I have recently had a renewed interest in comets and how comet tails are formed. From studying this process, a thought occurred to me that perhaps plasma ions can be created within a long hollow cylinder (say 50 ft long with a 3 ft diameter), open at one end and closed at the other, and when these plasma ions interact with the Sun’s solar wind, this cylinder/rocket will be propelled away from the Sun at a high velocity. Ideally, this rocket would be launched as close to the Sun as possible to gain the maximum effect of the solar wind.
The working principle of this rocket is that the open end of the rocket will be pointed directly at the Sun so that the solar wind will continually flood the interior of the rocket. At the closed end of the rocket, several gallons of water, or water ice, will be injected into the interior of the rocket, and this water will be quickly transformed into hydrogen and oxygen ions by the solar wind. The solar wind will then pickup these ions and push them against the closed end of the rocket. I think that these trapped ions pushing against each other will create a strong internal dynamic pressure and this pressure will continually push out against the solar wind flowing into the rocket. This interaction may create a ‘bow shock’ somewhere within the interior of the rocket. This bow shock should keep the ions trapped within the rocket. As this rocket is being accelerated, retrorockets will keep this rocket pointed in line with the outward flow of the solar wind.
Moreover, if this rocket were to be sent to another star, the solar wind from that star can be used to decelerate the rocket. Its retrorockets will simply rotate the rocket 180 degrees before it enters that solar system.