NASA preps ‘100-year spaceship’ program to boldly go where none have gone before

  • Planetary travel “within few years”
  • Funded by DARPA, NASA
  • First stop – moons of Mars

October 21, 2010 – A SENIOR NASA official has promised to deliver a spaceship that will travel between alien worlds “within a few years”.
Speaking at a conference in San Francisco on Saturday, NASA Ames director Simon Worden said his division had started a project with Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency called the “Hundred Year Starship”.
The project was kicked off recently with $1 million funding from DARPA and $100K from NASA and hopes to utilise new propulsion ideas being explored by NASA.
Star Trek fans, prepare to get excited – electric propulsion is here, according to Mr Worden.
“Anybody that watches the (Star Trek) Enterprise, you know you don’t see huge plumes of fire,” he said.
“Within a few years we will see the first true prototype of a spaceship that will take us between worlds.”
Mr Worden said the space program was “now really aimed at settling other worlds”.
“You heard it here,” he told the crowd at the “Long Conversation”.
“Twenty years ago you had to whisper that in dark bars and get fired.”
Mr Worden said he hoped to “inveigle some billionaires” such as Google founder Larry Page to help with further funding for the project.
Another possible source of propulsion being funded by NASA was by using microwave power from a planetary base to heat hydrogen propellants on board an orbiting spaceship.

Read more:
Infinity and Beyond: NASA to Develop ‘100-Year-Starship’
Pete Worden, Director of NASA’s Ames Center, announces the establishment of a “100 Year Spaceship” program: a DARPA-funded project to develop spacecraft capable of traveling to points far beyond our own solar system.

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