Trying to remember the name of a sci-fi book I read in the late 70s or very early 80s.
The basic storyline concerns a group of scientists on the first "space station" (a very large habitat, far far far larger than Skylab, ISS, etc). There is also a UN police or military force on-board. One of the scientists uncovers a UN plot to seize control of the Earth, and the on-board UN authorities attempt to detain the scientists to prevent them from exposing the plot. A background subplot has a block of plastic forming the first "star drive"; it is being exposed to a minute force whilst held on a workbench, but this force is doubling every second. IIRC the final scene has the scientists deciding to leave orbit and colonise space. No idea when written, a thin paperback typical of what one would find for 70p or so "back in the day".
Would love to read it again, even if I find that nigh on 40 years later my literary expectations have changed dramatically!