Over the past 50 years, getting to space hasn’t become any easier technically speaking. It still requires using huge rockets to create a massive enough amount of force to push a payload beyond the grip of Earth’s gravity.
A space elevator is just the thing that is needed to open up the high frontier of space.
A working space elevator is still not a reality as of yet. But some of the most intelligent and imaginative minds on Earth have been looking into the logistics of building such a space elevator. Rich DeVaul, head of Google X’s Rapid Evaluation team, has confirmed for the first time ever that Google’s super hush-hush R&D lab actually tried to design one.
Hiatchi designs world’s fastest elevator
Hitachi is stepping up efforts to finalize the design of the world’s fastest elevator. In April, it will open the 213-metre tall G1 Tower in Japan, where it will conduct verification tests on an elevator with a speed of 1,080 metres per minute (m/min).
David Bashford, lead of the LaserMotive team, preparing their robotic climber entry in the $2 million Space Elevator Games
A robot powered by a ground-based laser beam climbed a long cable dangling from a helicopter on Wednesday to qualify for prize money in a $2 million competition to test the potential reality of the science fiction concept of space elevators. (Videos)
A giant pneumatic structure could let people climb 20 km without the need for a rocket
A GIANT inflatable tower could carry people to the edge of space without the need for a rocket, and could be completed much sooner than a cable-based space elevator, its proponents claim.
As urban areas become more congested and dense, it becomes more challenging for city dwellers to spend time outdoors, exercise and relax. Buildings tower over public parks, blocking out the sun, while city streets are polluted with particulate matter and exhaust from vehicles. To cope with the growing need for green urban space, San Francisco-based designer Joanna Borek-Clement has envisioned these eye-popping Sky-Terra skyscrapers – not just a single building, but a network of interconnected towers that are inspired by the shape of neuron cells. This skyscraper superstructure provides a new city layer – one covered in public parks, amphitheaters, fields, and public pools and bathhouses. (Pics)
Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson host of the NOVA scienceNOW PBS program
From a half billion kilometers away, the message was powerful. In 1994, fragments of the Shoemaker-Levy 9 comet slammed into Jupiter. The earth-size fireballs ejected into space were captured and relayed back to be seen again and again in Internet replay. The message: we need a foothold in space if our species is to survive.
The project is a “space elevator,” and some experts now believe that the concept is well within the bounds of possibility — maybe even within our lifetimes. (Pics)
The idea of a space elevator made of ultra-strong carbon nanotubes has been talked about a lot over the past several years, but recently some research groups have begun to investigate the idea as a real possibility. Most recently, scientists from Japan have started an organization called the Japan Space Elevator Association, and they plan to host an international conference in November to draw up a timetable for the machine.
Christened the Signterior by its creator, Shanghai-based architect Nobuhiro Nakamura of A-Asterisk, the name is a blend of the words “signage” and “interior.”
Scary! Very scary!
The longest smoke break of Nicholas White’s life began at around eleven o’clock on a Friday night in October, 1999. White, a thirty-four-year-old production manager at Business Week, working late on a special supplement, had just watched the Braves beat the Mets on a television in the office pantry. Now he wanted a cigarette. He told a colleague he’d be right back and, leaving behind his jacket, headed downstairs.
If an elevator stretching from Earth into space could ever be built, it could slash the cost of space travel. But a controversial new study suggests that building and maintaining one would be an even bigger challenge than previously thought, because it would need to include built-in thrusters to stabilize itself against dangerous vibrations.
Photos and video after the jump.