CSS Skywalker - First Step To SF Orbital Resorts
CSS Skywalker, an orbital hotel designed by Bigelow Aerospace, will consist of a 22x45 foot inflatable space habitat that can be easily configured for its guests. In the configuration shown below, the top level is set aside as a lounge; the middle level provides space for sleeping guests. The bottom level holds bathrooms and sleeping areas.
(From CSS Skywalker Orbital Resort Diagram)
Science fiction fans of course remember the more spacious lounge in the orbiting space station in 2001: A Space Odyssey; note the low curving ceiling (this space station was spun on its axis to provide artificial gravity for the guests).
(From 2001 Lounge)
CSS Skywalker guests will not be so fortunate; the inflatable space module will not offer artificial gravity services to guests. The idea for an inflatable space bubble probably belongs to writer Larry Niven.
Guests in Bigelow Aerospace's hotel will be kept safe with three layers of protection: a membrane to keep air in, a protective layer for the membrane and an eighteen-inch-thick shield consisting of alternating woven graphite composite and foam. The intent of this layer is to provide protection against orbiting debris in low earth orbit (see Electrodynamic Tethers: Clean Up Debris for more information - and a possible real-world solution). Ground-testing of Bigelow’s habitat skin has shown that it can stop impacts by 5/8-inch-diameter aluminum pellets fired at it at 6.4 kilometers a second, several times as fast as a rifle bullet. Guests thus pampered will be charged $1 million US per night for their stay at the most unique resort property in the solar system. Guests at Bigelow's terrestrial properties - Budget Suites - pay as little as $49 US per night. Location, location, location.
(From CSS Skywalker Shielding)
Speaking of making sure that as much money as possible stays up above the gravity well, another well-known science-fictional orbital resort is Freeside, a large space habitat that provides everything a tourist could want:
`Freeside,' Armitage said, touching the panel on the little Braun hologram projector. The image shivered into focus, nearly three meters from tip to tip. `Casinos here.' He reached into the skeletal representation and pointed. `Hotels, strata-title property, big shops along here.' His hand moved. `Blue areas are lakes.' He walked to one end of the model. `Big cigar. Narrows at the ends.'
`We can see that fine,' Molly said.
`Mountain effect, as it narrows. Ground seems to get higher, more rocky, but it's an easy climb. Higher you climb, the lower the gravity. Sports up
there. There's velodrome ring here.' He pointed.
`A what?' Case leaned forward.
`They race bicycles,' Molly said. `Low grav, high-traction tires, get up over a hundred kilos an hour.'
(From Freeside Orbital Resort)
Will CSS Skywalker be a success? Bigelow Aerospace is gambling at least $500 million on whether or not space tourism really takes off.
("My God, it's full of ... guests!"
Read more about CSS Skywalker orbital resort.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 2/17/2005)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 1 )
Related News Stories -
Is 'The Pulsar Positioning System' Evidence For SETI?
'For a hyperspace jump, you need at least four beacons for an accurate fix.' - Harry Harrison, 1959.
Are Observed Radio Bursts An Alien Propulsion Technology?
'These cones were driven through space by light pressure, the possibilities of which force they had long utilized.' - Edmond Hamilton, 1929.
Caltech's ET Laboratory Looks For New Earths
'...set my automatic astronomical instruments to searching for a habitable planet.'- Edmond Hamilton, 1936.
Shh! USAF's Secret X-37B Space Plane Breaks Record
'More airplane than spaceship...' - Robert Heinlein, 1951.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Cattle Avoidance Feature In Indian Autonomous Cars
'The driver went about the business of gently slipping the teflon-coated metal scoop beneath the first animal...'
Project KOVR Fashion Protection From Infosphere
'... the entire shroudlike membrane took on whatever physical characteristics were projected at any nanosecond.'
Twist Bioscience High Density Digital Data On DNA
'They tied the memory to the bloodline and that was their record!'
'We're Not Creating A Terminator' Say Russians About Gun-Wielding Robot Fedor
Nobody is thinking about the Terminator. Westworld, maybe.
Vantablack Now IMMEASURABLY Black
'a black coating now that’s ninety-nine percent absorptive...'
Mercedes-Benz Autonomous Taxi Fleet In 3 Years
'... the taxi utilized sophisticated electronic sensors to perceive its surroundings.'
Is 'The Pulsar Positioning System' Evidence For SETI?
'For a hyperspace jump, you need at least four beacons for an accurate fix.'
Someday, You Might Like VR Enough To Move In
'That barrier was going to melt away someday soon. The transhumanists had promised...'
Humans Use Mental Power For Turtle Slavery
Now we need to start looking for animals with fingers...
Solar-Powered Moisture Vaporator
'The atmosphere yielded its moisture with reluctance.'
DxtER! Tricorder Prize Won By Final Frontier Medical Devices
We've been waiting a long time for this, Star Trek fans.
President Trump's Wall As Otra Nation Hyperloop
'...an hollow tube must be constructed the whole distance... as to admit a four wheeled carriage...'
Pickup Lines From Artificial Intelligences
'They hate us, you know... The humans. They'll stop at nothing.'
Pooper Scooper Drone Robot Watchdog 1
'Robots pick up the garbage and junk...'
Cassie Robot Brings AT-ST Walker To Life
There's even a log test!
Hundreds Of Robot Lawnmowers Invade Texas Town
'The mower reached the edge of the lawn, clucked to itself...'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories