Nuclear Pulse Propulsion: Fact and Fiction

Since the early 1990's I have been studying the history and technology of Project Orion and related programs. In short, Orion was a concept for a spacecraft powered by atomic explosions in the kiloton range. It may sound fairly ludicrous, but it is actually feasible from an engineering standpoint; where it failed was that it did not succeed from a political standpoint.

My research has resulted in two different projects: "Nuclear Pulse propulsion" and "Pax Orionis." "NPP" is the factual history of the concept, fromt he early days to recent efforts; at last check the book was well over 400 heavily illustrated pages. There are many, MANY CAD diagrams created specifically for this book. Examples:

One chapter of "NPP" will deal with nuclear pulse propulsion as it has been depicted in popular culture... literature, TV, movies. There has been more of it than you might think! But how much of it has been depicted correctly? How much of it is just plain rubbish? Many individual depictions will be described... and will be presented, where possible, with 3-view drawings and the like created just for this book:

The other project, "Pax Orionis," is a work of alternate history science fiction. What might the world be like if Project Orion hadn't been cancelled but instead had come to fruition? Every effort is being made to keep this work grounded in reality, both scientifically and historically. The point of divergence is the Cuban Missile Crisis: in the world of Pax Orionis, it is known as the Cuban War. As you might imagine, that little difference has some major implications.

Pax Orionis is being written and released one short story at a time. The first story released is a brief history of the Cuban War, setting up the change in timelines, and is available to read as a free PDF file HERE.

Pax Orionis has a Patreon to support it. For only a dollar, you can read the latest releases. But for two bucks you get an "enhanced" version... each short story comes with bonus technical diagrams revealing aspects of the world of Pax Orionis such as spacecraft or weapons designs, along with pieces of a second, slowly-unfolding story, revealed by way of newspaper articles and editorials.

Some of the technical diagrams released so far include:

Work on Pax Orionis stories is slow going. But with Patreon, you only get charged when I actually release something.

If you are interested in the Pax Orionis stories, take a look a the Pax Orionis Patreon. Who knows... if Pax Orionis becomes popular it just might prod me into finally finishing that Nuclear Pulse Propulsion book!