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Old 12-04-2013, 02:28 PM #1
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Default "Lunar Ring" Solar Panels On The Moon

Hey all,

I found this article on foxnews.com:

Japanese firm proposes building solar panel ring around moon | Fox News

Sounds like an interesting idea. They want to beam the energy collected to Earth using lasers or microwaves. Though I couldn't imagine that it would be terribly efficient and there are of course many other aspects that would make this difficult. It would be neat to see none the less.


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Old 12-04-2013, 06:24 PM #2
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Default Re: "Lunar Ring" Solar Panels On The Moon

haha not to mention if the microwaves are slightly off course somebody's gonna fry
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Old 12-07-2013, 11:34 PM #3
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Default Re: "Lunar Ring" Solar Panels On The Moon

Any birds flying through would be cooked!

Also I think its a terrible idea. Imagine if somehow terrorists managed to hijack the control of it. They could shoot it down in the middle of a city. It would literally be an invisible death ray they could use kill anyone.
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Old 12-08-2013, 02:17 AM #4
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Default Re: "Lunar Ring" Solar Panels On The Moon

So you loose 80% of the light energy by using photovoltaics. Then you loose 50% of that by transmitting it. Then you loose another who-knows-what in the receiver. The earth rotation also makes for difficult energy routing. I suppose the robots are going to clean and repair the system, too?

Makes a good faux news story for a slow news day, but I do not see how this is at all practical.
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Old 12-08-2013, 02:22 AM #5
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Default Re: "Lunar Ring" Solar Panels On The Moon

I was thinking the same thing as Cyparagon. I do believe photovoltaics are a bit more effecient than that arent they? not much though. yeah, next we'll get started on a dyson sphere and before you know it we'll be a type II civilization. (Kardashev scale)
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Old 12-08-2013, 02:26 AM #6
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Default Re: "Lunar Ring" Solar Panels On The Moon

Getting all that equipment up there costs more than it would generate in electricity.
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Old 12-08-2013, 05:58 AM #7
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Default Re: "Lunar Ring" Solar Panels On The Moon

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Getting all that equipment up there costs more than it would generate in electricity.
You missed the part where ROBOTS do all the planning, engineering, mining, manufacturing, maintenance, and repairs


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Old 12-08-2013, 12:07 PM #8
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Default Re: "Lunar Ring" Solar Panels On The Moon

They have a money hole to worry about at Fukushima. Can't see them having enough bread to fund this anyway.
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Old 12-09-2013, 03:33 AM #9
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Default Re: "Lunar Ring" Solar Panels On The Moon

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Originally Posted by Shakenawake View Post
I was thinking the same thing as Cyparagon. I do believe photovoltaics are a bit more effecient than that arent they? not much though. yeah, next we'll get started on a dyson sphere and before you know it we'll be a type II civilization. (Kardashev scale)
There are some research-lab cells that are 44% efficient, but commercial cells top off at 19%. They were pretty happy when they even got close to 15%. Most are a bit lower than that, some as crappy as 6% (like those garden lights), and they degrade over time too.

<begin rant>

That proposal in the news article is just plain idiotic. The moon could be a giant polished mirror and it will only reflect to Earth less than what the sun already shines directly to earth. The energy problem on Earth has never been about the amount of solar energy we have access to (12.2 trillion watt-hours/yr), but efficient means to harvest and convert that to something useful.

So why bother with with the moon at all? What does it have that we could not just do on Earth? Sure we have an atmosphere, but even that doesn't really matter if you're going to produce something huge. We have the whole Pacific Ocean if we really needed some empty space. We could set up solar lilypads out there instead of on some moon. Let the robots build stuff using Earth's bountiful silicon instead of on some moon.

Or why even bother with solar at all? The Japanese should be spending their time making molten salt nuclear reactors that can't even melt down, put out tons of power, recycle their own fuel, and could even be exported to places like Iran because the fuel is so export safe.

Regardless, I don't think we should be doing anything out in space besides sending probes out for exploration, or the regular batch of satellites we put up around earth, until we have a space elevator. We should get rid of that waste-of-money ISS, get rid of these stupid notions of moon bases and Mars bases, and start concentrating on the only rock we'll ever really call home: the Earth, or at least that space elevator.

Other than mineral mining, which is tenuous at best, there's really not much reason to be bothering with stuff off this planet anyway except just to explore it -- with probes. No place out there that we can ever reach in humanity's lifetime will ever even approximate even some of the least habitable places on Earth. Want to go to Mars? Enjoy your radiation-laden trip, only to have to live 3m (or was it 9m?) underground so you don't get bombarded with unsafe levels of even more radiation. OH WHAT A VIEW! And for what? A rocky desert with nothing useful on it? And what science would a human be able to do that a robot would not, and for far longer? We shouldn't be ever trying to live out there.

</end rant>
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Old 12-09-2013, 03:37 AM #10
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Default Re: "Lunar Ring" Solar Panels On The Moon

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We should get rid of that waste-of-money ISS
Elaborate? Interested to know why you think the ISS is a money sink.
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