News Junkie
Isaac Arthur - Science & Futurism
Thu Oct 13, 2016 3:16pm

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I especially like the Megastructures videos as there are ideas there that I never even thought of. I had one quibble with his breaking length for carbon nanotubes, he stated it as only a few thousand kilometers but at earth gravity, failing to clarify that gravity decreases substantially with altitude. Meaning that carbon nanotubes would have no problem reaching geostationary orbit and beyond. A space elevator might even go all the way to the moon, or far enough for orbital insertion, or direct transfer to a lunar space elevator.

And given that a carbon nanotube material that would make a space elevator feasible might be available sometime in the next 30-50 years, I have to imagine how much material such a thing could allow us to launch into space. We could build mega-structures! He talks about Babylon 5-type space stations and arrays of cylinder habitats (all good stuff!). Initially I'm thinking Space hotels, space-liners for long voyages to other planets, arrays of giant kilometer-scale plus space telescopes, space mining operations with BIG machines, orbital farms - possibly the largest structures we would need to build unless plants are selected for space survivable traits: CAM plants that can grow with leaves exposed to hard vacuum without losing water or gases, plants that can grow with stems outside in space but penetrating a space greenhouse via an airtight gel-based growth medium with roots & edible fruit entering a service tunnel where astronauts can tend to them).

With carbon nanotubes it's gonna get real!

    • Vacuum of space no match for the mighty radishNews Junkie, Thu Oct 13 6:30pm
      New Scientist CAM plants are typically found in desert conditions because of their ability to retain water under the most dessicating conditions. They utilize a different kind of photosynthesis... more
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