Yes I know, I haven’t posted in several days. There’s just not much going on right now in the Space Elevator ‘world’ that is visible right now.
There IS progress being made behind the scenes, however, with the Climber / Power-Beaming competition in the Space Elevator Games. As most of you know, problems occurred during the previous two tests of the competition raceway – these problems were chronicled (here and here) on this blog and in many other places in the blogosphere. A somewhat redesigned system along with a different helicopter pilot is set for testing this weekend. I really wish I could be there to report on it firsthand, but I have a previous engagement that I just can’t break.
I don’t want to go into all of the details of the new system – I’ll let Ben do that on his Space Elevator Games Blog – but I will say that it is simpler than the previous one. The people at the NASA-Dryden research center think this new way is the way to go (they were involved in the design modifications) and I, from my limited viewpoint, also think this new system has a much better chance of success.
So, wish Ben and the rest of the team good luck this weekend. If all goes well, we’ll be able to schedule the competition in the next few weeks and finally get to see some kilometer long, laser-powered, vertical climbs – and NASA will finally be able to hand out some prize-money in the Space Elevator Games.
(Crossed fingers picture from here)