Defence contract will advance photovoltaics

A team led by Boeing Advanced Systems has been awarded a DARPA contract for the first phase of a programme to develop a power system for spacecraft that will involve the use of solar concentrators.



The Fast Access Spacecraft Test project is a multiphase effort to design and develop a ground test prototype of a new High Power Generation Subsystem (HPGS) for spacecraft.

The Boeing HPGS is an integration of solar concentrator, power conversion and heat rejection systems supported by an ultra light weight structure and deployment system for point towards and tracking the sun. During phase 1, Boeing will develop a complete plan for a demonstration system.

When combined with electric thrusters, the system will produce a light weight power and propulsion system for satellites. Photovoltaics, which are widely seen as one of the most promising ways of providing ‘green’ energy began their real commercial development when seen as a way of powering satellites, and the Boeing solar concentrating technology remains one of the most efficient practical systems developed so far with a conversion efficiency of 36.9 per cent.

Other members of the team include DR Technologies, Northrop Grumman Astro Aerospace, Texas A&M University and Spectrolab, a Boeing subsidiary

Author
Tom Shelley

This material is protected by MA Business copyright
See Terms and Conditions.
One-off usage is permitted but bulk copying is not.
For multiple copies contact the sales team.

 

Supporting Information
Do you have any comments about this article?
Name
 
Email
 
Comments
 

Your comments/feedback may be edited prior to publishing. Not all entries will be published.
Please view our Terms and Conditions before leaving a comment.

© MA Business Ltd (a Mark Allen Group Company) 2021