applicable to simpler problems....

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Building Blocks for a Generation Ship

posted by Andreas Hein on April 2, 2014

Project Hyperion is working on the first ever design of a manned interstellar vessel. Recently, the team thought about how to leverage on existing heritage for the spacecraft’s subsystems. In particular, two major elements of a crewed spacecraft were of particular interest: the propulsion system and the habitat. A preliminary analysis has already been done...

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A Plumber’s Guide to Starships Part 1: Liquids

posted by Michel Lamontagne on March 21, 2014

Part 1 : Liquids in Pipes   Moving liquids around is hardly new technology – even if it’s in a starship. Pretty much all of the design tools were worked out in the eighteenth century, and the most recent developments – magnetic pumps for liquid metals – date back to the 1960s.  However, it is...

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Collaboration May Be Our First Step Toward the Stars.

posted by Jessica Riley on March 18, 2014

   Last week Icarus Interstellar announced that Les Johnson is stepping into a new position at Icarus as Chief Solar Sail Consultant. This new role presents opportunities for more communication and collaboration between Icarus, NASA, and the Tennessee Valley Interstellar Workshop, which Les is the Chair of. Les brings with him a wealth of experience...

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Introducing the Anchorage Makerspace | Icarus Interstellar’s Community Research Lab

posted by Andreas Tziolas on March 11, 2014

Makerspaces are community driven machine, electronics and creative arts shops where people pay a subscription to become members. Through November, Icarus members helped round up 25 Founders of the Anchorage Makerspace and opened up a shop in Midtown Anchorage. As the first mAKerspace in Alaska, the team is organizing workshops on 3d printing, welding, woodworking,...

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Adam Crowl

The Challenge of Relativistic Spaceflight

posted by Adam Crowl on March 3, 2014

Riding a Beam to the Stars   The stars are, at minimum, tens of thousands of times further away than the planets. Presently flights to the planets take a year or more, thus to reach the stars in years, rather than millennia, requires speeds tens of thousands of times faster – a large fraction of...

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Fueling Icarus

posted by Michel Lamontagne on March 3, 2014

  Icarus is to be a fusion powered starship.  To keep the ship’s mass within reasonable bounds, the fusion drive will have to be very powerful, transforming about 100 grams of fuel into 100 tonnes of thrust every second.  Just how powerful is that?  Well, the designs that emerged from the recent Icarus workshops vary...

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Why Bother Thinking About Something We Can’t Build Yet?

posted by Jessica Riley on February 20, 2014

  Icarus Interstellar Project XP4 Tackles Far Term Technologies Now.   Jeff Lee has recently been named Project Lead of the Icarus Interstellar X-Physics Propulsion & Power Project. XP4 focuses on potential far term technologies that utilize methods of engineering spacetime itself, some of which may present the possibility of faster-than-light-speed travel. XP4 projects are...

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