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Has JPA selected an Antarctic base yet?

Posted by: Terraformer - Wed Feb 23, 2011 8:30 pm
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Has JPA selected an Antarctic base yet? 
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Post Has JPA selected an Antarctic base yet?   Posted on: Wed Feb 23, 2011 8:30 pm
The only viable place for the DSS appears to be Antarctica - no overflight clearances required; indeed it's mentioned in Floating to Space as being the location. Have you looked at any potential launch places yet? I'm thinking a British territory might be best...


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Post Re: Has JPA selected an Antarctic base yet?   Posted on: Thu Feb 24, 2011 10:17 am
A launch from the equator gives you 4% of your orbital velocity for free. Launching from the poles gives you nothing.

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Post Re: Has JPA selected an Antarctic base yet?   Posted on: Thu Feb 24, 2011 11:19 pm
Except, in ATO, it's different - you're gaining more from the wind currents rather than the rotation of Terra. Given that Antartica doesn't have any countries to deal with who demand overflight clearences, any net benefit is likely to be neglible...

However, it counld constrain the range of orbits...


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Post Re: Has JPA selected an Antarctic base yet?   Posted on: Fri Feb 25, 2011 12:13 am
Terraformer wrote:
Except, in ATO, it's different - you're gaining more from the wind currents rather than the rotation of Terra. Given that Antartica doesn't have any countries to deal with who demand overflight clearences, any net benefit is likely to be neglible...

However, it counld constrain the range of orbits...


Just a random thought caused by this discussion if flying in an upwards spiral around the magnetic south pole could an airship get additional lift from an opposing magnetic field? after all we get both Northern and Southern lights as the magnetic field lines bend down at the poles.

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Post Re: Has JPA selected an Antarctic base yet?   Posted on: Fri Feb 25, 2011 5:21 am
Terraformer wrote:
Except, in ATO, it's different - you're gaining more from the wind currents rather than the rotation of Terra. Given that Antartica doesn't have any countries to deal with who demand overflight clearences, any net benefit is likely to be neglible...

However, it counld constrain the range of orbits...


I believe that would require supersonic winds, but I'd like to be proven wrong.

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Post Re: Has JPA selected an Antarctic base yet?   Posted on: Fri Feb 25, 2011 4:13 pm
The earth's magnetic field is extremely weak, so I don't think you'd get enough force out of it to be useful inside the atmosphere. A compass has a very finely balanced needle with very low drag, and even then the force is so small that they tend to get stuck. I think countering orbit degradation in space by means of running a current through a tether and pushing off of Earth's magnetic field does work (although it hasn't been used operationally AFAIK), but you only need a very small force (over an extended period of time) to overcome that tiny amount of friction.

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Post Re: Has JPA selected an Antarctic base yet?   Posted on: Sat Feb 26, 2011 3:08 am
Actually we're leaning toward an equatorial flight path. The Dark Sky Station does have limited maneuverability. We should be able to push north or south enough to eliminate overflight issues especially if the start the turns on the other side of the planet from the country we want to avoid.

We actually want to invite overflight countries to participate in science from the station so they would welcome overflight. There are ITAR issues but we've already started down the path to work those issues.

Hey everybody, we've just put up our new facebook site. Stop by and say "Hi" or flame or whatever, just let me know you're out there!

http://www.facebook.com/jpaerospace?sk=wall

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Post Re: Has JPA selected an Antarctic base yet?   Posted on: Sat Feb 26, 2011 10:28 pm
Lourens wrote:
The earth's magnetic field is extremely weak, so I don't think you'd get enough force out of it to be useful inside the atmosphere. A compass has a very finely balanced needle with very low drag, and even then the force is so small that they tend to get stuck. I think countering orbit degradation in space by means of running a current through a tether and pushing off of Earth's magnetic field does work (although it hasn't been used operationally AFAIK), but you only need a very small force (over an extended period of time) to overcome that tiny amount of friction.


I think i have also seen stuff about testing of tethers in space and given that magnetism obeys the same force inverse square rule that gravity does if its a useful force at orbital height then close to the poles it might also be a useful force on something like an airship taking its time as most of gravitation drag is countered by buoyancy and at the heights involved in an ATO the atmosphere will be pretty thin. I doubt it could be the only force but might be worthwhile if knocked a few percent off fuel needs.

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