An interesting new patent pending design for a photon thruster appears to be the real deal. Check out the article and who is behind it. (A fellow SRI alumnus!). Getting to Mars in a week means getting to the moon, as well as other nearby planets would be quite fast as well. This could be quite revolutionary.
Social tagging: Physics > Space > Travel
TUSTIN, Calif., Sept. 7, 2007 — An amplified photon thruster that
could potentially shorten the trip to Mars from six months to a week
has reportedly attracted the attention of aerospace agencies and
Young Bae, founder of the Bae Institute in
Tustin, Calif., first demonstrated his photonic laser thruster (PLT),
which he built with off-the-shelf components, in December.
This is an interesting development, but as cool as these high velocity, low mass, space drives sound with such amazing top speeds, the acceleration is extremely slow. This drive produces only 35 µN of force. At that, to get a 1kg craft up to just 360km/hr it would take 33 days! Granted they can do larger versions, but the very nature of these drives means that acceleration will alway be low. Most of the promise is in super long distances flights. Or high precision, low acceleration maneuvers.
Tribal Flight Size 13
Group size, Starting with 06.08.96- DJ Dazee MC Jakes Recorded Li