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Science and Technology "Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known." - Carl Sagan.

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Old July 12 2009, 07:47 PM   #1
Urge
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Why not make a centrifugal space-station?

One should make one with centrifugal gravity, so that one can test out how good it works, if the materials are holding, how much energy/rocket-fuel it takes to keep it spinning, if the crew likes it, and so on. It cant be a full-circle "donut" Kubrick-style perhaps, but a solution where forexample the living-quarters are hanging in the end of one cable, and the television-room and exercise-room is hanging from the other shouldnt be to difficult. (The cables must be hollow so that one can walk from the one to the other without taking a EVA offcourse, storagerooms in the midle)

Also, making such a space-station would give a feeling of progress that might boost fundings for NASA, ESA and the rest. The ISS is kind of boring, just a bigger version of MIR. I have heard that they where not intrested in making a centrifugal spacestation when they made MIR because they wanted to do cero-gravity experiments, but when they are done it might be possible to re-arrange it into a centrifugal one.

Does annyone know if there are anny plans for a centrifugal spacestation?
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Old July 12 2009, 08:09 PM   #2
Urge
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Re: Why not make a centrifugal space-station?

After doing some research, I found out that it almost happened:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Centrif...dations_Module
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Old July 12 2009, 08:37 PM   #3
JustAFriend
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Re: Why not make a centrifugal space-station?

Urge wrote: View Post
It cant be a full-circle "donut" Kubrick-style perhaps
Actually the donut-style for simulated gravity goes back a lot further than Kubrick.

Go check out the 3rd picture down of the 1952 Collier's magazine article
"Crossing the Last Frontier" by Werner von Braun....

As for building anything else, dont hold your breath.

With the retirement of the Shuttle next year and the crash of the global economy, it'll be quite a while before anything large gets built.
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Old July 12 2009, 11:03 PM   #4
sojourner
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Re: Why not make a centrifugal space-station?

Lots of plans, no money and no reason. The ISS was built for experimentation in zero-g and a low vibration environment. A centrifugal gravity station works against both those conditions.

Building one just to "try it out" would be a waste of money.
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Old July 12 2009, 11:42 PM   #5
Alpha_Geek
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Re: Why not make a centrifugal space-station?

You'd need a big radius or you'd get some major coriolis effect issues in your victims...err.. passengers inner ears.

The CAM module wasn't large enough for people to utilize as a faux gravity chamber.
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Old July 13 2009, 12:52 AM   #6
romulus
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Re: Why not make a centrifugal space-station?

^^About how big?

Yeah I too wondered why one was never built. I know why now, but in the days when governments where practically throwing money at the space program..... It's not like it's a new idea.
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Old July 13 2009, 01:55 AM   #7
Candlelight
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Re: Why not make a centrifugal space-station?

I'm thinking 5 miles long, rotating at 60 miles an hour, 2.5 million tons, capable of holding around 250,000 people, etc...
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Old July 13 2009, 04:11 AM   #8
sojourner
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Re: Why not make a centrifugal space-station?

....and we shall call it: Babylon 5
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Old July 13 2009, 06:26 AM   #9
T J
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Re: Why not make a centrifugal space-station?



Great we have the plan, now make it so!
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Old July 13 2009, 04:07 PM   #10
Alpha_Geek
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Re: Why not make a centrifugal space-station?

If Wiki is to be believed, the RPM would need to be kept under 2 in order to assure the majority of passengers suffer little from the disorienting effects of being spun 'round.

To get 1 G of centrifugal force at 2 RPM, you need a rotational radius of 224 meters (735 feet). That's pretty big compared to what we can fly these days. If you're depending on a counter balance, then you need to double the radius to get the diameter of your craft. On the bright side, if you build a torus this size, you get just under 9/10ths of a mile of deck to play with!


Also noted in the wiki listing is that an artificial gravity experiment was performed during the Gemini 11 mission. This attempt utilized a 36 meter (about 120 feet) tether between an Angena booster and the spacecraft. The results were unimpressive as rotation was hard to achieve and maintain. The crew felt no obvious effects but did observe that unstowed objects did tend to settle towards the bottom of the cabin.


Docking would be a challenge unless you put a facility at your rotational center to accomodate rendevous.
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Old July 13 2009, 04:09 PM   #11
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Re: Why not make a centrifugal space-station?

Candlelight wrote: View Post
I'm thinking 5 miles long, rotating at 60 miles an hour, 2.5 million tons, capable of holding around 250,000 people, etc...
You forgot the "...all alone in the night." part!!!
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Old July 13 2009, 06:09 PM   #12
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Re: Why not make a centrifugal space-station?

Maybe they can start working on it first quarter 2016 after they de-orbit the ISS which has been anounced today.
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Old July 13 2009, 06:55 PM   #13
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Re: Why not make a centrifugal space-station?

Alpha_Geek wrote: View Post
Candlelight wrote: View Post
I'm thinking 5 miles long, rotating at 60 miles an hour, 2.5 million tons, capable of holding around 250,000 people, etc...
You forgot the "...all alone in the night." part!!!
^

Even that program would suffer major setbacks, as Babylons 1, 2, and 3 would be sabotaged and destroyed, and number 4 would vanish without a trace.
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Old July 13 2009, 08:32 PM   #14
sojourner
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Re: Why not make a centrifugal space-station?

Marc wrote: View Post
Maybe they can start working on it first quarter 2016 after they de-orbit the ISS which has been anounced today.
Do you have a link? I cannot find this announcement on any of the space websites I haunt.
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Old July 13 2009, 09:04 PM   #15
Marc
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Re: Why not make a centrifugal space-station?

sojourner wrote: View Post
Marc wrote: View Post
Maybe they can start working on it first quarter 2016 after they de-orbit the ISS which has been anounced today.
Do you have a link? I cannot find this announcement on any of the space websites I haunt.
as an oily Cylon once said - by your command

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...l?hpid=topnews
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