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Shuttle and Space Lab and solar Panels in shadow

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tytower

Banned
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap110608.html

I thought they had control systems to keep panels out of shadow up there but it seems they either don't need the power or some other complication while the shuttle is there

Anyone know why ? Wonder how they will fare in this latest solar eruption?
 

Sceadwian

Banned
Obviously they can't have every panel in full sunlight all the time, there as you said are other complications, things need to be in certain orientation sometimes, like during shuttle docking. Solar eruptions effect nothing if the eruption isn't aimed at a specific target. The sun outputs flares that would cause chaos and bedlam on earth if they ever actually hit us. We're a TINY TINY spec of a target for it's total output. The frequency of truly dangerous bursts relative to the direction of their focus is very low generally.
 

RCinFLA

Well-Known Member
I am sure they have bypassing diodes every few cells in the high voltage series string. This cuts down on the shadow loss.

Also, when shuttle is docked the station cannot operate at its normal optimum angle because of the large mass of the shuttle at one end of the structure. If the whole station stack becomes right angle to earth it is structurally stressed.
 

WVProfessor

New Member
Am I missing something or is the Space Station orbit in the earth's shadow half the time like almost all low earth orbits? I worked on Space Station for Boeing and that is one of the reasons for having big batteries.
 

Nigel Goodwin

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
Am I missing something or is the Space Station orbit in the earth's shadow half the time like almost all low earth orbits? I worked on Space Station for Boeing and that is one of the reasons for having big batteries.
I don't think you're missing anything - it seems a completely pointless thread, which is why there's few responses to it. As you quite rightly say, the solar panels are used to charge batteries, which then supply all the required power, including when the satellite is eclipsed by the earth (once a day for geostationary, and many more times for lower orbits).
 

tytower

Banned
Nigel, you may see it as pointless and express that for your followers to also cast aspersions . I don't think so and Itherefore chose to ask the question . Few will be qualified to answer this anyway I suppose despite their gut reactions .

Visit the link and look at the panels . They are not in the earth's shadow , they are in full sun ,hence the shadows thrown by them , but they are not aligned for optimal reception of energy which is the reason for the thread, like me or not
 
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tcmtech

Banned
Most Helpful Member
Ever consider that they simply don't need all of the panels running at full output 100% of the time thus they just turn some of them a bit out of alignment when full power is not needed? :p

Also even at that altitude there is micro atmosphere present so by turning them parallel, thin side to the direction of orbit, they will produce less drag which does add up thus requiring fewer repositioning boosts from the stabilization rockets or engines they have on board over time.
 

tytower

Banned
Yes that's a good point. However as a Yachty when I can get full solar power I use it to charge but more importantly run those energy hungry type of utensils . Inverter for 120V,Desalinator ,Welder and Freezer while the power availability is there.

The station does not come into Port so I would have thought getting a full sun opportunity would be cherished .
I like the "less drag" suggestion and the "keep the mass balanced" too.
 
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