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Author Topic: How could people walk around on the space station?  (Read 5418 times)

Mark

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Mark asked the Naked Scientists:

Hi,
When you see science fiction movies people are able to walk around in space stations.  Is this really possible and how is it done in our current space station.

Thanks & Great Podcast!

Mark
Dallas, Texas  USA

What do you think?


 

Offline syhprum

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How could people walk around on the space station?
« Reply #1 on: 01/10/2008 21:48:13 »
I can think of at least four ways to construct a space station where gravity would be simulated enabling you to walk about in a fairly normall fashion, all are not very practical!
A very large cylindrical craft can be built rotating about its long axis, such a craft was featured in the novel 'Return to Rama'.
A large rotating toroidal craft will give the impression of walking in a tunnel with 'down' as the outer edge.
Two multi storey craft connected together by a long cable rotating about each other will do the same job.
One craft accelerating continuously at 9.81 M/s/s will have gravity similar to Earth but the power source will be a problem also relativity effects will creep in after a while requiring a reversal of direction.

Perhaps you can see why none of these craft have as yet been built!!!

The Russians are going to build one !

http://www.physorg.com/news10605.html
 
« Last Edit: 25/10/2008 06:45:23 by syhprum »
 

Offline syhprum

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How could people walk around on the space station?
« Reply #2 on: 25/10/2008 06:46:47 »
News on this front
 

lyner

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How could people walk around on the space station?
« Reply #3 on: 25/10/2008 13:56:41 »
One spacecraft accelerating at 9.91m/s/s would very soon be a long way from Earth!
I favour the long tether idea. Would they have the system rotating about a 'vertical' axis or a 'horizontal' axis? Which would be least confusing when you look out of the window?

Personally, I'd go for the magnetic boots of Science Fiction. Except for the facts that spacecraft don't have much steel about and that they would exercise all the wrong leg muscles.
 

Offline ukmicky

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How could people walk around on the space station?
« Reply #4 on: 25/10/2008 14:02:53 »
They should try Velcro :)
 

Offline LeeE

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How could people walk around on the space station?
« Reply #5 on: 25/10/2008 18:17:47 »
Velcro was one of two methods shown in 2001:A Space Odessey.  The rotating space station obviously used centripetal acceleration but during Floyd's journey from the rotating space-station to the Moon the stewardess had Velcro shoes.
 

Offline syhprum

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How could people walk around on the space station?
« Reply #6 on: 25/10/2008 19:33:58 »
The chief reason for advocating some form of artificial gravity is the very debilitating effect of the micro gravity environment.
It is OK for a month or two but a Russian astronaut who spent 425 days on Mir was in a state of collapse when he returned and took over a year to recover with the best of medical attention.
Astronauts travelling to Mars in a micro gravity environment would be incapable of doing any thing useful when they got there
 

lyner

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How could people walk around on the space station?
« Reply #7 on: 25/10/2008 21:28:05 »
They would have to do the '2001' thing. I'm afraid I can't do that Dave.
 

Offline graham.d

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How could people walk around on the space station?
« Reply #8 on: 26/10/2008 18:08:54 »
Did anyone notice that in 2001 they appeared to have normal gravity when having a conference inside the moonbase?

It completely spoilt it for me :-)
 

lyner

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How could people walk around on the space station?
« Reply #9 on: 27/10/2008 10:18:51 »
But they got the Moonshot pictures right on TV. Clearly a better production team.
 

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How could people walk around on the space station?
« Reply #9 on: 27/10/2008 10:18:51 »

 

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