Monday, April 20, 2009
Space-Based Power Plant
Just think a network of solar death rays, now that's cool. We can burn our enemy's like ants under a magnifying glass.
In 1973 Peter Glaser was granted U.S. patent 3,781,647 on the Solar Power Satellite to supply power from space for use on the Earth.
Good link Solar Power Satellites (SPS) http://chview.nova.org/station/sps.htm
Hurricane-Killing, Space-Based Power Plant
PG&E makes deal for space solar power
Utility to buy orbit-generated electricity from Solaren in 2016, at no risk
After JAXA's announcement of space-based solar power for Japan, we've been keeping our eyes peeled for some news of similar projects Stateside. Lo and behold, California's largest energy utility, Pacific Gas & Electric, has agreed to do just that, inking a deal with solar power startup Solaren Corp. The agreement calls for the utility to purchase 200 megawatts of electricity once the company starts beaming power down from Earth orbit beginning in 2016. A solar-power satellite would consist of mirror arrays -- perhaps measuring up to several miles wide -- which would focus sunlight onto photoelectric cells. From there, the electrical power is converted into a microwave beam that is directed downward toward Earth, where it's converted back into electricity and then fed into the grid. According to the company, the system could generate roughly 1.2 to 4.8 gigawatts of power, at a price comparable to that of other renewable energy sources. When asked for a comment, legendary sci-fi jazz composer Sun Ra was more than enthusiastic. "Space is the place," he said.