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We do, but not everywhere. The typical plant is the thermonuclear type, using plutonium. to create the kind of power for the ISS would be about $500M. the solar array is like $10M. there is the danger as well. the probes that use Pu are unmanned and of zero risk to people. if the iss lost orbit there would be a big mess.


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If I am reading your question correctly, I believe you are asking whether or not you can reach outer space by simply ascending to a certain distance rather than reaching a specific velocity--that is, if by climbing in a hot air balloon you can reach a point where the gravitational potential energy is zero. If this is what you're asking, then there is a ...


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What you're describing is called an air launch.See also the Wikipedia article on air launch to orbit. As far as I know balloons are not used because they can't lift heavy enough loads. The launch is generally done using a large airliner. There is some related discussion in the question Why do space crafts take off with rockets instead of just ascending like ...


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The rocket equation is a cruel tyrant. By far the hardest challenge is just finding a propulsion system that can achieve the necessary velocities. Project Daedalus proposed to use an inertial confinement nuclear fusion system, but we really don't know if that can be made to work. The best existing inertial confinement technology is the National Ignition ...



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