O'Neill Cylinder - Venice

The "O'Neill Cylinder" is an orbital space habitat, rotating to provide artificial gravity by way of centrifugal force with the inner surface of the cylinder providing living space. This design features a diameter of 1.6km (approximately 1 mile) and a length of about 5km (3.1 miles).


Within the inner surface of this particular conceptualization lies a replica of the Italian city of Venice. The 1.6 diameter design specified back in the 1970's by physicist Gerard O'Neill, after whom the habitat is named, managed to be just right to fit the main island of Venice perfectly.


While the technology to build such a habitat would be advanced, most likely the product of a post-scarcity economy, one could imagine designers replicating all sorts of versions replicating existing, historical, or fictional settings within which colonists could settle. The interior, in other words, does not have to reflect the level of technology required to construct the exterior. Being in a post-scarcity economy, efficiency would not be the primary priority when designing such a habitat.

The images were achieved using SketchUp7, a high-resolution satellite image of Venice mapped onto the inner surface of a 3D cylinder (all in actual scale) and then strategically placed buildings to give the illusion of being in the model. Vray was used to render while GIMP was used to edit it. There is more work to do on this -or perhaps another setting will be tried.