NewSpace 2011 will again be held in Silicon Valley again this year
Leik Myrabo, Ph.D.
Research Activities: Advanced space propulsion & power, aerospace systems, directed energy, hypersonic gas dynamics, energy conversion, space technology, alternative energy. Myrabo's experimental and theoretical studies are focused on alternative (non-chemical) energy sources for aeronautical, aerospace, and space flight propulsion of the 21st century and beyond. This advanced energetics research takes a long term, high risk approach to identifying areas of potential technological breakthroughs. His primary research emphasis is on the application of Beamed Energy Propulsion (BEP) with laser, microwave, or millimeter wave sources, in developing future air-breathing and rocket shuttlecraft for a variety of hypersonic boost-glide, space launch, and orbit-raising missions. These revolutionary beam-powered vehicles leave their propulsive energy sources on the ground or in space, and carry minimal on-board reaction mass and/or expendable coolant. Among other promising engine cycles (i.e., BEP-compatible), he is investigating pulsed detonation thrusters, magneto-hydrodynamic slipstream accelerators, Directed-Energy AirSpikes (DEAS), various rocket-based combined cycles, rotary pulsejets, scramjets, and a unique variety of air-breathing ion-breeze thruster. Dr. Myrabo's research relies on a combined experimental/ theoretical/ numerical investigative approach. His current MURI project investigates the propulsion physics of high power laser-beam launched nanosatellites (i.e., 1 to 10 kg) for affordable, rapid access to space. Myrabo has authored and co-authored more than 210 journal, symposium, and conference articles, and one bool--The Future of Flight. His second book--The Lightcraft Technical Manuals--is nearing completion
Research Associate Professor, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute