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For the last six months the National Security Space Office (NSSO) led an investigation of  space-based solar power (SBSP) as a way to reduce American dependence on foreign-oil as well as a solution to the possibility of global warming or climate change. Today the NSSO announced the study results at the National Press Club at an event sponsored by the National Space Society. Together with many other organizations, the Space Solar Alliance for Future Energy (SSAFE) has been chartered to promote the findings of the NSSO-led study, and to communicate the benefits of the technology to business, government and the general public. The full report is available online through SSAFE at

The study report, which was prepared for the NSSO Director, concludes “space-based solar power presents a strategic opportunity” for America that “merits significant further attention on the part of both the U.S. Government and the private sector.” The study report states “SBSP requires a coordinated national program with high-level leadership and resourcing commensurate with its promise, but at least on the level of fusion energy research or International Space Station construction and operations.”

The report announcement and report are posted at: Space-Based Solar Power Interim Assessment (Release 0.1) is Published!

Preventing resource conflicts in the face of increasing global populations and demands in the 21st century is a high priority for the Department of Defense. All solution options to these challenges should be explored, including opportunities from space.

In March 2007, the National Security Space Office’s Advanced Concepts Office presented the idea of space‐based solar power (SBSP) as a potential grand opportunity to address not only energy security, but environmental, economic, intellectual, and space security as well. First proposed in the late 1960’s, the concept was last explored in the NASA’s 1997 “Fresh Look” Study. In the decade since this last study, advances in technology and new challenges to security have warranted a current exploration of the strategic implications of SBSP. For these reasons, my office sponsored a no‐cost Phase 0 Architecture Feasibility Study of SBSP during the Spring and Summer of 2007.

Unlike traditional contracted architecture studies, the attached report was compiled through an innovative and collaborative approach that relied heavily upon voluntary internet discussions by more than 170 academic, scientific, technical, legal, and business experts around the world. I applaud the high quality of work accomplished by the team leaders and all participants who contributed in the last six months. I encourage them to continue their work in earnest as they move beyond this interim report and seek to answer the question of whether SBSP can be developed and deployed within the first half of this century to provide affordable, clean, safe, reliable, sustainable and expandable energy for mankind.

This interim assessment contains significant initial findings and recommendations that should provide pause and consideration for national and international policy makers, business leaders, and citizens alike. It appears that technological challenges are closing rapidly and the business case for creating SBSP is improving with each passing year. Still absent, however, is an appropriate catalyst to stimulate the various interested parties toward actually developing a SBSP capability. I encourage all to read this report and consider the opportunities that SBSP presents as part of a national and international debate for action on how best to preserve security for all.

//signed 9 Oct 07//
Acting Director, National Security Space Office

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