Publication:
Power beaming, orbital debris removal, and other space applications of a ground based free electron laser

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Authors
Wilder, Benjamin A.
Subjects
Advisors
Colson, William B.
Newman, James H.
Date of Issue
2010-03
Date
Publisher
Monterey, California. Naval Postgraduate School
Language
Abstract
When compared to other laser types, the Free Electron Laser (FEL) provides optimal beam quality for successful atmospheric propagation. Assuming the development and deployment of a mega-watt (MW) class, ground or sea based FEL, this thesis investigates several proposed space applications including power beaming to satellites, the removal of orbital debris, laser illumination of objects within the solar system for scientific study, and interstellar laser illumination for communications. Power beaming simulations are conducted within the Satellite Tool Kit (STK) program to determine the frequency of accesses between a satellite and one or more ground stations for multiple orbital profiles. FEL illumination of orbital debris is modeled to determine the thermal effects on a representative aluminum debris particle. FEL illumination of the Lunar and Martian surfaces is modeled to determine the relative laser and solar spectral intensities at these ranges. FEL illumination at interstellar ranges is modeled and discussed to determine our ability to communicate or detect laser communications over interstellar ranges.
Type
Thesis
Description
Series/Report No
Department
Physics
Organization
Naval Postgraduate School (U.S.)
Identifiers
NPS Report Number
Sponsors
Funder
Format
xxii, 159 p.: ill. (some color) ;
Citation
Distribution Statement
Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.
Rights
This publication is a work of the U.S. Government as defined in Title 17, United States Code, Section 101. Copyright protection is not available for this work in the United States.
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