Space 'elevator' to the Moon could happen by the end of the century
Excerpt: Recently, a non-peer reviewed study by Zephyr Penoyre from the University of Cambridge and Emily Sandford at Columbia University theorized that not only is an “elevator” to the moon possible, but it can be built using current materials. Their idea takes a different approach than that from NASA and the other space agencies. As opposed to a cable stretching skyward anchored from the Earth, the cable proposed in the study runs from the moon down toward our planet, coming to an end and hanging in Earth’s geosynchronous orbit, 22,236 miles above the surface. This would place the cable out of danger zone of lower orbit, where it could be struck by satellites or space debris. The pencil lead-thin cord would be constructed from carbon polymers and hung from the moon. The cost is estimated to be in the billions of dollars. [This isn’t even a remotely new concept. Often referred to as a “Beanstalk,” from the fairy tale about Jack and the Giant, this idea has been referenced in numerous stories and novels by Heinlein, Niven, and others from about the late 1960s on. The technical challenges remain daunting, and if it’s ever built, it’s unlikely to be what an ordinary person would consider “pencil-thin.” But, if it was ever built, it ought to be a pair, not a single cable. That way, there could be cars/capsules/carriers going in both directions at the same time. It’s very unlikely that any current reader will live long enough to see one finished. Ron P Color me skeptical. But then, there are a lot of things today I wouldn't have believe when I was an 18-year-old Marine. ~Bob).