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Stairway to Space By Brian Simpson

     While the Euro-West worries about multicultural inflicted miseries, Japan is getting down to business and technology, canvassing plans for a space elevator:

“A Japanese team working to develop a "space elevator" will conduct a first trial this month, blasting off a miniature version on satellites to test the technology. The test equipment, produced by researchers at Shizuoka University, will hitch a ride on an H-2B rocket being launched by Japan's space agency from southern island of Tanegashima next week. The test involves a miniature elevator stand-in -- a box just six centimetres (2.4 inches) long, three centimetres wide, and three centimetres high. If all goes well, it will provide proof of concept by moving along a 10-metre cable suspended in space between two mini satellites that will keep it taut. The mini-elevator will travel along the cable from a container in one of the satellites. "It's going to be the world's first experiment to test elevator movement in space," a university spokesman told AFP on Tuesday. The movement of the motorised "elevator" box will be monitored with cameras in the satellites. It is still a far cry from the ultimate beam-me-up goals of the project, which builds on a long history of "space elevator" dreams. The idea was first proposed in 1895 by Russian scientist Konstantin Tsiolkovsky after he saw the Eiffel Tower in Paris, and was revisited nearly a century later in a novel by Arthur C. Clarke. But technical barriers have always kept plans stuck at the conceptual stage.”

     The space elevator idea, if it can have all of the bugs ironed out, would be an enormous advance for business. It would become theoretically possible to dispose of nuclear waste by simply lifting it off into space. The strategy of using a space rocket was always dangerous, but if the elevator works, over time this would be an excellent way of getting rid of material which poses a threat to life on Earth.

     Thus, nuclear waste is already a major problem which quickly needs a technological solution, because nations are simply not going to stop building nuclear reactors.



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Sunday, 31 May 2020
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