[Server-sky] [ExI] Power sats again

Charles Radley cfrjlr at gmail.com
Thu Jul 18 01:33:47 UTC 2013

On 7/17/2013 4:14 PM, Michael Turner wrote:
> "The problem with hydro in most places is that it is remote, or small,
> or destructive of habitat, and usually all three."
> First, something that keeps getting lost in this discussion is that I
> propose beaming power up from Earth through a microwave relay back
> down to Earth. Surely, if it's very efficient sky-to-Earth, it's no
> less efficient Earth-to-sky? I really don't want people to lose track
> of the basic idea, but (thanks, Charles) maybe that's gotten drowned
> out by a misunderstanding of what I saying in the first place.

Sure, it is in the link budget numbers.

> Second, "small" and "destructive of habitat" might not be mutually
> exclusive, but in general, smaller is far less destructive. I believe
> the Sierra Club's official position on hydro is: small is good, big is
> bad.


> Finally, I'm trying to address "remote." Forget big dams, for the
> moment. If you have lots of (small) hydro in a remote area, and
> collect it over wires to a microwave transmission and beam it to
> space, for distribution to markets, that takes us back to my question
> of definition: since hydro power is solar, in effect, could relaying
> that power through orbit be considered a kind of SSP?

Certainly.  My interest is delivering global solutions, hydro is more of 
a smaller niche solution, not global.  There is certainly plenty of 
capacity to expand hydro in Africa, but most of the consumers are in 
Asia, North American and Europe.

> And if the capital costs of starting with SSP as microwave /relays/
> are much lower, instead of with huge PV arrays in orbit, well,
> wouldn't that be the place to start with SSP?





Charles F Radley
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