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NASA’s New Vasimr Plasma Engine Could Reach Mars In Less Than 6 Weeks

recently delivered $10 million in funding to Ad Astra Rocket Company of Texas
for further development of its Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket
(VASIMR), an electromagnetic thruster proficient of propelling a spaceship to
Mars in just 39 days. NASA’s funding was part of the “12 Next Space
Technologies for Exploration Partnership.” Ad Astra’s rocket will travel ten
times quicker than today’s chemical rockets while using one-tenth the amount of

system would cut the trip to Mars by months according to Franklin Chang Diaz, a
former MIT student, NASA astronaut, and now CEO of Ad Astra.

Image result
for VASIMR Plasma Engine

According to
Diaz, “this is like no other rocket that you may have seen in the past. It is a
plasma rocket. The VASIMR Rocket is not used for launching things; it is used
for things already in orbit. This is called “in-space propulsion.”


VASIMR heats
plasma, an electrically charged gas, to exceptionally high temperatures using
radio waves. The system then offers thrust by funneling the hot plasma out of
the back of the engine. According to Diaz, VASIMR will save thousands of
gallons of rocket fuel and tens of millions of dollars a year.

In the
following video, Diaz explains in great detail the origins of space travel and
why the magnetoplasma rocket technology will transform space travel and

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