Space Elevator Concept.
The purpose of the Tether Challenge is to develop a very strong tether material for use in various structural applications. The competition requires a 50% improvement in breaking force from year to year, starting with a commercially available tether in 2005. Additional requirements (such as operating temperature range, vacuum compatibility, and controlled electrical conductivity) will be added in future years.
The Tether Challenge will be conducted in two rounds. The first round will pit tethers from two teams directly against each other to determine the team with the strongest tether. The second round will determine if the first-round winner is at least 50% stronger than a house tether that represents off-the-shelf materials. If it is, that team will win the competition.
A space elevator would consist of such a tether attached to Earth’s surface, reaching into space. A space elevator is a theoretical structure designed to transport material from a planet’s surface into space. Many different types of space elevators have been proposed. They all share the goal of replacing rocket propulsion with the traversal of a fixed structure via a mechanism not unlike an elevator in order to move material into or beyond orbit.
DeltaX is a team of 5 MIT scientists trying to challenge themselves with unsolved problems of the industry and academic research.
In alphabetical order:
Dipl. Ing. Daniel G Pressl
Ph.D. John Hart
S.M. Stephen Steiner II