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b. Determine development funding requirements, level and timing of capi-
tal investments, sources of funds, and economic impacts and benefits of
development program phases and SPS operations on the U.S. economy
for specific SPS implementation scenarios.

c. Assess effects of SPS implementation scenarios on fuel costs and im-
ports, trade balances, and energy economies, and compare with the
effects projected for other energy production options.

4. Institutional Arrangements

a. Identify legal framework for SPS system construction, tests and oper-
ations, including ownership, liability, insurance, and required inter-
national agreements.

b. Assess political implications of SPS development and operations, in-
cluding international cooperation required for frequency assignment,
synchronous orbit positions, inspection to assure peaceful uses, and
protection from interference with operations.

c. Seek participation of appropriate public interest groups on issues per-
taining to environmental effects, microwave safety standards, and re-
ceiving antenna and launch site locations through effective and open
information exchange.

The five-year SPS development program should lead to a resolution of the critical issues and result in a better understanding of the SPS system. Throughout this period new concepts and technology will emerge that should be integrated in the program for the SPS system to evolve and mature. Decisions made on the basis of a specific system at too early a date may foreclose options. Space flight experiments will be required to evolve an optimized system. Keeping system options open will assure that the best available technology can be utilized when the decision to proceed with an expanded SPS development would be made.


There are several funding levels associated with the SPS development program. The Department of Energy-NASA development program has a budget allocation of about $15 million until 1980. This level of funding during the next four years, while permitting assessments of technical, economic, and environmental issues, does not permit significant technology developments to start until after 1980.

I recommend that the budget for the five-year SPS development program outlined previously be allocated as shown in Table 1.

As the development program proceeds and confidence in the SPS option is increased, allocated funds should approach the levels associated with other significant energy-technology development programs.

At the present funding level, which is about 1'e of the funding for each of the advanced nuclear energy options, it will be difficult to achieve the necessary momentum and obtain the commitments essential to a successful SPS development program.

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To achieve the SPS development goals will require coordination of future space programs directed to the intensive utilization of the space shuttle, performance of Spacelab experiments, demonstration of the capability to construct large space structures, and the generation of significant power levels to support planned space activities.

The SPS development program will focus efforts leading to space processing, human habitations required in orbit for fabrication, assembly and maintenance, efficient modes of space transportation, and the potential exploitation of extraterrestrial resources.

I believe that the SPS is one of the most promising power generation options to meet global energy demands in the 21st century. Its successful implementation could lead to the elimination of energy-related concerns. In a broader sense, the SPS represents a major and meaningful step towards extending peaceful human activities beyond the confines of the Earth's surface. With increasing confidence in the technical feasibility and economic promise of the SPS, the decision to pursue this option on an expanded scale should be made to meet the challenges that will have to be faced during the inevitable transition to renewable sources of energy. Now is the time for this nation to establish the potential of power from space to provide an inexhaustible energy source for the public benefit. Therefore, the SPS development program should be a significant component of our country's future space programs and be included in the national energy plan.


(1) Energy Research and Development and Space Technology, Hearings before the Subcommittee on Space Science and Applications and Subcommittee on Energy of the Committee on Science and Astronautics, U.S. House of Representatives. Ninety Third Congress, First Session, May 7, 22, and 24, 1973, No. 9, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, 1973, pp. 258-262 and 298-327.

(2) Glaser, Peter E., "The Potential of Satellite Solar Power," Proceedings of the IEEE, Vol. 65, No. 8, August 1977, pp. 1162-1176.


Dr. Glaser, Vice President of Engineering Sciences at Arthur D. Little, Inc., has directed a number of advanced engineering development projects on the utilization of solar energy, space and lunar science instrumentation, and space industrialization. He has published and spoken widely on the potential of solar energy to meet future energy demands.

Dr. Glaser received his undergraduate training in mechanical engineering at Leeds College of Technology and at Charles University, Prague. He obtained his MS and PhD degrees in mechanical engineering from Columbia University in 1955.

Since joining the Arthur D. Little staff in 1955, he has directed research on: Methods of generating high temperatures, including the construction of solar and arc imaging furnaces; thermal insulation systems; properties of postulated lunar surface materials; and solar energy conversion. He was responsible for the development of scientific experiments for all Apollo lunar landing missions, including measurements of the heat flow from the lunar surface, lunar gravity, and the earth-moon distance. He is directing projects on the feasibility of a satellite solar power station, life science experiments for shuttle and terrestrial solar energy applications.

Dr. Glaser is a past President of the International Solar Energy Society, and is currently serving as Editor-in-Chief of the Society's Journal. He is a member of Committees of the National Academy of Sciences; the American Association for the Advancement of Science; the New York Academy of Sciences; the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics; American Society of Mechanical Engineers; the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers; the Society of Automotive Engineers; American Ordnance Association; and Sigma Xi. He has over one-hundred publications, books and patents in the fields of solar power satellites, thermal protection systems, thermal properties measurements, thermal imaging techniques, lunar surface characteristics, extraterrestrial resource utilization and space industrialization. He was awarded the Carl F. Kayan Medal by Columbia University in 1974.






Jerry Grey

Administrator, Public Policy

American Institute of Aeronautics & Astronautics

for the

Committee on Science & Technology
U. S. House of Representatives
Washington, D. C.

January 24, 1978

American Institute of Aeronautics & Astronautics

1290 Avenue of the Americas

New York, N. Y. 10019







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