A Step Closer to Unlimited Power

From SRP author Cameron Cooper:

The article is a bit old, now, but the breakthrough it reports on is a highly positive one. Perhaps that was why it didn’t get more coverage than it did. (Yes, I’m a bit cynical!)

Space.com reported back in June that, “Scientists beam solar power to Earth from space for 1st time ever.”

The article reports on the successful experiment. What baffles me is why this wasn’t jumped upon by everyone. Why wasn’t a huge fuss made of this? It is, after all, a critical step in the harvest of solar power from space, which is in itself a major development in the progress of humankind.

Harvesting solar power in space, instead of relying upon panels upon the roofs of individual residences, is a vastly superior and more efficient process. As in, exponentially better.

In space, the sun’s output isn’t masked by bad weather, clouds or other interference, including being on the wrong side of the planet every 12 hours. The sun is always “on” in space.

Collecting the energy was never a technological issue. We’ve had efficient solar panels for a very long time. Getting that energy down to the surface has just been solved. The only thing left to resolve (apart from administrative BS like distribution and billing) is the efficient storage of that power, once it’s on the surface, so that power isn’t interrupted once the globe revolves away from the sun and the collectors beaming the power downstairs.

But we already have batteries, and the technology surrounding batteries is getting better every year.

That leaves just politics to get in the way. Power companies wedded to their coal-powered and nuclear-powered generators will fight the change and use their billion-dollar profits to trip up the adoption of space solar collecting. Unless they can get in on it themselves in the very early stages. But that requires vision and the spending of profits.

Harvesting solar power in space would radically change our economy, our way of life. No more fossil-fuel generators to infuse carbon into the air. No more carbon taxes! (I don’t know about you, but I seethe every time I pay my gas bill. The carbon tax is more than the gas itself!). The sun is an essentially limitless supply of energy that could drive the entire planet, resolving all our energy issues forever, and making a huge difference in the amount of carbon we’re putting into the atmosphere, too.

And we’re now one step closer to that reality. That’s why we should make a big fuss about it.

Cameron Cooper

SRP Author

Cameron writes best-selling science fiction, including the very popular Hammer and Crucible space opera series.
Check Cam’s books here on Stories Rule Press.