Difference between revisions of "SpaceElevatorEnvironment"

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== The Environment ==
 
== The Environment ==
  
The elevator stretches from the Earth to high orbit - passing through Earth weather, the ioinosphere, radiation belts and out beyond the Earth's magnetosphere.  In each of these environments there are concerns and hazards for the space elevator and a complete understanding is required to be able to produce a viable design.
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The elevator stretches from the Earth to high orbit - passing through Earth weather, the ionosphere, radiation belts and out beyond the Earth's magnetosphere.  In each of these environments there are concerns and hazards for the space elevator and a complete understanding is required to be able to produce a viable design.
  
  
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|width="100pt"| Hazard   
 
|width="100pt"| Hazard   
 
|width="200pt"| Impact
 
|width="200pt"| Impact
|width="200pt"| Solution
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|width="200pt"| Details / Solutions
 
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|Lightning || Severed ribbon || Location in lightning-free zone  
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|Lightning || Severed ribbon || Anchor location in lightning-free zone  
 
|-
 
|-
 
|Wind || dynamic destruction of the ribbon || Location where limited wind, ribbon design
 
|Wind || dynamic destruction of the ribbon || Location where limited wind, ribbon design
 
|-
 
|-
|Radiation || ribbon degradation || material selection
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|Radiation 1 || ribbon degradation || material selection
 
|-
 
|-
|Radiation || hazard to electronics and cargo || higher speed and shielding
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|Radiation 2 || hazard to electronics and cargo || higher speed and shielding
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|-
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|Debris || ribbon destruction || Ribbon design with a width larger than a meter insures only a small part of the ribbon will be damaged by any impact.  The ribbon design also isolates damage along the length of the ribbon.  Active avoidance limits impacts larger than 1 cm.
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|-
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|Meteors || ribbon destruction || Same as for debris though lower flux and active avoidance can not be used.
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|-
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|Earth's magnetic field || Current generation in ribbon || Ribbon is geosynchronous so only flucuations in the magnet field will create any current and this is small
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|-
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|Interplanetary magnet field || Current generation || The ribbon travels quickly through the interplanetary magnetic field but the field is too weak to generate and substantial current.
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|-
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|Solar wind/particles || ribbon degradation || same as radiation above
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|-
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|Gravitational influence || ribbon oscillation || The Moon and sun will both exert a gravitational pull on the ribbon at a roughly 24 hour period.  The natural frequency of the ribbon is about 7.2 hours and there will be little coupling
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|-
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|Thermal cycling || ribbon wear and oscillation || Each day the lower end of the ribbon will go in and out of the Earth's shadow.  This will change the temperature and length of the ribbon
 
|-
 
|-
 
|Atomic oxygen || ribbon destruction || coating of ribbon
 
|Atomic oxygen || ribbon destruction || coating of ribbon
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Status:
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== Basic Work Required ==
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*Full characterization of environmental effects starting from "The Space Elevator" book and studies done by others
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*Detailed model of ribbon magnetic field interactions
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*Detailed model of damage extent and flux due to meteors ( [[Leonids.doc| Leonids]] ) and debris.  Include the expected increase in orbital debrisover the next couple decades.
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*Thermal modeling of the ribbon during transition between sun and shadow
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== Major Work Items Required==
  
Include images and research data
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*[[Atomic_Oxygen| Experimental tests of ribbon in atomic oxygen]]
Include design write-ups
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*[[RadProtection| Radiation protection for humans in transit]]
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*[[RibbonDegradation| Detailed modeling of ribbon degradation lifetime]]
  
  
 
[[SpaceElevatorWikiOverview| Return to Overview]]
 
[[SpaceElevatorWikiOverview| Return to Overview]]

Revision as of 06:11, 11 July 2008

The Environment

The elevator stretches from the Earth to high orbit - passing through Earth weather, the ionosphere, radiation belts and out beyond the Earth's magnetosphere. In each of these environments there are concerns and hazards for the space elevator and a complete understanding is required to be able to produce a viable design.


Hazard Impact Details / Solutions
Lightning Severed ribbon Anchor location in lightning-free zone
Wind dynamic destruction of the ribbon Location where limited wind, ribbon design
Radiation 1 ribbon degradation material selection
Radiation 2 hazard to electronics and cargo higher speed and shielding
Debris ribbon destruction Ribbon design with a width larger than a meter insures only a small part of the ribbon will be damaged by any impact. The ribbon design also isolates damage along the length of the ribbon. Active avoidance limits impacts larger than 1 cm.
Meteors ribbon destruction Same as for debris though lower flux and active avoidance can not be used.
Earth's magnetic field Current generation in ribbon Ribbon is geosynchronous so only flucuations in the magnet field will create any current and this is small
Interplanetary magnet field Current generation The ribbon travels quickly through the interplanetary magnetic field but the field is too weak to generate and substantial current.
Solar wind/particles ribbon degradation same as radiation above
Gravitational influence ribbon oscillation The Moon and sun will both exert a gravitational pull on the ribbon at a roughly 24 hour period. The natural frequency of the ribbon is about 7.2 hours and there will be little coupling
Thermal cycling ribbon wear and oscillation Each day the lower end of the ribbon will go in and out of the Earth's shadow. This will change the temperature and length of the ribbon
Atomic oxygen ribbon destruction coating of ribbon


Basic Work Required

  • Full characterization of environmental effects starting from "The Space Elevator" book and studies done by others
  • Detailed model of ribbon magnetic field interactions
  • Detailed model of damage extent and flux due to meteors ( Leonids ) and debris. Include the expected increase in orbital debrisover the next couple decades.
  • Thermal modeling of the ribbon during transition between sun and shadow


Major Work Items Required


Return to Overview