You are Invited to the National Space Society Space Forum
Thursday, May 20, 2021, 9:00 to 10:15 PM EDT
A Modern Day Space Elevator – 2021
Featuring Peter Swan, Ph.D., President, International Space Elevator Consortium (ISEC)
Peter Swan, Ph.D.
Space Elevators have been a long-discussed technology designed to take massive payloads to space in a cost-efficient and environmentally friendly way. The practical aspects of this technology are still being debated, but recent advances have helped boost the concept of “A Modern Day Space Elevator – 2021.” This term surfaced as we have matured through the eight Space Elevator architectures described by David Raitt in his Quest Magazine article (2021). As the name implies, the Modern Day Space Elevator – 2021 has evolved from a dream to a scientific reality that we are moving into the second phase of development (Engineering Development). This change in maturity occurred as the limiting factor of the past has been overcome.
The latest information on tether material is that Single Crystal Graphene (SCG), a new material with 2D characteristics that has been shown to be strong enough and can be manufactured long enough. SCG is in the early phase of segment development; but, it is very promising. Mr. Adrian Nixon, an ISEC Board member and a major player in the development of 2D materials, believes the material will “be ready in time for space elevator development.”
A key driver for Dr. Swan’s interest in space elevators is his dream to enable the visions of Peter Glaser (space-based solar power) and Gerard O’Neill (CIS lunar space settlements) and further the NSS Vision of “People living and working in thriving communities beyond the Earth, and the use of the vast resources of space for the dramatic betterment of humanity.” Join Dr. Swan for this informative space forum as he explores these topics, discusses the latest advances in space elevator technology and gives us a hint of what will come next.
To view a series of videos on Modern Day Space Elevators developed by the ISEC team, go to https://www.isec.org/
Also be sure to read Dr. Swan’s article (co-authored by Cathy Swan) “Geo, Moon, or Mars? A New Architecture for Space Elevators” in the latest issue of Ad Astra magazine.
Peter Swan is President of the International Space Elevator Consortium (ISEC) and team lead for developing the space elevators. Peter is a member of the International Academy of Astronautics and Fellow of AIAA and the British Interplanetary Society. He graduated from the USMA in 1968 and served 20 years in the Air Force. His Ph.D. was in spacecraft systems from UCLA. He joined the Iridium satellite program leading to 92 satellites in orbit. He then joined Teaching Science and Technology, Inc. teaching space systems engineering. He continues to teach at Arizona State University for their OLLI classes. His latest books include Road to the Space Elevator Era , Space Elevators are the Green Road to Space , and Space Elevators are the Transportation Story of the 21st Century .