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Science & Technology»Solar Power to go Orbital?

»Monday, June 15,2009

Solar Power transmitted via Radio FrequenciesJules Verne once wrote a science fiction novel about space travel to the moon. Incredibly the author came up with the notion of using a rocket powered ship, something that was later proved to be the best way of powering space flight. And it looks like science fiction may become science fact again, with American energy giant, the Pacific Gas and Electricity Company supporting a project that will beam energy collected from solar panels in space, directly back to earth.
Not only is there a near constant supply of energy in space, the amount of energy each panel can create is as much as 10 times greater, because there is no atmosphere or weather conditions to weaken the strength of the sunlight.
Behind the technology, the Solaren Corp, have found a way to beam power down from space in the form of radio frequency transmissions, this could then be converted into electricity, which would be funnelled onto the power grid.

The Solaren Corp, consisting of 10 former satellite and aerospace engineers believe they have come up with a commercially viable system to produce electricity within 7 years. And further to that the technology involved is similar to 'mature' systems used with communications satellites today. Solaren CEO, Gary Spirnak said, "This is the exact same thing that satellites do every day. The basic technology is there. The Bottom line is that this is not really a technology issue."

Whilst the science is solid, there still remains a lot of hurdles to cross to get this off the ground, not least of which is funding. Solaren are looking for at least £1 Billion, which is a touch more than other renewable energy, research projects which are normally looking for funding in the tens of millions.