Solar Panels in Space: How NASA Uses Solar

Solar Panels in space

We believe in solar technology as the energy generator of the future, and we aren’t alone! NASA is responsible for almost all of the space exploration humankind has accomplished. They conduct and coordinate experiments in the International Space Station that push forward the boundaries of scientific thought. To do all this, they power a lot of what they do with the energy that comes from the sun. What’s truly amazing is that a lot of the same principles apply to the solar panels we can install in your home.

International Space Station

The ISS is the single most expensive item ever created, running over $100 billion! It functions as the world’s space laboratory and 10 countries have sent crew members to do experiments there. All of it is powered by the same basic principles are your typical home solar panel.

These solar arrays utilize solar cells and photovoltaic effects. This means that they turn light into electricity. Overall, the arrays cover an area over half of a football field in size. That immense size gives the station plenty of excess power that they store in batteries to operate the ISS when it is cloaked in shadow.

When it comes to efficiency, the solar panels are less potent than what you can get for your home today, being only about 14% efficient. However, NASA cares a lot more about weight and size since it costs so much to rocket things into space. While they aren’t as efficient, they were designed to be incredibly lightweight, and from that perspective, it was the best choice.

On Earth

Solar energy powers some of the biggest tech companies in the world. Tesla, Apple, and Google are just a few examples. The fantastic thing is that you can utilize the exact same energy to power your home, too! If it’s good enough for NASA, why not give it some more thought and see if it might work well for you!

Energy Concepts can handle all of your solar needs. If you’re interested in solar, give us a call at (559) 485-2504 or fill out an online contact form!