October 29, 2010
BA-2100 module and other Bigelow Aerospace news
Hobbyspace reports that Bigelow Aerospace presented a model of the BA-2100 (2100 cubic meter volume space hotel module.) The current BA-330 has 330 cubic meters of volume) Bigelow, in addition to showing off his modules, revealed for the first time the six "sovereign clients" that have signed memoranda of understanding to utilize his orbital facilities: the United Kingdom, Netherlands, Australia, Singapore, Japan and Sweden.
The International Space Station has a pressurized volume of 837 cubic meters
Popular Mechanics had info. The BA-2100 is over six times as large as the BA-330 and has multiple decks. The BA-2100's docking ends are about 25 feet in diameter, and one source told PM that the module's dry mass could be as low as 70 tons. In other words, in its uninflated state, it could be placed into orbit by the heavy-lift launcher. The massive structure could then be inflated and subsequently outfitted with materials carried aboard additional launches. With its radiation and micrometeoroid shielding, the BA-2100 could provide a trip for a large crew to the outer solar system.
Here is a link to a 4 minute interview with Bigelow
Here is a 6 minute interview where Bigelow talks about the next 50 years in space
He thinks that dozens of countries will be involved in space and that it will be business driven activity.
The current workhorse is the BA-330 module. It's an impressive structure—45 feet long, 22 feet in diameter and containing 12,000 cubic feet of volume. (In one scheme shown by Bigelow, nine BA-330s were connected to create a space hospital with more than 100,000 cubit feet of habitable space.)
Capable of comfortably supporting six crew members, according to Bigelow, each BA-330 module is more than 10 times as large as the dual-Orion configuration that Lockheed Martin has devised for its Plymouth Rock asteroid mission.
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