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The American space agency is hosting a competition in which a number of entrepreneurs will be showcasing a variety of interesting creations

A National Aeronautics Space Administration competition will draw a number of international scientists to the New Mexico desert for them to unveil a number of different revolutionary projects. The overall goal of the NASA contest is to build some form of a space elevator that would hopefully one day replace expensive rocket missions. Even though the idea of a space elevator constructed out of a long enough cable to lift men and goods into orbit seems a bit outlandish, the entrepreneurs realistically believe it can be done.

University researchers, several corporations and scientists from several countries will test their devices to at the competition next month. Over $400,000 in cash prizes will be made available to the winners to the contests.

The LiftPort Group is one company that has openly stated its intentions of constructing a space elevator . LiftPort announced last month that it has completed a second round of testing on a prototype space elevator platform that stretches over a mile into the sky. The space elevator it hopes to construct would span over 100,000 kilometers. The company will be represented at the NASA challenge next month.

Even though a proper space base hasn't been constructed on Mars, some experts are hypothesizing about the ability of building a space elevator on the red planet. The 24 ½-hour days and proper atmosphere makes it an ideal location for a space elevator. Many scientists cited by the group agree that interested parties should first build some sort of elevator off Earth before even mentioning Mars.

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RE: Space exploration
By lemonadesoda on 9/5/2006 3:44:30 AM , Rating: 1
It will not greatly increase humanity's survival odds. The greatest probability of failure is through what we are doing (or failing to do) on planet earth.

In terms of probability, the additional "odds" by your agrument are in the 1/100000000ths of a percent.

For the general good of the universe, it is probably a good idea to limit the scope of human damage to one planet. We can hope the "probability" will lead eventually, in another eon, to perhaps more eco-friendly little green men to evolve somewhere else in the universe.

If you want to learn how to live in "the harshest environments" so that "we will definitely create non-oil based economies and environmentally stable practices that can be translated back to earth" there are easier and cheaper experiments: Go buy a tent and live in the desert, or the polar ice cap for a year. Then come back to the oil-based-civilisation and report back!

RE: Space exploration
By rykerabel on 9/5/2006 4:27:27 PM , Rating: 2
Been there, done that, not difficult and quite enjoyable... but it didn't save the planet either.

"Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment -- same piece of hardware -- paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that's a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be." -- Steve Ballmer
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