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Inflatable Space Station Launched By Private Company

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posted on Jul, 20 2006 @ 06:49 PM
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I dont remember where I found it...I've had it stored on my pc for years.

And I think companies want there spaceships to look good, If its full of advertisments and different colors and logo's covering it, people wouldn't like its looks...and perhaps fly a different companies spaceship, One that has a cleaner more streamlined look.

And like I said, Nasa gets there money from us (the tax payers), the we (the large majority of tax payers) dont want Space vehicles littered with ads.



CX

posted on Jul, 20 2006 @ 06:54 PM
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Originally posted by PanzerDiv
I honestly wouldnt trust anything inflatable in space!, but good find


Good point, but then again people have been trusting something that falls to bits every time they launch it so this can't any worse.


CX.



posted on Jul, 20 2006 @ 06:56 PM
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That's all right I'll find it.

As for how shuttles look I wasn't talking about private companies I was talking about the ability of NASA if they wanted to to sell ad space and that companies would be more than willing to buy.

Wether they should or not is a different story as I said I personally don't care what it looks like. You could paint TAMPAX on the side of a space craft and I'd still get in it if it were safe enough to get me into space.

I want to go, don't care what they put on the side of the craft. Dignity can come later let's just get there for now.

Just my opinion, I certainly wouldn't subject you to flying aboard the S.S. Maxi(with wings).

Spiderj



posted on Jul, 20 2006 @ 09:52 PM
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Originally posted by CX

Originally posted by PanzerDiv
I honestly wouldnt trust anything inflatable in space!, but good find


Good point, but then again people have been trusting something that falls to bits every time they launch it so this can't any worse.



I can only assume your refering to the shuttle.

I'm not sure why Nasa doesn't just use Britians Space vehicle....oh wait, thats right...they havn't even launched a single person into space.





Originally posted by Spiderj
That's all right I'll find it.

find what? the picture I posted???
Or one that has Coke across the shuttle bay doors? Cause I highly doubt that picture exist...unless you make it.

Oh, and no, I wouldn't fly on a spaceship called anything like that...But thankfully, that would never be a spaceships name.
BTW, It probably isn't allowed to put corporate sponsored logos on the government funded vehicle. And I see that as a damn good thing.



posted on Jul, 20 2006 @ 11:35 PM
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the picture I posted???


Yeah. I'll find it.

Spiderj



posted on Jul, 25 2006 @ 12:16 AM
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Bigelow has released some pics of the inside of Genesis.
Not much to see...but still.




posted on Jul, 25 2006 @ 01:27 AM
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Originally posted by PanzerDiv
I honestly wouldnt trust anything inflatable in space!, but good find


When you consider it logically, any space vehicle containing an atmosphere, that is to say any vehicle designed as a crewed vehicle, is in fact, inflated. It's not like we've taken a chunk of solid metal and somehow "hollowed it out".

I understand your concern, however. Here's an experiment you can try to ease some of your fears:

Take a raw egg. Hold it on a counter-top with one hand, just firmly enough to keep it from rolling away. Now punch it, hard, with your other hand in a fist.

Big mess? Right.

Now try the same thing with a balloon.

Bit harder to burst your balloon, isn't it?



posted on Sep, 2 2006 @ 06:17 PM
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I honestly wouldnt trust anything inflatable in space!, but good find



I cant figure out why they wouldn't use chemical resins and hardeners to solidify and strengthen the walls once they are inflated. A similar process is used in the modern repairing of sewer lines using trench less technology without the need to dig called CIPPL Cure In Place Pipe Lining..

An inflatable composite fabric tube is unrolled into the old rusted pipes by pressure. Once the tube is fully inflated into position a thermosetting resin that is impregnated into the fabric is hardened using heat or UV light. This creates a very solid and very strong pipe liner.

I realize there are differences but the concept is similar.


[edit on 2-9-2006 by Heckman]



posted on Sep, 2 2006 @ 09:40 PM
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If you do that you won't be able to deflate it for return to earth for reconditioning and repairs. Remember you're in space. No amount of hardening will protect your from a micro-meteorite. The only defense against that is self healing textiles and avoidance systems.



posted on Sep, 3 2006 @ 10:15 AM
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you do that you won't be able to deflate it for return to earth for reconditioning and repairs. Remember you're in space. No amount of hardening will protect your from a micro-meteorite. The only defense against that is self healing textiles and avoidance systems.


Your right , but a hard and solid bulkhead can be used for attaching things to the hull on both the inside and outside which is very necessary for efficient use of space. I would think that a solid spacecraft would also be easier to precisely maneuver than a floppy spacecraft but I could be wrong.

What I am describing would be more usefully in the construction of a space stations rather than reentry spacecraft.

I dont see the advantages of having a spacecraft that you could launch into orbit then inflate giving the astronauts more room for experiments.. then deflating and coming back to earth. But wouldn't it be more efficient to simply launch the astronauts to a permanent station with their gear where they can experiment then the only needed reentry is for the astronauts. Isn't this one of the reasons NASA has decided to use the space station and rockets rather than shuttles?


The use of large inflatable and self hardening capsules that could be joined together seems like it would be a very easy and efficient means constructing the hull for a large permanent space station such as a "space hotel" In which case the entire thing could be made from inflatable self hardening sections rather than the need for the construction of the solid core using conventional more difficult and thus more expensive means.



posted on Sep, 3 2006 @ 10:52 AM
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I think the best application would be to use this inflatable craft as a mining tool. WHen resources in one location are used up, deflate, and move to the next place. THe hardening resin wouldn't be useful here, but it definately would be useful for a stationary station.



posted on Sep, 3 2006 @ 11:41 AM
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I think the best application would be to use this inflatable craft as a mining tool. WHen resources in one location are used up, deflate, and move to the next place. THe hardening resin wouldn't be useful here, but it definately would be useful for a stationary station.


Sounds like a effective means of provideing a moveable mineing base.

Demron or similar materials if proven to be effective could likely be woven into the inflatable making an effective and radiation safe movable base like you described. All without the need for thick aluminum lead or similarly solid materials to block radiation.

news.bbc.co.uk...

Self hardening inflatable units might also provide an easier means of constructing hulls for long range spacecraft such as a manned mars mission craft.



[edit on 3-9-2006 by Heckman]



posted on Sep, 4 2006 @ 05:56 AM
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Originally posted by Heckman
Your right , but a hard and solid bulkhead can be used for attaching things to the hull on both the inside and outside which is very necessary for efficient use of space. I would think that a solid spacecraft would also be easier to precisely maneuver than a floppy spacecraft but I could be wrong.


It wouldn't be floppy, air pressure will keep it rigid. Remember the Vacuum?




What I am describing would be more usefully in the construction of a space stations rather than reentry spacecraft.


I still don't really think it's needed. The innerd of the structure can be made modular with docking ports on the front and rear to connect additional modules. Specialized extender modules with a 6 way docking port should be built as well, though this structure will most likely not be inflatable, but due to it's specialized design and purpose, it won't be needed as it will be quite small. It just needs to be big enough to let a couple of people enough elbow room to maneuver around without inconviencing each other.

I also wasn't talking about re-entry craft, but I'll get to that in a sec.



I dont see the advantages of having a spacecraft that you could launch into orbit then inflate giving the astronauts more room for experiments.. then deflating and coming back to earth. But wouldn't it be more efficient to simply launch the astronauts to a permanent station with their gear where they can experiment then the only needed reentry is for the astronauts. Isn't this one of the reasons NASA has decided to use the space station and rockets rather than shuttles?


You missed my point entirely. What happens to a space station when it's no longer needed? Think Mir. I was just considering a way to reduce the amount of wastage that goes on with projects such as these. Wouldn't it have been nice to be able to deflate Mir and put it on the shuttle to take back down to earth to put on display for posterity? Another point is that when each module becomes obsolete or damaged beyond orbital repair, they can just deflate it and send it back to earth for repairs. Much less wastefull then splashing them into the ocean...



[edit on 4-9-2006 by sardion2000]

[edit on 4-9-2006 by sardion2000]



posted on Sep, 4 2006 @ 04:44 PM
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You missed my point entirely. What happens to a space station when it's no longer needed? Think Mir. I was just considering a way to reduce the amount of wastage that goes on with projects such as these. Wouldn't it have been nice to be able to deflate Mir and put it on the shuttle to take back down to earth to put on display for posterity?

Thats a good point. It would be nice.


Another point is that when each module becomes obsolete or damaged beyond orbital repair, they can just deflate it and send it back to earth for repairs. Much less wasteful then splashing them into the ocean...

When the fabric layers get so damaged that it is considered unsafe and or obsolete then there will be a need for a whole new inflatable . Remember these materials are composite fabrics there is a limit to the amount of patching that can be done. After so much of the weaving is damaged and fatigued there isn't any real way of repairing it. It just has to be replaced. (Patching can be done in orbit.)


There are many advantages to having a solid bulkhead in different applications. Such as the ability to attach things to the hull , rigid construction for maneuvering , easier repairing if the hull is punctured...
There are also obviously uses also for an "soft" inflatable craft that can be deflated and moved such as for mining bases.
For those craft needing a solid hull an inflatable self hardening hull would be a easier way of assembling one in orbit than conventional means.


It wouldn't be floppy, air pressure will keep it rigid.

While the air pressure will hold its shape the inflatable will by no means be rigid. It will have a drastic amount of flex and wobble compared to a solid craft unless some sort of frame is constructed to make it rigid. (Which requires more work , assembly , disassembly...)


Remember the Vacuum?

I'm quite aware that space is a vacuum



posted on Sep, 4 2006 @ 04:59 PM
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Originally posted by Rasobasi420
news.bbc.co.uk...

This is amazing. I wonder why NASA scrubbed the plans so early? The basic idea is an inflatable space station, that can be sent into space at a relatively small size, then filled with compressed air once in orbit.


An inflatable spacecraft that could form the basis of a future space hotel has blasted into space.

The Genesis craft has been built by commercial company Bigelow Aerospace, set up by hotel tycoon Robert Bigelow.

The folded experimental module launched from Siberia on a converted Russian intercontinental ballistic missile.


And a much better use of an ICBM in my oppinion.


how would you feel safer? floating around in space in a tin can or floating around in a baloon? and what happens when a small debris going really fast hit the baloon?
nasa was smart to abandon it. if it was a good idea "deep space nine" would be inflatable.



posted on Sep, 4 2006 @ 10:45 PM
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and what happens when a small debris going really fast hit the baloon?


That was discussed in the article as well as in this thread on the first page.

1st page 4th post down by Dr Leary:


It is built around a rigid central core and two solid bulkheads. The inflatable walls are composed of a range of materials including Kevlar, often used in bullet-proof vests, and a fibrous textile called Vectran.

The craft is strengthened to resist collisions with space debris
The walls are designed to be airtight and tough, to withstand the impact of space debris and small meteorites.


On a full-scale module, each wall would be 40cm (16 inches) thick.

I doubt even the space shuttle has 16 inches thick walls. Is a 1 inch wall of metal any safer?


Also by sardion2000 1st page

BTW It doesn't matter how thick the walls are, because if a meteorite hits it, it will cut through any thickness of metal(that we can feasibly launch into orbit) like a hot knife through butter. Having self healing textiles incorporated into the structure makes a lot of sense.


Worksoftplayhard:


how would you feel safer? floating around in space in a tin can or floating around in a baloon?


Thus the reason that I proposed the use of a self hardening inflatable hull using the same strong materials only with hardening resin.

a. has the benefits of being compact for launching into orbit.

b. minimal assembly in orbit required , just blow it up and apply heat.

c. you end up with a standard solid hull constructed out of very strong composite materials.



posted on Sep, 5 2006 @ 07:11 AM
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I was also thinking of it's applications in conjunction with a space tether. I know that has been put on hold until we can find a material strong, and durable enough for the tether itself, but as for as it's orbital platform, a structure like this would be ideal.



posted on Sep, 5 2006 @ 05:06 PM
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I was also thinking of it's applications in conjunction with a space tether. I know that has been put on hold until we can find a material strong, and durable enough for the tether itself, but as for as it's orbital platform, a structure like this would be ideal.


Thats another great idea! It seems there are many possibilities for inflatable technology.

I found some interesting information on inflatable tech / history.



Dr. William Schneider joined NASA in 1962 and went on to work as an Aerospace Engineer working on flight components for Apollo. He moved through different divisions at JSC until he was made Senior Engineer for Space Systems and Assistant Director for Engineering. In 1997 he created the basic architecture for the Transit Habitat or TransHab for short.

TransHab was designed to transport six astronauts on an interplanetary trip, such as a Mars mission. It was then chosen as a possible habitation module for the International Space Station in order to prove the concept.

A team of engineers, architects, and human factors experts at the Johnson Space Center developed the best size and layout for the spacecraft. TransHab was the first space habitat with a endoskeleton. It consisted of a dual system: a light, reconfigurable central structure and a deployable pressure shell. In order to deal with the riggers of space, the shell was made of several layers, each with its own specific purpose.

The layers allowed the TransHab, when inflated, to withstand up to 4 atmospheres, or 54 PSI, of pressure differential between interior and exterior. The shell also provides insulation from temperatures in space that can range from plus 121 degrees Celsius, or 250 degrees Fahrenheit, in the Sun to -128 degrees Celsius, or -200 degrees Fahrenheit, on the dark side. All this, while allowing 13,000 ft3 to fit a launch configuration of 14 ft in diameter. A standard exoskeleton would have a diameter of roughly 27 feet.

All these benefits made TransHab a potential miracle to NASA's Mars Design Reference Mission (DRM), as the crew habitat for the journey between planets. The plan was to launch the TransHab in a space shuttle bay, deflated, and packaged tight; once in orbit it can be unfolded, inflated, and deployed.

However, as Congress is apt to do in a budget crunch, TransHab was canceled in 2000. This is not the end of the story, but the beginning.

spacepragmatism.blogspot.com...









[edit on 5-9-2006 by Heckman]



posted on Sep, 6 2006 @ 01:07 AM
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Have you ever come into contact with any inflatable structures on Earth? We have tennis courts made of this material by the waterfront and they are extremely rigid and could easily support external attachments(and some did like Satellite dishes). It'd be more of an engineering challenge to do it on a structure like that.



posted on Sep, 6 2006 @ 04:25 PM
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We have tennis courts made of this material by the waterfront and they are extremely rigid and could easily support external attachments(and some did like Satellite dishes). It'd be more of an engineering challenge to do it on a structure like that.


I have never come into contact with an inflatable that felt like a solid or rigid object. However I also have never seen those tennis courts you speak of. What pressure were the courts inflated to??? It must have a very high pressure to feel like a solid material. Assuming that the space vessel has the same atmospheric pressure inside as the earth does at sea level then it would be 14.7 psi. The inflatable will hold its shape in a vacuum with 14.7psi. However during a movement change the only thing that will hold the vessel "rigid" would be 14.7psi... In my experiences with inflatables I have noticed that when they are moved they tend to flex and wobble. If you attach objects to a hull such as solar panels and radio masts then they will cause the inflatable to flex and wobble even more.

BTW how were the satellite dishes attached to the tennis structure?


Have you ever come into contact with any inflatable structures on Earth

The only inflatable structures that I have come into direct contact with are inflatable paintball forts/buildings and smaller bunkers. I have patched holes, repaired air valves , fixed leaking seams, inflated , deflated , moved them and set them up many times.

I'm simply trying to point out a possible method of constructing solid hulls in orbit by the use of self hardening inflatable technology and some possible advantages that it would have over conventional techniques. For many applications all else being equal a solid rigid hull would be better than a soft flexible one and vice versa.

One advantage of keeping an inflatable vessel soft would be that it is a bit lighter than resin impregnated materials. Also the process of hardening resin impregnated materials would make the initial setup more a bit more complicated. There are advantages and disadvantages either way.



[edit on 6-9-2006 by Heckman]



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