Alternative Energy DAsDDI 2008Culpepper Generic et al.
Space Mil 1NC Shell
A. UniquenessVarious space and defense agencies recognize the need to provide bothsecurity for energy and humanity in space
Based Solar Power As an Opportunity for Strategic Security"http://spacesolarpower.files.wordpress.com/2007/11/final-sbsp-interim-assessment-release-01.pdf The magnitude of the looming energy and environmental problems is significant enough to warrant consideration of all options, toinclude revisiting a concept called Space Based Solar Power (SBSP) first invented in the United States almost 40 years ago. The basicidea is very straightforward: place very large solar arrays into continuously and intensely sunlit Earth orbit (1,366 watts/m
) , collectgigawatts of electrical energy, electromagnetically beam it to Earth, and receive it on the surface for use either as baseload power viadirect connection to the existing electrical grid, conversion into manufactured synthetic hydrocarbon fuels, or as low
intensity broadcast power beamed directly to consumers. A single kilometer-wide band of geosynchronous earth orbit experiences enough solar flux in one year to nearly equal the amount of energy contained within all known recoverable conventional oil reserves on Earth today.This amount of energy indicates that there is enormous potential for energy security, economic development, improved environmentalstewardship, advancement of general space faring, and overall national security for those nations who construct and possess a SBSPcapability. NASA and DOE have collectively spent $80M over the last three decades in sporadic efforts studying this concept (bycomparison, the U.S. Government has spent approximately $21B over the last 50 years continuously pursuing nuclear fusion). Thefirst major effort occurred in the 1970’s where scientific feasibility of the concept was established and a reference 5 GW design was proposed. Unfortunately 1970’s architecture and technology levels could not support an economic case for development relative toother lower
cost energy alternatives on the market. In 1995-1997 NASA initiated a “Fresh Look” Study to re
examine the conceptrelative to modern technological capabilities. The report (validated by the National Research Council) indicated that technologyvectors to satisfy SBSP development were converging quickly and provided recommended development focus areas, but for variousreasons that again included the relatively lower cost of other energies, policy makers elected not to pursue a development effort. The post-9/11 situation has changed that calculus considerably. Oil prices have jumped from $15/barrel to now $80/barrel in less than adecade. In addition to the emergence of global concerns over climate change, American and allied energy source security is now under threat from actors that seek to destabilize or control global energy markets as well as increased energy demand competition byemerging global economies . Our National Security Strategy recognizes that many nations are too dependent on foreign oil, oftenimported from unstable portions of the world, and seeks to remedy the problem by accelerating the deployment of clean technologiesto enhance energy security, reduce poverty, and reduce pollution in a way that will ignite an era of global growth through free marketsand free trade. Senior U.S. leaders need solutions with strategic impact that can be delivered in a relevant period of time.
B. Link A renewed interest in solar development leads to an ambitious new spaceprogram
, was with NASA for 25 years, including 10 years with JPL in Pasadena, and 15 years at NASA Headquarters inWashington "Space-based Solar Power: Inexhaustible Energy From Orbit", Spring 20
. Ad Astra Magazine.http://www.nss.org/adastra/AdAstra-SBSP-2008.pdf Photographs of the sky over Beijing on a hot summer day—dark with particulates and unburned hydrocarbons dangerous to the youngand the elderly—illustrate that the air pollution crisis that once plagued Los Angeles is not gone, but has only relocated. Similarly,making the energy to run civilization releases enormous volumes of greenhouse gasses—over two pounds (one kg) of carbon dioxidefor each kilowatthour (kwh) generated by coal. Global average temperatures and oceansurface temperatures are rising, along with insurance premiums for coastal areas—when insurance can be found at all.At the same time, current space missions are narrowly constrained by a lack of energy for launch and use in space. More ambitiousmissions will never be realized without new, reliable, and less-expensive sources of energy. Even more, the potential emergence of new space industries such as space tourism and manufacturing in space depend on advances in space power systems just as much asthey do on progress in space transportation. New energy options are needed: sustainable energy for society, clean energy for theclimate, and affordable and abundant energy for use in space. Space solar power is an option that can meet all of these needs.3