“A cylindrical containment bag constructed from carbon nanotubes would be extremely light compared to the mass of asteroid debris and habitat, yet strong enough to hold it all together…”
Humanity has explored the solar system at an accelerating rate. Our technological advancements have grown rapidly over the years. We’re about to bring humanity back to the surface of the Moon in a few years, and by the end of the decade we’ll probably have landed the first human on another planet, Mars. While this news is exciting, we wonder what’s next. I recently wrote that if we want to colonize the solar system, we must go beyond the Moon and Mars. Colonizing the dwarf planet Ceres, for example, should be a top priority due to where Ceres orbits the sun. This dwarf planet is located in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. And the asteroid belt is of great importance to us,
Asteroids, resources and cities
The asteroid belt is the gold mine of our solar system. The resources at our disposal could greatly catapult humanity into a new technological age. The more resources available, the faster the progress. This is known throughout history, and many wars have been fought for resources. Today, scientists from the University of Rochesterexplained how we might build entire habitats (cities) on asteroids in the future. Rochester scientists used engineering and physics to explain how asteroids could become viable space habitats for future space explorers. This is essential if we want a future beyond Earth. We must find and create homes, buildings and structures for millions of people to work and live in. But in space.
The future and the asteroids
According to an article published in the Journal Frontiers in Astronomy and Space Sciences, researchers from the University of Rochester explain why our future may lie in asteroids. Astronomers estimate that our solar system is home to about a thousand asteroids with a diameter greater than one kilometer. These cosmic rocks are passengers of the solar system, revolving around the sun like all other cosmic objects. But asteroids aren’t that tough. By this, scientists mean that asteroids are not strong enough to withstand receiving even one-third of Earth’s gravity while spinning. Therefore, when rotated, most asteroids fracture and shatter. What’s more, most asteroids aren’t even solid rocks, but pebbles and clumps of loose boulders and stones.
A space bag type habitat
The idea is to contain an asteroid. Scientists propose to contain grains and pebbles. And how are they going to do it? Using a bag A very large space bag. Scientists suggest covering the asteroid with a huge soft bag made of very strong carbon nanofibers. This space bag would encompass and support the rotating mass of debris and grains from the asteroid and the habitat therein. It would support its weight as the object spins. Essentially, the scientists want to use a massive bag to trap particles, pebbles and blocks from the asteroid and build a city inside.