Domed Cities - For Earth?

Domed cities are a well-known sf staple. But do we need to start planning them for use on Earth, due to climate change? Supposed benefits, in addition to protection from drastic climate change, include reduction of costs for extreme weather and shifted costs for climate control of buildings.

(From Houston city dome proposed)

This picture is taken from a Discovery Channel program discussing the possibility of putting all of Houston, Texas under a protective dome.

In his 1905 story A Modern Utopia, H.G. Wells refers to the idea of covering at least parts of cities with sturdy glass domes:

One will come into this place as one comes into a noble mansion. They will have flung great arches and domes of glass above the wider spaces of the town, the slender beauty of the perfect metal-work far overhead will be softened to a fairy-like unsubstantiality by the mild London air.

Ordinarily, the idea of a domed city is usually applied to planets or moons with a really good reason for a dome - no air, for instance. As far as I know, the first person to suggest using a clear dome to cover an entire lunar city was Ray Cummings in his 1931 story Brigands of the Moon.

The Grantline camp stood midway up one of the inner cliff walls of the little crater. The broken, rock-strewn floor, two miles wide, lay five hundred feet below the camp. A broad level shelf hung midway up the cliff, and upon it Grantline had built his little group of glassite dome shelters…
(Read more about Cummings' glassite dome shelter)

Another early use for the idea of a kind of dome over an Earth city - like, for example, Scranton, NJ, was in James Blish's classic series Cities in Flight. A device called a "spindizzy" produced a force-field dome over earth cities (and also allowed them to defy gravity and take off into space!)

(Cities in FLight cover)

Read more about similar projects in a very nicely done article on Next Big Future.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 6/29/2009)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 9 )

Related News Stories - (" Living Space ")

Would Movable Houses Make Cities Better?
'He saw a house in the suburbs gently slide out of its place...' - Jane Webb Loudon, 1828.

City Made Of Bone
'The cheapest building material known...' - Larry Niven, 1968.

Tokyo Shimizu Mega-City Pyramid
'...the Sense/Net Pyramid screamed.' - William Gibson, 1984.

Electrochromic FIlm For Smart Windows
'The glass had been muted to dark blue.' - Frank Herbert, 1972.



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.






Current News

Untethered Drone Gets Wireless Power
'We'll use my 'broomstick'.'

ESA Plans Akon Projectile To Europa ala Jules Verne
'... might [it] not be possible to project a shot up to the moon?'

Transparent OLED TV By Panasonic
It's the look of things to come.

Shape-Memory Metal Transforms Millions Of Times
'Annealed in any shape for a time, and codified, the structure of that shape is retained down to the molecules.'

Advertising Drones Hover Over Traffic In Mexico
'Blurbflies are allowd to travel the streets, buzzing their adverts alive and direct...'

How Can Amazon Patent A Voice-Controlled Drone?
''Tight mid-shot...' he told it.'

'North Sense' Wearable Piercing From Cyborg Nest
'The fingers opened from the many-scaled stellarimeter grafted onto his palm.'

proCover Smart Sock Prosthetic Limb Enhancement
'Series of chemelectric afferent nerve-analogues, which permitted it to gauge to an ounce...'

Robots And AIs Will Replace Humans At 7 Percent Of U.S. Jobs
'And Mike took on endless new jobs.'

Human Doctors Still Better Than Computers
'Nowadays surgery was normally done by autodocs...'

FEDOR Humanoid Robot To Join Russians In Space
Am enjoying view of Russian robot.

BMW Self-Balancing Motorcycle - Never Put Feet On Road
'He had never ridden any motorized device that lacked onboard steering and balance systems...'

MicroTug Is A Micro Robot Beast
'And it had been dragging something...'

Linear Elastic Actuator in Parallel (LEAP) - It's A Hopping Robot
'...Probably the most grotesque forms of transportation ever invented.'

Smart Glove Controls 3D Printed Robotic Arm (Waldo!)
'Waldo flexed and extended his fingers gently; the... waldoes... followed in exact, simultaneous parallelism.'

Wearables For Animals Totally A Thing
'Twin deformities on either side of his skull had been engineered to house sensor units.'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise | - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.