[extropy-chat] Space elevator numbers III

David Masten dmasten at piratelabs.org
Sat Feb 17 06:07:54 UTC 2007

Getting back to the original posts:

On Wed, 2007-02-14 at 14:19 -0500, Keith Henson wrote:
> Also, unless the satellites are maneuverable, nothing 
> below the counterweight can coexist with a space elevator regime.

Any orbit having a repeating groundtrack that does not intersect the
elevator can contain satellites without worry. For example, the GPS sats
don't need to be moved.

Also, the ribbon tether folks claim (and they have provided enough
theoretical evidence to convince me) that a mobile sea platform allows
the tether to be moved to avoid satellites that pose a risk to the
tether. The question then is: do the dynamics of a pulley system allow
similar translational control over the tether system? 

> Van Allen belt radiation not only presents a radiation hazard to workers, 
> but degrades solar cells and electronics.  The total mass of particles in 
> the Van Allen belts is a few kg.  There has been a proposal to drain the 
> inner belt, http://www.tethers.com/HiVOLT.html but in any case a project 
> with a daily mass budget 3 orders of magnitude higher that the particle 
> mass in the belt should be able to deal with them.

Other solutions include a lightweight protective coating to the tether
system. Non-biological payloads do not need much protection.


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