A communication satellite built with 19th century technology. Because electron tubes or integrated circurits (to amplify an electric signal) are quite difficult to built with the available material, I decided to build a optical system. A large dish and some mirrors reflect the incoming light pulses from a ground station to a ruby crystal. So the incoming light both triggers and pumps the ruby, the light is therefore amplified by stimulated emission of radiation. Because the amplification is too weak, I added an undulator. This one is powered by a simple steam engine. The fluid in the tubes outside the housing expands (-->steam) in the 4 solar panels, then runs through the steam turbine (wich powers the generator) and cools down in the condenser... Keep in mind that it has more than 2.8 million faces; maybe you want to turn AA down to prevent SU from crashing if your machine is too slow.
The lowpoly version can be found here: http://sketchup.google.com/3dwarehouse/details?mid=521795125b92aec9e190ab16a1d71571 #satellite #steampunk #victorian