Space solar power (SSP) is generally considered to be the collection in space of energy from the sun and its wireless transmission from space for use on earth. It has been observed that the implementation of such a system could offer energy security, environmental, and technological advantages to those who would undertake its development. A study conducted by the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) sought to determine if unique, cost effective, and efficient approaches exist for supplying significant power on demand for Navy, Marine Corps, or other Department of Defense applications by employing a space‐based solar power system. The study was initiated by and prepared for top NRL management in part as a result of the publication of the National Security Space Office’s (NSSO) report “Space‐Based Solar Power as an Opportunity for Strategic Security.” The NSSO report’s recommendations included statements calling for the U.S. Government to conduct analyses, retire technical risk, and become an early demonstrator for SBSP. It should be noted that the principal objective of the NRL study differed significantly from that of the multitude of previous studies performed in reference to SBSP in that it focused on defense rather than utility grid applications.

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