Broadcast 1597 (Special Edition)

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GuestSearch: Dr. Bryan Laubscher. Topics: Space Elevator updates and conference details. You are invited to comment, ask questions, and discuss the Space Show program/guest(s) on the Space Show blog, Comments, questions, and any discussion must be relevant and applicable to Space Show programming. Transcripts of Space Show programs are not permitted without prior written consent from The Space Show (even if for personal use) & are a violation of the Space Show copyright. For further information and details about the upcoming Space Elevator Conference from Friday, August 12 through Sunday, August 14, 2011 at the Microsoft Conference Center, Redmond, Washington, visit You should also visit Conference registration information is available at the Space Elevator Conference website. As you will hear from Dr. Laubscher, the current focus has been and is on the materials needed for the elevator. We spent much of the first segment talking about carbon nanotubes, the R&D needed for them, the funding, and more. I asked what the primary challenge was and our guest said the fact that the carbon nanotubes are so very small is a primary challenge as we have not worked with things this small before. I asked several questions about the economics and the elevator being so far off into the future and listeners asked several questions of this type as well. Bryan talked about innovation and what is going on in various Asian countries and markets. He talked about the wealth creating potential of developing the elevator as well as the jobs it would create and mentioned several times that to remain a leading country and economy in the world, we must invest in innovative futuristic projects like the elevator. Dr. Swan called in to talk about the efforts underway by 29 global experts around the world to examine the feasibility of elevator rich and related projects. Dr. Swan stressed the need for a real vision and suggested that space elevator should be part of that vision. In fact, throughout this discussion, both Bryan and I talked about the need for visionary leadership in our country, not just for space but across the board. Dr. Laubscher went on to say that the elevator was a paradigm shift and enabled many things including space solar power (SSP). In the second segment, Andrew from Tucson called to discuss the availability of materials for researchers to buy. His call was most interesting so make sure you listen to what he was asking of our guest. Glen sent in an interesting question by email regarding assembling carbon nanotruses assembled into chain maille. Dr. Laubscher then again talked about the extremely small size of the carbon nanotubes and said we had never handled anything this small. In our final segment, Bryan talked about the upcoming Space Elevator conference. He mentioned that it was a three day technical meeting but it also addressed policy issues such as talk in the international law community that the elevator might be illegal. Later in this final segment, I asked Bryan for the main competitive projects the elevator faced. Ted called in to talk about the efforts of the International Space Elevator Consortium focusing on getting the elevator built. Tim sent in the final email and referenced the NASA JSC and Rice University efforts for structurally reinforcing materials and wanted to know if carbon nanotubes had a use in this arena. In his closing comments, Bryan appealed for us all to get involved and he made suggestions on how best to do that. If you have a comment or question, post it on the blog URL above. If you want to get in touch with Dr. Laubscher, send your note to me at and I will forward it to him.



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24 Jul 2011 Dr. Bryan Laubscher
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