Businesses and homes around the country are making a valiant effort to use solar power where possible but Japan feels it is time to step up the game. They aim to create a 400km-wide and 11,000 km-long solar panel on the moon which would transfer the energy back to earth via lasers. So is this plan a viable solution for the future of solar power, or is simply a shot in the dark?
The ‘Luna Ring’ as it is being called is a concept dreamt up by the Shimizu Corporation. The plan is still in its initial stages but if it was to go ahead would start the construction as soon as 2035. Although this is a long way off, this could be an innovation in energy and could make a dramatic difference to the way in which we live throughout the globe.
That’s No Moon…It’s A Power Station
The project is planned to involved many phases which will take place over a time frame of 30 years. However, this is far from being finalised as the process in which to create the materials has not been decided. Ideas are being thrown around regarding the construction that include making lunar concrete from cementing material and using solar-heat processes to create bricks, glass fibres and ceramics. However, this could be a long shot as carrying out these processes and building a structure this large on Earth would be a big enough task, let alone on the moon.
However, if the plans go ahead and ways to create the materials are decided on, this could be one of, if not the biggest, project ever undertaken. The results could be fantastic for a planet which, although it is trying, is still struggling to use eco-friendly power more than traditional methods. Reports on the effects of this energy use are not only confusing but have mixed results. So by making use of the moon and the space which it has, this could be a huge step in the right direction.
13,000 Terawatts All Year Round – Earth’s Power Problem Solution?
It has been estimated that the system could transfer around 13,000 terawatts of power all year round. With the advantage of no clouds or bad weather present on the moon, the stream from the solar panel is unlikely to falter. This could be a saviour in terms of the energy that we are getting through. In 2006 the world used on average 85.3 million barrels of oil a day, and this is estimated to rise to 113.3 million barrels per day by 2030. If the plans for the ‘Luna Ring’ go ahead, this could make a dramatic impact on these figures.
Article by Amy Bennett on behalf of Solartech, the experts in a wide range of renewable energy solutions.