Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Getting Power From The Moon

Date:
April 17, 2002
Source:
American Institute Of Physics
Summary:
If a physicist in Houston has his way you’ll be able to say good-bye to pollution-causing energy production from fossil fuels. In the April/May issue of The Industrial Physicist Dr. David Criswell suggests that the Earth could be getting all of the electricity it needs using solar cells – on the moon.

If a physicist in Houston has his way you’ll be able to say good-bye to pollution-causing energy production from fossil fuels. In the April/May issue of The Industrial Physicist Dr. David Criswell suggests that the Earth could be getting all of the electricity it needs using solar cells – on the moon. In the article Criswell proposes a Lunar Solar Power (LSP) System, using arrays of solar cells on the lunar surface to beam energy back to Earth. Criswell estimates that the 10 billion people living on Earth in 2050 will require 20 Terrawatts (TW) of power. The Moon receives 13,000 TW of power from the sun. Criswell suggests that harnessing just 1% of the solar power and directing it toward Earth could replace fossil fuel power plants on Earth.

"The lunar operations are primarily industrial engineering," says Criswell. He and Dr, Robert Waldron first described LSP in 1984 at a NASA symposium on Lunar Bases and Space Activities in the 21st Century. "Adequate knowledge of the moon and practical technologies have been available since the late 1970’s to collect this power and beam it to Earth. The system can be built on the moon from lunar materials and operated on the moon and on Earth using existing technologies," reducing the expenses associated with transporting materials to the moon. He adds that LSP would be even cheaper if parts of the production machinery are designed to be made of lunar materials.

The LSP system consists of 20-40 lunar power bases, situated on the eastern and western edges of the moon, as seen from Earth. Each power base has a series of solar cells to collect energy from the sun, which is sent over buried electric wires to microwave generators that convert the solar electricity to microwaves. The generators then send the energy to screens that reflect the microwave beams toward Earth, where they are received by arrays of special antennas strategically placed about the globe. "Each antenna converts the microwave power to electricity that is fed into the local power grid," says Criswell.

"LSP is probably the only option for powering a prosperous world within the 21st century," says Criswell. "However, it does require a return to the moon." The system depends on some human occupation of the moon to build and run the lunar bases, but Criswell also sees this as an opportunity. "Once we are back and operating at large scale then going down the various learning curves will make traveling to the moon and working there ‘routine."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Institute Of Physics. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Institute Of Physics. "Getting Power From The Moon." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 April 2002. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/04/020416073334.htm>.
American Institute Of Physics. (2002, April 17). Getting Power From The Moon. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/04/020416073334.htm
American Institute Of Physics. "Getting Power From The Moon." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/04/020416073334.htm (accessed July 30, 2014).

Share This




More Space & Time News

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Supply Ship Takes Off for International Space Station

Supply Ship Takes Off for International Space Station

AFP (July 30, 2014) The European Space Agency's fifth Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV-5) is takes off to the International Space Station on an Ariane 5 rocket from French Guiana. Duration: 00:34 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship

Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship

AP (July 30, 2014) Arianespace launched a rocket Tuesday from French Guiana carrying a robotic cargo ship to deliver provisions to the International Space Station. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast

In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast

AP (July 30, 2014) Every summer, tourists make the pilgrimage to Chincoteague Island, Va. to see wild ponies cross the Assateague Channel. But, it's the rockets sending to supplies to the International Space Station that are making this a year-round destination. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Russia Saves Gecko Sex Satellite, Media Has Some Fun With It

Russia Saves Gecko Sex Satellite, Media Has Some Fun With It

Newsy (July 27, 2014) The satellite is back under ground control after a tense few days, but with a gecko sex experiment on board, the media just couldn't help themselves. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins