NASAs 1970s Solar Sail Plans?


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16 December 2010
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I've been looking into the pre-'Face-on-Mars' articles of Richard C. Hoagland and found an intriguing one from the May 1977 issue of Analog entitled "Return to Mars: A mission for the Enterprise" (He was referring to the Space Shuttle btw)

In it he mentions two 'semi-secret' (His words, not mine) NASA proposals for Solar Sail missions I've never heard of and cannot find any reference to on the NTRS.

The first proposal involved fitting a 800m (a side) solar sail to a Mariner (10?) flight spare and sending it to rendezvous with Halley's Comet.

The second was a Manned Mars Mission where the manned vehicle was proceeded to Mars by an unmanned carrier which would use a 2000m solar sail for propulsion.

If anyone has any knowledge of anything like this I would dearly like to know.
that were JPL proposals in 1976
but i can't not recall the Name of proposals

the 800 meter sail is stretched on 4 crossbeams and carry 800kg payload
had to be launch with space shuttle in 1981 in orbit, there Sail is deployed with held astronaut.
the next 250 day the sail move from Earth towards the Sun
into a 60 days solar orbit, the probe use higher light pressure to get in inclination of Halley orbit
this take nine months time, after that the Sail makes a low speed rendezvous with Comet in early 1986

later the proposal for Halley probe change in begin 1977
the square sail is now a Heliogryo with 8 x 12 km long "wings" similar like a helicopter blade.
the assembly rotate and use centrifugal force to stretched wings, without need supportbeams, what make sail lighter.
but this Heliogryo desgin had to manny unknowns, so the NASA say no and take ion engine concept in September 1977


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