At the end of 2012 Internet users was a report that the United States government is going to build a Death Star – a super weapon of the epic Star Wars, capable of destroying entire planets. In response to the rising turmoil the White House explained that they had received a appeal from the sci-fi fans with a proposal for the construction of such a battle station. However, the government discarded the project because of its high cost and inexpedient.
But is it possible to build a Death Star in reality? If not, can you at least come closer to its destructive power? Replace if lasers, modern weapons? Well, let’s look at everything in order.
What is a Laser
The word laser – an acronym for light amplification by inspiring emission of radiation, which translates as light amplification by stimulated emission. Put simply, it is a device that converts energy and diffused light in a narrow beam of high frequency.
The main component of any laser is the working fluid, or the standard through which an electrical pulse is applied. Upon receipt of a large number of external energy, the environment becomes really unstable, and its start atoms collide with each other, it releases a tremendous amount of photons are repeatedly reinforced the electron beam. Then light enters the optical cavity where two mirrors is focused into a fine laser beam. Despite all the technological advances of recent decades, talk about the full use of lasers for military purposes too early. And there are objective reasons.
One of them is the lack of energy-charge batteries or small size for small arms. Even the most powerful lithium batteries do not give a thousandth part of the energy required for at least one step of the blaster. To have enough power, you have to connect your weapon with the power supply to the cable. That is, in fact, need a battery the size of a matchbox with the amount of energy of the whole plant. So far, the development in this area is ongoing.
Another reason is the unreliability of working bodies. For example, laser pointers, which are actively used by bullies to stop the aircraft, can shine at a distance of 50 kilometers, but they have little specific power. If the pointer is pumped into enough energy to destroy the car, it just explodes in the hands of the shooter. Crystals to be used as working environments for blasters and luchemetov not withstand great stress and crack. So that in the next 15-20 years, our troops have to continue to use conventional machine guns and rifles.
The program, which shook the world
President Reagan makes a declaration about the launch of Star Wars. March 23, 1983
In contrast to the light infantry weapons, the development of high-power laser systems, successfully fighting has been going on for the past 30 years.The first such project, in judgment with which any atomic bomb seemed childish prank, was a program of the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI). On her early announced, United States President Ronald Reagan, March 23, 1983. Planned to create a missile complex with ground and space-based, in part of which would include orbiting satellites with laser guns. The scope of the project is simply amazing, so press dubbed his program Star Wars, based on the film by George Lucas, which was released on the big screen shortly before the event.
While the United States feared a nuclear assault the USSR, because Soviet missiles surpassed their American counterparts in the event of war the advantage could not be on the side of America. Therefore, the Pentagon intended to launch a satellite constellation-killers capable of destroying missiles still on the rise.
American military wanted to put satellites chemically pumped lasers with powers up to 20 MW. Such stations would be able to instantly detect and blow up enemy missiles. Each laser has enough battery for a thousand series for 50-70 seconds each.
It was also decided to install X-ray lasers with nuclear pumping on particular rockets that had to take off of the submarines in the very beginning of the attack, and, going beyond the atmosphere, to make the shot. The fact that nuclear reactions can be obtained in the tens or even hundreds of millions of times more energy than when the chemical. In this case, these units were converted from a defensive to an offensive weapon, it could literally incinerate entire cities!
But even here there were problems. Home was in the laser. X-ray laser is a small nuclear bomb, surrounded on all sides by thick copper rods. When the charge explodes, cores were collected and focused wave emerged into a powerful X-ray laser beam. However, with the explosion of the charge explodes and the laser itself. Need as accurately as possible to bring a weapon to the target, because second chances. Any problems and political issues related to the agreement on the non – deployment of nuclear weapons in space. Plus fabulous price hundreds of billions of dollars. From this idea was abandoned.
Star Wars in action
However, in spite of the full readiness to translate the project into life, with the collapse of the Soviet Union the need to position space-based lasers disappeared by itself.Today, efforts are aimed principally at reducing the size of laser systems. Already have ready land, sea and air samples undergoing field trials. Air version because of its bulkiness puts in 747. However, the Agency for Defense Advanced Research Projects already reported that they have materials on the laser gun that can be installed in a lightweight fighter. Its weight will be about 750 pounds.
But still, is it possible to create giperlazer to destroy planets? Yes, probably.
The main problem is the supply of energy. For the Death Star will require an enormous amount of energy. The most expected option of supply may be fused. It’s kind of a smaller version of the process that occurs in the nuclei of all the stars in the universe.
In modern nuclear power atoms of enriched uranium is split and face, causing heat. In a fusion process inside the star, the hydrogen atoms under a huge gravitational force begin to connect into heavier helium atoms, and the temperature can reach 100 million degrees Celsius.
Today, an international group of scientists working on the making of the most powerful reactor in the history of mankind ITER. This International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER), or informally the second sun. According to the designers, the reactor was fully come into operation in 2022. It is designed for the production of 500 megawatts of electricity.
However, the reactors that will provide the energy super laser Death Star, most likely, there will be no more than 1000 years.
In adding, the cost of Death Star goes far beyond sanity. Experts estimate that at its construction taxpayers will have to fork out for – attention! – 850 quadrillion dollars!!! To give you a better sympathetic of how much it can be said that the total GDP of all countries in the world is about 85 trillion USD, that is a mere 0.01% of the required amount!
For such an ambitious project will need the resources of several hundreds of star systems. Even for a hypothetical galactic empire, it would be almost too heavy draft. And despite the fact that proposed to build the first, small Death Star. If someone does not know, the plot of Star Wars had two stations: the first diameter is 164 kilometers, and the second – more than 900 kilometers (compared to the diameter of the Moon – about 3474 kilometers. How much money is required for a larger version, it’s frightening to imagine.
But enthusiasts are happy they have started collecting donations for the special online platform Kickstarter. To begin with they they need $ 30 million to start the detailed design of combat Super station.
Of course, you can twist a finger to his temple, they say, nothing more to do, but because even the top minds in the world at one time claimed that it is unfeasible to build an atomic bomb, and openly laughed at her attempts to project. But after the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the world changed eternally.