An elevator to space? SIGN. ME. UP.
From Travel and Leisure:
Later this month, researchers at Shizuoka University will begin testing for a “space elevator,” which would connect earth and a space station by cable. In the future, this elevator could be used to transport people and cargo back and forth.
But there are still some major hurdles researchers must overcome before an elevator could begin test runs. According to Smithsonian, there is no cable in the world that is strong enough to withstand the forces of gravity and the harsh winds of the upper atmosphere. And nobody yet knows how cable movement would work in zero gravity — but we might gain a better understanding later this month.
Despite the fact that tests haven’t yet begun, a Japanese corporation has already issued a proposal for the space elevator. In their concept, the Obayashi Corporation envisions almost 60,000 miles of cable that would connect a station floating in the sea to a satellite orbiting the planet. The trip would take approximately eight days to complete via cable car. There’s a “realistic” timeline of completion by 2050, according to the corporation.
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