NASA-Designed Space Colonies Circa 1970

Fresh off the Apollo 11 Moon landing and aching to get some of those sweet avocado-colored refrigerators into space, NASA held a couple summer camps focused on designing space colonies. Artist’s renderings of some of the designs are truly spectacular–predating digital imaging, they’re all hand-painted works of Aquarian Age science fiction.

The perspective in the painting of a cylindrical colony featured above (in cut-away view) is striking, but perhaps a fancier shape is more your style…

The gallery also showcases designs for toroidal colonies (donut-shaped, as above) and Bernal spheres (below), with interior and exterior views for each.

And because astronauts always smile while assembling the future home of 10,000 exoplanetary colonists, here’s a painting of NASA’s finest living it up in the void.

Check out the rest of the gallery!

Also, if you’re interested in attending a NASA Space Colony Summer Camp, details for current opportunities are available on the official NASA site.

All photos courtesy NASA Ames Research Center.


8 Responses to NASA-Designed Space Colonies Circa 1970

  1. Aaaaaaand back in the real world, we barely have enough jobs and/or resources to look after the planet we've already got. Or at least not an even enough distribution.

    How could we possibly expect THIS to be a reality with this fact in mind?

  2. Reminds me of the Citadel in Mass Effect (and probably many other space stations with an artificial gravity system based on this centrifugal force system).

  3. Seems like I read somewhere that the spinning speed needed to create gravity on cylindrical and toroidal colonies like that would be so excessive it would cause dizziness on on the inhabitants. Plus there are no known substances that are strong enough maintain the structural integrity with that much spinning weight.

    It's super awesome looking but the physics make it realistically impossible.

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