Episode 441: Sailing on Sunlight

In Arthur C. Clarke’s short story “Sunjammer,” a spaceship designer develops a spacecraft with a large “solar sail” that propels it through space using radiation pressure from the Sun. In recent years, solar sails have jumped from the pages of science fiction into real life. In 2014, NASA plans to launch its own Sunjammer spacecraft — the largest solar sail ever sent to space.

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