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Space Elevator - Won't Happen

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posted on Jun, 3 2005 @ 04:22 PM
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Originally posted by Murcielago
If the cable snaps in the middle (for whatever reason), it will settle back down to earth, because its lightness, it would be how most imagine, which is a steel cable come whiping down from a hurdred miles up, slicing people in two.


Do you have any statistics or data regarding the speed of the spaceelevator ribbon and it's potetioal velocity upon impact?

From what I have been reading most anything above 1000 km is going ot disitigrate, while the rest below is going to break up. But most of that problem of impact , both in human life, and property damage can be avoided by moving it off shore a few hundred miles like they are proposing.

If really needed the could probly have misile interceptors on standby to destroy anyhting that could even impact on land




posted on Jun, 3 2005 @ 07:37 PM
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Originally posted by Murcielago
If the cable snaps in the middle (for whatever reason), it will settle back down to earth, because its lightness, it would be how most imagine, which is a steel cable come whiping down from a hurdred miles up, slicing people in two.


Errr... a bit off with the cable's mass. It will not just float down. It might even whip down. The molar mass of Iron [Fe] is around 3500 g/mol (too lazy to get the real numbers, but I remember it being close to that) which is very heavy and would definately whip down to earth. A mole of carbon nanotubes is about (well, real numbers don't really exist but based on my calculations) ~750 g/mol. About a fourth of the mass, substantualy smaller but still quite heavy. I think it's strenth and careful engineering will prevent it from snapping in the first place.

ohh.. another thing, there may be people in the orbiting station once they get more settled with the space elevator concept. They would put safety at top priorty and definately work towards that. If the cable snaps and your up there, well your screwed. You'll either get swung into space if you have enough velocity, or burn up in the atmosphere.

[edit on 6/3/2005 by GoldEagle]



posted on Jun, 3 2005 @ 07:55 PM
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the space elevator ribbon is not made out of pure carbon nano tubes, but the nano tubes and epoxy that binds them together. Nano tubes and the expoxy startti break down above 600 degrees which is why it breaks up.

Okay, now I know you know nothing about the space elevator when you think the orbiting achor station will come crashing down from obit., or be flung into space. are are just coming up with ideas without thinking about to be a "Devils advocate" about the program

[edit on 6/3/2005 by Jehosephat]



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 03:12 AM
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Originally posted by Murcielago
If the cable snaps in the middle (for whatever reason), it will settle back down to earth, because its lightness, it would be how most imagine, which is a steel cable come whiping down from a hurdred miles up, slicing people in two.

yes...i'm quoting myself.

I meant to say it WOULDN'T be how most imagine. sorry for the misleading typo.

because of the cables flatness, and lightness it would fall down to earth at a slow pace. It it hit you, you wouldn't be de-capitated, you wouldn't have broken bones, you would be fine. But, because of weather it will be out at sea, which is good, because otherwise there would be a fair share of lunatics saying "Its gonna rip and cut buildings in half...RUUUUUN!!!"

[edit on 4-6-2005 by Murcielago]



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 08:59 AM
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It being flat would increase surface area and make it decend slower. But it wheighs alot still. Miles of anything landing on you would surly cause a bit more than broken bones. Just a fourth the mass of iron cables. It being a ribbon will save lots of lives because it will either burn up most of it, or decend slower giving people time to move out if it's way.

Josephat, you right about that devils advicate thing, just keeping you people alert.

[edit on 6/4/2005 by GoldEagle]



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 10:15 PM
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Originally posted by GoldEagle
But it wheighs alot still. Miles of anything landing on you would surly cause a bit more than broken bones.
[edit on 6/4/2005 by GoldEagle]


miles of it wouldn't land on you, just a small portion of it would, like a few feet. Of course miles and miles of a light ribbon will add up to be reletively heavy, but only a yard or so would land on you (if it hit you), think of a peice of rope, a normal smallish rope, not some big thick one used on tugboats, and have someone standing at the top of a skyscrapper, and have him unravel the spool of rope until it reaches the ground, then have him let go of the rope, while a 1000 ft of rope is pretty heavy, having it spread out it would gently fall down to earth, and no taxi's would be cut in half in the process.


thats the best analogy I could thinks of.....but take my word for it, it would do no damage, it would be as deadly as some one throwing a sheet of paper out there high-rise window.

edit: I just want to point out that it will not be in a city or even on land, but in the ocean. But...If say 100 feet of cable lands on top of you (which it wouldn't, at least not nearly that much anyway), that 100 feet will weight in at a very very heavy .5 lbs. thats right a half a pound...and that 100 feet of it.

[edit on 4-6-2005 by Murcielago]



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 10:33 PM
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I think the destruction scenerio is fairly moot. There is risk in every proposition like this, however if we are going to progress as a race we have to take some risks. It will no doubt be less dangerous then lighting a rocket under your legs and hoping you make it; these space elevators are the future, lets build them!



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 11:10 PM
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agreed. Just think how much damage the shuttle could have done if it broke up deeper in the atmopshere and larger chucks rained over the southern united states. It did plently by breaking up where it did.

The gain of a space elevator for interpalnetary recorces and exploration far outwieght the risks of a ribbon crashing back down on earth.

You think people in California wouldn't build near a fault line, or Mudslide, but they do because they are willing to accept the risks or dont care



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 11:20 PM
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If this think does get built, I doubt that it will ever snap. They would put much care in it's development and this in many cases is enough to prevent it from coming down to earth. Remember these people are engineers, we should trust them to these things, because they have the know hows to attack these problems.

So lets rule out the possibilty of this thing snapping already and address some other issues.

[edit on 6/4/2005 by GoldEagle]



posted on Jun, 4 2005 @ 11:27 PM
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.
I am guessing you could build some kind of tower using somekind of rigid carbon nanotubes. Im not sure how high or if it would be worth it.

The idea that a flat ribbon will float down [somewhat] points out that crosswind considerations will be pretty relevant. Imagine wind stress on 1000 miles of a 10000 mile cable/ribbon.

The idea of a solar power source [from the illustrations] makes sense, because that way you don't have to carry any fuel. The Solar cells themselves would need to be pretty light though.

What about lightning strikes? Wouldn't carbon be a semi-conductor?
.



posted on Jun, 5 2005 @ 06:50 PM
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What about lightning strikes? Wouldn't carbon be a semi-conductor?


Its location see little, to no, lightning.

BUT...no one knows yet what will happen...but theres a good chance that it would break.



posted on Jun, 5 2005 @ 07:00 PM
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www.npr.org...

Here is a good piece on something called "Skyhooks" havn't listened to it yet but it seems like another plan for developing a space elevator. Allot of people are taking this serously... just talked to an electrical engineer the other day and he seemed worried about induction current causing molecular tearing. Unfortunately he didn't go into any details as I was sort of pressed for time but it's another problem to consider.

EDIT: Here is the /. story that tipped me off to this story

science.slashdot.org.../06/05/2048210&from=rss

There is some great commentary in the comments section that everyone should check out.

[edit on 5-6-2005 by sardion2000]



posted on Jun, 5 2005 @ 07:02 PM
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The chance that it might break is still there and this may be quite the push factor for the elevator project.

Carbon Nanotube + Epoxy break up at near 600 Degrees? Pretty low if you ask me. Your going to see a label on the thing saying - Caution: Keep away from open flame. Are you sure of this?

[edit on 6/5/2005 by GoldEagle]



posted on Jun, 5 2005 @ 09:07 PM
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look at my link.

Tho i think it was in celsius. In all honesty there really isn't much of a reason to make it heat resisitant. Spaceshipone just had some ablative paint for its reentry.



posted on Jun, 5 2005 @ 09:58 PM
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Originally posted by sardion2000
just talked to an electrical engineer the other day and he seemed worried about induction current causing molecular tearing. Unfortunately he didn't go into any details as I was sort of pressed for time but it's another problem to consider.

[edit on 5-6-2005 by sardion2000]


I read somewhere that carbon nanotubes aren't the greatest of conductors, and I belive that it wont be much of a problem. but im the wrong kind of engineer to come to that conclusion.

[edit on 6/5/2005 by GoldEagle]



posted on Jun, 5 2005 @ 10:28 PM
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while i dont know anything about the temp...600C is 1112F.

The only bad thing with that reletively low temp (1112F), is that if in the future terrorist get there hands on a laser...but thats at least 50 years away.



posted on Jun, 6 2005 @ 01:01 PM
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Just found a link to an interview with Dr. Brad Edwards discussing the latest developments with the space elevator concept:

www.thespaceshow.com...

I have not listened to the interview yet so i can't give you my opinion, enjoy!



posted on Jun, 6 2005 @ 01:42 PM
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I teach a section of Nanotechnology at my university (about STM, AFM, and other kinds of microscopy), and someone brought up the space elevator. We all had a good laugh.

A lab here is to make carbon nanotubes. The students realize how difficult it would be to create an appreciable amount of them.



posted on Jun, 6 2005 @ 06:00 PM
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No offense.. but this idea is the worst... back to the drawing board.



posted on Jun, 6 2005 @ 07:21 PM
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Originally posted by Jehosephat

Tho i think it was in celsius.


I use only SI units and I'm Canadian, I only use Celsius. Just in case any of you people are confused when I used temprature before. I have a habit of just saying degrees and not mentioning that it's Celsius, sorry about that. I assume everyone uses SI units. But it think the official SI unit for temprature is Kelvin, can't remember, that was high school stuff.

I'm going to have to address an issue T_Jesus mentioned. Carbon nanotubes are a hell to make in even minute quantities, how do they plan to mass produce them and develop the technology in so little time? I read what "they" said but it dosen't quite cut it for me.


[edit on 6/6/2005 by GoldEagle]




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