NASA’s photo voltaic sail technological innovation would like to electric power space exploration employing sunlight

NASA has declared ideas to take a look at its current solar sail technologies in 2022. recognised as ACS3 (advanced composite solar sail procedure), the goal of the mission is to exchange traditional rocket propellants by establishing and tests photo voltaic sails working with daylight beams to go nanosatellites. 


‘just as a sailboat is powered by wind in a sail, solar sails employ the stress of daylight for propulsion, getting rid of the have to have for regular rocket propellant,’ NASA wrote in a june 23 statement.

photos by NASA



the NASA solar sail propulsion units have been intended for upcoming little interplanetary spacecrafts destined for reduced-price deep-house and science missions demanding prolonged-length and low-thrust propulsion. the profit of nanosatellites with solar sails is a constant thrust without using expending propellants, enabling orbits that are not possible with traditional propulsion systems.


‘the major goal of the ACS3 mission is to display the successful deployment of the composite growth solar sail in lower-earth orbit,’ reported NASA. ‘after reaching house, the mission’s CubeSat spacecraft will deploy its photo voltaic power arrays and then commence unfurling its photo voltaic sail by way of 4 booms that span the diagonals of the square and unspool to get to 7 meters (about 23 ft) in duration. just after around 20 or 30 minutes when the solar sail is fully deployed, the sq.-shaped solar sail measures about 9 meters (about 30 ft) per aspect or about the size of a compact apartment. a suite of onboard digital cameras will obtain images of the sail all through and right after deployment in buy to evaluate its shape and alignment.’

NASA's solar sail technology wants to power space exploration using sunlight



interest in photo voltaic sailing as an different to chemical and electric propulsion programs continues to improve. employing sunlight to propel small spacecraft in lieu of consumable propellants will be advantageous for lots of mission profiles and gives overall flexibility in spacecraft style to support NASA satisfy its missions’ targets most effectively.



project info:


identify: advanced composite solar sail system (ACS3)
initiator: NASA
firm: NanoAvionics

juliana neira I designboom

jul 05, 2021