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Meanwhile, the China Academy of Space Technology claimed to already be testing such a system in 2019 and said that a fully-functional Chinese microwave beaming power station in space could be deployed by 2050.
"Building upon the concept of scalability, rather than using a laser beam to kill a UAV, they began to pursue the idea of beaming power to a UAV to allow continuous flight, with potential application to both surveillance [Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR)] and countermeasure missions. The team has pursued this idea using NRL applied research funds with the vision that long-range laser power beaming to UAVs could allow for long-duration flights with reduced manpower requirements for many Navy and DoD missions, including off-board decoys, persistent surveillance, and communication relays."
As you can probably tell at this point, this technology has massive implications not only for the future of UAVs, but for all of mankind. Such a system could be used to keep UAVs in the air for very long periods of time to replace cell towers or communications satellites in the event of a crisis in a region or even for normal operations of increasingly complex communications networks. Unlike a tethered aerostat, these UAVs would require far less infrastructure, could be moved around at will for optimum coverage, and could land quickly for servicing. They could even deploy dozens of miles, or even further, away from their base stations. With a space-based power source, they could fly anywhere on earth. Obviously, the implications for overhead surveillance are equally impactful.
It seems odd he calls them radio waves in the video which are at a lower frequency than microwaves which is what the articles are about. Microwaves have more energy than radio waves.
originally posted by: 727Sky
For those who can watch the very short video on how the wireless transmission of electrical power works there is a very simple demonstration in the video..
We are talking about microwaves being used to transmit POWER, think about it. Microwave ovens have very stringent regulations to only allow very small leakages of microwaves outside the oven for safety reasons, since high levels of microwaves can cause problems, such as cataracts for one thing. The US regulation for leakage of microwaves is no more than .005 watts per centimeter squared at approximately 2 inches from the oven surface, and the emissions of most are well below that maximum, all are below it of course.
As you can probably tell at this point, this technology has massive implications not only for the future of UAVs, but for all of mankind.
In that program I think the idea was to build large receivers in remote areas to collect the microwaves, so the idea was people shouldn't get exposed to that much power if the beams don't stray from their intended target. But as we all know, almost anything that can go wrong will go wrong at some point so the aiming mechanism will fail at some point and people will get exposed to the microwaves. If that happens, compare the 200 watts per square meter you'll potentially receive, with the 0.5 watts per square meter you could potentially receive at a distance of 20 inches from your microwave oven, or the ~1 watt power of your cell phone (and people are worried about 4G and 5G which isn't much more than a watt at your phone.
The central feature of this concept was the creation of a large-scale power infrastructure in space, consisting of about 60 SPS, each delivering 5 gigawatts (GW) of base load power to the U.S. national grid (for a total delivered power of about 300 GW)...
To assure beam safety, "center-of-beam" power intensities have been limited to the general range of 100-200 watts/m2 during the SERT Program
You can aim or "focus" the microwave beam to a limited extent, but even focused laser beams spread out and focused microwave beams spread out even more than that, so there would be no way to focus all the energy on the drone. So if you adversary sent up a fleet of 12 microwave powered drones to fly in a formation around your drone, I think they could probably do that as long as they shadowed the movement of your drone, assuming the beam is aimed to follow the drone. Details about how that worked weren't in the article or the video.
originally posted by: Bhadhidar
If you beam electrical power from space in the form of microwaves, wouldn’t that allow anyone using a similar conversion antenna to “hijack” your beam to power their aircraft as well?
Well certainly that would be a goal, but I've read some technical papers about all the different options for doing that and there are numerous technical challenges, so it doesn't seem to be very economically feasible anytime soon. The death ray from a converted boeing 747 is a much more practical idea since that 747 can take off and land and be refueled not only for the fuel needed for flying, but for the fuel needed to power the death ray. Some of the challenges for doing that space based are the launch costs and other factors.
originally posted by: beyondknowledge
Soon someone will realize that the UAV is obsolete. Why bother with missles or other hardware. They will have orbital death rays.
Got a link?
originally posted by: chadderson
Doesn't this match the tech that people claimed was the sole reason for the California fires? Satellites sending back beams of energy to earth where they 'missed' the receiving target resulting in swaths of burned down areas, houses literally and mysteriously 'cut in half' with fire.