Energy & Power
Canadians make the case for solar power… from space!
By Anthony Capkun
May 11, 2014 – In keeping with its mandate to support, encourage and facilitate international dialogue on solar energy from space, SPACE Canada (Solar Power Alternative for Clean Energy) is sponsoring a dinner at the International Space Development Conference (ISDC 2014), where John Mankins will deliver the evening’s keynote “The Case for Space Solar Power”.
Space solar power (SSP) uses satellites in space to collect the sun’s energy, which is beamed to receivers on the ground then fed into the power grid just like energy produced by conventional power plants.
Mankins had a 25-year career at NASA, during which time he led an $800-million R&D program annually and, for many years, was in charge of NASA’s studies on space SSP. Mankins and Mark Hopkins—CEO of the National Space Society—will explain how the first economically viable SSP satellite could be built in less than 20 years, followed in rapid succession by additional profitable satellites.
“The sun produces 10 trillion times the amount of energy currently consumed by humanity,” said Hopkins. “By harvesting a tiny fraction of this energy via SSP, the energy crises would be over. Humanity would have all of the energy it needs for the foreseeable future.”
The resulting electricity could be sold at prices below those of competing alternatives, such as coal or nuclear, insists SPACE Canada.