Broadcast 1149 (Special Edition)

04 May 2009 Dr. Bryan Laubscher
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Guest: Dr. Bryan Laubscher. Topics: Space Elevator, chemical rockets, Space Elevator Conference, power beaming, lightening strikes. Dr. Bryan Laubscher returned to The Space Show to continue our discussion about the space elevator. We started out with Bryan telling us about the upcoming Space Elevator Conference in Redmond, WA. Check it out at www.spaceelevatorconference.org. Registration is available online and there are discounts if applicable to your situation. We moved on from discussing the conference to the materials needed for the space elevator including carbon nano tubes (CNT). Bryan went into detail as to how the CNTs are made so if you are not familiar with the growth process, you will be after listening to this show. Dr. Laubscher also identified three serious issues that unless resolved are show stoppers. These issues are the consistency of the material, the length, and the strength. Several times during the show he said if the materials cannot be made, its the end of the space elevator concept. He also talked about how most of the CNT resources go into the more market driven applications in the electronics field, not into the areas needed for the space elevator. There were several listener questions about the elevator and CNTs. In addition, Bryan talked about the various competitions at their upcoming conference and also as hosted by the Spaceward Foundation (http://www.spaceward.org/). One of the intereesting competitions involves contestants coming up with a material stronger than used by the host of the competition. If you do, you can win a huge amount of money! This show went to two hours as a result of a 40 minute call with listener Charles Pooley in Mojave. To say the least, Charles is not a believer in the space elevator and he challenged Bryan continuously during their conversation. Charles asked about lightening strikes on the cable and you will want to hear how Bryan suggested dealing with it. I asked Bryan about oscillation on the cable and knowing where the cable was at all times and you will want to hear how Bryan suggested dealing with this and the comments offered by Charles. Charles advocated continued use of chemical rockets which Bryan challenged in some detail. This is a lively discussion, factual as well as emotional at time. I promise you, you do not want to miss this discussion! If you have comments or questions for Dr. Bryan Laubscher, you can email him at belaubscher@comcast.net.

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