Online Journal of Space Communication


The realization of solar power from space is becoming increasingly closer as a solution to solving the continued growth in energy demand. Space based solar power is also being perceived as an alternative solution for non-renewable energy resources. Future solar power satellites will be positioned in orbit around the Earth where they will collect solar radiation. That radiation will be transformed into a microwave energy beam that is targeted to a receiving rectifying antenna or “rectenna” located on Earth’s surface. The received microwave energy will be converted into direct current electricity.

This presentation focuses on the microwave patch antennas used with integrated rectifiers in ground receivers on Earth. Inset feed and quarter-wave microwave patch antennas and a microwave rectifier were engineered, manufactured, and tested in-house at the University of North Dakota. The results showed a resonant frequency close to the desired 2.45 GHz, but the rectifier demonstrated 21% power conversion efficiency from AC to DC at 15dBm. The antenna and rectifier were combined and analysis was performed for the parameters of distance of the receiving rectenna from the transmitter and power output upon rectification.

The innovation of this project is the “Multi-Combinational Renewable Energy Efficient Generator ” that allows such energy attachments as terrestrial solar and wind, geo-thermal facilities, energy storage systems, and the rectenna itself to be integrated into the base structure. The future Global Electrical Grid will use solar power satellites as a space electrical node and, it is hoped, the MCREEG generator will serve as a ground electrical node.

Advisors: Dr. Sima Noghanian, Dr. Hossein Salehfar, Dr. Isaac Chang, Dr. James Casler, Dr. Ron Fevig

antenna.pptx (17024 kB)
Presentation in PowerPoint format

rectenna.pdf (1799 kB)
Rectenna: Inset-fed and Edge-fed "Patch" Antennas with Rectifying Circuit (Article))



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