Martin Soltau, Co-CEO of Space Solar, spoke to Engineering & Technology Magazine about the future of Space-Based Solar Power, and the new technologies that are emerging to make this a reality.
“Could satellites send solar energy to Earth? E&T talks to two men who say ‘yes’.
One of the most pressing questions facing the world today is that of how to ensure a reliable source of energy that comes without carbon emissions or the ‘intermittency’ associated with existing sources of renewables. According to Martin Soltau it is a question with an answer that is clearly visible every day: the Sun.
Soltau, currently business manager for aerospace with engineering consultancy Frazer-Nash, is not arguing for increasing areas of the Earth’s surface to be covered in solar panels. Instead he is a proponent of a much more radical idea. This is that massive satellites that could ultimately measure several kilometres across be put into orbit to convert sunlight into electricity in a highly efficient manner free from atmospheric interference and then beam it down to Earth in the form of microwave radiation for conversion back into usable electric power.”