Ever since Japan was hit by multiple natural disasters, in particular the 2011 earthquake and tsunami, most of the country’s power plants have been shut down, these nuclear power plants sources of electricity from Japan, As a consequence, scientists and researchers across the country began to look for other ways to acquire electricity to make up for this.
This is where a Japanese firm came up with an idea that looked like sciencefiction, the project is to build a set of solar cells around the Moon equator to recover solar energy and send it back to Earth. The Shimizu Corporation company, Group specialized in the construction; imagine the creation of a giant “solar belt” around the Moon, at the level of the lunar equator.
It would be 11,000 km long and up to 400 km wide in places. It would consist of an assembly of photovoltaic cells linked to buried cables. These would transfer the electricity generated to the face of the Moon still visible from Earth. So we’re wondering how this project could be done? And what are the obstacles that slow down or prevent this idea from happening?
First part: How does it work?
The objective is to generate a continuous flow of energy from the moon equator of the Moon, which receives a constant amount of sun exposure and transmit it to the Earth from the near side of the Moon. It is an ambitious idea that requires assembling machines transported from Earth and using remote controlled robots to carry out the construction on the surface of the Moon.
The robots would play the lead role in the construction of the Luna ring. Remotely Operated 24 hours a day from Earth, robots would be present to level the lunar landscape and assemble orbiting machines and equipment before landing on the moon. A team of astronauts would support the robots on site. The idea, the company representatives say, is to lay a concrete strip (which can be made from lunar soil) 250 km wide all around the lunar equator (about 6,800 km).
Then the concrete would be covered with solar panels, which would be connected by cables to microwave and laser transmission stations. The bundles of energy sent by the moon would be directed to the receiving stations on Earth, which would make it possible to have a source of energy 24 hours a day because there are no clouds or other bad weather on the moon.
Shimizu says such a system would be able to return 13,000 terawatts of energy to Earth. The energy would then be transmitted in two forms: electromagnetic waves (microwaves between 1 and 300 GHz of frequency) and lasers. This energy would be emitted from the moon by giant antennae.
Second part: The Disadvantages of this Project
Despite the enthusiasm of the Shimizu company, and all its explanations (not always very clear), such a project today seems difficult to achieve for financial reasons already well established, but also for technical reasons, it would be difficult to build such a huge structure from such a long distance. It is also difficult to ensure that the international community adheres to the project in view of the problems it may cause, such as the disturbance of the lunar soil that will prevent the work and construction made by the robots, also the dusting of the installed solar cells that will be complicated to carry out each time.
The company will certainly have to find ways to protect solar panels in order to prevent any transferred dust from covering, scratching or otherwise preventing the efficiency of solar panel cells. This project will certainly be difficult to achieve one day, but Shimizu strongly believes in it and he is determined to do everything possible to achieve it.
A solar belt project on the Moon is a bit drawn by the hair, but it is not at all impossible considering the many advances in science and technology, but one must know that if one day we see this lunar belt, the earth will enter into a new air and a new dimension, and the idea of exploiting space for our planet will be stronger than ever.