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Space Elevator games

Posted by: Andy Hill - Tue Jul 31, 2007 10:47 am
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Space Elevator games 
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Post Space Elevator games   Posted on: Tue Jul 31, 2007 10:47 am
I've just read the following article and am a bit confused:

http://cosmiclog.msnbc.msn.com/archive/ ... 92892.aspx

It says "the speed and height requirements have been doubled" does this mean that every time someone gets close to winning this prize, as they did last year, NASA will keep raising the bar?

It would have been much fairer IMO to keep the requirement the same and award the prize to the team who exceeded it by the biggest margin. NASA could have then set another prize for higher/faster climbers next year.

If there is now a moving goal post to prevent a winner I dont see much point in anyone enterring. Lets hope that this a one off and will not be repeated every year.

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Post    Posted on: Tue Jul 31, 2007 5:05 pm
Well, it depends, it's possible that the progress made by those teams can be tremendous in one year time. So if they don't scale up the requirements, that only one or two actually fail and all others succeed. And that wouldn't be good at all. So I do hope they made the right decision and look at the competing teams and their current progress so they didn't scaled up too quick (so someone can win), but neither too slow so that not almost everyone wins.

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Post    Posted on: Tue Jul 31, 2007 6:47 pm
Why change the requirement for this prize only? If they did the same thing to the Lunar lander challenge because Armadillo nearly won it last year then everyone would be really hacked off.

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Post    Posted on: Tue Jul 31, 2007 8:12 pm
True.. well.. I guess we can only wait and see what the results will be.

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Post    Posted on: Tue Jul 31, 2007 8:43 pm
Would be very unfair if they did it again, but with these things, it's for everyone pretty new. No one (i think) had ever done this, so it wasn't more then a guessing game for NASA to set a bar.

But if NASA does it again, well, that's not okay in my book.


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Post    Posted on: Wed Aug 01, 2007 8:39 am
Hello, Stefan,

as far as I remember this moment it has to do with the goal to get climbers and tethers that are better than existing technologies. This goal is required because the existing climbers and tethers don't fit into the requirments of a space elevator yet.

If it is correct what I remember then the prize is not meant for the technology itself but for the improvement beyond the capabilities and properties of the best existing technology, tether or climber - progress is the goal.

So the doubling of speed and height requirements might have to do with existing technologies at present already exceeding the previous requirements while they didn't fit into the requirements at the time of last year's competition.



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Post    Posted on: Wed Aug 01, 2007 10:20 am
Stefan Sigwarth wrote:
Would be very unfair if they did it again, but with these things, it's for everyone pretty new. No one (i think) had ever done this, so it wasn't more then a guessing game for NASA to set a bar.


Isn't that true of the other challenges as well? I dont think that a private company has created a rocket able to do what Armadillo's can without a big government contract before.

I understand NASA wanting to progress the technology I just think that they should reward the progress at regular intervals rather than a single prize for a big achievement. They should learn from past challenges instead of changing the current ones.

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Post    Posted on: Wed Aug 01, 2007 10:57 am
:idea: What if the ANSARI X PRIZE Rules where changed to 200km in june 2004 as the technology was "available" to reach 100km (sarcasm).. Well I think I have to agree, it's better to pay out the money from the first prize and just create a new prize for a higher goal and not change the rules every year..

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Post    Posted on: Wed Aug 01, 2007 1:57 pm
What I remember in detail is that the tether challenge is designed so that the strengths of the tethers developed by the competitors is compared to the strength of a given tether provided by NASA. A competitor wins if his tether proves to be stronger than NASA's one. NASA always applies the most strong tether they can get.

In so far the climber and power challenges and the speed and altitude requirments may be designed very different to the tether challenge and the tether competition design perhaps can't be applied to those other competitions.



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Post    Posted on: Wed Aug 01, 2007 9:25 pm
Hmmm that is odd. I really hope its not a sign of things to come. Raising requirements without rewarding present achievements is a surefire way to discourage anyone from chasing the prize much longer than they already have... *shakes head*

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Post Re: Space Elevator games   Posted on: Wed Jul 29, 2009 2:36 pm
This year's requirement is now 1km.

http://www.spaceelevatorgames.org/#justTheFacts

Perhaps they will make it all the way to 64,000km without paying out a prize. This sucks!!

If I were competing against constantly moving goal posts I would probably have been really upset about this. I dont understand why they cant leave the requirement as it was and have an additional prize for the higher altitude, at least that way someone would win something.

I really think this is unfair.

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Post Re: Space Elevator games   Posted on: Sun May 20, 2012 11:33 am
Wow this looks exciting. :)

I wouldn't mind dumping a couple of million dollars on tether development, we could do so much with a strong rope. :)

Anybody done research here into that field?

I am wondering what we could do with some bioengineering.

Develop artificial amino acids, or similar small molecular building blocks, and design enzymes that can work with them, stick them together or pull them apart as required.

We could not only grow but constantly repair our tether, or make it self repair if we could create a "living" tether.

There is a lot of potential in bioengineering and biomimicry.

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Post Re: Space Elevator games   Posted on: Sun May 20, 2012 6:37 pm
That's an interesting idea, but I don't think that there's any natural material anywhere near strong enough for a space elevator. Extremely strong potential cable materials like Kevlar, Twaron, Spectra and carbon nanotubes all have extremely long molecules (up to millions of atoms), which is why they are so strong. You just don't see that in nature.

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Post Re: Space Elevator games   Posted on: Wed May 23, 2012 8:24 pm
Lourens wrote:
That's an interesting idea, but I don't think that there's any natural material anywhere near strong enough for a space elevator. Extremely strong potential cable materials like Kevlar, Twaron, Spectra and carbon nanotubes all have extremely long molecules (up to millions of atoms), which is why they are so strong. You just don't see that in nature.


DNA

:)

Nature is the master of nanotechnology. Of course there isnt any material that is strong enough, but if we want to make one there is plenty of fibres and molecular threads to get inspiration from.

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Post Re: Space Elevator games   Posted on: Thu May 24, 2012 12:40 pm
Good point. Still, we'd have to engineer some kind of organism that makes DNA, or any other suitable molecule, and secretes it somehow onto the cable in such a way that it reinforces it.

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