The greatest challenge in the field of aviation is to meet the growing concern of depleting fuel source for efficient propulsion of the vehicle. The advanced propulsion techniques look at tackling the challenges with an innovative aero engine.
The aim is to propel an aircraft with a ground based laser beam. The laser tracks the aircraft in flight, directing its energy beam at specially designed photovoltaic cells carried on board to power the plane's propeller. The aircraft doesn’t carry an engine but only a photovoltaic cell. The ground based laser is to be guided to fall on film connected t the photovoltaic cell. The cell in turn generates current proportional to the intensity of the laser beam. The current is used to drive a propeller.
The advantage is that the aircraft is being propelled by a clean engine which doesn’t produce any kind of emission in terms of acoustical or chemical. The aircraft can be used efficiently for surveillance. Tactical positioning of the laser beam enables the aircraft to undertake long range missions. The film which receives the laser beam can be optimised for greater efficiency and provide greater area.