Imagine being able to capture solar power in the vastness and emptiness of space itself, before you send it down to the earth for humanity to consume. After all, it is not as though the world’s oil reserves are unlimited – no sir, we have been making effort to ensure that the world’s energy consumption is as efficient as possible, but this latest idea from the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) might just be feasible – to come up with the ability for the military to “capture” solar power in orbit, before projecting it back down to earth.
Should this particular effort be successful, safe and efficient, it would obviously help the Pentagon to save a whole load of money considering how much fuel the U.S. military consumes each day, but it could also turn the subject of military deployments right on its head. No longer do fuel tankers need to reach remote or volatile areas, while one could carry out longer missions without the need to return to base for a refuel session.
A couple of prototypes have been tested to date, where it is known as a “sandwich” module, which was specially named for a design innovation that crams in the entire slew of electrical components between a couple of square panels. On top lies a photovoltaic panel which will absorb the Sun’s rays, while the electronics system in the middle does the work of converting such energy to a radio frequency, whereas the bottom antenna will do the work of transferring power harvested to a ground target. [Press Release]
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