[ExI] Inflatable tower could climb to the edge of space

Dan dan_ust at yahoo.com
Mon Jun 8 16:45:21 UTC 2009

--- On Mon, 6/8/09, Dave Sill <sparge at gmail.com> wrote:
> http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20227117.000-inflatable-tower-could-climb-to-the-edge-of-space.html
> "A GIANT inflatable tower could carry people to the edge of
> space
> without the need for a rocket, and could be completed much
> sooner than
> a cable-based space elevator, its proponents claim.
> Inflatable pneumatic modules already used in some
> spacecraft could be
> assembled into a 15-kilometre-high tower, say Brendan
> Quine, Raj Seth
> and George Zhu at York University in Toronto, Canada,
> writing in Acta
> Astronautica (DOI: 10.1016/j.actaastro.2009.02.018). If
> built from a
> suitable mountain top it could reach an altitude of around
> 20
> kilometres, where it could be used for atmospheric
> research, tourism,
> telecoms or launching spacecraft."

I wonder what load it could support.  I don't think such a tower need reach 200 km to be of use.  One only a few tens of km tall and that could, I guess, support a decent-sized booster near the top might be used to launch people and payloads onto orbit from a very high altitude.




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