Where’s the Final Report?
Posted by Coyote on September 15, 2007
Space-Based Solar Power Advocates and Critics,
September 15th is here…so where’s the final report from the National Security Space Office that was promised???
There won’t be any. Well, not a final report, and not by close of business today.
On the 6th of September, following the first day of the Space-Based Solar Power Conference held in Breckenridge, Colorado, Mr Joe Rouge, the Deputy Director of the National Security Space Office, issued new orders to the director of the study (me). It was jointly determined between several officials and conferees that space-based solar power merits even closer look in several areas. No findings are yet final. We still have more questions than answers. Therefore the National Security Space Office will issue an interim report in October, and will continue thereafter!
Tentatively, the National Security Space Office may release its interim report at a National Space Society event held at the National Press Club on 10 October, 2007. This has not yet been finalized, but it may be the right type of event to get the word out about the awesome potential of space-based solar power and the challenges that must be overcome to help the commercial sector proceed in this endeavor with a successful business case.
The emphasis throughout this study is that the DoD wants to be a customer of clean energy from space, not a producer.
To foreshadow the interim report, it will likely address the following in some form or fashion:
- The study design: The first-ever DoD led study using the Internet in a wide open public forum to develop a future concept, including:
- 10% U.S. electric baseload by 2050
- Crawl, walk, run approach
- Open Trade Spaces (Requiring greater analysis and testing):
- Lift: Expendables? Reusable rockets? Spaceplanes? A mix? How many? Launch sites?
- Energy generation on orbit: Photovoltaics (panels or concentrators?)? Solar dynamic (what type?)?
- Power transmission to Earth: Microwave? Laser? What frequencies for either?
- Scalability of small space solar power satellites to large (Kilowatt range to Megawatt range to Gigawatt range): Which technologies are best in each scale? What testing is unique to each scale? What learning is needed?
- Earth reception: size and types of rectennas? Intellectual properties?
- Legal issues: Liability? Indemnity? Licensing? Frequency managment?
- Orbitology: Which orbits are best suited for each scale? What geostationary slots will be required and when? What orbits will be used for assembly and transfer?
- On orbit assembly: Robotic? Man-robot mix? What orbits will be used for assembly? Assemble low and transfer high? Finally assembly at geo?
- Orbital transfer: Self-propelled or independent space tugs?
- Operations: By whom? From where? Telemetry and station keeping? Ground network?
- Liquification: How? Where? What types of liquids? Distribution?
- Business case: How does the commercial sector get involved? What will stimulate investment along the critical path?
- Findings and Recommendations:
- Pending (okay, the caballeros know what the findings and recommendations are…but we have to keep you in suspense until we release the interim report, right? Here’s a hint…if you read every word on this website you will know most of what will appear in the report!)
This entry was posted on September 15, 2007 at 11:58 pm and is filed under Space Solar Power news, Study-Related. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.