Blogging helps collect one’s thoughts. After the previous post I revisited my presentation and mass-models, only to discover a significant mistake in a key cell reference in Excel. Yikes! Re-writing my equations’s references I managed to shave a significant number of years off the minimum voyage time to Alpha Centauri via a mag-sail equipped “Daedalus” 2nd Stage. And update the affected slide being presented by my friend Pat Galea (thanks again, Pat!)
Now I am really interested in what a two-stage “Daedalus”+Mag-Sail can do. More importantly, how far can we send it in 100 years? As fascinating as Alpha Centauri A & B (and Proxima) might be, the known exoplanets are all much further away. The nearest (arguably) habitable exoplanet is Gliese 581g at a distance of 20.3 light-years. Can we get there in under 100 years using fusion and mag-sails? Or do we need something different?