Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Could We Build a Dyson Sphere in the Near Future?

I really like the IO9 blog - when they are not coming up with something totally weird, there is always an interesting and thought provoking article. Case in point, Is it reasonable to consider that we could, within the next fifty or so years, develop and put into play the construction and have it completed a couple of decades after that.

I am not going to get deep into what a Dyson is, I suspect that we all have a working concept of one. But to summarize, Freeman Dyson envisioned a sphere of orbiting solar satellites that would harvest most if not all of the output of the sun, making for unlimited power. Over the years since the concept has morphed into rings and complete spheres, the most common being a solid sphere made up of material from the outer planets brought into Earth orbit to complete a sphere at Earth orbital distances, capturing 100% of all of the sun's output. At anytime in the foreseeable future, it is clear that Dyson's like that described as a solid sphere would be completely outside our technological capabilities, however a ring of habitats and solar satellites may very well be possible.

Read the IO9 article here and see what you think

1 comment:

kallamis said...

For an entire Dyson sphere to be built, I believe would take a lot more material that what we have in our solar system.
I believe heat and radiation build up would be the hardest things to overcome in a complete sphere.
Also, one catastrophic failure in that, would pretty much wipe out all life here.
As for running with the sat system, and harnessing the energy, that seems like the easiest and most logical thing to try first regardless of technology.
Something like this needs to be handled by a government, and considering how well we all get along on this little speck in space, I see lots of complications here. The problem is, governments working together, and actually having the funds to do it, since money is still the driving force of everything on the earth.
This would be a good way however, and the perfect chance for the world to work together for a scientific endeavor, like we in america did during the space race.
I just think that 50 years is a bit hopeful for the start of this project, unless the private sector gets involved, and starts experimenting with the sending of energy back to earth. Once the private sector proves it can be done, and safely, the world I believe would start to change at last.
Of course, as long as oil is believed to be never ending by so many, this won't happen till we hit critical situation.
But then, I still have dreams now and then that Roddenberry's concept will come to fruition. A peaceful and safe world, not over populated, everyone working for the simple purpose of advancement, and creating the easiest life possible for all. I still want my jetpack, my flying car, and my intelligent robotic helper. And yeah, I know, wish in one hand, and ......
Sorry this isn't exactly in my normal order or sensible order, but i got my first break from my kid, and wanted to get my 2 cents in on the Dyson sphere.