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

Dan dan_ust at yahoo.com
Fri Jun 12 18:09:04 UTC 2009

--- On Fri, 6/12/09, Damien Broderick <thespike at satx.rr.com> wrote:
> At 09:30 AM 6/12/2009 -0700, Keith wrote:
>> For a serious structure, drag from wind is going to be
>> immense.  Some places on the equator have a fairly
>> steady wind out of the east.
> Here are two intensely simple-minded and ignorant
> questions:
> In view of wind drag, would there be any merit in building
> the thing *behind* the wind shield of a big mountain range,
> rather than on top of one? I guess the wind kicks in equally
> on the portion above the mountain tops, but perhaps the base
> would be more sturdy if somewhat shielded.

Might be good, though I wonder if, in some of these cases, the wind might, at high altitudes, be worse on the leeward side of a large mountain range.
> Could wind help *lift* the tower if it has nicely shaped
> computer adjusted aerofoils jutting out from it all the way
> up, orthogonal to the wind?

That actually sounds like a good idea to my untutored ear.  :)

Also, aren't there certain areas on the planet where the wind is relatively nonvariable?  I think that might be the best place to put this -- if the structure is basically to stay in place.  No having wind change would make the engineering and control easier, in my view.  (Of course, I don't mean find a place where the wind is constantly 120 kph in a westerly direction and deal with it.:)




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