Next Generation Clean Energy “Space Solar Photovoltaics” (SSPS) Innovations Will Happen!
Global energy policy is in need of a major shift.
The need for electricity will increase dramatically as global warming and the population explosion lead to chronic power shortages and the shift to electric vehicles.
The percentage of clean energy has reached 18% as of 2019.
Space solar photovoltaic power generation (SSPS) is a strong candidate for this next generation of clean energy.
SSPS has a history of favoring Japan.
A laboratory at Kyoto University has been researching and developing this technology since 1983.
Solar panels are 6.6 times more effective at generating electricity in space than on the ground. The problem, however, is the cost of transporting power from space to the ground.
According to initial estimates, construction costs of about 1.3 trillion yen
Construction of power generation and transmission systems in space Approx. 570 billion yen
Construction of ground power collection system Approx. 230 billion yen
Transportation cost of parts: approx. 470 billion yen
Maintenance and operation costs approx. 34 billion yen / year
The construction method envisioned is to first launch a number of components by rocket from the ground to low orbit (about 500 kilometers above ground), assemble them in orbit, and then gradually transport them by inter-orbit vehicle to a location 30,000 to 30,000 meters above the ground. It will be moved to a geostationary orbit of 6,000 kilometers.
In this connection, an SSPS with a capacity of 1 million kilowatts would have a capacity of 2 Solar panels as large as 1.5 kilometers square would be required.
The most difficult of these challenges is “parts transportation. According to estimates, 500 rocket launches of SSPS components are required, and with current technology It is estimated that each launch costs approximately 10 billion yen. In other words, 500 launches would cost 5 trillion yen in transportation costs alone.
This led NASA to back off, saying that the cost would be enormous compared to nuclear power. But Japan decided to take a chance on this. I believe that launch costs will be reduced by Moore’s law. I think there will be an exponential evolution of multiple innovative technologies, such as materials science, at some point.
In every innovation in the past, all of the science fiction-like ridiculous ideas have been realized. Tesla, for example, which no one took seriously until a few years ago, has now surpassed Toyota’s market capitalization.
It is also important to remember that this system is the quickest way to transmit electricity to the Moon when this is realized and people come to live on the Moon.
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