I thought about the Satellite I and II for a bit and decided to work them out as they were originally intended. That means using inertron. That means I need to reread Armageddon 2419 (not a bad thing) because aside from repelling normal matter inertron has a bunch of other properties that make it very very useful.
For handwavium it was worked out very nicely as I recall. The Satellite series were not constant boost ships instead having a normal cruising speed of 40 kps. Of course the characters say at once point that they can produce food and fuel en-route. Which makes me kind of cry a little. that makes the Satellite as bad as a reactionless drive ship.
There's also no word on what powers the dang ships. If it's atomic it ain't fission as we understand it because there's no room for radiation shields. So I get to make some stuff up or translate their 1930's doubletalk to 2016 doubletalk.
What's interesting about this setting for me is that aside from lacking a warp drive a lot of the technology is up there with Star Trek. Disintegrators (phasers)? Got it. Gravity manipulation? Got it. Very well behaved rocket drives (impulse power)? Got it.
Unlike Trek, Buck Rogers tried to keep the effects of its handwavium straight. Inertron could be deadly stuff. Ships that lost part of their structure might rocket into deep space. Wearing a back pack with the stuff let you make incredible jumps and leaps but you retained momentum and could break your skull if you tripped.