Solar Power Satellite and its EMC Issues

The solar power satellite (SPS) which attracts attention as CO2 free clean energy is introduced and the examination of interference by SPS are discussed.

Solar power satellite (SPS) attracts attention as clean energy which does not take out CO2 and can solve an environmental problem and the energy problem of drain of a fossil fuel. Efficiency is much higher than the solar power placed on the ground as a base power supply which can be supplied for 24 hours. An essential technology for SPS is microwave power transmission (MPT). The outline of SPS, MPT, and the interference issues by the SPS are introduced.


CO2 emissions per unit electric power from various plants [1]. Although the emission from SPS are calculated based on below-mentioned NASA/DOE Reference Model, it is as few as that from a nuclear power plant. In breeder scenario which builds SPS with the electric power made from SPS, it becomes half of that.

Brown wrote the history of MPT in 1984 [3]. Tesla has tried and failed in wireless power transmission by a 150 kHz radio wave in the 1900s. It became full-scale after high power microwave tubes were available at the postwar period and Brown made a large contribution to MPT. He succeeded in the first demonstration of MPT to drive a dc motor attached to a fan by 100 W of dc power retrieved from 400W CW power generated by a magnetron in 1963. He invented rectenna (= rectifier+antenna) which changes microwave into a direct current directly and made a microwave-powered helicopter flight in 1964. He also demonstrated a system where the overall efficiency from dc power into a magnetron generator to dc power output of the rectenna was 54%. The conversion efficiency of rectenna could reach up to 90% [3]. Over 30 kW of dc power was transferred over one mile (1.6 km) from a parabolic antenna for the satellite tracking of the JPL (Jet Propulsion Laboratory) Goldstone Facility. Matsumoto [4] introduced in 1995 early history, Japanese experiments of microwave power transmission, the rocket experiment on an interaction with the microwave in the ionosphere, its theoretical analysis and computer simulations, a microwave driven airplane, and some other Japanese microwave power transmission experiments

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