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Concentrating On The Solar Energy Space Race

11th October 2007

The Space Solar Alliance for Future Energy (SSAFE), a new organization advocating investment in space-based solar power technologies to address the planet’s future energy needs, was announced this week at the National Press Club.

The coalition of thirteen leading research organizations and space advocacy groups focused their inaugural event on the announcement of a new study of space-based solar power led by the National Security Space Office (NSSO).

The study concludes that space-based solar power deserves substantial national investment as a path towards addressing America’s future energy needs via a renewable energy source with no carbon emissions or hazardous waste. In the Space Solar Power concept, developed in the late nineteen-sixties by Dr. Peter Glaser, energy from sunlight is collected in space and transmitted wirelessly for use on Earth.

Mark Hopkins, Senior Vice President of the National Space Society, stated, “As the United States makes decisions now to answer the energy challenges of the next 50 years, space-based solar power must be a part of the answer. The NSSO-led study charts the path forward. While the technical challenges are real, significant investment now can build Space Solar Power into the ultimate energy source: clean, green, renewable, and capable of providing the vast amounts of power that the world will need. Congress, federal agencies and the business community should begin that investment immediately.”

The new Space Solar Alliance for Future Energy (SSAFE) will promote the findings of the NSSO-led study, and seek to communicate the benefits of the technology to business, government and the general public.

According to Air Force Colonel-Select M.V. ‘Coyote’ Smith, the leader of the study, "When we started this work I had my doubts about the technology. But as the facts poured in, it became obvious that my initial assessment was wrong. Not only is this possible, but space-based solar power is probably the greatest opportunity to develop a safe, clean source of energy that can readily be shared with all of humanity."

The founding members of SSAFE are the National Space Society, Space Frontier Foundation, Space Power Association, Aerospace Technology Working Group, Marshall Institute, Moon Society, ShareSpace Foundation, Space Studies Institute, Spaceward Foundation, AIAA Space Colonization Technical Committee, ProSpace, Space Enterprise Council, and Space Generation Foundation.

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