Dr. Brad Edwards, co-author of The Space Elevator and Leaving the Planet by Space Elevator, has appeared in two new interviews. These interviews discusses the Space Elevator somewhat, but concentrate much more on nanotechnology in general.
In the first interview, Dr. Edwards briefly discusses the Space Elevator before the conversation turns to developments in nanotechnology. I must disagree with Dr. Edwards on one issue though. When asked why a Space Elevator hasn’t been built yet, he said that it was because a) society is distracted by other things (swine flu, the war in Afghanistan, etc.) and b) NASA is afraid of failure. While both of these may or may not be true, IMHO I think the reason a Space Elevator hasn’t been built yet is the fact that carbon nanotubes just aren’t strong enough yet.
In the second interview, Dr. Edwards states that a carbon nanotube “1/8 inch in diameter could hold 20 tons”. Again, I must disagree with the optimism here. I don’t think such a tether exists. Someday it may (and it better if we ever want to build a space elevator), but it’s not here yet.
But the interviews are interesting and a lot of very futuristic nano-technologies are discussed.