Between science fiction and reality: a team of Japanese engineers at Shimizu Corporation, a leading architectural, engineering and general contracting firm, is working to turn the moon into a giant solar panel.

The project, called Luna Ring, considers the possibility to install a Solar Belt along the entire 11,000km moon’s equator. The goal is turn the moon into a giant solar panel station for the infinite coexistence of mankind and the Earth. The solar energy collected would be transmitted and beamed back to Earth as microwaves and laser, where it would then be turned into electricity and then potentially supplied to the national grid.

You might be wondering: how will they build and set up the Solar Belt? With robots, of course! Robots will play a vital role in construction on the lunar surface. They will be tele-operated 24 hours a day from the Earth to excavate and level the ground, to lay down concrete made from moon soil and to construct and assemble machines and equipment.

Shimizu Company plans to have a pilot demonstration by 2020 and for construction to begin by 2035; while costs and hurdles in place have not been addressed. Can we hope to solve our energy problems by looking at the space?

Source: The Independent

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