Re: Dyson shell redux

From: Doug Jones (
Date: Fri Mar 16 2001 - 12:18:18 MST

Spike Jones wrote:
> I could have explained this idea a little better. The nodes
> are still arranged in rings, concentric but not coplanar,
> forming an effective shell, Bradbury style. But I realized
> the connecting wires need not be a factor of 5 longer
> than the distance between the nodes.

Dyson originally proposed myriads of free flying objects, not a single
monolithic shell, so you've reinvented the sphere ;) Every object is
assigned a basic path, and maneuvers actively to maintain that path,
with partial feedback from its neighbors in a "flocking" behavior.
There's a small company (AeroAstro? MicroCosm?) that sells a software
package which allows a constellation of satellites to maintain their
orbits autonomously.

Dyson sphere swarm elements would use a descendant of that program. See
also Keith Henson's classic 1989 post on megascale engineering,
including how to change the color of an M-dwarf star while concentrating
its output into its ecliptic plane-

and scan down to "An Even Longer Lever".

Also, an old comment of mine about nearer term applications:

Doug Jones, Rocket Engineer
XCOR Aerospace

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