Solar energy may jump up to an entirely new level by 2035, as we may see aerospace engineers harnessing the Sun's power from Space.
The China Academy of Space Technology (CAST) has stated that the nation will be doing just that and building a space-based solar power station in our lifetime.
This would massively cut down on current fossil fuel consumption.
A solar station up in Space
China plans on building a 200-tonne megawatt-level solar station based in Space by 2035.
The station would capture the Sun's energy that never makes it all the way down to Earth, according to Wang Li, a research fellow at CAST. Wang shared the information at the sixth China-Russia Engineering Forum held in Xiamen, China last week.
Wang mentioned that the energy would be converted into microwaves or lasers and be beamed back to our planet to be used for our consumption.
Furthermore, Wang said "We hope to strengthen international cooperation and make scientific and technological breakthroughs so that humankind can achieve the dream of limitless clean energy at an early date."
This would be a very welcome achievement given the amount of fossil fuels we currently use is dwindling, not to mention their extremely negative effect on our environment.
A Space-based solution would be more sustainable and efficient from the sounds of it. Wang pointed out that this method of harnessing energy would provide a reliable power supply solution for satellites, disaster-stricken zones on Earth, as well as isolated areas.
This idea was first hatched back in 1941 when science fiction author Isaac Asimov wrote about the concept of harnessing power from Space. Then in 1968 an American aerospace engineer, Peter Glaser, put together a formal proposal for such a solar-based system in Space .
China plans to accomplish a 200-ton megawatt-level space-based #solar power station by 2035, which would capture the sun's energy that never makes it to the planet, according to the China Academy of Space Technology. #energy #space https://t.co/nDR9SAEjat pic.twitter.com/KjyoGhsAg0— China Daily (@ChinaDaily) December 2, 2019
To kick-start the project, China is building a testing-base in Bishan with an 200 million yuan (US$ 28.4 million) investment. The base will research high-power wireless energy transmission, and how it would impact our environment.
If all goes to plan, Wang suggested this could also further commercial space transportation industries.