Earth to Mars in just 10 weeks! If it works. Which is a mighty big if.
First designed by British scientist Roger Shawyer back in 1999, the EM drive uses electromagnetic waves as fuel, and creates thrust by bouncing those microwaves back and forth within a metal cavity to trigger motion.
Newton’s Laws say engines need to push something to go. A car pushes against the ground, and a jet or rocket engine pushes out exhaust. But the EM drive is apparently exhaustless. Yet it’s survived a few tests.
However, new research from physicists at the COMSOL company, the University of Helsinki, and the University of Jyväskylä in Finland, suggests the EM drive produces exhaust after all. The theory is that the EM drive achieves compliance by emitting paired photos that are essentially invisible to detection.
[Fiona MacDonald/Science Alert]