Interplanetary travel: we all want it. But who is working on it, goddamit?! Well, actually, HyperV Technologies Corp, a company based in Chantilly, VA, is, folks. As t-shirt swag on the company’s Kickstarter page reads, “Plasma Jet Electric Thrusters for Spacecraft… I’ve Got My Best PhDs Working On It.”
The guys behind HyperV are three scientists, Dr. Doug Witherspoon, Dr. Andrew Case, Dr. Sam Brockington, and an energy & space entrepreneur, Chris Faranetta. On their Kickstarter page, they claim to “build the world’s best plasma jets for nuclear fusion and plasma physics research.”
HyperV Technologies freely admits there are electrical thrusters already at work in spacecraft right now, but they believe their designs are better. Why? “We believe our thruster technology has the potential to be just as efficient as existing electric thrusters (such as ion and Hall effect thrusters) and with similar specific impulse,” claims HyperV. “But our advantages will be derived from a thruster that is less complex (and much more robust), which can use a variety of propellants including gases, inert plastics, and propellants derived from asteroids, Mars, the Moon, etc.”
HyperV thinks the main advantage will be cheaper fuel, which will push space travel into the interplanetary future. They simply need funds, to the tune of $69,000 by November 3, to build a repetitively firing plasma accelerator. Up until this point, they’ve only tested single-firing accelerators.
Watch the video below for some more background. The video is quite amateurish. But, hey, these guys are busy working on a futuristic plasma electric accelerator for interplanetary travel! They’re not cinema auteurs.