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Triangles, Bridges And Centripetal Space Habitats

  1. Sep 14, 2005 #1
    Making metal bridges from steel triangles is a very good idea because triangles are one of the strongest known shapes. My question is, would making a bicycle wheel-like space station's foundation braced with lots of triangles of whatever construction material is used(carbon fiber, aluminum, titanium etc.) make the space station be able to handle higher rotational speed without flying apart than using an unbraced sheet of material as the station's foundation?
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 15, 2005 #2
    To a degree this could help. However, there is a limit to the angular velocity with which a ring can safely rotate. There are tangental and normal stresses that are imparted on a spinning disk. So a strut system could help distribute the stresses due to rotation.

    FYI: This is why you won't see a CD-ROM speed faster than 72x because that is the rotational speed at which the acrylic the disk is made from fails (and the 72x drives have a hardened steel case to prevent flying acrylic shards... of death).

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