Date of Award
Master of Science (MS)
Due to the continuous rise in the global energy demands, new sources of fuel and energy need to be explored. One area of research that is currently underdeveloped is the study and application of space solar power. Space solar power (SSP) is a broad topic that covers the idea of capturing and transmitting renewable solar energy from space to earth. There has been lots of research in the area of SSP, but there are yet any test platforms operating in space continuously to gather data for supporting the commercialization of SSP. This research document looks at the design of the sub assembly level of components while keeping in mind the end application of SSP. The most innovative idea of this research work to be implemented is adding a DC to DC converter to a rectenna array to regulate the output so that the output may be used in a constant charging application. A rectenna is a rectifying antenna used to convert microwave energy into a DC output. The process used in the following work developed a rectifier that has been shown to work through simulations and a buck/boost converter to regulate the output voltage from the rectifier. Simulations using the developed rectifier produced more than 1.8V DC when excited by two 6V peak to peak 5.8GHz sine waves. The sine waves were out of phase by 180o. The filter on the designed rectifier was able to reject re-radiation of the 2nd and 3rd harmonics of the 5.8 GHz input signal by more than 25 dB and 22 dB, respectively. The efficiency of the designed rectifier is unknown due to the simulations not having a current output for a power calculation and the assembled prototypes did not produce any measurable results. The efficiency of the buck/boost converter has been measured to be 80% efficient and up to 95% efficient, depending on the input voltage and the load requirements.
Bernaciak, Robert, "Experimental Super High Frequency Rectifier And DC To DC Converter For Application In Space Solar Power" (2016). Theses and Dissertations. 1993.