The carpet by poul watts essay

In Neal Stephenson 's Anathem a kinetic bombardment weapon is deployed from orbit to trigger the eruption of a dormant volcano. Even if the ship was theoretically capable of doing damage to ground targets, there still remains the issue of actually hitting the target, and the prospects on that front are dubious at best.

Faced with a powerful surface defense utilized to capacity, Teleships generally adopt variable geometary orbits, which allow them to approach closely to the planet for brief and unpredictable passes. Real life concepts and theories During the Vietnam War, there was limited use of the Lazy Dog bomb, a steel projectile shaped like a conventional bomb but only about The time between deorbit and impact would only be a few minutes, and depending on the orbits and positions in the orbits, the system would have a worldwide range.

With 6—8 satellites on a given orbit, a target could be hit within 12—15 minutes from any given time, less than half the time taken by an ICBM and without the launch warning. Second, their accuracy is very good, which is useful when attacking targets that are in a populated area.

Consequently, Johnson administration officials argued that the treaty implicitly permitted the use of national technical means to verify compliance: To put that into perspective, an OSK made of iron will need to be about 1.

The tactics required to neutralize planetary defenses see Section 4 will vary based on the type of defense. A larger OSK will, all else being equal, be more efficient than a smaller one, retaining more of its mass and velocity on impact. Achievable accuracy has been estimated at ten to twenty feet CEP.

In the extremely unlikely scenario that they would be called on to inspect lunar facilities, NASA noted that: It was swept aside like it was nothing.

The Magic Carpet

In science fiction In the mids, popular science interest in orbital mechanics led to a number of science fiction stories which explored their implications. It has also been suggested that commando teams could be used directly against certain strategic targets, generally command and control, but the ease with which these can be defended against such attacks makes them a dubious proposition compared to orbital or remote bombardment.

It should be noted, however, that such teams more or less require low-orbit fire support, given the time lag in kinetic drops from high orbit.

It has even been suggested that vessels be intentionally designed to break up on atmospheric entry to reduce the risk to people on the ground. The cost of a comparable nuclear weapon is almost certain to be no greater than that of the asteroid-deflection operation, particularly when the fleet operations costs are factored in, and depending on the technologies involved, it is very likely to be significantly less.

This actually increases penetration, and allows guided projectiles to be used. But we heard nothing. A couple of days later, one of their armor boys came by to look us over, and left us a crate of rat-bars and a medkit. In the case of the system mentioned in the Air Force report above, a 6.

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The carpet by poul watts essay
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Alan Watts Lectures and Essays