error 303: I'm slowly coming to like the idea of a launch loop as a possible replacement for rockets to get stuff into orbit... but I could totally be talked into a giant trampoline.
brantgoose: I would support the idea of a slingshot--you'd have to dig a tunnel through the Earth though because the sling shot aimed at the horizon would force the astronaut to fly through too much atmosphere at too low a trajectory. It would definitely be a lot better to start on the other side of the Earth and go through a tunnel. You might be able to keep the tunnel clear of air to reduce air resistance by covering both ends with a sort of mechanical sphincter.One option would be a sphincter timed to open just as the astronaut hits, letting in very little air. Another possibility would be a film through which the astronaut could pass without injury. Or you could perhaps use pumps and negative air pressure to keep air out of the tunnel, combined with sphincters or film coverings. Using air to blow the astronaut to the space station like a pea in a pea-shooter would be a bad idea as the astronaut would be harmed by the wind or else by hitting the tunnel walls. You need a vacuum for this to work. The less air the better. Of course, putting a trampoline in a giant airless tube would also make bouncing to the space station easier.For that kind of money, though, you could build a space elevator and send astronauts and freight up in comfort, at almost zero cost once the overhead and construction costs were paid.If worse comes to worst, you could always have another crash space program and replace the space shuttle with rockets or new tech. The USA has done this sort of thing before and I doubt if it would cost more this time 'round.
KillaChinchilla: For CSM, this is not half bad.
mr lawson: KillaChinchilla: For CSM, this is not half bad.Um...when has CSM ever been bad?I get the name might turn people off, but, to me, their reporting has always been top notch.
Lt. Cheese Weasel: Ziggy Zoggy Ziggy Zoggy Oy Oy OY!!!!
KillaChinchilla: mr lawson: KillaChinchilla: For CSM, this is not half bad.Um...when has CSM ever been bad?I get the name might turn people off, but, to me, their reporting has always been top notch.I actually completely agree, was not overly familiar with the site and spouted off before I clicked around.
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