Blueprint for the Torch ship. Drawings by Pangman
A letter found in the Enzmann Archives
From Dr. Robert Duncan-Enzmann, PhD, MD
To Dr. Gallant
National Geographic Magazine
Sept 10, 1981
Dear Dr. Gallant,
One of my children, the littlest named ****, indicated to me that she had found another reference to the Flying Iceberg (referring to Enzmann's Torch ship fueled by frozen deuterium) in your book in the children’s section of the library. I went to look, and you have prepared a delightful book about the Universe. One of the best I have ever seen – congratulations! She is 8, all our other children are in graduate school or college.
In the dim halls of my memory, I recall previous references by yourself to the types of starships that I designed so many years ago. To be honest, very little was really published. Very little of the information available as early as 1958 was ever released. The situation was compounded in 1960 when a virtual moratorium on systems development of all kinds was ‘propounded!’ Well, that’s politics and not my thing.
Time has passed and things have changed. I have information that can be made public. It is not, and never has been classified – let me say it just ‘has not been available.’
It has been possible to build a starship for perhaps two decades. Some of the most primitive designs are known to a small but avidly interested public. The more advanced and far simpler designs are not known to much of anyone. I will be glad to release the information to you if you will indicate the source, as you always graciously do.
You are well versed in current technology and will immediately see how simple and practical the proposed methods are. Everything is – of course – off the shelf. There are no new sciences or technologies. I am very much an engineer.
Orion A – (nuclear pulse) A potbellied reaction device. Did you know it was test flown?
Orion B – (nuclear pulse) An open plate (open piston) behind which a tiny shaped nuclear charge was exploded. Hey- what is your car but a line of cannons on a crankshaft – and the first internal combustion in operation in France ca 1750 operated on saffron. It was called the ‘cannon engine.’ Orion B was an open piston where 100,000,000ok (kelvin) for a microsecond heated the plate to 100ok average.
Orion C – (32 ‘piston’) was my first starship operating on fission and fission-fusion pulses.
Hyperon A - (32 ‘piston’ pulsed filament) was a fusion/fission-fusion torch operating in a pulse mode, or possibly with a continuous burn.
Hyperion B – a concept developed by myself in the very early 1940s, one I took up again in the 1950s, and saw as a technological direction in the late 1960s as better than the costly fuel hogs Orion A, B, and C for an unmanned interstellar probe. It was never worked on. Even studies fell under the systems moratorium, and still worse, all discussion of devices such as Orion were expunged from the American Media.
However, today things have changed in a startling way. Do you want the story? It is yours if you give proper credit. I have been asked by several periodicals to write it up, but have dragged my feet for years, not months. Divide up the fee anyway you like, 95% for you and 5% for me if that pleases you.
And so, very truly yours,
Dr. Robert Duncan-Enzmann
Dr. Robert Duncan-Enzmann, designer of the Enzmann Starship
physicist, scientist, astronomer, geologist, archaeologist, historian, linguist, medical doctor
British Embassy School, Peking, China; Univ. London; WW II USN, AC; RN, AB Harvard; ScB Hon., London; Standard, MSc, Witwatersrand; Nat Sci Scholar; MIT course work; Royal Inst. Uppsala Swed.; PhD/MD Cuidad Juarez, Mex.; Pacific Radar: Greenland Gap-filler, Canada DEW-line; SAGE; Pacific PRESS; California ATLAS, BMEWS; ICBM; Kwajalein Atoll ICBM intercept; TRADEX; Mars Voyager; Cryptography.