VICTOR HABBICK VISIONS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY VICTOR HABBICK VISIONS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Solar sail spaceship. Computer artwork of a space- ship passing the planet Mars. The spacecraft is powered by solar sails (blue). The principle of solar sail propulsion is that the craft is driven by the stream of photons (light) emitted from the Sun. Each photon imparts an acceleration as it is reflected off the sail. The acceleration is slow but continuous, and high speeds may be attained.
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