Does this video show a revolutionary new propulsion system or is the rotation simply a byproduct of convection?
The British National Space Centre’s technology and industrial policy deputy director has told Hyperbola that 2010 could see a workshop on the Emdrive to bring together the expertise to tackle the “underlying physical phenomena” that is seen in the video above
The video purports to show the microwave propulsion system known as the Emdrive produce enough static thrust to rotate a mass on an air bearing but other phenomena may be involved
Below is a presentation about Emdrive that is similar in its content to the presentation given by Emdrive’s inventor Roger Shawyer yesterday here at the CEAS 2009. The two differ in that the presentation below gives information on Chinese and US interest in Emdrive, which Shawyer declined to answer questions on yesterday, while the presentation shown at CEAS had information about a vertical take-off and landing vehicle flight test programme
The UK government has investigated the Emdrive before. Beyond references to these grants on Shawyer’s website and in his presentations further detail is not readily available on the web, bar this freedom of information request. Interestingly it suggests that the government paid reviewers of Emdrive were, well, flummexed
For further information about the history of this mysterious propulsion system there is always Wikipedia and its page that outlines the “controversial” history - but like so many Wikipedia pages some of its links to supporting information don’t work sadly
And it hasn’t persuaded the Chinese because according to Wired magazine the Chinese have apparently revealed that they are working on an Emdrive of their own – and Shawyer mentions in his presentation that he has visited the country – and that they have reproduced the rotation seen in the video
So Hyperbola asks itself, is Emdrive the cold fusion of the 21st century or not?