Edwards believes a space elevator offers a cheaper, safer form of space travel that eventually could be used to carry explorers to the planets.
Edwards’ elevator would climb on a cable made of nanotubes — tiny bundles of carbon atoms many times stronger than steel. The cable would be about three feet wide and thinner than a piece of paper, but capable of supporting a payload up to 13 tons.
The cable would be attached to a platform on the equator, off the Pacific coast of South America where winds are calm, weather is good and commercial airplane flights are few. The platform would be mobile so the cable could be moved to get out of the path of orbiting satellites.
I like the idea of not sitting on a large tank full of rocket fuel when making that journey into space. This is really an interesting idea. This video gives a much clearer picture of what is involved. I just wonder what sort of wind issues this would encounter in the upper atmosphere. And what if it started to drag and then begin to wrap itself around the earth?