Stretched Lens Array (SLA) for Collection and Conversion of Infrared Laser Light: 45% Efficiency Demonstrated for Near-Term 800 W/kg Space Power System

Mark O'Neill, Joe Howell, John Fikes, Richard Fork, Dane Phillips, Dan Aiken, A.J. McDanal
2006 2006 IEEE 4th World Conference on Photovoltaic Energy Conference  
For the past 2½ years, our team has been developing a unique photovoltaic concentrator array for collection and conversion of infrared laser light. This laser-receiving array has evolved from the solar-receiving Stretched Lens Array (SLA). The laser-receiving version of SLA is being developed for space power applications when or where sunlight is not available (e.g., the eternally dark lunar polar craters). The laser-receiving SLA can efficiently collect and convert beamed laser power from
more » ... ser power from orbiting spacecraft or other sources (e.g., solar-powered lasers on the permanently illuminated ridges of lunar polar craters). A dual-use version of SLA can produce power from sunlight during sunlit portions of the mission, and from beamed laser light during dark portions of the mission. SLA minimizes the cost and mass of photovoltaic cells by using gossamer-like Fresnel lenses to capture and focus incoming light (solar or laser) by a factor of 8.5X, thereby providing a cost-effective, ultra-light space power system.
doi:10.1109/wcpec.2006.279893 fatcat:dwfu4up4kvb5te4snovasso7ii