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Magnetic Sail to Act as Spacecraft Braking System

The Breakthrough Starshot program plans to send tiny probes to Alpha Centauri, and a German physicist...
The Breakthrough Starshot program plans to send tiny probes to Alpha Centauri, and a German physicist has now outlined a possible braking system called a magnetic sail(Credit:Breakthrough Initiatives)

Our nearest stellar neighbor, Alpha Centauri, is just four light-years from Earth, and while that’s pretty close in the grand scheme of things, we can’t just pop over to borrow some milk.With our current technology, the journey would take tens of thousands of years, but there are plans for tiny unmanned probes that could trek there in as little as 20 years. read more