Moon Society/Lunar Development World Map

Courtesy of James Rogers of Lunarpedia

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08 October 2008

32,000th Floor Please

American and Japanese scientists say that the manufacturing techniques and materials for building a space elevator should be ready around 2020 or so.  Currently, the stronget material available - carbon nanotubes - have only about a quarter of the strength needed.

Japan, unlike the United States, is prepared to spend $10 billion to develop the technology.  A space elevator would reduce the cost of putting an object in orbit to just the electricity needed to climb the elevator.  Electricity is much cheaper than rocket fuel.