A group of physicists from St Petersburg University and their colleagues from Technical University of Berlin have completed their work on the first prototype of the plasma engine, which will consequently enable us to use broadcasting and information platform, a value-for-money solution rather than orbit satellites.
We started to study plasma accelerators, that we now use in constructing the engine, as far as late 1980s, in Leningrad, said SPbU Prof Igor Mashek, who is also one of the creators of the engine. In 1990s, the project, due to a lack of finance, was frozen and renewed only in 21 century.
“The collaboration included SPbU professors, post-graduate and graduate students, as well as our colleagues from the Technical University of Berlin”, — said Prof Mashek.
With an advent of the newly developed engine we can use flying information platform as long as we want, as an analogue of the orbit satellites, he added.
“The technology has no equals as it doesn’t need fuel on board – instead it uses air and work on solar batteries”, — said Prof Mashek.
Another competitive advantage is that it is eco-friendly: the only product it emits into the air is ozone.
The information platform operates over vast territories, still within the air space of the country, he added.
For example, South Korea needs only two platforms to cover its territory, while Germany five platforms.
Now the prototype of the plasma engine is in the Technical University of berlin in Germany.
“If we have a working group of five members and receive due finance, we can develop a more advanced prototype in St Petersburg within a year”, — said Prof Mashek.
The technologies we use in the plasma engine can also be applied in space exploration (spacecraft modeling to carry astronauts from the Earth orbit to the Earth; developing thermal protection systems); in microelectronics (surface nanostructures); in medicine (X-ray diagnostic tools with high resolution).