Inventions for space technology by Anthony Ratkov.
Lunar Cargo Vehicle (LCV).
A space station, such as the International Space Station (ISS) cannot orbit the Earth forever, eventually, the Earth's gravity will pull it down, and it will crash into the Earth's surface. One way to prevent the ISS from impacting the Earth's surface is to disassemble the station, and transport the pieces of the station to the Moon, where the pieces will be soft-landed on the lunar surface, and eventually put together to become a permanent base on the Moon. To do this, you would need a Lunar Cargo Vehicle . One example of what a Lunar Cargo Vehicle (LCV) would look like is shown in the illustrations below.
The illustration above shows what the LCV would look like. The LCV would have a pressurized crew compartment, and several rocket engines to propel it. It would have straps hanging beneath it, so that pieces of the ISS could be held securely.
The illustration above shows the LCV carrying part of the ISS. The ISS module is held securely by the straps underneath the LCV.
The illustration above is a side view that shows an ISS module strapped to the underside of the LCV.
The illustration above shows the LCV carrying part of the ISS through space, on it's way to the Moon.
The illustration above shows the LCV landing on the lunar surface while it carries the module that has been removed from ISS.
The illustration above shows the LCV leaving part of the ISS on the Moon, as if takes off. The LCV can return to the ISS and pick up another module, and bring it to the Moon. Eventually, all the modules from the ISS could be brought to the Moon, and assembled there, to create a permanent lunar base.
Symmetrical Space Shuttle Configuration.
The space shuttles flown by NASA into orbit are not symmetrical , the shuttle vehicle itself rides in a lopsided position on the side of an enormous fuel tank. When it gains altitude after launch, it actually rolls around, so the heavy side is facing Earth. This roll is unavoidable since the Earth's gravity pulls on the shuttle, and reorients it, so it's heaviest side is facing down. A possible answer to the problem is to design a space shuttle that is symmetrical. This design actually has two re-entry vehicles facing each other in a back-to-back configuration. Since the two re-entry modules weigh the same amount, the entire vehicle is naturally balanced. A set of rocket boosters are installed in the gap between the two re-entry vehicles. When the vehicle is launched, the two re-entry vehicles separate from one another and they jettison their rocket boosters when the boosters run out of fuel.
Space Shuttle With Multiple Lunar Modules.This invention combines the concept of a space shuttle (which dates back to the 1980's) with the concept of an Apollo lunar module (which dates back to the 1970's). The space shuttle in this invention would carry as many as four lunar modules into lunar orbit, then the lunar modules would leave the shuttle and would land on the moon.
Zero-Gravity Stereolithography For Forming Interior Walls In An Orbital Vehicle.
An orbital vehicle can be folded up into a very compact package and launched into orbit, and after it has been placed in a zero-gravity orbital environment, it can unfold itself, to make more interior space available. After it is fully unfolded, it can build walls and other partitions inside of itself with a stereolithography apparatus. The stereolithography machine would extrude a liquid plastic that solidifies when laser beams hit it. Walls and furniture can be built inside the orbital vehicle with this method.
An electric rocket is a rocket that uses electricity to heat water, so the water is transformed into steam. The high-pressure steam is ejected through an exhaust nozzle at the bottom of the rocket, so it provides thrust to push the rocket upwards. An electric rocket could operate without burning fuel, so it would not pollute the air. The electricity for powering an electric rocket may come from solar panels, windmills, or human power. In a human-powered rocket, there would be several astronauts inside the rocket and each astronaut places his feet on a set of pedals, these pedals would be similar to the pedals on a bicycle. Each set of pedals would be connected to an electrical generator, so when the astronaut pedals, the generator produces electricity. The electricity produced by the pedal-generators would go to a boiler, and it would boil water to produce steam. The steam would be exhausted through the exhaust nozzle, to propel the rocket upwards. A human-powered rocket may have as many as a hundred astronauts inside, all pedaling simultaneously. If the astronauts cannot provide sufficient power by pedaling, the rocket's power system may be augmented by solar panels and windmills. An array of solar panels and windmills would pre-heat the rocket's boilers to prepare for takeoff, and therefore the solar panels and windmills would reduce the work load for the astronauts. After the rocket leaves the ground, the astronauts inside would be the rocket's sole source of power. It may be possible for a human-powered rocket of this type to go on sub-orbital flights, orbital flights and also lunar flights that would permit lunar landing and lunar exploration.
The illustration above shows a set of pedals. This is the basic unit of power for a human-powered rocket.
The illustration above shows a steam-powered rocket engine with a set of pedals connected to it. This would be a test rig, to test the concept.
The illustration above shows a steam-powered rocket engine with four sets of pedals connected to it. This would allow four astronauts to pedal simultaneously.
The illustration above shows an astronaut pedaling, to produce electric power for a steam-powered rocket engine. The rope the astronaut is holding is intended for him to steady himself, in zero gravity.
The illustration above shows the astronaut pedaling, to produce electric power inside a space vehicle.
The illustration above shows an astronaut seated in a seat designed for a space-shuttle type vehicle.
The illustration above shows a space-shuttle type vehicle. A vehicle of this type would have as many as a hundred astronauts in it, all the astronauts would pedal simultaneously to produce power for the vehicle. This type of vehicle would be launched vertically, would orbit the earth, and would land horizontally on an airport runway.
The illustration above shows several astronauts inside a space-shuttle type vehicle. Each seat is equipped with a set of pedals.
The illustration above is a diagram of the steam-powered rocket. The electric supply conduit, shown at the left side of the illustration, may be connected to any source of electric power. It may be connected to solar panels and windmills (during the pre-flight warm-up period) or to a set of pedal-generators.
The illustration above is a diagram of a steam-powered rocket engine connected to a windmill.
The illustration above is a diagram of a steam-powered rocket with a solar panel and a windmill connected to it.
The illustration above shows a steam-powered rocket connected to a windmill and a solar panel.
The illustration above shows a steam-powered rocket being launched.
The illustration above shows a steam-powered rocket with three solar panels connected to it.
The illustration above shows a steam-powered rocket with seven solar panels connected to it.
The illustration above shows a steam-powered rocket with twelve solar panels connected to it.
The illustration above shows a steam-powered rocket with fourteen solar panels connected to it. If a steam-powered rocket is large, hundreds of solar panels and windmills may be connected to it.
The illustration above is a diagram of a three-stage steam-powered rocket. After the water in the first stage has been turned into steam and consumed, the first stage is jettisoned, then the second stage begins to exhaust it's steam. After the water in the second stage has been consumed, the second stage is jettisoned, and the third stage begins to exhaust it's steam.
The illustration above shows a three-stage steam-powered rocket on the launching pad.
The illustration above shows a three-stage steam-powered rocket at the moment it leaves the launch pad.
The illustration above shows a three-stage steam-powered rocket at liftoff, in this illustration, it has cleared the launch tower.
The illustration above shows a three-stage steam-powered rocket gaining altitude after liftoff.
The illustration above shows a steam-powered rocket with a battery pack attached to it. Attaching a battery pack to the rocket would increase it's power. The electricity stored in the battery pack would be used to boil water, to produce steam. A battery pack may weigh several tons, and it may be jettisoned after it runs out of power, to save weight. The battery pack itself would be charged up by an array of solar panels and windmills before the flight begins.
The illustration above shows a three-stage steam-powered rocket with battery packs attached to all three of it's stages. After a battery pack has used up all it's power, it is jettisoned and it descends on a parachute. After recovery, it can be used again.
The illustration above shows the launch pad facilities for a three-stage steam-powered rocket. Several solar panels are shown near the launch pad, these solar panels provide power for the rocket's battery packs. The battery packs may require several days of charging, before they have sufficient power to propel the rocket into orbit. After the battery packs and the rocket's lower stages have been jettisoned, the sole power source for the rocket will be the astronauts pedaling, inside. Power obtained from the astronaut's pedal-generators would provide power for the insertion into lunar orbit, and also for the return trip to earth.