Monthly Archives: April 2006

Another skeptic…

I just ran across this interesting thread, discussing the possibilty (or not) of a Space Elevator.  One of the contributors, an “nhughes1” (who states that he is a long-time Aerospace Engineer) declares that a Space Elevator is flatly impossible.  The last post on the thread is nearly 9 months old.

I’m not a Physics major, so I can’t comment on his calculations.  I wish I knew his email address – I’d refer him to the Edwards / Westling book and ask him for his comments.

Anchoring the Space Elevator in the Atlantic Ocean?

As mentioned in the LiftPort April, 2006 Technical Newsletter, Jasper Bouwmeester, an Aerospace Engineering student in the Netherlands, will be interning at LiftPort this summer.  The Newsletter describes a Space Elevator concept project that Jasper and his team did, with one of their conclusions being that the Space Elevator should be anchored in the Atlantic Ocean.  The Newsletter contains a link to the paper created – you can also find it here.  It’s well worth the read.

Google Earth Space Elevator

I’ve not played around with the Google Earth Tool (though my 13-year old son downloaded it and creeped out my wife by being able to zoom into our house), but now I have a reason to.  Over at GoogleEarthBlog, FrankTaylor has posted a 3D Space Elevator model, GoogleEarth ready.  Very cool.

As soon as I can get my son to quit modding up his XBOX (again), maybe he can take pity on me and show me how to use this.

Da Vinci Exhibit Opening At Science And Industry reports that an exhibit honoring the life and works of Leonardo Da Vinci has opened at Chicago’s Museum of Science & Industry.  It’s a 4-part exhibit; the fourth part highlights “40 modern Leonardo’s” with one of them being Brad Edwards.  Tickets are $21.00 and the exhibit is open until September 4th.

The Museum of Science & Industry is a cool place, but has gotten a bit dated as of late.  They’ve been working to update their exhibits and, as a Chicago-area resident, I’m looking forward to seeing this one.

Earlier mention of Rep. Mollohan and ISR

While perusing the July, 2004 issue of Discover Magazine, I found this paragraph.

The office of the world’s leading space elevator designer is across the street from the Foxx Pawn Shop in the somewhat frayed downtown of Fairmont, West Virginia. The little mining community of 19,000—hit hard by the 1990 Clean Air Act, which made the local sulfurous coal a tough sell—aims to become a high-tech hub, helped by lashings of funds from Congressman Alan Mollohan, a ranking member of the House Appropriations Committee. Edwards is director of research for the Institute for Scientific Research, a four-year-old technology development house headquartered here in a new, cool, rather spartan office building. The space elevator is the most prominent of a dozen projects on the institute’s agenda.

This is the earliest mention I’ve found, so far, of Rep. Mollohan’s funding of ISR.

Affordable to the Individual Space Flight

This web site has evidently been in existence for some time (since 1998?), but I just stumbled across it today.  It purports to describe a concept where with “today’s technology”, humanity could build a system which would make space flight much more affordable.  The key concept is a “Earth Orbiting Elevator”, a skyhook.  The author doesn’t describe what the “Elevator” would be made of, but it’s an interesting site nonetheless.

LiftPort April, 2006 Technical Newsletter released

In this issue, LiftPort Research Director Tom Nugent mentions a proposal written by 10 Aerospace Engineering Students in the Netherlands to build a Space Elevator in the Atlantic Ocean.  He also reminds us that he will be presenting at the International Space Development Conference in Los Angeles on May 4th.  The Newsletter can be found here.

Maybe the NY Times Figured We Wouldn’t Notice

Dennis Byrne, a columnist for the Chicago Sun Times, also has his own blog.  In a posting yesterday, he comments on how the NY Times and the Wall Street Journal reported the story of West Virginia Democratic congressman Alan Mollohand and how he’s funded numerous non-profits with taxpayer dollars.  One of the non-profits he’s funded is the Institute for Scientific Research (ISR) and, earlier today, I noted a story from another blogger stating that some of the money has been earmarked for Space Elevator development.

I think this story has legs and we’re going to be hearing more about it soon…

Stairway to Heaven: Space Elevators, Platinum, and the Hydrogen Economy.

The Space Elevator concept must be gaining traction – it’s now getting politicized.  Some weeks ago, James Miller, an Assistant Professor of Economics at Smith College, proposed in his article “Elevating Elephants”, that the Republicans should adopt a campaign plank in support of a Space Elevator.  Today at DailyKos, ManFromMiddletown posted an article that discussed energy alternatives and talked in favorable terms about the problems that a Space Elevator could solve.  The author refers to the Miller article as coming from the “Dark Side”.  He mentions LiftPort and believes that the Space Elevator should be built by an International Coalition.

Extra! Extra! makes the Space Blogroll!

And, today I find out that this blog has been added to Robot Guy’s Space Blogroll.  Thanks!  And thanks for the work to put the Space Blogroll together.

I’ve added the Space Blogroll to my links and, as soon as I get competent in php, I’ll figure out a way to post it in it’s entirety rather than as just a link.


NASA Needs You! (and you and you and you…)

One Big Mutation also comments on the NY Times story about the NASA Centennial Challenges. This exact same blog entry can also be found at Museum of Mahem, here, in this blog entry from Circle of Tripe, in this blog entry from Darn Tasty and in many others. No, I don’t know why other than the fact that someone seems to have too much time on their hand.