[ExI] Space Project (power satellites)

Adrian Tymes atymes at gmail.com
Fri Aug 7 23:30:02 UTC 2020

On Fri, Aug 7, 2020 at 3:37 PM Keith Henson via extropy-chat <
extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:

> Adrian Tymes <atymes at gmail.com> wrote:
> > Data source, please?
> Table in Wikipedia, simple spreadsheet.


> This problem has been
> recognized since the late 78s.

Your problem statement presumes data that substantially conflicts with the
data I am aware of.  Also, the orbital debris environment has changed
significantly since the 1970s (assuming that's what "78s" is a typo for).

> That a single satellite going LEO->GEO will on
> average be hit 40 times seems way higher than is supported by the data I am
> aware of - which is that most satellites going from LEO to GEO get hit zero
> times.
> Comm satellites have dimensions of meters and an area of tens of
> square meters.  They also go up fast, a few hours.  Power satellites
> have dimensions in the 10 km range, areas in the tens of square km,
> and (if self powered) take weeks to months to go from LEO to GEO.

This makes so many assumptions...

1) Slower I can buy.  You mean they're using their own power to power ion
engines  (or arcjets, or other electric rockets) as a cost saving measure,

2) Send them up in smaller pieces, designed to teleassemble on GEO.  That
way, if one of them does get hit it doesn't take out nearly as much of a
satellite - and it has an easier time dodging.

3) If they're self powered, they can carry (or be towed by something with)
lasers powerful enough to deflect smaller space debris, and evade large
debris (which they should have a lot more warning about).

> A power satellite has km scale dimensions, a mass of around
> 30,000 tons and is flimsy.  I don't think a multi km faring or a
> rocket big enough to put 30,000 tons in LEO is in the cards.

You're making a lot of other hardware for this project, why not a 30 k-ton
launch vehicle?

> > I wonder if there's enough data to estimate the cost of setting up a
> lunar
> construction facility, building the satellites there, then launching (fully
> assembled) from the Moon to GEO.
> I would say this is way beyond what can be done with existing engineering.

I wouldn't, not given some of the existing engineering I've seen just in
the past few months.  But then, I may be using a wider version of
"existing", considering we're already talking about using many other things
that don't already exist but we know how to make them.
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.extropy.org/pipermail/extropy-chat/attachments/20200807/50fc79e0/attachment.htm>

More information about the extropy-chat mailing list