Beam It Down: A Drive to Launch Space-Based Solar Disaster relief may make sense as an early application, given the costs
Victoria Jaggard For National Geographic News Published December 5, 2011
In an aircraft hangar in Germany, scientists are firing lasers across the room in the hopes of bringing science fiction to life: beaming solar power directly from space.
According to a new report by the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA), space-based solar technologies now in development in the lab will be technically feasible and ready for practical demonstration within the next decade or two.
What's more, based on existing technologies, space-based solar could be an economically viable alternative to today's commercial energy sources within the next 30 years, concludes the report published last month.
In fact, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, or JAXA, is "going forward on their demo plan, with satellites scheduled to be up by the end of the next decade and a full pilot system by 2030," said Frank E. Little, of the Space Engineering Research Center at Texas A&M University.
Good article, describes some of the projects being worked on.
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