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Space elevator

Posted by: Sigma - Thu Sep 13, 2012 4:56 am
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Space elevator 
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Post Space elevator   Posted on: Thu Sep 13, 2012 4:56 am
So, by pointing a very very strong laser straight up, through the center of a tube shaped ship, the laser makes a pillar of plasma, the ship uses a M.h.d plasma accelerator to climb the beam by throwing the plasma, the ship could also be powered by striking two hi temp photovoltaic cells,with two strong lasers, with a contact built into the surrounding edge of the two cells, these intense beams would also generate plasma, effectively connecting two leads to the ship, so at least for a time, power could be beamed up the "power beams", and that could be used to climb the "pillar beam".

Just a thought,

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Post Re: Space elevator   Posted on: Thu Sep 13, 2012 2:30 pm
Above a relatively low altitude (~10 miles) the atmosphere gets too thin to generate much of a plasma. You could carry a gas supply with you to "seed" ahead of the vehicle, convert to plasma and then thrust against. But that adds mass and is probably less effective than simply enclosing the tube and making it a "conventional" beamed energy rocket.

Perhaps if you could somehow "push" the column of plasma up all the way to your target altitude and maintain it as an "energy/plasma cable" the idea might be practical. But that is pretty much handwavium "light-saber" technology. The energy requirements alone are mind boggling...


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Post Re: Space elevator   Posted on: Thu Sep 13, 2012 7:29 pm
What about pawing down from space, and up from earth and drawing on the energy potential of everything beetween some how, I.e super lightning....sustained.

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Post Re: Space elevator   Posted on: Thu Sep 13, 2012 10:05 pm
Sigma wrote:
What about pawing down from space, and up from earth and drawing on the energy potential of everything beetween some how, I.e super lightning....sustained.


I think the problem with this and your one above is that they wont ever be as energy efficient as other ways of using the same amount of laser power there are other various solutions.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laser_propulsion

The super lightning toys that have been produced recently make great disruptive weapons and maybe when they can be controlled properly might make wireless tasers feasible over human scale distances but the way the atmosphere changes over long distances i don't think they will be scalable and any way if you have that much laser power available you might as well go with a simple Orion project type ablative blast in pulses to the bottom of your launch vehicle without the problem of small nukes contaminating our atmosphere.

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Post Re: Space elevator   Posted on: Fri Sep 14, 2012 6:54 am
A very long conductor would release the potential stored energy beetween the layers of the atmosphere, so you might be able to power it with current stolen from the atmosphere.

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Post Re: Space elevator   Posted on: Sat Sep 15, 2012 10:40 am
JamesG wrote:
Above a relatively low altitude (~10 miles) the atmosphere gets too thin to generate much of a plasma. You could carry a gas supply with you to "seed" ahead of the vehicle, convert to plasma and then thrust against. But that adds mass and is probably less effective than simply enclosing the tube and making it a "conventional" beamed energy rocket.

Perhaps if you could somehow "push" the column of plasma up all the way to your target altitude and maintain it as an "energy/plasma cable" the idea might be practical. But that is pretty much handwavium "light-saber" technology. The energy requirements alone are mind boggling...


Well I guess it would be like those "plasma space cannons" from various sci-fi games.

You shoot high velocity stable smoke ring like vortices of plasma, but instead of it meaning to shoot down a ship, you are actually riding it to space.

It could be like a space fountain, but the pellets are pockets of plasma instead of actual solid objects. At least it sounds cool for a sci-fi novel or movie. :)

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Post Re: Space elevator   Posted on: Sat Sep 15, 2012 2:03 pm
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/in-pictures-19597250

Image 8 is my argument against using controlled lightening up a laser as a propulsion system admittedly a laser might be able to straighten it a bit for a while but inherent randomness in the atmosphere would probably make it diverge at some point.

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Post Re: Space elevator   Posted on: Sat Sep 15, 2012 6:53 pm
Look into the potential energy differential of the ground and the rest of the layers, the power up there is amazing, but the discharge rate would be massive, if you could absorb the initial shock, and gradually power the system.... Also after the initial discharge then a steady stream of current would flow

Also it happens natually http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Upper-atmo ... #Blue_jets

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