Author's note: The following is a reconstruction in HTML of the material I prepared for my presentation of the KESTS to GEOHR concept at the SSI conference in May 1997 at Princeton. Since SSI subsequently chose to not publish the camera-ready copy of my paper which I supplied them, I am therefore free to present this material here in my web pages. This HTML version of this documentation has been prepared on 2000 09 15 at 2125hrs, in Glendale, CA.-- J E D Cline.
Generalizing and expanding upon specific ground-to-space concepts created in the 1980's, Kinetic Energy Supported Electrically Powered Transportation Structures (KESTS) have the potential of enabling truly massive space colonization in earth orbit. Compressive strength of materials limitations are bypassed by using the kinetic energy of a stream of orbital velocity mass elements circulating within the loop structure, compressing their trajectories toward the planetary center, supporting weight against the force of gravity. Electromagnetic coupling of the kinetic energy of the stream of mass elements also supports the weight of the evacuated tubing in which it flows, and transfers propulsion energy to vehicles traveling along its vast bridge-like structure. It can also serve as a power transmission and storage link between solar satellite thruster powerplants and the earth surface's electrical power grids. Stabilized by laterally-coupling mass stream pairs and by active position feedback servo systems, these are dynamic structures. The massive potential payload capacity of such electrically powered transportation structures linking earthís surface and earth orbital altitudes, conceivably could enable construction and habitation of an Orbital Habitat Ring around the Earth, a site where civilization can resume expansion utilizing the great resources of space. Perhaps these concepts can inspire humanity to reach new heights of healthy vigor.
Copyright © 1997 by James Edward David Cline.
A Brief Description of the Idea
Examples of kinetic energy being used to support structural shapes have been around a long time. Consider the kinetic energy of pressurized gas within a balloon or spacecraft fuel tank enabling the shape of that structure and its ability to carry load. Consider the arch of water in a fountain bringing water up to waiting lips. And consider the cowboy's lasso's loop, maintained in a circular shape by the spin of the circle of rope.
Let's expand on that lasso's loop picture. Imagine that the whirling lasso is almost frictionlessly sliding around inside a rim; the rim is slightly smaller than the lasso's loop so as to squeeze the lasso into a smaller radius than it would naturally assume, thus the lassoís centrifugal force is producing a small outward radial force on the compressing rim.
Then imagine that the rope's loop is sufficiently large as to go completely around the planet, contacting the planetary surface where electric motors input the energy for maintaining the loop's rotation; and continuing on to arch high above the far side of the planet before returning to the ground contact point, in a circulating loop.
To couple the electrical energy into the loop, make the loop the rotor of an electrical motor, perhaps looking more like a linear motor there.
To prevent the rope/loop from burning up in the atmosphere, enclose it within evacuated tubing. Support the weight of that tubing by compressing the trajectory of the rotating loop toward the ground, electromagnetically coupling the distributed weight of the tubing to the spinning loop. That tubing is stationary relative to the earth surface, and appears as if it were a structure upon it. Call the rotating lasso's rope a ìmass stream.î Since the earth is rotating once every 24 hours, the structure must also do so, being attached to the ground; so to link this planetary rotation to the structure, pair up counter rotating mass streams, bonded laterally together by their tubing to force a common trajectory between them. And electromagnetically couple the pulsing passage of the mass stream past any point on its circumference to provide lift energy to vehicles clinging to tracks along the tubing. And thus we have a picture of a basic form of a KESTS, or Kinetic Energy Supported Electrically Powered Transportation Structure. Such a transportation structure potentially could reach as high as Geosynchronous Earth Orbit.
KESTS: Kinetic Energy Supported Transportation
A generalized concept unifying the visionary
1980's structural concepts of Hyde, Lofstrom, and Smith is offered
here, and expanded upon.1,2,3 Since the 1980's, such megaprojects
have been disregarded in favor of scout-type space exploration,
but the current impending crisis of mankind's weight upon the
earthsurface ecosystem, suggests re-consideration and expansion
of these concepts for a massive migration of civilization into
nearby space resources. New ideas for emplacing these enormous
structures are described, and the applications enabled by new
forms of such structures. A new way of self-powering the structure
from solar electric mass thrusters is described here, which potentially
could also supply surplus electrical energy to earth surface commercial
power grids. It is offered that space technology thus has a chance
of enabling a vast human civilization in near-earth space while
also enabling the restoration of a balanced earth surface ecosystem,
which surely would be very good news for a conscientious humanity's
long term survival prospects.
A kinetically-supported active structure would be, in general, a structure which has as its primary resistance to deformation, the force of deflection of a large high velocity mass stream circulating within the structure; feedback control mechanisms intelligently actively guiding the application of this force based on the changing loads on the structure. The potential length of a kinetically-supported active structure is enormous, as is its expected payload capacity. Such rail-like transportation structures would far exceed the dimensions normally limited by the strength of materials, by being supported by the electromagnetically-coupled aggregate downward deflection of high velocity mass streams circulating within them. Their payload capacity potential thusly would be vastly greater than that which conventional reaction engine technology can provide, and doing it with minimal environmental impact. They would be active structures, as contrasted with passive structures, in that they would use feedback-stabilized energy to maintain them. Similarly, kinetically supported active structures would use position sensing in a feedback path to the ground mass stream re-acceleration point(s) modifying the internal mass stream velocity vectors so as to counteract deflections of the structure due to shifting payload weights, oscillation, wind loads, and response to impacts that might happen. Once built and supported using ground-based electrical power, space-based solar electric power would provide energy for it, such as dedicated SSPS in GEO, and/or solar powered thrusters located high along the structure providing all of the support and transportation energy used by the structure, and provide some intermediate active position feedback corrective vectors modulating the mass stream at their locations. The basic configuration of a KESTS structure, of the type being mostly discussed here, would connect at the equator and loop around the earth extending to far above the far side of the equator. Generally, kinetically supported active structures would utilize electromagnetic exchange of energy between masses in relative motion between each other, resembling an enormous distributed linear motor. They would have internal storage of an immense supply of energy, composed of the kinetic energy of pairs of very large continuous mass streams circulating along its length moving at orbital velocities, also intrinsically distributing transportation energy to payloads moving along it. They consist of pairs of laterally-coupled tubes linking counter rotating mass streams so that the whole structure rotates with the earthís rotation.
The Overall Concept Into Which KESTS Fits
The overall concept is of a technology of efficient
large-scale transportation of people and goods which involves
extreme changes in altitude, potentially from earthsurface as
far up as geosynchronous earth orbit. The potential of such an
adequate transportation system to enable much of the near-future
human population to choose to move into rings of near-earth-surface-normal-interior
space habitats could enable the restoration of the earth surface
ecosystem back to long term normal balance, while also enabling
humanity to expand civilization enormously by living in man-made
habitats, as now but located close in earth orbit, essentially
free from need of resource destruction on the surface ecosystem
thereafter. This very worthy goal hopefully balances the highly
conjectural state of the technology at this point in time.
Building transportation structures, a form of bridges, to connect the ground all the way up to orbital altitudes may seem absurd; however, such structures are being considered here. The compressive strength of known materials is very inadequate to the task of bearing the weight of such immense structures, so the compressive load would largely be carried by compression of the trajectory of mass streams circulating within the structure at above orbital velocities. The mass streams are referenced to the earth surface, so the load of the weight of the structure, and payload moving in vehicles upon it, is transferred by the mass streams to the ground load bearing. The pulsing electromagnetic energy of magnets contained within the mass stream is inductively coupled to the distributed load of the structure, and to the vehicles traveling upon the structure. Similarly, energy is put into the structure by electromagnetic coupling to the mass stream.
Basic Principles Of Kinetic Energy Supported Structures
Instead of building with tensile and compressive members, which have limits in their strength of materials and thus limits to their size, consider the possibility of using stored energy within the bridge structure to support it, to augment the chemical bond energy energy now providing its strength.
Picture, if you will, the immense kinetic energy of a massive pair of orbital velocity mass streams, flowing in a hard vacuum, circulating within channels along the length of such a bridge structure. The kinetic energy of those mass streams are electromechanically coupled to the structure of the bridge, providing support for the bridge structure and its live loads through downward radial compression of the mass stream trajectories, concurrently distributing energy to move those live loads along its length from the Earth's surface up to the desired orbital altitude and back down again to the Earth's surface, in a laterally coupled parallel pair of continuous loops. Most of the energy is stored within the kinetic energy of the circulating mass streams; only a small fraction of the mass stream's kinetic energy would be used each time around the loop, thereby providing a buffer against transients.
Generally, a KESTS would maintain its shape against forces acting against itself by using the kinetic energy of rapidly moving mass within itself to resist those forces. Energy coupling between the mass stream's packets and the tubing/track/vehicular parts of the structure is electromagnetic. The mass stream's intrinsic path is maintained by automatically re-optimizing the velocity of each of the packets at thrust points along it's path at the earthsurface contact re-initialization sites, thrusters, and benders.
Significant features of such a transportation system are that it would use electrical energy instead of chemical energy for transportation of payloads, would use part of its internally stored kinetic energy to do the work both of holding the structure up and to power payload vehicle movement along its path, would be stabilized against changing forces against them by active position feedback servo systems, and eventually provide excess electrical power to associated consumers as well as provide its own power from associated space-based solar-electric powerplants.
General Forms Of Kinetic Structures
KESTS are structures raised upon a planetary surface which resists the force of gravity by utilizing downward compression of a high velocity mass stream circulating around within the structure. There are several potential shapes of KESTS:
The dynamics which can be envisioned at this time for this form of KESTS involve the coupling of the mass stream to its environment. In some ways resembling the spinning rotor of an electric motor, the mass of this rotor is going around faster than the orbital velocity at any point, held lower by the weight of the sustained loads of passive structure and its live loads. The rotor, or mass stream, couples to its environment only through electromagnetic and electrostatic fields. Pushing from the earthsurface contact anchor re-initialization site, the mass stream is re-accelerated and repositioned to restore energy consumed along the KESTS pathway, compensating for live loads and lateral forces on the KESTS. From this re-initialization site, the mass stream heads back upward, electromagnetically dragging weakly against the passive structure around its path, as well as dragging against coupling to vehicles tapping that energy to lift them up the KESTS. This passive structure involves the evacuated tubing in which it flows, the shear coupling between counter rotating stream tubes, and the guidance tracks for live loads such as passenger vehicles. Live loads being lifted along the KESTS exert a downward force on the structure's mass stream, but live loads which are decelerating back toward the earth surface exert an upward force on the tracks thus adding energy back into the transportation system.
Other major forces on the mass stream come from passive weight "benders" for changing the shape of the KESTS, and solar-electric thrusters which support their sub-orbital velocity's weight by reaction to thrusting downward on the downward-flowing mass streams, thus adding solar-derived energy to the mass stream's energy.
The Mass Stream Packets
The mass stream is composed of packets performing several functions. Their primary function is to provide the storage and exchange of the kinetic energy which supports the compression load of the structureís weight, and distributes energy to move payload along the structures. Some packets may also function as vehicles transporting payload within the mass stream itself, and other forms of packets may be the payload itself on a one-way trip up or down as raw material. Packets need to be designed to resist contact with each other and with the tubing wall, somehow avoiding such contact wear; so perhaps they will need periodic automatic inspection and repair/replacement. Packets exchange energy within the KESTS by rising/falling in a gravitational field, and electrically through permanent and induced magnetism, and electrostatically. The electric field energy exchanges support the structure, center the mass stream within the tubing, input and extract energy to the mass stream, sense packet position and velocity, for re-initialization processes, and prevent physical abrasive contact.
Planetary Body Access Structural Shapes
Besides the vertical loop and the parabolic
arch shapes, there is another basic form. If the mass stream is
sufficiently large as to extend upward at a tangent to the earth's
surface, it could continue on to be gradually bent by the earth's
gravitational field to circle the earth to return to its point
of origin, such as from a point on the equator circling around
the earth back to itself. All the way around the Earth, extending
far out into space on the opposite side of the planet from its
surface contact central point. Non-equatorial surface contact
points are conceivable, needing a mirroring contact point on the opposite side of the equator from itself, where either direct turn-around loops are located, or instead full loops interchange at their upper crossover point.
Applications of Planetary Body Access Kinetic Structures
Such large kinetic structures could provide transportation capability millions of times greater than what we currently have. This massive capacity would totally change mankind's relationship with space. The experience of building and utilizing a Stanford Torus space settlement in the Clarke Belt, constructed entirely of resources from the earth surface, could teach us a lot which would help in the design of more of the settlements, as well as learn technological and sociological techniques useful on Earth herself. The first space settlements in the Clarke Belt, permanently connected to earth surface by the kinetic structures, create a beachhead for returning the Moon, this time to create the industrial resource base for building the main structure of vast numbers of those settlements in the Clarke Belt. For example, building just one continuous string of Island-One type 10,000 resident-each Stanford torus space settlements all the way around the earth-circling Clarke Belt, would provide residential areas and supporting agricultural areas for up to 15 billion people. This would enable a vastly expanding human civilization while taking their load off of Mother Earth.
Emplacement Of KESTS
The enormous difficulties in emplacement of KESTS into space from earth surface is sometimes glossed over, in the enthusiasm for the tremendous potential of the KESTS to provide truly massive efficient payload transfer between Earth surface and space near the Earth. However, there is frustration in trying to figure out how to get the KESTS up there in the first place. Suggestions so far have been by Keith Loftstrom, Rod Hyde, Earle Smith, and the author.
Early Emplacement Concepts
The techniques by Loftstrom and Smith involve laying the loop mechanism on Earth surface across at least one ocean, then accelerating the loop mechanism until it rises, or by carrying the upper portion of the loop aloft with balloons prior to acceleration. Hyde's vertical form of KESTS would be built by inserting new evacuated sections at the Earth surface launch point, incrementally raising the upper reflector end as sections are added at its surface base.
KESTS Emplacement by Flying Nose-Reaction Propulsion
The thrust of a mass stream against a structure
which produces a sudden 180 degree turn around of the mass steam,
much as Rod Hydeís ìStarbridgeî fountain structure
would have done, suggests another emplacement means. Making the
tube diameter a small fraction of an inch and of flexible tubing
would enable a small ground construction site and expendable R&D
launches. A large circular mass driver would accelerate the mass
stream up to , say, 20,000 mph while flowing within evacuated
tubing which is configured as a large coil. At the start of the
launch the weight of the nose
thruster, which provides the 180 degree turnaround of the mass stream within itself, needs to be much less than the force of the mass stream slamming against it to be electromagnetically thrown backward by the nose thruster. Headed upward, the nose thruster would resemble a conventional reaction engine launch, if the version merely releases the mass stream into the environment once it has expended its push against the nose thruster; more advanced versions would provide laterally-coupled return tubing for the reversed returning mass stream packets. The weight of the rising mass of the uncoiling tubing would be supported by distributed electromagnetic against the mass stream hurtling through it, as in the conventional KESTS form. The nose thrusterís trajectory would arch over and down to the site of the other end of the KESTS arch. Experience with building ever-longer arches would increase until the arch has completely circled the planet to have its landing site be at its launch site, thus emplacing a seed KESTS into space, for bootstrapping construction of full capacity structures. Nose thruster KESTS emplacement technology offers seed-bootstrapping KESTS, temporary KESTS, and special one-way materials delivery systems..A half-arch from ground to GEO conceivably could provide one-way delivery of construction materials; for example, if the mass stream is a glass fiber with magnetic inclusions in it, delivered at, say, 4 miles worth per second, accumulates respectably.
Chemical Reaction Engine Technology Emplacement
Another, rather brute force emplacement method would use chemical reaction engine technology to initially accelerate an upward bucket chain of objects that form the energy storage mechanism that will eventually support the KESTS. This technique establishes a tubeless KESTS mass stream first, then installs evacuated tubing around it, forming the basic structure of the KESTS. The tubeless KESTS is an immense chain of magnetically-coupled objects or packets, accelerated first by a modified form of chemical reaction engine technology or by electromagnetic rail technology. The front packet takes the brunt of the punishment, slamming through the air at meteoric velocities. The following links in the chain are packets which are in the wake of the lead packet, and have less effort to eject the air molecules that get in between the packet chain links.
The chain of orbital velocity missiles starts at earth surface, rapidly goes upward out beyond the atmosphere, coasting in trajectory around the planet to re-entry headed for its point of origin. As the chain of packets rise, some of their kinetic energy is converted to potential energy, and the average spacing between the chain links must decrease; so the chain is built to fold like an accordion in the hard vacuum to expand the width of the mass stream at higher altitudes. When the lead packet reaches the starting point, it is joined to the chain at that point, and re accelerated.
The contra-rotating version is then started
up in the opposite direction alongside the new tubeless KESTS.
It too loops around the Earth to rejoin itself at the surface
contact re acceleration site. The two chains of orbital velocity
packets are configured to electromagnetically couple laterally,
using electromagnetic position lateral linking nearly frictionlessly.
The laterally-coupled pair of sheathing tubes are then laid upon the two speeding chains of packets, its weight supported by the rising side of the dual chain of packets, sliding on the electromagnetic bearing surfaces of the outside surface of the chain of packets. Laid along the length of the KESTS, it is next sealed and evacuated. By this time all re-acceleration of the KESTS packets is electromagnetic.13
Emplacement as a Millimeter Microwave-Boosted Launched Mass Stream
Similar to launch by the blast of chemically powered reaction engine exhaust against it, multiple beamed millimeter wave energy sources perhaps could utilize hot air plasma acceleration technology to emplace seed KESTS.14
Payoff or Value
What is the value of enabling a resumed vigorous
expansion of human civilization while also enabling the restoration
of the earth surface ecosystem? The intent of this paper is to
inspire hope for such a near-future major space-based civilization,
enabled by an earth surface to space transportation system adequate
to the task of transporting every existing human being into space,
if need be, to an Orbital Habitat Ring encircling our planet.
An indefinitely long improvement in the standard of living for humanity in general, would be made possible by a transportation system adequate to the task of establishing a massive beachhead in earth orbit, increasing access to space resources, increasing how far we can go and how much we can carry there. With enormous increases in room to grow, raw materials and abundant 24 hour per day solar energy, resource wealth can increase life satisfaction for all. This all could uniquely be made possible by a mature Kinetic Energy Supported Electrically Powered Transportation Structure technology. More specifically:
Enabling Technologies or Systems
Relation to Major Mission Objectives
Key Demonstrations Required
Comparison with Tether Types of Transportation
Kinetic Energy Supported Transportation Structures ("KESTS") perhaps will be eventually supplanted by centrifugally-supported equatorial tethers, for long-term massive transportation between earth surface and near-space. Indeed, KESTS might well provide the immense payload lift capacity to GEO useful for the construction materials for such tethers. However, there are several significant advantages KESTS have in the near future time frame: first, they do not need development of carbon monofilliament (diamond monofilliament) tether material before construction; second, they do not need to be built starting at GEO; and third, perhaps most importantly, they inherently distribute the transportation energy needed to move payload along their length.
Yet the choice is not of avoiding major stress, but of which stressor to accept. Looking back the other way, where the limits to earth surface population growth were passed very long ago, requiring some 9 people out of 10 to just... not be... anymore, for long term survivability of humanity, surely is stressful; the process of deciding who lives and who does not, seems likely to be stressful, if not even gladiatorial. Colosseum, anyone? What percentage of resources can be recycled, each time around, and how many recycles can there be before there is not enough left to recycle one more time? Can technology eventually enable 100% recycling? We donít seem to be able to stop ourselves from exterminating species as part of our harvesting of planetary resources, anymore than we can stop from spraying our homes with insecticide, there is no harmony seemingly within us for co-existence anymore with the biodiversity complex that provided us with life. Will humanity realize quickly enough what the meaning of ìfittestî is for humanity, in the phrase ìsurvival of the fittestî. Who wins in the long run, the one who stomps on the bee fearing a bee sting,, or the one who enables the bee to gather honey and pollinate the crops? In what way can the average personís attitude be shifted from a tremendous resentment at the prospect of an enormous interference with their daily lives and current property ownership, to that of perceiving a series of wonderful opportunities?
So the second, and perhaps the most difficult and unlikely, milestone to be passed is the one where somehow a world full of people together choose the path of full responsibility for the fragile ecosystem of their Mother Earth, acknowledging their heavy foot upon it, and also simultaneously accepting full responsibility for the tremendous magnificent civilization that can soon evolve from the present one, just shifted up into space orbiting the earth.
Applications Beyond Space Development
Before these very large kinetic structures
can be built here on the Earth's surface, on the lunar surface,
and on the Martian surface, a lot of experience needs to be gained
by utilizing them for smaller spans in surface to surface applications.
Kinetic structural arches might support conveyor belts which span
hundreds of miles, connecting coal deposits with local electric
coal-fired powerplants. The kinetic arches could support water
pipelines spanning from arctic glacial areas to deliver water
to desert farming areas thousands of miles away, along great loops
created by the coriolis force. Oceans could be spanned, directly
linking the continents, analogous to the building of bridges where
ferries were the only option before.15
Ground-to-ground applications would provide the development of the technology, and supply solid working experience with KESTS. The technological niches appear to be in possible competition with long range air and sea transportation routes. The specific forms of KESTS technology actually put into hardware will control the ultimate range of applications, of course.
Next, a full-scale over-water bridge could be built, perhaps linking two islands or an island with the mainland, such as connecting Long Beach with Catalina Island, some 27 miles of water to cross. Early ones will fail, just as in aircraft and rocket development; the failure modes of KESTS is likely to be fast and spectacular with the stream mass being quickly burned up when suddenly having to travel through the atmosphere without its vacuum shielding, so early ones might best be built in unpopulated areas. What must be done to compensate for coriolis forces will be discovered and proven out. Maintenance procedures and needs would get worked out. An ongoing creative process of envisioning, design, analysis, experimenting, engineering, manufacturing, trying out...and back to the envisioning function again, forms an endless loop ever perfecting the KESTS to meet real-world needs and resources functionality.
As confidence builds as the KESTS meet the real world environment ongoing, ever greater projects can be attempted. Intercity KESTS bridging remote unpopulated areas might then be built, such as linking a new super airport in the Palmdale area with Los Angeles, a KESTS connecting Hawaii with the California coast and with Alaska also. Other countries would be involved by this time, such as Japan would find KESTS island hopping quite effective in their transportation network. With experience of KESTS in high storm conditions such as hurricanes...assuming their multiplicity of servos is able to compensate for such heavy wind loads...would open up possibilities for transcontinental KESTS transportation. The relative advantages of high kinetic energy flatter trajectories would be balanced with the lower velocity high arching trajectory KESTS. Delivery of materials, such as bringing glacial water to the deserts of Australia, North Africa, and the Middle East, opens up another version of KESTS, where the KESTS primarily provides support for the vacuum tubing, and the materials being delivered are themselves moving in sealed containers at near orbital velocities within the vacuum stream tubing enclosed in a high velocity hose structure that unzips at its delivery terminal, disgorging its cargo, and then is whirled around along with the KESTS stream for the return trip to the inlet terminal.
Other Important Factors
The basic intention of this project is to provide a key transportation link to enable an alternative to the rapidly increasing resource entropic garbage and destruction of ecosystem biological resources such as rain forests by an expanding earth surface civilization. Recent research shows that the earth surface ecosystem can indefinitely support only a small fraction of the present human population; this project could give those "excess" billions of people some exciting and useful things to do and hopefully in the process create a place for themselves and their children to come to live in an enormously expanding civilization, largely independent of earth surface resources, and enabling restoration of the earth ecosystem thereafter. Probably when the first cave dwellers decided that the cave complex was overpopulated, and cast out the weaker ones, they didn't realize that those "weaker" ones would learn to build their own shelters and grow their own food, and create a population support resource vastly beyond that possible to the cave dwellers in their hunter/gatherer territory. The kinetic structure transportation technology just might be able to open up the potential of truly vast real estate creation in the Clarke Belt. There civilization could flourish given the efficient inflow of raw materials from both earthsurface and lunar sites.16
The technological challenges are great. The beneficial applications are vastly greater. Who will do the R&D? Who will pay for the R&D, and how will the rights for the use of the resulting technological development be kept accessible for all humanity, yet pay for itself in a reasonable period of time? Indeed, KESTS to Orbital Habitat Rings would require a technological resurgence of worldwide activity of science, technology, social, agricultural, environmental fields ... nearly all of the fields of human endeavor.
Some Research Questions
1. Stability of the KESTS structure: how high can it go while remaining able to cope with unbalanced transient forces upon it? What are those expected forces? How much wobble will be present at any point along it, particularly at the site of embarkation to the habitat ring? Can its active position servo system be adequately damped to prevent uncontrolled oscillations in the feedback loop? What is the ratio of active feedback damping vs. energy-consuming passive damping structures distributed along KESTS?
2. What is the traffic volume necessary for a given size KESTS, at the break-even point, considering the energy input required just to maintain support of the structure? Analogous to the heart beat pumping blood through a person's arteries, capillaries, and veins, that "pumping" is required to sustain life of the KESTS system.
3. Pulsing magnetic fields hazard to living beings: The coupling of the mass stream to the enclosing tube structure and to vehicles moving along the structure is primarily pulsing electromagnetic in nature. What hazard does this present to passengers, since some studies have linked such ELF fields to diseases such as alzeheimers and leukemia; can design minimize such ELF fields in cargo and passenger parts of the vehicles?
4. What kind of industrial business system can possibly remain responsible to the long term goals of an expanding civilization and restoration of the earth surface ecosystem?
5. Willingness of the majority of present-day earth surface population to leave their lifelong homes to migrate to the orbiting habitat ring: people are attached to the familiar, and often have worked much of their lifetime to provide the home they now live in with their family, and are not likely to easily choose to leave it all. The value of their real estate will need to be adequately returned to them somehow in the overall process. And those whose fortunes are dependent on the real estate wealth they have currently amassed, will need assurance of equivalent wealth in the new civilization site somehow. Who will provide the money for all this? Can there be a one-for-one correspondence of real estate on the ground with real estate in the habitat ring? And can life in the habitat ring be guaranteed sufficiently better than that on earthsurface to provide the incentive to migrate?
6. Can there be multiple KESTS, or would the crossover sites provide risk of crashing together in space? Can these crossover points be made deliberately coupled, even providing additional stability to the overall KESTS system?
7. What orbital altitude will be the optimum site for the habitat ring? The Clarke Belt (geosynchronous earth orbit) would provide a theoretically stationary embarkation point between KESTS and the orbiting habitat ring, but shielding requirements might be greater there than in other places, requiring more non-rotating shielding mass around them. Low Earth Orbit would require less shielding, and the demands on KESTS are much less, but guarantee of indefinitely long compensation for orbital decay of the immense habitat ring would somehow need to be made. And is there some way to have habitat rings at both altitudes, using mirrored KESTS to arch over lower orbital altitude habitat rings?
8. What effects of the mass streamís electromagnetic flow within the earthís magnetic field?
9. The entire KESTS structure must rotate once every 24 hours, as it is attached solidly to the earth surface. Lateral coupling between upward and downward mass stream provides the mechanism to swing the enclosed mass streams around with the rotation of the earth, but what are the magnitudes of the distributed lateral force between the mass streams and tubing, and how much weight does this structure add to the KESTS? These are important parameters for KESTS equations.
10. Given the transfer of most of most of civilization to the Orbital Habitat Rings around the Earth, 15 billion people in the hypothetical example given here illustratively, there would be plenty of spare mile-diameter 600 feet wide toroidal habitats, which could be used to re-create small copies of earthsurface natural ecosystems. Those local zoological parks conceivably could be ark-like backups for all of the original earthsurface species, including the largest land and marine mammals. Those space-based zoological gardens would be excellent research sites for the restoration and maintenance of the giant national park that the earthsurface could become, preserving precious biological genetic resource pools of biodiversity for the future. What will be the managerial processes that ensure this will happen?
The engineering, sociological, and business
challenges of KESTS to an Orbital Habitat Ring are great; indeed,
in nearly all fields of human endeavor. The transportation structure
itself has engineering challenges enough to satisfy the most dynamic
intelligent of people, not the least of which is engineering the
dynamic stability to cope with potentially oscillatory mechanisms
due to the long delay times between load changes and time to reach
the site from the mass stream re-initialization point(s). In the
Orbital Habitat Ring, there is a major challenge of balancing
the myriad interactive systems of life and machine for stability,
yet including the creative growth necessary to civilization.
KESTS concepts suggest to us a new way to move ourselves and our civilization's belongings far and high into earth orbit, perhaps even enabling earth life to occupy the relatively motionless orbit of the Clarke Belt. To leave the caves of earthsurface while we can, or not to leave; that is the question. Continue to ride the earthsurface ecosystem downward, or to turn upward? Every one of ourselves, not just the lucky few, can thereby move up to an area where it is more appropriate to build ideal man-made living space. Up there, mankind can flourish like never before, and from there can allow Mother Earth to heal herself, as if from the partition as she gives birth to mankind bringing life to the rest of the solar system. The decision to research and develop the technology of kinetic energy supported electrically powered transportation structures would be a major step toward true large scale colonization of space, even in our time.
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This document by James Edward David Cline.