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Laser Ablation Could Boost Jet, Rocket Fuel Efficiency

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A new approach to the concept of laser propulsion could launch satellites into orbit and push aircraft past Mach 10 with enhanced fuel efficiency. By ablating solid fuel inside a jet nozzle, laser pulses could increase the speed of gas flow out of the system to supersonic speeds. The approach was proposed by Yuri Rezunkov of the Institute of Optoelectronic Instrument Engineering and Alexander Schmidt of the Ioffe Physical Technical Institute in St. Petersburg. Mach number distribution simulation for a supersonic nozzle with an off-axis paraboloid; (a) describes the system without...Read full article

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