CoolIP index Most recent edit: Saturday April 12, 2014 SearchSite
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Microwave Power Transmission (MPT) for Tropopausal AWES
What is the actual potential regarding MPT to the ground from AWES platforms operating at the tropopause?
High transmission efficiencies have been predicted and shown over decades of research. Rectenna efficiency is about 95% and the atmosphere has microwave frequency band-gaps where almost 100% transparency is possible.
Optimal beam widths are on the order of 1km, and its not hard to envision parabolic or phased array multi-kite or megakite designs at this scale. A tethered parabolic surface could rotate around the wind compass while always aimed back at a central anchor point in the midst of a phased ground array receiver.
Much of the foundational engineering science has been done in the guise of Solar Satellite studies. Kites eliminate many barriers inherent to space deployment, with the major difference that flygen wind power would be harvested, not solar. Many optimization paths are evident. Its easy to see that "waste heat" at the microwave transmitter can be scavenged and regenerated by various means for high overall transmission efficiency.
Chris Carlin, our most experienced aerospace expert in large-scale wind power development, is correct to identify MPT as a respectable AWES study. Doug is wrong only to mock the whole idea, without doing the homework. MPT will be a key idea as AWES theory develops from its infant stage.
Once again, this is not a premature AWES concept down-select, but a proper topic for broad comparative study and testing.
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