I've read about the idea of putting solar panels in space, or the already used electrodynamic tethers which gain energy as they move through Earth's magnetic field.

The question I have is:

How do you get the generated energy back to Earth?

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    $\begingroup$ Better on Space Exploration... $\endgroup$ – Solar Mike Feb 14 '18 at 19:53
  • $\begingroup$ beam of microwaves $\endgroup$ – joojaa Feb 14 '18 at 19:56
  • $\begingroup$ yes, let's make it a well-aimed beam of microwaves. $\endgroup$ – niels nielsen Feb 14 '18 at 21:27
  • $\begingroup$ Beams of microwaves or laser light. See Wikipedia Space-based Solar Power $\endgroup$ – Fred Feb 15 '18 at 2:09
  • $\begingroup$ @nielsnielsen, ... and aim it at the solar-roadways project :D $\endgroup$ – user6335 Feb 15 '18 at 18:21

Generators in space are mainly used as nuclear power source in space where solar power is not a viable power source. The different space generators in use today are radioisotope thermoelectric generator and radioisotope piezo electric generator. This generator converts energy stored in a radioactive material directly into motion to generate electricity by the repeated deformation of material.

As far as the transmission of energy is considered, it can be achieved by perpetual motion which is most possible in space the on earth. In space the weightless space helps to achieve perpetual motion which oppose the law of conservation of energy. Hence the energy can be tried to transmit back to earth from generators in space through perpetual motion.perpetual motion is motion of bodies that continue indefinitely.the laws of thermodynamiccs apply even at very grand scales.example,motions and rotations of celestial bodies such as planets may appear perpetual,but are subjected to many processes that dissipate kinetic energy,such as solar wind,interstellar medium resistance,gravitational radiation and thermal radiation,so they will not keep moving forever.there is a scientific consensus that perpetual motion in an isolated system voilates either first law of thermodynamics,or second law of thermodynamics or both.Depending on this criteria perpetual motion machines are clasified as perpetual motion machine of first kind which produces work without the input of energy,it thus voilates the first law of thermodynamics. pertual motion machine of second kind is a machine which spontaneously converts thermal energy into mechanical energy.when the thermal energy is equivalent to workdone it does not voilate first law of thermodynamics but voilates second law. perpetual motion machine of third kind is defined as one that eleminates friction and other dessipative forces completely.it is impossible to make such a machine as the dessipative forces cannot be completely eleminated.but it can be reduced to the limit in space. hence using one of the criteria with the generators in space we can try to transmit energy back to earth.

  • $\begingroup$ Why is solar power not a viable power source in space? Could you elaborate more on the actual question of how the generated power would be transmitted back to earth? $\endgroup$ – Andrew Feb 16 '18 at 9:32
  • $\begingroup$ Mr Irfan, much as I admire your devastating left-arm quick bowling, your understanding of physics and engineering leaves much to be desired. $\endgroup$ – 410 gone Feb 16 '18 at 10:54

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