EMMI - Electric Solar Wind Sail Facilitated Manned Mars Initiative

Status Report From: e-Print archive
Posted: Wednesday, September 3, 2014


Pekka Janhunen, Sini Merikallio, Mark Paton

(Submitted on 3 Sep 2014)

The novel propellantless electric solar wind sail (E-sail) concept promises efficient low thrust transportation in the solar system outside Earth's magnetosphere. Combined with asteroid mining to provide water and synthetic cryogenic rocket fuel in orbits of Earth and Mars, possibilities for affordable continuous manned presence on Mars open up. Orbital fuel and water eliminate the exponential nature of the rocket equation and also enable reusable bidirectional Earth-Mars vehicles for continuous manned presence on Mars. Water can also be used as radiation shielding of the manned compartment, thus reducing the launch mass further. In addition, the presence of fuel in Mars orbit provides the option for an all-propulsive landing, thus potentially eliminating issues of heavy heat shields and augmenting the capability of pinpoint landing. With this E-sail enabled scheme, the recurrent cost of continuous bidirectional traffic between Earth and Mars might ultimately approach the recurrent cost of running the International Space Station, ISS.


13 pages, 2 figures, submitted to Acta Astronautica


Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysics (astro-ph.IM); Popular Physics (physics.pop-ph)

Cite as:

arXiv:1409.1036 [astro-ph.IM]


(or arXiv:1409.1036v1 [astro-ph.IM] for this version)

Submission history

From: Pekka Janhunen 

[v1] Wed, 3 Sep 2014 11:14:38 GMT (447kb,D)


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