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The Spaceward Foundation Releases Multi-Year Space Elevator Competition Roadmap

Press Release From: Spaceward Foundation
Posted: Monday, March 28, 2005

image Following last week's $400,000 prize purse announcement by NASA, the Spaceward Foundation has released details of its Space Elevator competitions for 2005 and 2006, as well as a long-term roadmap.

Scheduled to be held annually starting this fall, the competition promises to provide spectacular visual imagery and attract a large audience. Details are available at: http://www.elevator2010.org/site/competition.html

"These competitions represent the best way to demonstrate our vision of the Space Elevator to the public, and to focus the best scientific minds in the country on this engineering task," said Dr. Bradley Edwards, the developer of the modern Space Elevator design.

Dr. Edwards is on the board of directors of the Mountain View, CA, based Spaceward Foundation, the non-profit organization that is managing the Elevator:2010 project.

The Climber competition will challenge teams to build a Space Elevator prototype capable of scaling a 200 foot vertical ribbon using a beamed-power system. Climbers will be limited to 25 kg (50 lb) and will have to climb at a minimum speed of 1 m/s (3 ft/s), while carrying as much payload as possible.

The Tether competition is an open dare to industry to produce tethers that are stronger and lighter than anything fabricated to date. Tethers will be pitted head-to-head in a high-tech tug-of-war fashion, and the winner will still have to beat the previous year's winner by at least 50%.

"The release of the multi-year plan and roadmap are important milestones for us," said Meekk Shelef, president of the Spaceward Foundation. "We plan for this event to become an annual tradition, featuring progressively more complicated Space Elevator prototypes, leading to a complete proof of concept by the year 2010."

The Spaceward Foundation is also starting a K-12 and public outreach activity dubbed "Elevator:2010 Explorer," designed to allow personal involvement of as wide an audience as possible, and including interactive displays in technology museums, children's activities, and school science projects.

Elevator:2010 is an educational and competitive program revolving around the Space Elevator concept. Elevator:2010 includes programs aimed at universities, K-12, the general public, and private industry. For more information please go to: http://www.elevator2010.org

The Space Elevator is a revolutionary system promising a low-cost, safe, and scalable access to space. For more information, please visit: http://www.elevator2010.org/site/primer.html

For additional information, please contact ben AT spaceward.org.

A press kit containing this release, an image and a logo is available for downloading at http://www.elevator2010.org/site/documents/pr20050328roadmap.zip

The press kit containing the previous release and NASA's press release is available at http://www.elevator2010.org/site/documents/pr20050323saa.zip

Related Link: SpaceRef's Space Elevator Reference

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