A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
NanoRacks Space Station Module Concept Validated
It's possible to convert launch vehicle upper stages into space station modules, says a five-month NASA study.
( illustration Ixion module, upper stage left in orbit refitted as space station module, attached to ISS )
Jeffrey Manber, chief executive of NanoRacks, discussed the results of the study, part of NASA’s Next Space Technologies for Exploration Partnerships 2 (NextSTEP-2) effort, in panel discussions Dec. 6 at the SpaceCom Expo here.
The concept, called Ixion, involves taking an Atlas 5 upper stage left in low Earth orbit after a launch and refitting it with life support and other systems needed to support a crew. That converted module could then be attached to the ISS or be used as part of a standalone commercial space station.
The idea of converting an upper stage into a space station module is not a new one. Manber noted that, half a century ago, NASA studied the so-called “wet workshop” approach as one approach for what would become the Skylab space station, but concluded it was too difficult.
Technological improvements have changed that assessment. “We’re now increasingly confident that we can show NASA that this second stage can be repurposed both using crew or even, amazing to me, doing it robotically,” Manber said.
That's not the only possible configuration, at least according to science fiction writers. I seem to recall the Tether Space Station from David Brin's 1983 story Tank Farm Dynamo:
The tank was the next to last in a row of forty of the great cylinders, nestled side by side. A parallel deck of sixteen huge tanks lay about sixty kilometers "overhead" linked to this collection by six strong cables. Twenty meters away from where I stood, one of the half-inch polymer tethers rose from its anchor point, a mirror-bright streak toward the planet overhead.
Via SpaceNews; thanks to @nyrath for tipping us off on Twitter.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 12/4/2017)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )
Related News Stories -
NASA Tests Prototype Europa Lander
Why have legs if they don't walk around? Just asking.
NASA's Psyche Mission To Metal Asteroid Launches Thursday!
'We can even fuel the space ships and mine the Asteroid Belt for rare metals...'
Space Weather To Universe Weather
'It radiates outward in a cone which, by the time it has reached our section of space, is many lightyears across.' - Poul Anderson, 1953.
That's MOXIE! Terraforming Mars Baby Steps
'Drake was the young spatial engineer he employed to terraform the little rock.' - Jack Williamson, 1931.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Wearable Energy Harvester
'... he had tightened the chest to gain maximum pumping action from the motion of breathing.'
Drones Participate In Buddhist Rites
'...a prayer wheel swung into view and began spinning at a furious pace.'
Anna Indiana AI Singer-Songwriter
'She is a personality-construct, a congeries of software agents'
Video Manicuring ala Schismatrix
'The program raced up the screen one scan line at a time'
'Feel the AGI' OpenAI Leader Now OpenWorship
'And are all the people willing to be governed by a machine?'
NASA Tests Prototype Europa Lander
Why have legs if they don't walk around?
Tailsitter Drone Aircraft For SAR
'...it was so easy for me to remain motionless in midair.'
Forward CarePod The AI Doctor's Office
'It's an old model,' Rawlins said. 'I'm not sure what to do.'
Mika The Robot-Boss
'the robot-boss was busy at the lip of the new lode instructing and egging the men on to greater speed...'
Yamaha Motoroid 2 No Handlebars Self-Balancing Motorcycle
'He rode the bike with an intense lack of physical grace...'
San Francisco Autobus
'THE autobus turned silently down the wide street...'
Should Your Car Decide If You Can Drive?
'Okay. Maybe the car was right...'
Lucid Dreams On Demand From Prophetic and Card79
'the peeper did not operate by virtue of its machinery alone, but by the reaction of the brain and the body of its user...'
Honda UNI-ONE Hands-Free Wheelchair Follows 100 Year-Old Design
'Noiselessly, on rubber-tired wheels, they journeyed...'
EBS-260 Handjet Free Hand Dot Matrix Printer
'McKie held a chalf-memory stick over the dusted surface.'
Sensitive, Soft Robot Skin
'...tinted material that had all the feel and appearance of human flesh and epidermis.'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories