February 20, 2010

Mach Effect Propulsion Research Update

If the Mach Effect is real [mass fluctations) and behaves as theorized (with some experimental confirmation) by James Woodward and the effect scales up as expected then we can create propellentless space drive. It appears that the latest research work by James Woodward is validating the existence of the effect.

STAIf 2007- Mach-Lorentz Thruster (MLT)Applications presentation by Paul March.

An overview of the Mach Effect and interview with Paul March

All nextbigfuture articles related to Mach Effect Propulsion

1-G Space Drive

One-G constant acceleration and deceleration space drive would mean Earth-to-moon in 4 hours, Earth to Mars in 2-5 days, Earth to Saturn in 8-9 days.

The Woodward effect is a hypothesis proposed by James F. Woodward, a physicist at California State University, Fullerton, that energy-storing ions experience transient mass fluctuations when accelerated.

Paul March updates -
Dr. Woodward's work is based on NO new physics. His mass fluctuation conjecture rest squarely on accepted and experimentally verified theories such as Newton’s three laws of motion, Einstein's special and general relativity, Lorentz invariance, and of course Einstein's famous mass = Energy / c^2. And no, it's NOT E= m*c^2 for that version came later. The only element in Woodward's theoretical foundations still in dispute is how to integrate Mach's principle and its effects on the origins of inertia into GRT.

Now you want to know what Jim has produced of late in regards to his latest shuttler test program. I don’t want to steal Dr. Woodward’s thunder, but I’ll append a typical, but still very preliminary data plot for your review with the understanding that Dr. Woodward is still wringing out this new shuttler test set up looking for false positives that might contaminate this test series using this particular type of “soft” PZT material as the energy storage capacitor material. And as usual, using high-k cap dielectric materials makes the result time dependent and a tad flakey, so bear with Jim’s teething pains in bringing this new test article up to its full potential, but M-E potential it has.

Woodward's scaling rules appear to work given the ~100 nanoNewtons Jim's device is generating at 47kHz and the fact that the M-E predicts cubic frequency scaling, it fits right in with [Paul March's] results operating at 2.2 and 3.8 MHz. Jim needs to increasing his operating frequency by a couple of orders of magnitude to see some much more impressive results measured in milliNewtons

When Dr. Woodward gets his current M-E proof-of-principle "Demonstrator" finished with accompanying M-E data for all to review, the normal scientific process would require other independent scientist to replicate his results at their leisure. However that will take years to accomplish, so how can we jump start this process? IMO, having NASA allocate approximately $1.0-to-2.0 million per year for a 3-to-5 years laboratory R&D effort to see if Woodward's M-E work can be verified and then expanded to increase its per thruster output level from micro-Newtons to Newtons and then thousands of Newtons would be well worth the effort. Remember that if we can make this leap from M-E laboratory curiosity to working M-E thrusters, we will have equivalent specific impulse figures measured not in thousands or even tens or thousands of seconds, but trillions of seconds. We will also have a path to building GRT's traversable wormholes or Alcubierre's warp-bubbles needed for interstellar flight that will be measured in weeks to months instead of thousands of years. To me that would be tax dollars well spent no matter what the outcome of this R&D endeavor yields.

Paul March's
Mach-2MHz test article in a MINWAX Faraday shield used the same 500pF at 15kV, Y5U barium titanate caps that Jim was using at the time, but alas no vaccum system, it generated a first light thrust of ~5,000 micro-Newton running at 3.8 MHz. (See my STAIF-2006 paper and the attached related slides. I'm also attaching my MLT-2004 test article's typical 8-second data run's thermal evolution as they heated up for your reference.) I literally saw the Mah-2MHz's ~1,000 uN initial thrust level at 2.15 MHz die off into the noise over a ~1.0 minute run time with semi-constant, (I was looking at the thrust scope trace most of the time), cap voltage of ~125V-p and input power. It looks like the cap’s barium titanate’s crystalline structure is rearranging itself while its under constant load, which in turn probably kills off the piezoelectric induced radial bulk acceleration in the caps that magnifies the vxB Lorentz force in these MLTs.

BTW, these high-k cap based M-E test articles can be resurrected if one lets them rest for several days, or bakes them in an oven above their Curie temperature for an hour or two, then letting them cool down to room temperature. However, they never seem to last as long as they did originally. They typically demonstrate renewed run times to thrust die off on the order of 1/2 to 3/4 the time originally demonstrated when new. That may be great for telling the physicists that something weirdly physical is going on in these M-E tests, but it really sucks when it comes to making a reliable thruster needed for aerospace uses…

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