Space Tethers and Space Elevators - ISBN: 9780387765563 - (ebook) - von Michel van Pelt, Verlag: Copernicus - Details - OvW eBook Shop

Details

Space Tethers and Space Elevators



von: Michel van Pelt

32,12 €

Verlag: Copernicus
Format: PDF
Veröffentl.: 12.06.2009
ISBN/EAN: 9780387765563
Sprache: englisch
Anzahl Seiten: 215

DRM-geschütztes eBook, Sie benötigen z.B. Adobe Digital Editions und eine Adobe ID zum Lesen.

Beschreibungen

Michel van Pelt explains for the first time the principle of space tethers: what they are and how they can be used in space. He introduces non-technical space enthusiasts to the various possibilities and feasibility of space tethers including the technological challenges and potential benefits. He illustrates how, because of their inherent simplicity, space tethers have the potential to make space travel much cheaper, while ongoing advances in tether material technology may make even seemingly far-fetched ideas a reality in the not too distant future.
Michel van Pelt explains the principle of space tethers: what they are and how they can be used in space, along with elevators. He introduces space enthusiasts to the possibilities of space tethers including the technological challenges and potential benefits.
This detailed account of the possibilities of tethers in space, from very practical applications to (near) science fiction, gives an overview of the past, present and future of space tether development and presents the various concepts, ranging from those feasible in the near future to extremely innovative and challenging ideas. It shows how space tethers have already been used to stabilize spacecraft using tidal forces and to generate artificial gravity using a spinning system with a spacecraft connected to a counterweight via a cable. Tethers can also generate electricity by dragging spacecraft through the Earth’s magnetosphere, as was attempted with partial success during two Space Shuttle missions. Using electrodynamic forces, conductive tethers can also accelerate or brake a spacecraft.
Probably the most exciting tether concept is the space elevator, consisting of an incredibly strong long cable that stretches from the Earth’s surface into space. Solar powered "climber" machines, which are already under development, could use such a cable to haul cargo into orbit. The author also describes how space tethers can change the orbit of satellites, by effectively moving their center of gravity through the deployment of long cables. Tethers rotating at high speed can be used to accelerate or slow down spacecraft that briefly latch to them. In principle, such "momentum exchange" tethers can be used to fly a space probe from low Earth orbit all the way into orbit around Mars, without the need for rocket propulsion. A tether can also provide scientific information on the magnetosphere of the planet it’s orbiting.
Michel van Pelt explains the principle of space tethers: what they are and how they can be used in space. He introduces non-technical space enthusiasts to the various possibilities of space tethers, the technological challenges, the potential benefits and their feasibility. He illustrates how, because of their inherent simplicity, space tethers have the potential to make space travel much cheaper, while ongoing advances in tether material technology may make even seemingly far-fetched ideas a reality in the not too distant future.
The Basics.- Disruptive Technology.- Dreams and Ideas.- Early Experiments.- Into Earth Orbit and Beyond.- Space Elevators.- Challenges.- Conclusion.
On Earth, tethers or ropes or lines are used primarily to bind things to each other. In Space, tethers can also be used to attach spacecraft to each other, but this technology involves much more than simply tying things together. Ropes can also be used to climb, to reach places higher up – maybe all the way into space and in fact this concept exists in the form of a space elevator, consisting of a long, incredibly strong cable that stretches from the Earth’s surface into space. Solar powered "climber" machines, which are already under development, could use such a cable to haul cargo into orbit.

Space tethers could also be used as a means of transportation, to swing from one place to another. In stories on Earth, Tarzan uses liana vines to swing from tree to tree, and there are many serious ideas for using tethers in space in a somewhat similar way: swinging satellites into another orbit, or even passing them from tether to tether all the way to the Moon and Mars! Although this sounds like science fiction, many space missions using tethers have already flown. Most of them have been relatively small and experimental, but in the near future space tethers have the potential to revolutionize space flight.
Explains the principle of space tethers: what they are and how they can be used in space
Gives an overview of the past, present and future of space tether development
Presents the various concepts of space tethers, from the feasible to the innovative and challenging
Describes the technological challenges, potential benefits and feasibility of space tethers
The first comprehensive popular science book on space tethers for non-technical space enthusiasts

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