space-based solar power
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Space-based solar power is electrical power which is generated by collecting solar energy from an installation somewhere in Earth orbit where sunlight is both more continuous (minimal "nighttime") and unobstructed by atmosphere.
From that location, the electrical energy must somehow be transmitted to the Earth's surface, either via wireless power transmission or via cable (which would require the construction of a space elevator). The former is currently the most feasible option, at least for the near term.
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An orbiting facilities where space-based solar power is collected is a solar power satellite.
- 2009-04-14 California's new power source a solar farm: "Sometime before 2016, Solaren Corp. plans to launch the world's first orbiting solar farm."
- Universe Today: a more detailed article on the same news
- 2009-02-18 New Company Looks to Produce Space Based Solar Power Within a Decade: Space Energy, Inc.