Randy writes: In space, there is abundant energy everywhere in the form of electromagnetic waves of all frequencies, and space is the perfect place for solar energy conversion. There have been proposals for beaming down solar energy converted by large arrays of solar panels in space, but the effort would be difficult and costly. An artificial sun might be a more practical solution.
Recent research has shown that light can in theory be used to produce ferromagnetism in tiny voids made with CoFe otherwise known as Prussian blue. Light driven chemistry is the basis of life in our solar system and is driven by our sun.
Mankind have always been builders of increasingly more complex structures. We have advanced so much that materials science is our economic driver. Solid state electronics are commonplace, and with the invention of the scanning tunneling microscope, we now have automated nanoassembly of complex structures that are built atom by atom.
As advanced as our electronics industry has become, we still do not have many fuel cell powered cars on the road and funding for the research on solar energy and fuel cells seems to be inadequate considering the severity of global warming today. If we can improve solar power by solving the energy storage problem, we could solve most of our energy woes.
Fusion research is much touted, and has been going on with not much success for about forty or fifty years. So, why do we not try something a little simpler-water dissociation. Water dissociation can be accomplished with light, with electricity, and with pulsed magnetism. The power requirements for water dissociation are not that great, and can be provided by ambient zero point energy.
An artificial sun could be built in space using robotics out of mesoporous silica glass in the form of a hollow sphere. Tiny voids formed out of Prussian blue about two nanometers in size would produce light driven ferromagetic distortions of the voids. As magnetic dipoles form automatically in dielectric spheres exposed to electromagnetic energy, the dipoles would vibrate slightly and there would be an interaction of changing magnetic fields and the production of tiny magnetic waves inside the voids.
The boundaries of the voids would vibrate back and forth and the waves thus produced would be amplified by the resonance conditions of the boundaries. If our artificial sun was indeed made from silica glass, condensation of water would occur inside the voids due to the extreme cold of space. Water is the quasi stable state of free hydrogen and is abundant in space, so we need not worry about a fuel supply.
The water droplets in the voids would dissociate into hydrogen and oxygen in the presence of the light driven pulsed magnetism, and the automatic recombination process would emit light, which would further drive the production of ferromagnetic distortion. This would cause further dissociation, and further recombination. When hydrogen and oxygen recombine there is always an emission of light because the process of recombination gives off the energy that was stored in the dissociation process. So, the process would be self-sustaining.
If found to be necessary, thin films of superconductor-semiconductor-superconductor junctions can cool the surface of the sphere electronicly. The space agency presently cools the electronic components of space satellites using a variation of this principle.
Some day, we will have to leave the cradle of earth. According to Professor Steven Hawking, our earth will continue to get hotter as the sun continues to grow larger. An artificial sun would allow us to colonize the outer planets, and even some day perhaps leave the solar system, and start again.
As fantastic as it sounds, the galaxies have been observed to be growing further apart at an exponential rate, and perhaps in fifty thousand years we will be marooned here in our solar system with nowhere to go. Our sun will eventually die. So we may have to start over with a man made solar system somewhere else. In fifty thousand years, this may be our only choice. We will have to build an artificial sun and new earth.
Ralph Randolph Sawyer