LiftPort hits Kickstarter seeking funds for space elevator experiment

Aug 28, 2012
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We've seen all sorts of projects hit Kickstarter over the years from video games to iPhone docks and all sorts of stuff in between. What may be the strangest Kickstarter project I've ever seen is now seeking funding on the service from a company called LiftPort Group. LiftPort is a company that wants to build a space elevator on the surface of the moon.

The Kickstarter project isn't seeking funding for a lunar space elevator. Rather it's seeking funding to conduct an experiment with a 2 km long tether and a robot to climb the tether. If the experiment is successful, it will beat the previous record set by LiftPort by roughly a quarter of a mile. The funding goal for the project was $8000.

So far, the company has raised over $19,600, and it has 16 days left to go. The group has offered "stretch goals" for the project that it would implement if funding went over $8000. These additional goals include adding telemetry sensors and the ability for the robot to go higher.

This experiment is the first step in what the company hopes will be a $3 million feasibility study on the possibility of building a space elevator on the surface of the moon. Ultimately, the goal is to build that space elevator to carry cargo from the surface of the moon to a point where spacecraft from Earth can rendezvous with the elevator. LiftPort founder Michael Laine believes that a space elevator would be easier to construct on the moon because of the lack of atmosphere and lower gravity. The company believes the lunar space elevator would cost about $800 million to construct.

[via Forbes]


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