To provide some context..

I have designed an interstellar spacecraft called Solar One.

It employs a combination of 3 propulsion methods: nuclear fusion, beam-powered propulsion , and photon propulsion.

Basically, several compact fusion reactors power a laser system that propels a huge light sail.

Physicist Robert Forward already proposed in 1983 to use a 26-TW laser system to propel a 100-km light sail, a fresnel lens to focus the beam of the laser, and decelerate the spacecraft with a secondary light sail.

I propose something a bit different, which is to use to use his 26 TW-laser to propel a 1-mile light sail that would deploy from the spacecraft after the acceleration stage, use parabolic mirrors that gradually change their orientation in order to focus the laser beam, and finally use a photon rocket and Bussard scoop to decelerate the spacecraft.

In theory, it could be possible to achieve 22% the speed of light, reaching the closest potentially habitable exoplanet in less than 20 years.

The problem is that high energy lasers weight too much. And a on-board laser would be needed to ionize hydrogen.

What do you guys suggest to reduce their weight?

This is my paper and a short video that summarizes all.

  • $\begingroup$ Welcome to te site Albert! It would be better if you made your actual question more specific and avoid directly asking for suggestions. For example "What problems would this system have in regards to <specific issue>" or "How do existing proposals tackle <specific issue>" $\endgroup$ – Speedphoenix Jul 18 '20 at 10:10
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    $\begingroup$ All the TW lasers I know of are short-pulse lasers with very slow rep rate. A continuous TW laser is currently science fiction (needing more than 1000 1-GW power plants - your fusion reactors are similarly science fiction). $\endgroup$ – Jon Custer Jul 19 '20 at 2:07

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