The Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket (VASIMR) is an electro-magnetic thruster for spacecraft propulsion. It uses radio waves to ionize and heat a propellant and magnetic fields to accelerate the resulting plasma to generate thrust. It is one of several types of spacecraft electric propulsion systems.
The method of heating plasma used in VASIMR was originally developed as a result of research into nuclear fusion. VASIMR is intended to bridge the gap between high-thrust, low-specific impulse propulsion systems and low-thrust, high-specific impulse systems. VASIMR is capable of functioning in either mode. Costa Rican scientist and former astronaut Franklin Chang-Diaz created the VASIMR concept and has been working on its development since 1977.
So if you can use microwaves to ionize and mag fields to accelerate, couldn’t you do it on a more ‘diffuse’ surface too? Or do something that treats the ship like the particle and the earth mag field like the “engine” and accelerate yourself relative to the earth?
@ Jason Calley; There are a number of blogs that discuss this field, none of which I can recommend, sorry. To create the needed device one must understand the causes of mass/inertia as well as gravity. I believe a “rich” magnetic field can confuse Mass/inertia and negate gravity.
More of these things are OT and bad manners. pg
There, now it’s “On Topic” and good manners… so, carry on ;-)