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Space Elevator: November 2009


With LaserMotive winning $900,000 at the recent NASA Centennial Power Beaming Challenge, AKA the Space Elevator Games, there's still $1.1 million on the table to won. So Spaceward, the organizers have tentatively scheduled May 10, 2010 as the last chance for teams to compete for the the remaining money. The competition is open to any team that qualifies.

The games will be held at NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center on Edwards Air Force Base.

The European Spaceward Association is preparing for the Third International Conference on Space Elevator Systems - CNT Tether Design and Lunar Industrial Challenges. The conference will join some of the world's leading researchers and engineers on space elevator systems and carbon nanotube fiber production. An add-on this year will be a session on lunar industrialization challenges.

It was, to say the least, the most exciting of the Space Elevator Games to date, and what's more, NASA now has to write a check in the amount of $900,000 to Lasermotive of Seattle for winning the 1st level prize.

Lasermotive of Seattle on Friday tried to win an additional $1.1 million in prize money after already winning at least a share of the level 1 prize money of $900,000 earlier this week, but their last climb attempt ran into technical issues and they called it quits for the competition.

The Kansas City Space Pirates are the lone remaining team with an opportunity this afternoon to try and win some prize money after the University of Saskatchewan Space Design Team (USST) failed to win anything earlier today.

If the Kansas City Space Pirates can't qualify for prize money on their last attempt then Lasermotive will win the $900,000 level 1 prize outright.

Early this morning University of Saskatchewan Space Design Team (USST) had one last chance to get in the prize money. After a series of technical issues it was hoped they would put in a good climb this morning. Unfortunately it was not meant to be. They could not solve technical issues and are done for the competition.

Related: University of Saskatchewan Space Design Team Competes Valiantly at NASA's Power Beaming Challenge

The NASA sponsored Power Beaming Challenge, also known as the Space Elevator Games, is guaranteed to give out some prize money this year after a stellar performance by Team Lasermotive in the first day of the competition.

For Lasermotive of Seattle, It was their first attempt of the day and they accomplished what they never could before. And that was actually climbing the complete length of a tether in competition. And what a run it was. With their attempt they qualified for at least a share of the 1st level prize money of $900,000.


The 2009 Space Elevator Games underway with the Kansas City Pirates the first team to compete this morning. Unfortunately their morning effort did not qualify them for any of the prizes.

This afternoon the team out of Seattle, Lasermotive is attempting to get some prize money. You can watch the event live.

Here's a story from AP on this morning's try by the Kansas City Space Pirates.

- Laser-powered elevator to space hits some snags, AP