Japanese Construction Company Plans Space Elevator By 2050
Obayashi Corp. plans to build a space elevator by 2050. The company is days away from completing this structure, the Tokyo Sky Tree, which will be Japan’s tallest building at 2,080 feet high.tsushima2011 via Flickr
Space elevators have been our shared dream for years, but like other promising technologies of the future, they’re just concepts on a distant horizon. Now a Japanese construction firm that specializes in the very tall could make them a reality. By 2050, so still pretty far on that horizon, but hey, it’s a start.
Obayashi Corp., which is almost done building the giant structure above, the Tokyo Sky Tree, wants to build a space elevator that would reach 22,370 miles (36,000 km) above the Earth — that’s above the altitude where geosynchronous satellites orbit. It would take a week to ride up the elevator, traveling on some type of vessel tethered to carbon nanotube cables.