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Gorn
2015-Sep-29, 03:02 AM
Hello. Whenever I hear about power stations in space..I think 'most' assume it always involves 'solar cell farms'.

My question is is it at all possible and practical and 'more robust..better'..to use the Sun as a heat source instead.

My thinking is to send like maybe asteroidal 'slag' type material to the Sun at high speed and then have it return.

It would then be very hot..and you could use the heat energy to generate electricity..say.

Would this not be a more 'powerful' way of generating power instead of huge solar cell farms?

Has this idea been explored?

If not..I want the credit
Bye
G

Noclevername
2015-Sep-29, 03:10 AM
To get to the Sun from our distance takes enough energy to de-orbit Solar System bodies. To get back here takes just as much energy. And the rock would be losing heat all the way home. We can build photoelectric cells pretty cheaply and locally, and replace or maintain them as they wear out. I've heard that they can, for example, be made from Lunar regolith.

What form of power generation would you use on a molten asteroid anyway? It's temperature differential, not just heat, that generates electricity.

publiusr
2015-Oct-02, 06:10 PM
This might be a more useful way to form a structure. A molten blob with explosives or some water inside that ruptures and inflates the mass into a hollow (if lumpy) sphere.

Statites near the sun might be better:
http://nextbigfuture.com/2013/08/statites-close-to-sun.html

Best of all might be simple coils in orbit around the sun generating power directly. http://scienceblogs.com/builtonfacts/2010/06/18/power-from-the-earths-magnetic/

Gorn
2015-Oct-03, 02:57 AM
Hello. Thanks for the response. This is not about you..but I thot I would like to mention,..also..I keep hearing about "Super unique..Star Trek" solar sails that need to be..hmm..hear we go...super thin..super strong..super light weight..super temperature resistant..super sized..o'h I don't know..hmm..maybe SuperMan!!!! to be a capable solar sail. Hogwash.

I also read in this article about this thing if things don't go well ending up losing its orbital energy in some way and crashing into the Sun.

Anything that has enough orbital speed will orbit the Sun..forever!! If not..better put on your safety belts because apparently the Earth is going to crash into the Sun any day now!

What I am thinking is a large 'power station' that you could use for power..or..could send out laser pulses for solar sails. If your worried about the inverse square law of light..a series of lenses will take care of that.

Sorry..I don't have any faith in negativity..kinda reminds me of Yoda talking to Luke Skywalker saying..'always with you it cannot be done...hear you nothing that I say!'

I will safely ignore such articles.
Bye
G

Jens
2015-Oct-03, 03:22 AM
It would then be very hot..and you could use the heat energy to generate electricity..say.



You might want to think about how you would generate electricity from a hot rock.

DaveC426913
2015-Oct-03, 03:39 AM
Hello. Thanks for the response. This is not about you..but I thot I would like to mention,..also..I keep hearing about "Super unique..Star Trek" solar sails that need to be..hmm..hear we go...super thin..super strong..super light weight..super temperature resistant..super sized..o'h I don't know..hmm..maybe SuperMan!!!! to be a capable solar sail. Hogwash.
Building things in space far from Earth is nothing like building things on Earth. You can build colossally large structures out of incredibly thin, incredibly light materials because there's virtually no gravitational force to distort them.

Because it sounds like hogwash does not mean it is hogwash to engineers to do this for a living.

publiusr
2015-Oct-03, 08:32 PM
Exactly.

You can do flat structures as well. Imagine two giant soap bubbles. Where they intersect will be perfectly flat. You spray that, pop the rest and you have a sail.


There seem to be some advances in using heat and light in ways that don't need traditional solar cells--optical rectennas
http://nextbigfuture.com/2015/09/solar-cells-will-be-made-obsolete-by-3d.html
http://www.nature.com/nnano/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nnano.2015.220.html

And here is a strange--Galfenol http://nextbigfuture.com/2015/09/galfenol-can-convert-70-percent-of.html