[ExI] delaware to california

spike spike66 at att.net
Wed Jul 12 18:20:23 UTC 2017

-----Original Message-----
From: extropy-chat [mailto:extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org] On Behalf Of BillK
Sent: Wednesday, July 12, 2017 9:16 AM
To: ExI chat list <extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org>
Subject: Re: [ExI] delaware to california

On 12 July 2017 at 16:20, spike  wrote:
>>… Is there a way to haul the ice to where it would get in an ocean 
>>current  that would carry it to California?...spike

>...This iceberg is too big to tow. Putting stuff on the iceberg is also risky as they tend to split up or flip over as they warm up and start melting...

Could we split off a piece of it intentionally?  Look for a crack forming somewhere, then use fracking technology?  Or inject seawater into a crack, saltwater melts the freshwater ice, split off a piece, go haul it to wherever the currents are likely to carry it.

>... There are also lots of small icebergs around down there that ships would have to avoid...

Eh, perhaps not necessarily.  If the capital invested isn't too crazy high, perhaps the ships could take their time, keep their speeds low enough that floating ice isn't much of a hazard.  How about those old WW2 battleships?  Take those guns off of there, that should be plenty of payload capacity for a few km of 2 cm diameter steel cable.  Create a harpoon made of something as simple as a Diesel-fired heated tip, drop it ten meters into the ice, spring loaded barbs, that should hold up to the tensile strength of a 2 cm diameter cable.  

My European friends, do pardon if I drop into weird units for a minute, for I learned most of my mechanical engineering using American-made stuff, which is measured in inches, feet, furlongs, rods, hogsheads and such.  One inch diameter cable is good for a steady 80k pounds force with safety margin, that stuff weighs a couple pounds per foot so about 10k per mile, about 50k pounds of cable should be plenty so your battlewagon converted to Iceman-Cometh could haul that easily with the weight of a single one of the 16ers removed and could stay off a safe distance from the ice.  Double it for the weight of the winches needed to haul in the cable and the Diesels needed to drive the winches, another 100k pounds perhaps.

>...This is a favourite topic - search tow icebergs...BillK

Thanks BillK!

So now I need to figure out what kind of velocity to expect if we have about a steady 50k pounds force horizontal on a hunk of ice.


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