Credit: Clouds AO


Yes, it’s filed under speculative, space, architecture.

But the New York-based Clouds Architecture Office (Clouds AO) has released details of “Analemma” and a system referred to as the Universal Orbital Support System (UOSS).

Credit: Clouds AO

This same group worked with NASA recently to create a Mars Ice Home.

Overall, the group’s new concept trump’s Trump Tower!

Super tall tower

In the group’s new idea, by placing a large asteroid into orbit over Earth, a high strength cable can be lowered towards the surface of earth from which a super tall tower can be suspended. Since this new tower typology is suspended in the air, it can be constructed anywhere in the world and transported to its final location.

Credit: Clouds AO

Clouds AO’s proposal calls for Analemma to be constructed over Dubai, which has proven to be a specialist in tall building construction at one fifth the cost of New York City construction.

The bottom line is that the concept inverts the traditional diagram of an Earth-based foundation, instead depending on a space-based supporting foundation from which the tower is suspended.

Figure-8 form

Orbital mechanics for Analemma: geosynchronous orbit matches Earth’s sidereal rotation period of one day. The tower’s position in the sky traces out a path in a figure-8 form, returning the tower to exactly the same position in the sky each day.

Credit: Clouds AO

Clouds AO explains that manipulating asteroids is no longer relegated to science fiction.

“Analemma can be placed in an eccentric geosynchronous orbit which would allow it to travel between the northern and southern hemispheres on a daily loop. The ground trace for this pendulum tower would be a figure eight, where the tower would move at its slowest speed at the top and bottom of the figure eight allowing the possibility for the towers occupants to interface with the planet’s surface at these points. The proposed orbit is calibrated so the slowest part of the towers trajectory occurs over New York City.

Credit: Clouds AO

Electromagnetic elevators

As detailed by Clouds AO, “Analemma would get its power from space-based solar panels. Installed above the dense and diffuse atmosphere, these panels would have constant exposure to sunlight, with a greater efficiency than conventional PV installations. Water would be filtered and recycled in a semi-closed loop system, replenished with condensate captured from clouds and rainwater. Developments in cable-less electromagnetic elevators have effectively shattered height restrictions imposed by elevator cable spool volume.”

Credit: Clouds AO


Height limit?

While researching atmospheric conditions for this project, Clouds AO experts realized that there is probably a tangible height limit beyond which people would not tolerate living due to the extreme conditions. For example, while there may be a benefit to having 45 extra minutes of daylight at an elevation of 32,000 meters, the near vacuum and -40C temperature would prevent people from going outside without a protective suit.

“Then again,” the Clouds AO website explains, “astronauts have continually occupied the space station for decades, so perhaps it’s not so bad?”

Credit: Clouds AO






High cost of construction

Analemma Tower is a proposal for the world’s tallest building ever.

“Harnessing the power of planetary design thinking, it taps into the desire for extreme height, seclusion and constant mobility. If the recent boom in residential towers proves that sales price per square foot rises with floor elevation, then Analemma Tower will command record prices, justifying its high cost of construction,” the Clouds AO website explains.

For more information on this innovative group, go to:

One Response to “Asteroid-enabled Tower: Harnessing the Power of Planetary Design Thinking”

  • Pete Swan says:

    The concept is quite exciting… hanging a building at the end of the space tether. The development of this would be in parallel with space elevators quite close by to ensure support during construction as well as during operations. fascinating addition to the original concepts of space elevators.

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