The World's Tallest Skyscraper May Hang From An Asteroid Like Earth's Own Disco Ball

If you thought Manhattan's giant glass horseshoe was crazy with its innovate U-shaped design, feast your eyes on these mad geniuses' outrageous idea -- they want to hang a skyscraper from an asteroid!

Concept image of the Analemma Tower - Clouds Architecture Office
The guys at the New York-based Clouds Architecture Office decided they weren’t going to be happy with a boring old tower that just sits on the ground. No, instead they decided to dangle one from a freaking asteroid like Sia and her chandelier. The Clouds Architecture Office backs up its design with some concept images of the intended final building, as well as their analysis of the logistics.

The Analemma, as it’s called, will remain tied to its asteroid in geosynchronous orbit above New York that matches the Earth’s sidereal rotation (the Earth rotates by tracing out a cone with its axis, called sidereal rotation). This way, the tower traces out a lopsided figure-8 across New York, passing the same point at the same time each day.

So, how does the company plan to construct a mammoth like the Analemma? Not by any simple means apparently. The team wants to actually build the tower in Dubai where construction costs would be cheaper, and then physically move the asteroid to its orbit over New York.

How high is up?

The plans currently involve hitching a high-strength cable to an asteroid placed 50,000 km above the Earth. For reference, the International Space Station sits well below at about 435 km above sea level. Thankfully, the team has considered that extreme elevations would make for a terrible backyard (not to mention the extreme cold) so the highest floor is situated at an elevation of 32 km.
So, how do you exit a tower dangling a kilometre above ground? Well, if the concept images are to be taken literally, one possible option is parachutes from the lower floors.
However, one method the company suggests is transfer stations at the ends of the tower’s daily pendulum shift. The tower would be moving at its slowest here, allowing the bottom floor to lock in and interface with passenger and cargo containers, to transfer between Earth and the sky’s giant charm bracelet.
Beats the heck out of your view of the traffic jam everyday

Do you get space TV?

Analemma is designed to draw power from space-based solar panels installed above the diffusing effect of the atmosphere. Water is also filtered and recycled in a semi-closed loop system, replenished with condensate captured from clouds and rainwater. The building is expected to be mostly self-reliant, with funerary and reliquary floors, places of worship, as well as a commercial and restaurant hub, aside from residential spaces.
Aside from that, you’re also going to have the best view on (or in this case above) the planet, as any windows will show a different view based on the time of day. Of course, the size and shape of those windows would decrease the higher up into the atmosphere you go, to compensate for atmospheric pressure.

This is all just a rich guy's fantasy right? Right?!

Technically, this is still just a concept, but the science supporting it is very real. The ESA already proved with its 2015 Rosetta mission that’s it’s possible to land on an asteroid, which means it’s also technically possible to effectively mine them for materials. Meanwhile, NASA’s Asteroid Redirect Mission planned for 2021 involves physically relocating a chunk of asteroid to stable Earth orbit. If that succeeds, we could very well be moving these floating hunks of rock to wherever we please.
In addition, one of the strongest theories scientists are working on, when it comes to mining asteroids or colonising Mars, involves building space elevators. These high-powered lifts would function using electromagnetism instead of steel cables, making them more cost-efficient and structurally sound for Earth to orbit transport.
Of course, the prices for this kind of pad would be exorbitantly high, but it’s still cool to think that one day, inverted towers threatening to topple out of the sky might be completely normal. 
An infographic shows approximately how high the Analemma extends
Powered by Blogger.