China is Planning a Solar Station in Space

The main challenge would be the wireless energy transfer from space to Earth.

 

The laser beam and microwave power transmission systems are currently the most promising technologies for wirelessly transmitting power over the long distance from a satellite in orbit to the surface of the Earth. The two methods differ in size, mode of operation, efficiency, and cost.

Advantages of Laser Beam Transmission  

  • Does not interfere with TV, radio, Wi-Fi, cell phone and other communication signals
  • Requires smaller transmission and receiving equipment compared to microwave transmission. (For example, a 1GW installation would require about a one-meter diameter transmitting optics and a ground receiver of several hundred meters across.)

Disadvantages of Laser Beam Power Transmission

  • Suffers from atmospheric losses due to environmental factors such as rain and clouds and hence cannot provide continuous power
  • Has a low conversion efficiency
  • May require huge battery storage systems on the ground
  • Carries the risk of causing skin and eye damage if not well managed

 

Advantages of Microwave Wireless Power Transmission

  • Benefits from highly-developed microwave technology, capable of achieving efficiencies of up to 85%
  • Achieves lower atmospheric attenuation

Disadvantages of Microwave Wireless Power Transmission

  • Requires management of the energy lost during conversion of DC to microwaves
  • May cause RF interference
  • Requires large transmission and receiving equipment

 

https://www.allaboutcircuits.com/news/wireless-power-transmission-of-solar-energy-from-space/

 

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And the weight, it says. Heavier than the ISS. Wow.

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3 minutes ago, Marina Schwarz said:

And the weight, it says. Heavier than the ISS. Wow.

The weight just means you'll need to send more rockets to build it in space. It's more a cost problem than a technological one. We know how to send payloads in orbit and assemble them. The ISS was built 20 years ago.

But sending energy from space to Earth is a technological challenge and still requires some research to improve the technology.

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