Energy gun system as space propulsion system?

Aug 14, 2020
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I just read an article on the U. S. navy's development of "SEWIP block 3" unlimited energy bullet ammo energy gun system. Now I'm shooting completely in the blind on the physics involved, but my question is: Could such an unlimited energy bullet ammo energy gun system -- as described in that article and named here, or anything very like it scaled up in number, or size, or power, or all together, double as a continuously powered in-space space propulsion system? The article did not go deeply at all into the system or physics, of course, but I immediately wondered if there might be duality of use to such a system or the physics of it, whatever.
 
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Nov 19, 2021
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I read some of what is available on SEWIP Block 3. By "unlimited energy" they mean an energy beam with an "unlimited amount of bullets" as opposed to guns with projectiles, not an "unlimited amount of energy in each pulse". They system is comprised of sensitive receivers that can sense enemy radar before the radar detects the ship. It can then jam the radar. When missiles head towards the ship, the SEWIP can aim numerous "pencil beams" of RF energy that disrupt the electronics of the missile causing it to destroy itself.
The system is no more than a powerful emitter of electromagnetic energy. The formula for converting such energy to thrust is F=P/c.
Force is in newtons (about 100 grams)
P is in watts
c is the speed of light.
To produce a useful amount of thrust (SpaceX rocket has 20 million pounds) you would need about 1300 times the amount of electrical energy the world produces.
 
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Thanks to billslugg for the above explanation as to how 'SEWIP block 3' works.

So, we are back to the recoil physics of mass energy mass matter loss systems that cannot be sustained for a continuous boost space drive. Still, there must be such recoilless capability somewhere, somehow. Even one that possibly uses the space environment, the "fabric of space," itself for continuous boost. Possibly a system that develops directed sonic-like vibrations, or string-like vibrations, or quantum-like fluctuations, or gravitation-like waves, for continuous powering. Of course, these latter would be entirely internal power systems powering to the external environment. I'd prefer the existence of the first system and a finding of a way to use the energies of the cosmos itself for all continuous boost-accelerative drive through it (with possibly an all-internal power system of some kind or other being there only to be the first stage initiator of the second stage system that would take a handover, a relay).

There is awesome energy in the universe itself. In the not-too-distant future I think we will discover a way to access it for use. There should be a way to use it for a continuous drive through it. Little of what we have today was even thought possible just two hundred or so years ago.
 
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If you could accelerate a mass without a recoil mass, momentum would not be conserved. Conservation of momentum is right up there with conservation of angular momentum, mass/energy, charge, baryons and leptons. In order to violate those laws, there would have to be variation in things that are invariant, such as reversal of time or travel faster than the speed of light. They are what defines our universe. Our universe functions as observed only because such invariances are true. Find a counterexample and, unavoidably, our universe would cease to exist.

And yes, zero point energy is there but it is not accessible since there is no lower energy region for it to move to. It is like having a thermos full of coffee all at the same temperature. Inside the thermos no work can be done since all locations are at the same temperature. There is no 'sink' for energy to flow to. It is the flow of energy that produces work. Work is required in order to move a spacecraft.
 
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If you could accelerate a mass without a recoil mass, momentum would not be conserved. Conservation of momentum is right up there with conservation of angular momentum, mass/energy, charge, baryons and leptons. In order to violate those laws, there would have to be variation in things that are invariant, such as reversal of time or travel faster than the speed of light. They are what defines our universe. Our universe functions as observed only because such invariances are true. Find a counterexample and, unavoidably, our universe would cease to exist.

And yes, zero point energy is there but it is not accessible since there is no lower energy region for it to move to. It is like having a thermos full of coffee all at the same temperature. Inside the thermos no work can be done since all locations are at the same temperature. There is no 'sink' for energy to flow to. It is the flow of energy that produces work. Work is required in order to move a spacecraft.
You are locked solid into the narrow range of everything, but everything, being relative to Einstein's observer standing still by the railroad tracks watching trains go by, else watching apples fall from trees and looking through his telescope. One already existing obvious "counterexample" is quantum mechanics which obviously does not function as observed (according to classic and relativity physics). The open systemic universe "at a distance," the probably unified universe, is nothing like the foreground, closed systemic, universe you seem to think the entire universe is tied to. I am of the belief that we are going to find it a very different universe out there when and if we get out there than the one you appear locked into here in the cave of Earth. There are going to be physics to it you know nothing of, physics even someone like me, and geniuses like Stephen Hawking when he was alive, only imagine or envision. It's going to be a vastly different world and universe . . . and physics.

"Reversal of time" is an observation a traveler of the universe always observes to his rear. Stealing your own example, it is why he, the traveler, would see Sol and Earth 4.27 light years away to his rear as he approaches Proxima Centauri by way of speeding, accelerating, up in the future of Proxima Centauri on the way. Always, always, by way of speeding, accelerating, up in the futures of his destinations on the way to them (from their past (-) to t=0). That he will observe his departure points in "reversal of time" is the exact recoil in time of that same speeding, accelerating, up in the future to the fore. The difference will always be his onboard clock time. The Earth-bound observer will never observe his arrival, no matter if it took him 5 days or 50 years according to his onboard clock, until 4.27 years have passed plus that traveler's onboard clock time, In other words, if it takes him 50 years to make his voyage, the Earth observer, relativity speaking (sic), would measure the crossing of space to have taken the traveler 54,27 years of time. The Earth observer would, if he could, observe the traveler to have aged only 50 years in that observed time of 54.27 years for the voyage. If it takes only 5 days per the traveler's onboard clock, that would be 4.27 years and 5 days observed by the Earth observer for a voyage of 4.27 light years (thus a travel 5 days in time less than the speed of light, slower than the speed of light . . . observed), and an observation that the traveler had only aged 5 days, that the clock had only advanced in time 5 days, in 4.27 years and 5 days of observation (if it were at all possible). Yet the traveler at Proxima Centauri observes an Earth and Sol in the distance that by relative observation would exist a little before his four years old child, four years old when he left Earth, was born. He traveled swiftly, very swiftly, into a future (+) in one direction, and recoiled, rebounded, just as swiftly, exactly as swiftly, into a past (-) in the opposite direction.

I, who have read, studied and thought on history, on change, and a future of yet more change, virtually all my life, already have children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, and still hope to see a beginning of yet another generation of my family, look forward to a great new outbound frontier of opening, a new frontier of universe and of physics for them. To me, seeing you naysay even possibilities, and providing meaningless closed systemic foreground-local proofs, too bad you don't, or can't see what we see. From your dead-slow and slower inertial universe life will be advancing into a lightning-fast almost inertialess, if not completely inertialess, universe. The unobserved universe. The unobservable universe (t=0) to the Earth-bound observer (t=0). The one, the many, always out front (t=0), to infinitely out front (t=0), of the speed of light. Macrocosmic, as well as microcosmic, distances essentially "quantum entangled" (t=0). The only frontiers (t=0), the only universes (t=0), that travelers (t=0) ever travel out into (the less, and ever less, relative, to non-relative, universes always out front of, always reaching beyond, the speed of light). Red and blue shifts of light help prove that . . . the distances, to vastness of distances, between realities (t=0) (plural) and relativity (singular). So does the principle of uncertainty; the principle of ever-growing uncertainty, prove it.
 
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Right, you can slow down time and you can speed up time. But you can't make time go backwards in our universe. You can look at the present and you can look at the past but you can't look at the future. Maybe in some other universe but not in this one.
 
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We are locked into current physics because the universe and its physics demand that. If something is possible because there is physics we are not aware of, we need to discover it. If something that violates current physics we need to discover why and how it really does fit into current physics (the calculated age of globular clusters a few years ago comes to mind). If it really does not fit into current physics, we need to discover how to add that to our knowledge. But, we can't think in terms of physics we don't know about beyond conjecture, there is no math and data to support it.
Yeah, we can imagine faster than light travel, or using photons to propel us, but, nothing allows that at this time, and we can't talk about it because we have no good data to back that up.
I suspect that conservation of mass-energy will always be with us.
 
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Right, you can slow down time and you can speed up time. But you can't make time go backwards in our universe. You can look at the present and you can look at the past but you can't look at the future. Maybe in some other universe but not in this one.
We do it all the time regarding the unobservable and observable universes; two very different dimensions of universe. Where do you think the observable horizon of origin is for anything that moves? To the distantly fore and rear of anything that moves. The unobservable universe of destination futures (+) is to the fore of anything that moves . . . from out of that horizon of origin. Ascend, accelerate, into the unobservable universe toward destinations, toward destinations' futures (+), and see departure points descend in time, descending into pasts (-) toward mergers with that distantly observable horizon of origin. Usually not far toward it, as in crossing a nearby street leaving some departure point, but departure points always going away [toward] that distantly constant horizon of origin. The farther, faster, the ascent in futures (+) to unobservable destinations oncoming to foregrounds from out of the horizon, the farther, faster, departure points are observed to descend into time pasts (-), descending into graduating background mergers always pointing toward eventual merger with that distantly observable constant horizon of origin. The balance wheels of pasts (-) - futures (+) always turning, always preserving the balance. I would advise getting a sense of direction. Not in some other universe but in this one.
 
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I have mass. I pick up a good size and mass of brick on the surface of the Earth and throw it. I cannot throw it very fast, thus very far, at all. I have the same mass on the surface of Mars, and so does the brick. On the surface of Mars in the same amount of time, I could throw that brick much faster, much farther, than on the surface of Earth. Same masses, same time, same force (same lever), different gravity, different result. On the surface of the Moon in the same amount of time, I could throw that brick much faster, much farther, than on the surface of Mars.

Same masses, same laws, but a more, and more, permissive environment.

There is positive (+) inertia and a relativistically dead-slow, and slower, universe (or planes to the universe). There is inertialessness (0). And there is negative (-) inertia and a lightning-fast, and faster, universe (or planes to the universe).

The speed of light is measured the same at all velocities. Some say there is no center to an infinite universe (or infinity of universes). Others, such as me, say every point of an infinite universe (of an infinity of universes), is the dead center point of the infinite (of the infinity). Thus, the speed of light will measure the same at all points of every point's surrounding, englobing, compass . . . as if there were no animation, no other velocity, no other momentum, no other movement, to or in the universe. The superposition being that the entire universe, and the entirety of universes, other than the given center point, is in motion.

There are three other laws to Newton's three, as I see them:
1.) States that no object remains at rest, or moves straight with any constant velocity, unless acted upon by an external force ("Newton's first law is valid only in an inertial reference frame").
2.) A body acted upon by a force moves in such a manner that the time rate of change of momentum does not equal the force exactly the same for all environments. The same force applied in differing environments has differing momentums, thus differing time rates of change.
3.) If you know an object's position in space-time -- ever more precisely, you know its momentum in space-time -- ever less precisely. If you know the object's momentum in space-time -- ever more precisely, you know its position in space-time -- ever less precisely. It's accelerated somewhere beyond where, and when, per the speed of light, it's observed and measured to be. Closely beyond, or far beyond.
 

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Thanks to billslugg for the above explanation as to how 'SEWIP block 3' works.

So, we are back to the recoil physics of mass energy mass matter loss systems that cannot be sustained for a continuous boost space drive. Still, there must be such recoilless capability somewhere, somehow. Even one that possibly uses the space environment, the "fabric of space," itself for continuous boost. Possibly a system that develops directed sonic-like vibrations, or string-like vibrations, or quantum-like fluctuations, or gravitation-like waves, for continuous powering. Of course, these latter would be entirely internal power systems powering to the external environment. I'd prefer the existence of the first system and a finding of a way to use the energies of the cosmos itself for all continuous boost-accelerative drive through it (with possibly an all-internal power system of some kind or other being there only to be the first stage initiator of the second stage system that would take a handover, a relay).

There is awesome energy in the universe itself. In the not-too-distant future I think we will discover a way to access it for use. There should be a way to use it for a continuous drive through it. Little of what we have today was even thought possible just two hundred or so years ago.
You are using the word "think" in a very inappropriate way. Maybe you should just say you think you can fly to the stars by finding fairies and phantoms to push your ships there. Or think you just wiggle your nose like Samantha Stevens and they will teleport there.
 

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