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[SG] Nuclear-powered aircraft so large other aircraft can land on them in our future? - Page 24

post #231 of 250
Would make a great floating evac point, even for the end of the world, as for how it should take off, Nuclear power could possibly help it do a Vertical Take off.
   
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post #232 of 250
Sounds like the grand-daddy of all aircraft carriers in the sky
post #233 of 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by BirdofPrey View Post
Fuel is a misnomer in this case. The fuel is what powers the nuclear reactor to generate the heat. The air is propellant which is acted upon by the engine to generate thrust. Air resistance shouldn't be a problem. Nuclear rockets and jets are fairly high thrust engines.
I don't think you know how nuclear engines actually work, nor how much hydrogen/other fuels are burned in the process during flight. Nor how little oxygen is present in the upper reaches of our atmosphere. Likewise, these engines don't produce any static thrust. So unless these puppies are maintaining mach speeds, which would be impracticable for an airport, you are looking at a crap load of fuel to put these monsters into the air while still maintaining enough fuel to overcome the constant drain caused by resistance.

You don't just neglect friction, especially while these puppies get faster. Seriously?

Cheers.
Edited by Domino - 10/28/11 at 7:47am
post #234 of 250
I must say I have a few issues with this idea (at least in a non-military application).

The first is the effort of all of this extra development, engineering, production, maintenance etc. etc. for the sake of saving fuel in the smaller parasite craft (of which how many will actually "dock" with this vehicle)? Like public transport, it only makes sense on the most populated routes - otherwise, smaller aircraft will have to detour to use it - it will be the aeronatical equivalent of a passenger car ferry.

In addition, if the craft is going to travel more slowly than the parasite aircraft would ordinarily, it will make journey times a real ballache for passengers. - In this sense it seems that recently we've been making backwards steps. First, we lose Concordé and with it supersonic passenger aircraft, then, should this come into play, we'll be travelling slower than we are now on 40+ year old aircraft.

Progress? Surely it would make more sense to continue to develop faster & more efficient non-parastic aircraft (compact nuclear reactors couls be an option in the future)?

The only way this would make sense is if it were some sort of stepping stone to spaceflight...

...however, I'm not doubting that an airbourne airport would be an epic thing to see.
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post #235 of 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by Domino View Post
I don't think you know how nuclear engines actually work, nor how much hydrogen/other fuels are burned in the process during flight.

We're not talking about rockets. Hydrogen is not oxidized to generate heat and pressure in an electric motor. The primary mover is powered by transmutation of elements - E=mc^2 produces orders of magnitude more energy per unit of "fuel" (thorium, uranium, etc.) than oxidation of kerosene.

For the stated purpose of serving as a landing strip for commercial airliners, this behemoth would need to operate below the maximum altitude of those airliners, not in the thin upper atmosphere, and at those altitudes you don't need rockets. Propellers are adequate and you just need some way to make them spin. If waste heat from the reactor can be used to increase pressure of gasses exiting the engines, that's just a bonus - oxidation reactions of carried fuel are still not needed to make that happen.
Edited by willis888 - 10/28/11 at 11:32am
post #236 of 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by willis888 View Post
We're not talking about rockets. Hydrogen is not oxidized to generate heat and pressure in an electric motor. The primary mover is powered by transmutation of elements - E=mc^2 produces orders of magnitude more energy per unit of "fuel" (thorium, uranium, etc.) than oxidation of kerosene.
where are you pulling your propulsion? this energy is mostly converted into heat. it helps in the expansion of gases, but you still require some sort of fuel.

air doesnt get you off the ground and a intake and compressor to give enough air that would be sensible for take off is not going to get an airfield off tue ground is unpractical
air resistance is going to increase as you go faster resulting in more fuel being burnt to overcome the friction.

you either give these propellors or they arent staying in the air for a very long time. hate to tsee this go to waste
Edited by Domino - 10/28/11 at 11:32am
post #237 of 250
? wait what, i just read the past two replies and I think you guys are debating on the same team...?
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post #238 of 250
I'm imagining an electrically powered, high torque fan with valved pressure chambers behind it, a reactor-fed heat exchange in the chambers and a nozzle behind them.

Or maybe just the fan, and forget about trying to do extra work with reactor heat.
Edited by willis888 - 10/28/11 at 2:42pm
post #239 of 250
Yep, USAF would want this now.
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post #240 of 250
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nocturin View Post
? wait what, i just read the past two replies and I think you guys are debating on the same team...?
He edited in after me 20 minutes of editing my grammatical errors from the phone.
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