Moon gets first micro-grid
- May 18, 2022 6:52 pm GMT
NASA is going back to the moon, but they’re taking a microgrid with them this time. That’s right, a Sandia National Laboratories grid unit will power the Artemis Program, a sustained lunar exploration that is being pitched as a precursor to a human Mars mission.
The scope of the initial bases is outlined in this article over at Universe Today:
The Base Camp concept consists of a habitation unit capable of accommodating up to four astronauts as well as a mining and processing facility that will use local resources (lunar regolith and water ice) to fashion rocket fuel, water, oxygen gas, and building materials – a process known as in-situ resource utilization (ISRU). This will extend the duration and range of surface exploration while reducing dependence on resupply missions from Earth. This facility and its microgrid will be located far from the base camp to avoid disrupting other science and technology activities.
That same article quotes Jack Flicker, a Sandia electrical engineer, on the challenges of building such a system:
“There are some very important differences between something like an ISS-type microgrid to something that has the extent of a moon base. One of those differences is the geographic size, which can be problematic, especially when running at low DC voltages.
“Another is that when you start to extend these systems, there will be a lot more power electronics as well as a lot more distributed energy resources that will exist throughout the base. Sandia has been looking at microgrids with a lot of distributed energy resources for quite a long time.”
What a time to be alive.
No discussions yet. Start a discussion below.
Get Published - Build a Following
The Energy Central Power Industry Network is based on one core idea - power industry professionals helping each other and advancing the industry by sharing and learning from each other.
If you have an experience or insight to share or have learned something from a conference or seminar, your peers and colleagues on Energy Central want to hear about it. It's also easy to share a link to an article you've liked or an industry resource that you think would be helpful.