80 Ton Lifter Possible in 6 Years: Interview with EmDrive Inventor

Relativity Drive Spaceplane

Relativity Drive Spaceplane

EmDrive Demonstrator Engine

EmDrive Demonstrator Engine

Roger Shawyer, the inventor of the EmDrive engine – sometimes called a relativity drive – kindly let me interview him via email. If the EmDrive achieves the things set forth on the EmDrive website, to say that this is a revolutionary technology is an understatement. To see this, see these slides about his vision for the second generation EmDrive.The interview –

BTE-Dan: If NASA or the ESA agreed to test your EmDrive, would you be willing to let them test it?

Roger: If either organisation showed a rigorous understanding of the theory, we would consider such a request.BTE-Dan: Do you have any plans to let independent testing labs test your EmDrive (besides the Chinese who have already tested it)?

Roger: Yes. Note that the Chinese University built and tested their own design, based on data that is in the public domain, and some advice in a couple of lectures I gave when I visited them.

BTE-Dan: Can you give any more information about any independent testing plans?

Roger: I’m sorry, but I cannot comment any further on these plans.

BTE-Dan: Can you talk about any new engines you are building? And are you ready to move past the prototyping phase?

Roger: We are an R&D company only.

BTE-Dan: If money was not an object, and a large engineering team was applied, how long do you think it would take to build an EmDrive suitable for large interplanetary spaceships?

Roger: A large first generation engine could be built and flight qualified within a 5 year schedule.

BTE-Dan:  It’s said by some that since the EmDrive lacks many published papers and peer review that it should be viewed as unlikely to work given the amazing claims about it. Do you have any comment on this?

Roger: It is generally agreed that if two independent analyses come to the same conclusions, and two independent experimental programmes produce the same results, the conclusions are correct.

BTE-Dan: In general, what is your greatest frustration when it comes to transitioning the EmDrive to viable production engines?

Roger: My experience in the space industry shows that it is very conservative, which is understandable considering the costs and risks involved. However there is also a distinct reluctance to develop low cost new technologies, whilst the customers are willing to keep funding the present high cost solutions.

BTE-Dan: In your theory paper you describe how electromagnetic waves going in opposite directions in the EmDrive’s waveguide are traveling near the speed of light, and the waveguide shape causes an imbalance of beam velocities and radiation pressure at the two ends of the waveguide. From there you theorize that the end walls of the waveguide are in different frames of reference by invoking the theory of special relativity. This permits the EmDrive to form an open system and a net thrust is then allowed by the laws of physics.  However, there are no equations to specifically prove the claim that the two ends of the waveguide are in difference frames of reference. Are you or anyone else you know of working on a mathematical proof to more directly show the EmDrive is an open system?Roger: The two ends of the waveguide are not in separate reference planes.It is simply that Special Relativity allows the EM wave and the waveguide to act as an open system. Otherwise accelerating the waveguide would alter the fixed value of c which is clearly not allowed! A laser gyro works in the same way.Note that accelerating the waveguide cavity does produce a Doppler shift in the EM wave, which leads to a loss in stored energy, thus complying with the conservation of energy.

BTE-Dan: You describe a 2nd generation of EmDrive which uses a superconducting microwave cavity where 1kW of input power is capable of lifting 3 tons of mass. Of course if this worked it would be mind blowing. When do you think a prototype of a 2nd generation EmDrive could be built given adequate funding of a development project?

Roger: A prototype 2G thruster, giving 3kN for 1kW microwave input could be available in 3 years. A large prototype 2G thruster giving 800kN [80 metric ton-force] for an 80kW input would take 6 years.

BTE-Dan: Okay, and finally, you must like your job. Any comments on that?

Roger: After a long and fascinating career in the space and defence business, I still regard engineering R&D as great fun.End of interview.

****

One final comment. I see my question about the two ends of the waveguide being in different frames of reference was rather silly. The end walls are physically connected within the same overall assembly, so that could not be. So it’s the waveguide and beam that he claims are in different reference frames. And after going back and checking, that is what his theory paper says too on page 5.

This entry was posted in EmDrive Engine, Engines, Technologies on Earth. Bookmark the permalink.

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33 Comments on "80 Ton Lifter Possible in 6 Years: Interview with EmDrive Inventor"

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RW
Guest

Thanks! Those were some great questions.

Josh
Guest
So, I’m still working this around in my head,but just from looking at it I have the following:The website says — “use patented microwave technology to convert electrical energy directly into thrust. No propellant is used in the conversion process. Thrust is produced by the amplification of the radiation pressure of an electromagnetic wave propagated through a resonant waveguide assembly.” — So what exactly would we be looking at? Would this thing just lift off the ground with no visible thrusts? I assume it would look similar to a propeller bases VTOL in that you would see air and ground… Read more »
Josh
Guest

**Propeller based

Ezmarii
Member

Maybe this is something so far over my head that I don’t recognize the answer, but, does this thrust output have any negative effects to the surrounding area? For example, can you safely put organic life in the path of the thrust and simply feel a “push”, or is this just like a microwave in that it would be extremely harmful? If it’s safe, could this also be the anti-gravity engine for use in cars, motorcycles, skateboards of the future that sci-fi has taught us will come about eventually?

LittleMe
Guest

Imagine if something like this was equipped on the Voyager,It produces about 470 watts in it’s RTGs A 2G thruster giving 300kg trust at 100 watts would have given it mind blowing speeds over the years.if you could keep the super conduction walls cool as Wikipedia suggest it needs

Arcbird
Member

Without shields, how fast would one have to travel to encounter friction problems in space?

James
Guest

I don’t think there would be any friction unless you are talking about micro meteors the size of a grain of sand that would punch holes all throughout your ship.

Larryman
Guest

I hope China uses the EmDrive on their Moon Lander. It would avoid disturbing the landing site’s soil, on landing. And it would avoid knocking over their flag, when the Lander relaunches from that site.

DigitalGalaxy
Guest
If it works, why isn’t there a small model mock up? Such as a drive that plugs into the wall and only lifts 1kg? That could be carried around in a car and shown for demonstrations. It’s the same problem with LENR: if it works, demonstrate it! If the scientific community/media isn’t paying any attention because they aren’t convinced of the physics, take it over their heads and to the public! If it’s bogus then it can’t be demonstrated in public. If it isn’t bogus, just demonstrate the prototype device. It’s simple. If you have something real, bypass the naysayers… Read more »
AKOkie
Member
I feel the same way. I want to see results rather than talk and studies that seemingly go nowhere. Andrea Rossi has a lot of talk about patents pending on his LENR, but who has actually seen a true prototype? Supposedly, Mr. Rossi has a 1 MW unit that was to go online in February 2013 at a powerplant somewhere in the U.S., but things have gone quiet again. The EMDrive’s mathematics appear sound, but where’s a prototype? Granted, there’s laboratory prototypes (such as the demonstrator pic in this article) used to take measurements of the EMDrive, but I want… Read more »
Paul Doherty
Guest

My understanding was that the current prototypes only extert a small amount of force – so it would be unable to lift anything, and would only be testable under lab conditions.You may be able to put it on a set of scales and show the weight reading decrease slightly, but I doubt that would make much impact on the public…

johnw9171
Member

I know this doesn’t involve the 80 ton lifter, but has anyone else heard about Obama referencing to the “Jedi Mind Meld” in a speech? That might explain some of the Enterprise feasibility study petition politics. He probably isn’t really the big Star Trek fan he claims to be but just used it to get votes. A real Star Trek fan would never mix up Star Trek and Star Wars so bad as to mistake the Vulcans and the Jedi. I doubt he really has any interest at all in this project.

Mitchz95
Member

We haven’t gotten any political attention yet, and our petition was dropped because it didn’t get the necessary signatures. I doubt Obama has even heard of BTE yet.And he probably meant to say “Jedi mind trick”, and used “meld” by mistake.

Larryman
Guest

I don’t like Mr. Shawer’s concept for a shuttle craft. I like my concept better…http://www.buildtheenterprise.org/forum/gravity-manipulation/build-the-shuttlecraft-before-the-enterprise

Jeremy
Guest

No offense or disrespect meant, but there are a lot of “scams” out there, and I just wanted to know how serious you really are about this thing. Again no offense intended.

Jonny
Guest

If he has built and tested the effects of a reactionless drive, he’d allow a lot more independant testing because he’d receive near unlimited funding. If its a scam, he just needs to give out a tad bit of info here and there in order to get ‘some’ funding…

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[…] email interviewed Roger Shawyer, the EmDrive inventor, here. He has doggedly stuck by his invention even while getting little money for help and while having […]

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[…] BuildTheEnterprise ← Breakthrough Propellantless EmDrive for the Enterprise? 80 Ton Lifter Possible in 6 Years: Interview with EmDrive Inventor → […]

jonaD
Guest

80 tons of thrust for 1 kw would make SPR Ltd. prime pickings for foreign nations and/or groups with nefarious intents. I hope he has his family in a secure location and his lab under high security alert?

AlainCo (@alain_co)
Guest

given Shawyer numbers, 80 toms is a bit optimistic…in fact any weight from the ground (10N/kg) is a challenge… a superconducting cavity at few kelvin is an engineering challenge.we will see satellites and probe much before… normally if EmDrive is validated in china , in 5 years maybe something will be commercial if things goes at normal speed.Much less if there is oppositions. 30years?

Oleg
Guest

Russia successfully tested antigravity engine by Leonovhttp://okomov.livejournal.com/577.html

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Aetzbar
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A new physical theory with STW ( Static Time Waves)In the beginning was infinite geometric space. This space became filled with Static Time at absolute rest and absolute cold. Static time is strictly quantitative, and does not differentiate between past, present and future. Being quantifiable and measurable, static time is a scientific concept. Static time of 0.0033 microseconds per meter will be measured regardless of the direction chosen.Stars move through static time, which does not disrupt their motion. Static time exists but is imperceptible. Static time is the deepest secret of the universe. Static time fills all infinite space, eliminating… Read more »
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