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Scientist Sees Space Elevator in 15 Years

  1. Jun 26, 2004 #1

    Ivan Seeking

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    http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tm...94&e=1&u=/ap/20040625/ap_on_sc/space_elevator
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 26, 2004 #2
    You won't hear any argument from me. A relevant anecdote comes from Arthur C. Clarke: Asked when a future space elevator might be built, he replied, "When everyone stops laughing."
     
  4. Jun 26, 2004 #3
    I'm skeptical. I don't dought its possible but I don't think by 2020. It just seems too fantastic to be done so near in the future, as arrogent as that might sound.
     
  5. Jun 27, 2004 #4

    enigma

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    As soon as they start getting the tubes longer than a foot or two, I'll stop laughing.

    I do want them to build one: There are just too many difficulties to be overcome for it to be feasible to go beyond TRL 1 for a while.
     
  6. Nov 10, 2004 #5
    You can stop laughing!

    =======
    The current level of SECRECY in nanofiber research, almosts guarantees your laughter is already being given a few snickers at. :rofl:
    When are the nay sayers going to realize something BIG is about to occur to the human race! :rolleyes:

    CAN YOU SMELL WHAT THE SPACE CADETS ARE COOKING? :yuck:

    Difficulties be damned.

    THIS IDEA WORKS!
    Better jump onboard fast or your DEFINITELY going to be left behind saying. :zzz:

    WOT HAPPENED :confused:
     
  7. Nov 10, 2004 #6
    Rotflmao!

    ---
    I doubt you realize what happens when folks smell BIG PROFITS! :eek:

    As for the Space Elevator seeming too fantastic to be done in the near future, just recall how long it took to go from, no manned space flight, to man on the moon. 1959-1969. :surprised
    As arrogant as this might sound, skepticism is a poor excuse for real scientific method.
     
  8. Nov 10, 2004 #7
    Wars of nerves and rates of national technological development

    There was a cold war then. There is no cold war now:

    • The state of "war without war" or what has been called the "war of nerves" thus in fact is capable of performing much of the function of war. If a nation appreciates that a war is lost before it begins, should it break down under its burden of armaments, a badly organized country may seek to rectify its ways. When all is said, the cost of being prepared for war is a more humane source of natural selection than war itself[13]. It was, incidentally, in this sense that the poet Robert Frost, in his visit to Russian intellectuals, gave explicit thanks to this mutual national competition. And anyone familiar with the reactions of American science and education realizes that they too owe much to Sputnik.
    (Raymond Cattell. A New Morality from Science: Beyondism. Chapter 5.7 — 'The Functions of War and the Development of a Functional Substitute'.)
     
  9. Nov 11, 2004 #8

    drag

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    Greetings !

    Don't wan'na be the pessimist around here, but I seriously doubt we're
    ever gon'na push "space" in an elevator. :wink:

    In 20 years we can easily have much more advanced, safe and more important - cheap chemicly fueled rockets. In fact, we could have them
    now if some mass production policies were adopted. And that's just what
    I'd call the default. There are also many other things like effective fusion
    reactors and advanced propulsion systems like the scramjet, external combustion, and even small-bomb powered rockets that could become
    a reality in 20-30 years and make the whole idea of building something
    like a space elevator totally ineffective even if feasable.

    Live long and prosper.
     
  10. Nov 11, 2004 #9

    russ_watters

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    Two problems with this:

    1. You're basically saying that its secret except that you know about it. Uh, yeah, right... :rolleyes:
    2. It isn't secret.
     
  11. Nov 16, 2004 #10
    Oh ye of little faith!

    o:)
    It seems that lack of imagination or plain outright skepticism, hinders the acceptance of most breakthrough concepts, until events overtake skeptics to such a degree that they have to cave in to the reality.

    Lets just say, that I seriously doubt that folks that know the science, and are jumping on board in droves, and the REAL space cadets at the AIR FORCE ACADEMY, would be joining the growing groups of scientists in the forefront of the Space Elevator nanotech revolution, if this was pie in the sky.

    See you at space station GEO One... :wink:
     
  12. Nov 16, 2004 #11
    Hot War

     
  13. Nov 17, 2004 #12

    enigma

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    Tech like this would not be black budget. It's not as if you can hide a 30,000km long rope...
     
  14. Nov 17, 2004 #13

    Chronos

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    Well, from an engineering standpoint, I think it is a hugely complicated project. Frankly, I doubt 10 billion would even cover the design phase. Torsional stress on a structure increases exponentially with length [think tall buildings]. An anology, giant ants are structurally unsound.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2004
  15. Nov 17, 2004 #14
    Well, ants are not exactly made of nanotubes/buckyballs.
     
  16. Nov 17, 2004 #15

    russ_watters

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    I think you miss the point. An ant that's 1cm long can carry something like a hundred times its own weight, while a much larger ant (not sure how long) wouldn't even be able to support its own structure. The point is that structural support issues scale exponentially: doubling the height of a building requires four times the support structure.

    But that isn't even my biggest cause for skepticisim. They call them nanotubes for a reason: they are small. They need to be able to make them many orders of magnitude longer before you can even hang a chandalier from one. Like enigma said - wake me up when they make one longer than a foot.
     
  17. Nov 17, 2004 #16

    Janitor

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    Off by a factor of at least 10. Probably more like 100.
     
  18. Nov 18, 2004 #17

    drag

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    I believe that if the project is not carried
    out within half a century at most, there'll
    be no need for it later, because there'll be much
    better and simpler options.

    Live long and prosper.
     
  19. Nov 19, 2004 #18
    Wakey Wakey

    ======

    Ok! :surprised WAKE UP!!!! :bugeye:
    Check out:

    http://lifesci3.arc.nasa.gov/SpaceSettlement/Nowicki/

    Status:
    Tethers Unlimited has successfully developed a method of fabricating
    long lengths of Hoytethers. Using this process, we have fabricated
    over fifty kilometers of Hoytether prototypes suitable for use in
    electrodynamic and momentum-exchange tether missions, and tested
    them succesfully in several tether deployment systems.

    Am I reading what I think I'm reading here?
    Just how far along is this approach?
    I better shut up or I might get too excited and start jumping up and
    down.
    ==
    BTW The Hoytether is either patented or in the process of being patented.
     
  20. Nov 20, 2004 #19

    drag

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    I beg your pardon, but do you know what an electrodynamic tether is ?
    Because if you did, you would not involve it in this discussion. :wink:

    Peace and long life.
     
  21. Nov 20, 2004 #20

    russ_watters

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    That isn't a nanotube, its just an interesting design for a conventional tether. Its nowhere near the same thing and is not something that can be used for a space elevator.
     
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