Spaceship Design Factors

Ship layout for Interstellar Flight
For a more detailed image of Power distribution


Variations on a Theme

The chronology and repeated re-introduction of BEP right across the world in the distant past leaves little to no doubt the technology was introduced by an alien race visiting Earth from space. Whether this can ever be fully proven is doubtful but whoever they were and wherever they came from, the evidence left behind shows they had extremely advanced technologies that included flying machines with both global and space potential.

With the rapid advances in our modern technology, it's now possible to piece together even more and show how it all fits together with the myths and legends of our past. My videos show just how closely the ancient stories tie in with what science has now established about the physical realities in this regard. To top

Although not primary evidence, the eye witness accounts of ancient records are particularly revealing as they describe (in extraordinary detail) quite peculiar events that once seemed entirely irrational, until our knowledge of space navigation techniques caught up. It is now becoming possible to show how the artefacts, events and legends of our past precisely match this new-found knowledge and history is at last starting to make sense as a single co-ordinated whole

The basic premise of this reconstruction assumes that the technology of the Ancients was developed around the steady, progressive development of certain basic principles, associated in various ways with Beamed Energy Technology. Evidence from the pyramids was particularly significant in defining the various ways in which the energy was controlled.

If our visitors came from space, then they must have had a techological solution to space travel and it seems reasonable to assume their technolgy consistently used BE technolgy, similar to that already revealed. The technology used to reach the planet's surface was probably a variation of the techniques used by Interstellar ships, varying only in a matter of scale and the specific energy source being utilised

As an exercise in what the future might hold, I have attempted to extrapolate on what the systems and techniques might be for a craft approaching a solar system on a visit from space. Videos 6 and 7 explore some of these options and show how the ancient stories tie in with what we now know about space flight.

I have based my predictions on the principle that only the source of the energy changes whether the craft is flying in earth's atmosphere or across the vast distances of interstellar space. Nuclear power would seem the obvious source of power between the stars but in orbit around a planet, other options would inevitably come into play to power craft visiting a planet's surface. This is a look at some of those options. To top

Design Considerations

NASAs Lightcraft
The first (model) aircraft to fly on beamed energy
(taken from LTI web site)

Artist Impression of laser-powered craft
(From web site of Robert H. Frisbee,
chief researcher at NASA's JPL
Advanced Propulsion Concepts program.(APC))

Visionary BEP passenger Lightcraft
The Visionary proposal by Leik Myrabo,
developer of the Lightcraft

The pictures on the right show just three of the main concepts under consideration by NASA for launch vehicle propulsion. Only the tiny Lightcraft has actually flown but they all focus on the two basic considerations, the energy required and the means of collecting and controlling that energy for flight.

The design of the ultimate craft, basically a space shuttle, must include provision for creating sufficient thrust beneath it for all applications, irrespective of where the energy came from, above or below. This must include some ability to collect energy from different quarters for making basic manoeuvers. To top

Many of the proposals previously suggested appear impractical because they fail to resolve a variety of problems, most commonly those associated with delivering enormous quantities of energy (at high E/D) through air without causing a premature explosion. However, there is also the secondary problem of the very real risk to people and even facilities on the ground from a beam of such high intensity.

Logic suggests that energy beams cannot be transmitted through air at very high energy/densities without some risk of causing precisely the same effect as seen in a lightning strike. This quite possibly precludes the use of high-energy lasers, especially in marginal conditions of high static charge, when lightning is most likely to occur.

For these two reasons, the scenes depicting lasers or microwaves being delivered directly to a craft from above seem entirely unlikely. This applies whether the beam comes from LEO or GEO. To top

A laser can certainly transmit power at extremely high E/D but this apparent advantage can only be fully utilised in space. With high E/D's, the likelihood of a highly dangerous, premature explosion of air around the craft is simply too high. However, there is another far more practical solution and it comes, perhaps predictably, from the pyramids.

High E/D is the very basis of BE Propulsion but the premature explosive ionisation of air is a very basic problem that must be totally engineered out. Whether it is electricity (as seen naturally in lightning), lasers, microwaves, x-rays or sunlight, the passage of energy must only be used in a highly concentrated form out in space or in strictly controlled conditions where unwanted explosions are unable to occur. To top

To avoid potentially catastrophic pre ignition, any high concentration of energy must be limited to the aircraft's combustion area and/or to the confines of a wave guide channel that is (at least partially) evacuated.

The solution is totally basic to the evidence seen at Giza and at Teotihuacan where wave guide passages and channels have been found, sealed with stone covers.

Discovered in 1872, thick stone tiles completely sealed what have since been described as 'air shafts', in the Kings and Queens chambers of the Great Pyramid. It seems eminently more likely these 4 narrow passages were microwave guide channels. To top

Microwave amplification or frequency tuning are two possibilities that suggest themselves rather strongly. Perhaps an experts in electronics will be able to resolve the issue but testing whether the cover panels were microwave-transparent should be relatively easy to do. If they are, it would provide significant corroboration for my theory.

It might seem extremely presumptuous trying to predict this level of detail in systems 1000 - 5000 years old but they are totally predictable elements of BE transmission and propulsion systems and basic craft design. To top

Factoring in Essential Features

Once a craft has lifted through the atmosphere and turns to head toward its destination, it must align to a different source of energy. That energy could come from a supply suitably angled to the line of flight from below but it seems far more likely, when operating into Earth orbit, that the required energy will be transmitted down from above.

In space, once a craft is beyond the effects of atmospheric drag it would be able to unfurl a light-weight, forward-facing collector to receive microwaves (or a laser beam) from above. Logically, in the case of microwaves, these would then be channelled through the centre of the craft to the thrust units at the rear. This essential requirement firmly defines a number of features within the craft's design. To top

Once the essential requirement of having a microwave duct passing through the centre of the craft is realised, it also becomes obvious that such a channel could be used in both directions, depending on circumstances.

During liftoff, microwave energy is (obviously) available beneath the craft at very high E/D. By channelling some of that energy up through an (evacuated) wave-guide, it can be used to create an Airspike above the craft. This channelling is a highly significant benefit since it allows the microwaves to be finely controlled to produce an airspike of the most suitable focal length. To top

During launch, the majority of the energy would come from below but in space it may only be available from (the destination?) above, making it essential that these craft are able to collect and effectively use energy beamed from either source. There are a number of entirely predictable combinations in collector design that would be needed to accommodate these various situations.

During re-entr the opposite would apply with energy from above being directed in the opposite direction, down through the craft to be used beneath it, to slow it down (See 1,(Launch Elevation), and 2,(Space Deployment)

[The schematic elevations shown in my book, "Solar Power & Pyramids" give the most significant combinations, demonstrating the dual use of the central wave guide for channeling energy either up or down through the craft, depending on circumstance. This can best be seen in a highlighted version of von Daniken's now famous of Palenque spaceman. The variations in what is described as the 'Tree of Life' seems a quite appropriate description for the wave guide, as described above. ] To top


The initial vertical launch from the ground to space requires the greatest thrust and thereby sets the ultimate limits of this technology. Once in space, different problems arise but none is anywhere near the same order of magnitude.

Designing a craft to reliably and repeatedly survive the journey to and from orbit must be the ultimate challenge of this (plasma) technology. Launching from the ground at the bottom of Earth's gravity well, brings a whole new meaning to "starting at the bottom and working up".

Beamed energy or (more accurately) Ionising Propulsion (IP) systems, have already established an enviable record in space applications, where they have been developed to supply maximum reliable power from the absolute minimum amount of fuel mass. At present they are used in manoeuvering systems, space tugs and deep space probes.

To date, these highly successful IP systems have always been powered by (microwave) electricity supplied by a combination of onboard solar panels and batteries but their conversion to a remote source of energy is seen as no more than a minor technicality. To top

The basic fuel efficiency (or fuel mass/thrust efficiency) of these so-called "electric" thrusters is commonly many times greater than that of conventional rockets, up to 10x greater in the case of the DeepSpaceOne (DS1) cometary space probe (that was) fueled by the exotic, rare earth gas, Xenon.

To date, electric thrusters have developed their minimal (or fractional) thrust from onboard power supplies but, because of their technical simplicity no theoretically limit is set to their being scaled up and converted to use remote power, especially microwaves.

As history now records, beamed energy technology (BET) has been fully proven as capable of lifting a craft from the ground but it was done using laser power, not microwaves. The reason for this is primarily that lasers have a very high energy-density and are well suited to small scale, experimental applications, where the finite control available with lasers provides a special advantage. To top

However, when all other factors are taken into consideration, masers (the frequency-tuned form of microwaves) would appear to be a far more practical source of beamed energy for the majority of applications. Ultimately, although the infrastructure has yet to be developed, this energy will come from space. However, as the first stage, we must develop (beamed) energy systems on the ground, capable of lifting larger, basic BEP aircraft.

In considering just the simplest of flight applications (ie those limited to earth's atmosphere), the very first test flights of NASA's tiny model Lightcraft (5th November 1997) have totally proved the basic principles.

Beamed Energy Technology is now fully proven as being fully capable of powering flight from the ground fueled only by the air collected en route. To top

Beam Range

A maser beam transmitted from GEO will create a primary footprint at the ground around 250m in diameter, far larger than any aircraft or space shuttle, nevertheless the major portion of the beam can still be effectively utilised if it is reflected by suitably-placed mirrors. This was the basic purpose of the (stepped) pyramids and the collector fields that surrounded them, as discussed elsewhere.

The mirrors and/or other energy supplies focused upwards from the ground will provide the majority of the lift through the atmosphere. Ultimately this energy may be supplied indirectly from a Space Solar Power Satellite (SSPS)

A craft centred within a vertical beam (directed downwards from space) can utilise the energy received directly from above and also that reflected from the ground. And it can do at maximum E/D, without the need of complex delivery systems.To top

(Leik Myrabo has proposed that power from space could be used to provide enough lift to launch a basic craft, assuming only that the E/D is sufficiently high. Logic, and the historical evidence, both suggest this situation applied in the distant past but only in very special circumstances). To top

Under normal operation, the craft would then lift vertically so as to remain within the energy beam and thus receive maximum power from both the launch site and from space. It may be possible to redirect the primary beam but only in a very limited way.

With the first stage of lift-off completed and the craft at sub-orbital speed, it would then turn toward its objective. The energy for the next (lateral) stage of flight should now come either from ahead or behind, somewhere preferably within direct line-of-sight of the craft's central axis.

At or near the equator, a vertical lift is of course ideal for reaching a SSPS in GEO, directly overhead. However, all other destinations involve some lateral (horizontal) component of thrust to push the craft in the appropriate direction. This energy must also be carried on board or collected somehow by the craft from some suitably-situated, remote energy source.

After such a sub-orbital hop, another energy source (also suitably-placed) will be needed beyond the craft's destination to reduce the craft's speed prior to re-entry, to allow a safe return into Earth's atmosphere.

Once its speed is suitably reduced, the craft can re-enter the atmosphere and then glide to a landing site up to 1000km away. To top

Impressive Range & Efficiency

The Lightcraft technology is being developed primarily as a more efficient space launch system but although the record flight is so far only around 90m, it has most ably demonstrated that beamed energy could launch an aircraft to the top of earth's atmosphere.

Further, it is only logical to assume that this frisbee-like craft with a spinning rim would have a better-than-average glide ratio, (probably well in excess of 30:1) and that it would also have quite extraordinary stability. To top

Theoretically, a basic Lightcraft with no engine or fuel, could receive 20 seconds of power from an energy beam, accelerate at 3 g's to reach 6000m (20,000ft) altitude and then fly at speeds in excess of 300kmh with a range of 180km or more. Alternatively, with little change in basic design, a small surveillance craft could loiter at high altitude for hours or even days using minimal energy.

If the energy beam was generated from solar energy, the flight would cause little if any air pollution and yet, after 5 years, there appears to be very little serious money being spent in this research. Despite the irrationality of the situation, the opponents of BEP consistently raise the issue of the immense temperatures involved. However, although indisputably significant, the high temperatures are not beyond control. To top

It is well acknowledged (and entirely accepted) that the temperatures required for BEP are very high indeed. At 4000oK - 30,000oK, they are quite literally hot enough to melt any material known to man. However, these temperatures (and pressures) are only a tiny fraction of those faced by fusion reactors, a closely related area of research attracting major funding on a scale almost beyond belief.

With associated technologies, Beamed Energy Propulsion should be considered a major (and arguably the primary) contender in the race to develop a viable alternative source of energy that could ultimately save our climate and our civilisation.

In contrast, after 40 years of research and literally billions of dollars expenditure, the developers of fusion power are no closer now than they were 40 years ago in developing the technology to manage and contain temperatures and pressures* at least 30x greater than those anticipated in developing BEP.(*ie <1,000,000K and 1000 atmospheres, respectively).

With no guarantees in sight, fusion researchers admit it will be at least another 40 years before they can hope to develop a viable technology. Even if successful, that would be 30 years too late. We need a viable technology NOW and it is available with beamed energy. It may not class as a wonderful "Toy for the Boys" but beamed energy clearly has the potential and capacity to provide an entirely proven and practical solution. To top

It is obvious that the extreme temperatures will still be a major issue when it comes to launching into space, but flights that remain within earth's breathable atmosphere would already seem to be well within our capability.

At an entirely survivable 3g's acceleration, a boost to 6000m would take less than 20 seconds, less than twice the initial flights of the model Lightcraft, a model with no cooling system at all. The flight record stands at ~12 seconds before over-heating caused a failure, and then only of a design 'fail-safe' linkage deliberately built into the tiny craft.

At 20g's, the maximum theoretical power, 12 seconds would see a small craft travelling at hypersonic speed at the very edge of space. To top

The development of an effective cooling system for BEP flights within the atmosphere would seem an entirely reasonable objective with potentially almost immediate returns. There are even clues to guide us within what is now known of the technology of the Ancients. The further extension of that technology would also seem entirely predictable, especially when compared to the admitted difficulties faced by the developers of fusion power.

In the longer term there are also many additional possibilities for BEP technology, some of which would provide even greater advantages and reduce even further the ecological impact of the use of this technology. They might also reduce the basic power requirements and even the acceleration forces involved for flights made on regular routes.

In the meantime, it would seem logical to investigate these claims, that there is provable, irrefutable evidence that (BEP) technology was used in the distant past in ways far more sophisticated than has been suggested here so far. Having said that, let's have a look at the what the factors are that will determine craft design. To top

Shuttles to Planetary Orbit

To a fair degree, the limited range and operational characteristics of commuter-range aircraft can be included in craft being designed for far wider applications. This includes applications that involve the use of energy delivered from above and below, most especially in the operation of the remarkable Airspike which can also be used as a form of horizontal propulsion by generating a partial vacuum ahead of the craft's line of flight. To top

Vertical launch, powered from above
(or from below by reflection)
by sunlight and/or by maser from
Space Solar Power Satellite (SSPS)
Aircraft Powered by Maser or by sunlight


To the Moon and Mars

When access to Earth orbit is truly conquered, attention can focus on the requirements for sustaining life in the weightlessness of space and on the immense distances of journeys between the planets and the stars. Factors barely worth a mention in a half-hour, weightless trajectory around the globe become highly significant for survival on extended journeys.

Beamed energy from the Moon or from Earth orbit could greatly reduce the travel time to the Moon or Mars. It's possible that, on an occasional basis at least, the journey to the moon could be accomplished without artificial gravity but it would be a different matter entirely going to Mars and certainly out of the question if travelling to the moons of Jupiter's or further afield. There would also, obviously, be much greater problems associated with survival, such as the ability to carry enough (renewable) supplies of food and air and even more significant, enough energy and suitable reactant fuel.

For any true space journey beyond Mars, any direct assistance from Earth is clearly out of the question. The ship must be totally self-supporting in all aspects of life support and in basic fuel, energy and reactant. To top

Space writers and physicists have made endless calculations that supposedly "prove conclusively" that it's impossible to carry enough reactant on board a spaceship to "throw out the back" to accelerate a craft to any truly useful speed for interstellar travel. They consider it even more inconceivable that the craft could also carry enough reactant to slow them down again at the other end of their journey,

The problem of energy can readily be solved with nuclear fuel but the problem of carrying enough reactant initially seems insoluble. Therefore, the diehards insist, "it must be impossible" and, by the same logic, it must also be impossible for anyone else to have visited Earth. Ipso facto, according to these illustrious critics, everyone is mad who even considers the possibility that aliens might indeed have visited Earth.

But what if the evidence of these visits is conclusive which, given a fair hearing, I believe is easily proven?

The attitude of these modern experts is precisely similar those who once claimed the world is flat, that humans would never travel faster than a horse and that men would never fly. In a glorious and classic case of selective blindness, there is an entirely obvious and rational solution that is generally ignored. To top

The "Starship" enterprise

Simply to carry all the basic life support systems and supplies essential to life, an Interplanetary or interstellar spaceship will of necessity be very large and it must also have some form of artificial gravitation to avoid the crew suffering debilitating bone loss. For these reasons and others it is logical to assume the ship will be many 100's of meters in diameter and be shaped, at least in part, like a massive, spinning wheel, the strongest and most effective design for this purpose. In fact, there are very strong reasons to support a double wheel arrangement, mainly in order to better control the enormous masses involved.

Interstellar Spacecraft - generating Force Fields
The general form is defined by essential functions

Across interstellar space the massive craft (probably well in excess of 1km in total diameter) will travel along the direction of its axis, with the crews' quarters (at least) rotating at around 1.25rpm to generate a totally suitable (1g) artificial gravity. The vertigo effect (caused by the spin) would be minimal on such a large diameter. To top

However, the craft must also be designed to operate usefully when in orbit around its planetary destination and for this it will need to incorporate rather different features to facilitate the operation of services from space to the ground. Fortunately, with a little modification and rearrangement, the general, double-wheel design can be made to serve both functions. Once established in orbit, the craft would "morph" into a shape more suitable for collecting additional energy from the sun and supplying to craft operating down to the ground below.

The alignments and rotations needed for tracking the sun and supplying the ground below are predictably different to those needed across interstellar space and necessitate the arrangement This means the alignment of whole sections would need to rotate to maintain both earth and solar tracking. To top

It's all about Power

The supposed "impossibility" of carrying sufficient mass on board to accelerate to significant speeds, (plus enough to slow down again) has had physicists arguing for years. The solution is that the ship must obviously have the means to somehow collect the reactant it needs as it travels through space, both for acceleration and for braking. Further, it is reasonable to assume that the actual ways and means of utilising that mass are probably very similar to those used in other BEP craft. Whether it is for a ship in space or within earth's atmosphere, simply put, it is a matter of supplying energy to accelerate mass in the most effective way for each different application. To top

In this regard, the general and popular conception, that space is a vast void of absolute nothingness is actually quite far from the truth. A spaceship must certainly avoid or control even the smallest visible particles, or risk being destroyed by their impact but space is teaming with photons, ions, gamma rays and dozens of other sub-atomic particles that all have some mass. These particles are blowing away from every star, including our sun. The concentration of atomic particles is billions of times greater when it forms into a solid mass but collect enough, over a sufficiently large area, and even deep space can supply the mass required for an interstellar space drive. All that's required are the batteries, so to speak, the energy to make it all work, and for that nuclear energy is the obvious candidate.

The so-called solar wind, (travelling at around 420km/sec) is made of a highly ionised and highly diffuse plasma, atomic particles with significant mass and enough kinetic energy to drive a spacecraft with a large solar sail, across the solar system*. Collect enough of these particles from a sufficiently large area and the solar wind can provide the reaction mass required to provide substantial acceleration (or thrust) outwards from the sun.

Solar sails have been proposed that would directly utilise the solar wind to power interplanetary flights but, used passively, the ultimate (theoretical) speed imparted is inevitably tied to the speed of these particles. To top

Artists impression of a mini-magnetosphere
deployed around a spacecraft

Click to enlarge

Employing Force Fields

To draw on the energy of the solar wind it is not necessary to deploy a physical solar sail of immense size since the force can be captured using electromagnetic fields. Tests in a vacuum chamber of with a triple-lobed magnetic generator (the so-called M2P2 Mini-Magnetosphere Plasma Propulsion ) system suggest it could effectively act as a sail to draw energy from the solar wind across an area 50x the basic diameter of the generator. Thus, a group of field generators spaced 1km apart could, with significant efficiency, act as a sail 50km in diameter (see diag).

The use of the M2P2 thruster has obvious potential for accelerating (or decelerating) an interstellar craft but is effectively limited to the relative confines of the solar system, with the useful force available rapidly diminishing farther from the sun. It may be a significant start but the solar wind is travelling at only a fraction of 1% of the speed of light and for interstellar travel, a more active system is obviously required. To top

The craft, of necessity, will have a nuclear power plant, so the supply of energy is not the major problem. What is needed, is a means to draw in the scattered particles found in interstellar space and, once again the use of force fields would seem the obvious way to achieve this.

One concept uses lasers to ionise particles far ahead of the ship. Utilising basic electro-magnetic principles, the whole craft will then form an enormous super conducting, magneto hydrodynamic (MHD) drive. It is potentially a far more powerful, inside-out version of Myrabo's proposed passenger craft (shown at the head of the page).

The coils will accelerate the ionised particles along the ship's axis, then concentrate and accelerate them through the center of the wheel between contra-acting coils in the wheel rim and the hub. Depending on its area of influence, the concept promises to provide significant thrust that could be sustained indefinitely and to extremely high speeds. To top

Spaceship in Orbit

General layout of spaceship
when deployed in GEO orbit

The Duties of a Mother Ship

Once it enters a planetary orbit, the requirements of an Interstellar craft change entirely as it starts supplying power in support of activities on the ground.

The in-line arrangement of two wheels on a common axis that made the craft an ideal MHD drive system in deep space is simply not practical for collecting and re transmitting energy from the sun to supply shuttle craft operating to a planet's surface.

Although the basic components are entirely similar, to be truly practical, a mother craft in planetary orbit must track both the sun and the activities on the ground at the same time, with each wheel turning quite independently on a different axis.

To allow for the alteration, the central axle must contain two elbow joints, each able to bend to 90o. The changes in the rotation of the wheels and axes would be controlled by gyroscopes. To top

Returning to Planetary Orbit

For an exploratory craft to return to space from the ground, it must somehow be able to utilise energy received from the mother ship in space. It is therefore essential that a landing craft is somehow able to collect at least enough energy to return a lightly loaded craft back to space.

Within earth's atmosphere it is impossible to supply a craft directly with an energy beam of sufficient intensity for lift off without seriously courting the problems associated with pre-ignition of the air. The problem highlights the need to supply the energy over a relatively large area and for it to then be focussed beneath the craft by a system of mirrors. The problem is how to do this?  To top

An image of the Apollo mission's Eagle lander provides a clue. The first, exploratory craft must land upon a framework that will later act as its launch platform. The crew must then deploy (disposable) mirrors to reflect the energy received from above into the combustion chamber beneath the vehicle. Later, launch platforms can be built to serve this same purpose.

Thus is revealed the true reason for building pyramids. As energy systems at the ground were developed, different combinations and arrangements applied. For every possible variation in the energy supplies, there are an equal number of possible combinations in the collector arrangements but, given due consideration, most can be reasonably assessed. They include various ways to use direct solar in combination or otherwise, with microwaves, lasers or x-rays. At different sites and at different times just about every combination imaginable was apparently tried and most are relatively obvious once the physical structures are analysed and the basic secret is known. To top

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