The concept of solar power stations in the space has been long. Developed in the 1920s by a Russian scientist, the concept was mainly was an inspiration for writers for a long time.
A century later, scientists are making huge strides in converting the concept into reality. Understanding the potential of these efforts, the European Space Agency is looking to fund such projects. The concept is predicted to be the first industrial resource for ‘beamed power’ from the space.
Meanwhile, climate change is the greatest challenge of current time. The impact of climate change is being felt in the form of rising global temperature to shifting weather patterns. To overcome these challenges, it will require radical changes in the way we generate and consume energy.
Conventional Renewable Energy Sources lack constant supply
In recent years, renewable energy technologies have developed to a great extent featuring improved efficiency and lower cost. However, one major obstacle to the uptake of renewable energy technologies is absence of constant supply of energy. For example, solar and wind farms produce energy only when the sun is shining or the wind is blowing, however, electricity is required around the clock each day. Eventually, a method is needed to store energy on a large scale before renewable sources can be switched to.
For such objectives, generating solar energy in space is a possible way. There lie many advantages for this. A solar power station located in space could orbit to face the Sun all through the day. In the normal course, the Earth’s atmosphere absorbs and reflects some light of the Sun. To address this, solar cells above the atmosphere will receive more sunlight and generate more energy.