Day 2 (Part 11)

UBC again failed to lift off.  They went up 10-12 feet at the most and then their climber began slipping on the tether again.

This finishes the first round of competition today.  There is going to be an attempt to move the competition climber over to the fairgrounds for some more climbs.  I hope it succeeds, but that’s an awfully big crane and the roads to the fairground aren’t that rolbust.  Let’s keep our fingers crossed.  The tether competition is coming up later today, too.

More soon…

5 thoughts on “Day 2 (Part 11)

  1. scott littlejohn

    any tether update? Our son’s involved with the UBC tether team & the webcast ended without covering it! Help! (and thanks!) -scott

  2. Rob Sutton

    I am horrified and aghast that the Australian news did not cover this history-making, earth-shattering event. They were too busy with the local car race, Indy car.

    I would have liked to have entered an Australian team into the competition next year, but from the sounds of it USST has won it already! Congratulations to them!

  3. Grant

    I have heard about unprofesional scedualing and conduct on the part of Nasa representitives and how the whole xprize was won.
    I have well founded information that teams where not alloted an equal and fair amount of time to set up there elevatiors and allso in the disqualification of the tethers. A point for disbelivers the ubc teather was .5mm to short of the 2 m requirement but the rules give no discrepantsy as to this mesurement. allso the german team got 1 full hour to set up their elevator and my sources on the ground show that ubc only got 15 minites!! WHO IS RUNNING THIS THING!!! there should be some serious look at the managers resonsible for this compition and they should be held accountable. my email is Gnbauld@hotmail. com and i would like to hear any info from anyone else who has heard about these problems and whats being done about them!!

  4. Ted Semon Post author

    Grant – you need to hear the rest of the facts before you start throwing accusations around.

    Fact – the tether competition rules clearly state that the tether must be at least 2 meters long. UBC was not the first team disqualified for this reason. When Centaurus Aerospace was disqualified for the same reason in the match before UBC’s, that should have been ample warning to UBC to be sure that their tether met the requirements. Yes, the judging was pretty strict. But with $200K at stake, the requirements had to be met, not just approximated. Furthermore, when their tether was tested in a “non-title” match, it was weaker than the Centaurus Aerospace tether so it’s not like they lost the prize money on a technicality.

    Fact – UBC was allowed at least 5 attempts on the competition tether; 1 on Friday and 4 on Saturday (in 2 windows of 2 attempts each). None of their attempts were able to climb more than a few meters. I don’t know where your “15 minutes” figure came from. They had more than 15 minutes on Saturday – they had a full half-hour TWICE and made two attempts during each window. I think they had even more time than that on Friday, but I didn’t measure it.

    As to who is “running this thing”, it is the people at The Spaceward Foundation (

    I do truly feel bad for the UBC people. They did a lot of work, came a long way, spent a lot of money and have little to show for it. But I’m sure they’ve learned a lot and I hope they come back next year.

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