7 thoughts on “Dylan Taylor”

  1. Wish the story were longer. Eric is a good writer and reasonably unbiased in his journalism.

    Against my better judgement, I peeked at the comments; I’ve been commenting at Ars for a long time (10+ years), but I seldom do anymore because the comments section has been overrun with the fellators of intrusive government and for this article, the comments were worse than usual. I couldn’t get past the second page. Shit like that is why I refuse to give them my money as a member. And a decent adblocker takes care of the ads.

    I was fortunate enough to see O’Neill speak (and the next day, do a hands-on seminar about mass drivers) at my university during my freshman year, when I was trying to decide between aerospace engineering and physics as a major. He was an excellent public speaker, and very engaging in the small group setting too.

  2. –“I’m a true believer,” Taylor, 51, said. “If the end state is O’Neillian, the way my brain works is—what are the obstacles and what are the constraints, and how do we overcome them?”–

    Not fan of big space “stations”. But how about one in Mars orbit, say L-2.
    I prefer small artificial gravity stations, or structure which houses about 1000 people.
    But it seems to me, that big structures could work better further from the Sun {or don’t want small structures far from the Sun}.
    It seems like pretty good guess is we get Mars settlements before any other towns in space.
    And if had +10,000 people on Mars, why wouldn’t they build space settlement in Mars orbit?
    Mars works just good as the Moon in terms of mass driver type stuff. Though material might come from space rocks rather Mars surface. Mars might be, probably is, a better place to mine space rocks. And Earthlings probably not keen on space rocks being brought into Earth orbits. And maybe, where Martian have babies is in artificial gravity station. Babies and small children could better place to raise them on space station than Mars surface??
    Maybe. It could be that long-term living on Mars gravity is not good. Though possible artificial gravity is not as good as Mars “natural” gravity. Or maybe Martian want to spend a year in Artifical 1 gee gravity, before going back Earth for some reason.
    But generally, it seems having some big “O’Neill cylinders” makes Mars a “better planet” and don’t think such things are going make Earth a better planet.
    But I still think Venus orbit going to have largest human population in the future, and they will mostly be small O’Neill cylinders type things.

  3. The O’Neillian argument often hinges upon the assumption that children won’t be able to grow up healthy on the Moon and Mars where material resources are immediately available. But before one makes this conclusion, we need to do the animal studies including with additional artificial gravity exposure in the context of a centrifuge on a planetary surface. If these artificial gravity experiments prove that healthy gestation and childhood are possible on the Moon and Mars then those are the likely destinations for initial large settlements until the cost of transport of materials to empty points in space approaches that of planetary surfaces.

    1. You can’t get less than one g steady on the surface of the Earth. I guess raising some animals in 1.2 or 1.4 g might be a clue though. This needs to be run in LEO. Musk is placing a big bet on people thriving in 0.38g. Fortunately Starship/SH system will open up all sorts of other possibilities and activities including the O’Neill concept.
      Thought – maybe Mars is just the difficult enough and far enough away goal to motivate everyone concerned to build Starship/SH even if living on Mars long term proves impossible.

    2. The centrifuge you’re talking about was supposed to be launched to the ISS years ago, and is currently moldering in a Japanese warehouse.

      1. The arguments against it was that it would induce vibrations on the ISS that would interfere with other experiments. Given the current state of pressurization issues, inducing extra vibrations to the ISS is probably not a good idea regardless of its effects on experiments. Sounds like a free flyer, perhaps in co-orbit with ISS would be the way to go. With Starship that becomes doable. With two Starships tethered nose to nose and co-rotating, extra not required.

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