These guys all agree: Space Travel needs to be faster and less expensive.

Stellar Electric Propulsion ('StEP') will dramatically increase Spaceflight speeds while reducing Spaceflight costs.

StEP is an advanced Spaceflight Technology that is purely electronic.

It produces thrust without consuming any form of fuel or propellant.

A number of StEP prototypes have been built and here's a picture of the first one that passed all of its Proof-of-Concept tests (it is named '003').

As a test of 003's ability to produce thrust solely from electricity, it was sealed inside the gondola of a helium balloon.

By floating the prototype in mid-air, we can observe how it performs in conditions of neutral buoyancy.

After sealing it in, 003 was activated and its thrust was used to execute a remote-controlled flight in the test facility.

Gracefully gliding around, the flight seems rather ordinary...

However, make no mistake, the success of this thrust test actually represents a World's First achievement.

Note: StEP Technology, the Intellectual Property demonstrated, is secured by Trade Secret protection.


UPDATE: The StEP project has a new member of the Prototype family. Thruster '003a' is a little smaller, a little lighter, and much more tightly engineered than 003. Together, those three qualities mean '003a' puts out more effective thrust than '003' and it can run for greater durations without stopping for inspections (or a battery recharge). For fun, we sometimes refer to it as "Smaller Lighter Tighter" instead of its model number.

Below: 003a, sealed inside a vacuum chamber, undergoing a low-air-pressure thrust test.

This test shows what happens when StEP technology is tested in an environment where a propeller, an air jet, or an atmosphere-ionizing thruster would generate very little usable thrust... or likely none at all!

A successful test result would be a significant leap forward for the StEP project.

Note: StEP Technology, the Intellectual Property demonstrated, is secured by Trade Secret protection.


How might a fuel-free technology like StEP be able to improve Space Travel?

'Old-school' Space propulsion technologies (like ion-electric and plasma-electric systems) produce thrust by consuming some sort of propellant (fuel) and, eventually, they deplete it. Once that happens, an old-school Spacecraft spends most of its time coasting through the void. Often, running out of propellant signals the end of the mission. Coasting through Space toward a destination is an old-fashioned '20th Century' way to do things. More importantly, ending a Space Mission because all fuel has been exhausted should become a thing of the past.

Above: A group of hybrid-electric thrusters, all of which require fuel to operate.

A StEP thruster is not a hybrid-electric type. StEP does not rely upon ion or plasma technology to generate thrust.

StEP Technology produces thrust without consuming any fuel, so a Spacecraft equipped with StEP thrusters can continue Spaceflight operations as long as it has access to electric power.

Thanks to the Sun, StEP can get electric power from Photovoltaic Arrays (i.e. Solar Panels).

In Space, electric power provided by Solar Panels can be converted into thrust by StEP Technology.

StEP-equipped Spacecraft will use power from the nearest Star to accelerate, decelerate, and change trajectory.

Using StEP, Starlight equals Spaceflight!

How might a purely-electric thrust solution like StEP reduce the cost of rocket launches and long-term Space Missions?

By deleting the mass of long-term-mission fuel (and the mass of the fuel-system hardware) from a spacecraft, we can reduce the cost of each rocket launch.

Once it is in Space, a vehicle of lower mass can be accelerated and decelerated much faster than one relying on old-school propulsion solutions.

These performance advantages result in HIGHER SPEEDS enroute, SHORTER ROUTES through Space, and LESS EXPENSIVE Space Travel.

What else can you do with purely-electric Spaceflight thrusters?

Quite a bit, actually.

You can capture Earth-orbiting space junk and recycle it, in order to create brand new construction material.

You can build amazing structures in Space, like large-scale Scientific Space Stations and mind-blowing Space Resorts.

You can intercept and deflect potentially dangerous Earth-crossing objects.

You can remotely survey and mine asteroids, then return a vehicle to Earth carrying a cargo of valuable materials.

That's just a tiny taste. There are many more benefits to be gained from purely-electric Spaceflight Technology.

Developed to its full potential, StEP Technology will expand the definition of what is "possible" in Spaceflight.

Want to learn more? A series of 30-second promos were created to give you a glimpse of a StEP-enabled future.

To view the 'Next StEP Forward' promos, CLICK THIS YOUTUBE LINK.


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