Re: Open Air Space Habitats

Michael Lorrey (
Sat, 01 Mar 1997 10:40:08 -0500

Forrest Bishop wrote:
> This is part of a chapter of a new book on nanotech.
> Copyright (c) 1997, Forrest Bishop, All Rights Reserved
> Open Air Space Habitats

Overall, a good article. I would suggest going into greater treatment of
the engineering aspects, such as needing 500 mile high walls on either
side of the tube wall to keep atmosphere from spilling out (Niven had
1000 mile high walls, which would only be neccessary if you intended on
making it livable for more than a few hundred thousand years). Also, it
is important to NOT have any large body within the radius of the tube,
as the danger of damage to the tube is too great to allow, and the
gravity irregularities of any non-homogenous, non-perfect spherical
gravitational influence would cause the tube ot wobble such that it
would eventually hit the body (as was discussed in Niven's _Ringworld

Additionally, consider the physiological effects of rotation on humans
and other organisms in the tube ecology. O'Niel et al. determined that
coriolis effects of rotating in small radius structures caused
disorientation, confusion, and losses of balance in people exposed to
such an environment for too long. It was estimated that the radius owuld
need to be at least several miles, with a rotational velocity of less
than 1 rpm. THis is why toroidal space colonies are thought to be
preferred over tubular ones of similar capacity, as you get greater
rotational radius with equal useful surface area.

Also, the effects of radiation on Buckytubes should be examined.


Michael Lorrey ------------------------------------------------------------ President Northstar Technologies Agent Inventor of the Lorrey Drive

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