Google Lunar X-Prize and Space-Based Solar Power
Posted by Coyote on November 22, 2007
One of our regular contributors, Dan Lantz, provided us with a link to an incredibly well done Internet video that explains the Google Lunar X-Prizes for Lunar Exploration in a production called “Moon 2.0.” Space-Based Solar Power makes a cameo appearance!
Personally, I think it steals the scene, like Sean Connery arriving triumphantly in the last scene of Keven Costner’s movie “Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves.” Oops, did I spoil it? Sorry.
The long term plan is to eventually produce such satellites on the Moon and boost them back to Earth orbit to provide clean energy! That way we take advantage of the Moon’s lower gravity that makes launching them back to Earth an much easier energy proposition. Naturally we will have to construct considerable infrastructure on the Moon first to make it happen. I’d like to point out that we may also need solar power satellites in Lunar orbit and eventually Martian orbit as well.
The short term plan, of course is to produce solar power satellites on the Earth and boost them into our orbit until the Moon is developed sufficiently to begin production and launch from there.
Please take a look at the video. Think about it. What type of incentives do you think are appropriate and effective stimuli to promote private sector investment in space-based solar power and its supporting infrastructure? Who might offer such prizes?