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In Greek mythology, Icarus is the son of the master craftsman Daedalus, the creator of the Labyrinth. Often depicted in art, Icarus and his father attempt to escape from Crete by means of wings that his father constructed from feathers and wax. Icarus's father warns him first of complacency and then of hubris, asking that he fly neither too low nor too high, because the sea's dampness would clog his wings or the sun's heat would melt them. Icarus ignored his father's instructions not to fly too close to the sun, whereupon the wax in his wings melted and he fell into the sea. This tragic theme of failure at the hands of hubris contains similarities to that of Phaëthon. Wikipedia.

Lee J.S.,Icarus
JBIS - Journal of the British Interplanetary Society | Year: 2015

The use of laser-created subatomic black holes (Schwarzschild Kugelblitzes or SKs) as sources of energy for the propulsion of interstellar starships has been suggested in the literature [1 & 2]. Solar sail inspired propulsive configurations, in which the petawatt Hawking radiation from a SK is incident upon an inertial "Dyson Cap" (DC) and two inertial "Dyson Plates" (DP) designs are examined. The interactions of the Hawking radiation particle species with the material from which the DC and DP are constructed, are described. The accelerations, maximum velocities, and displacements provided by these configurations are determined, and then contrasted with the kinematic results achieved by a starship with a SK-powered engine. Source

Vivian C.T.B.,Icarus
Occupational Medicine | Year: 2014

Background Assessing incapacity (lack of fitness for work) is a core activity for occupational physicians (OPs). However, it is increasingly thought that biomedical approaches to this assessment are not ideal and there is a need to move to a biopsychosocial paradigm. Aims To seek the opinion of practising OPs about long-term fitness to work and assess the degree of consensus within the group surveyed. Methods A group of OPs attending a conference considered five case scenarios concerning possible unfitness to work and gave opinions using electronic keypads. Results Up to 72 OPs responded to the cases. In four out of five cases, there was generally good agreement (by over two-thirds of respondents) with results which appeared to be consistent with biopsychosocial principles. Conclusions While consensus in this group was generally high, it is unclear whether these results would be replicated in other OP groups. Although the speciality in the UK is looking to speak with one voice, it is unclear whether there is a current consensus within it on forming opinions on cases in which complex biopsychosocial factors apply. Additionally, speciality training does not yet address biopsychosocial concepts. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society of Occupational Medicine. © The Author 2014 Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society of Occupational Medicine All rights reserved. Source

Long K.F.,Icarus
JBIS - Journal of the British Interplanetary Society | Year: 2011

This paper discusses the important role of 'disruptive technology' in altering the assessment on when the first unmanned interstellar probe mission is possible. Historical estimates suggest that such a mission is likely possible in the 23rd or 24th century. This paper argues that if such assessments also consider the role of high-growth exponential technology trends then in fact the first unmanned mission may be possible much earlier. The case study of a 100 year flyby space probe mission to Alpha Centauri 4.3 light years distance is examined, with an ideal cruise speed of 2,700 AU/year. Starting from an assumed mission capacity of 5 AU/year in 2020 a simple assessment shows that assuming a greater than ∼8% technology growth annually in mission capacity (as measured by the attainment of cruise speed) it may be possible to launch an interstellar probe by around the year 2100. This depends upon significant and sustained science and technology research investment being made, particularly into space propulsion engineering in the near-term. This paper is a submission of the Project Icarus Study Group. Source

Long K.F.,Icarus
JBIS - Journal of the British Interplanetary Society | Year: 2011

This paper was originally a response to a US DARPA solicitation1 requesting information for the 100 Year Starship Study™. An expanded version is here presented. Preliminary ideas for a (long term) research model and Interstellar Institute for Aerospace Research (IIAR) are discussed. The views expressed in this document represent the authors only, presented as one of several ways in which such an institute could be constructed. Source

Cardon A.L.,Icarus
JBIS - Journal of the British Interplanetary Society | Year: 2015

As we consider the technical challenges we will overcome to launch our first interstellar mission, it is natural that we envision our own view from the deck of that starship. However, the cold reality of the vast distances of interstellar space, in keeping with the history of space flight, clearly indicates that our first forays into such missions will likely be unmanned probes. Indeed, it is the limitations of our own biology and psychology, primarily in their fragility and brevity, that anchor us to the terrestrial environment upon which we depend. But by considering the diversity of biological adaptation documented on Earth, in combination with the promise of an advanced bioengineering program, we can begin to imagine how evolution or design could adapt the intrepid travellers to long-duration stresses inherent to interstellar flight. Source

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