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Concept for a Gossamer solar power array using thin‑film photovoltaics

Spröwitz, Tom and Banik, Udayan and Grundmann, Jan Thimo and Haack, Frederik and Hillebrandt, Martin and Martens, Hauke and Meyer, Sebastian and Reershemius, Siebo and Reininghaus, Nies and Sasaki, Kaname and Seefeldt, Patric and Sergeev, Oleg and Spietz, Peter and Sznajder, Maciej and Toth, Norbert and Vehse, Martin and Wippermann, Torben and Zander, Martin E. (2019) Concept for a Gossamer solar power array using thin‑film photovoltaics. CEAS Space Journal. Springer. doi: 10.1007/s12567-019-00276-6. ISSN 1868-2502.

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Official URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s12567-019-00276-6?wt_mc=Internal.Event.1.SEM.ArticleAuthorOnlineFirst&utm_source=ArticleAuthorOnlineFirst&utm_medium=email&utm_content=AA_en_06082018&ArticleAuthorOnlineFirst_20190918


The power demand for future satellite applications will continue to rise. Geostationary telecom-munication satellites currently approach a power level of up to 20 kW. Future spacecraft will provide yet more transponders and/or direct mobile-satellite services. Electric propulsion is in-creasingly used for station keeping, attitude control and GEO circularization. Interplanetary mis-sions already use kW-range electric propulsion. Space Tugs are studied for several fields. Suitable engines require 100 kW or more. The envisaged use of such engines and the operation of future GEO satellites lead to a renewed interest in large, deployable and ultra-lightweight power gen-erators in space. Within the GoSolAr (Gossamer Solar Array) activity, DLR develops a new photovoltaic array technology for power generation. It is based on the DLR Gossamer approach using lightweight, deployable CFRP booms and a polymer membrane covered with thin-film CIGS photovoltaics. The booms are arranged in a crossed configuration with a central deployment unit. The photovol-taic area is composed of one large square membrane with double folding using two-dimensional deployment. Even though the efficiency of thin-film photovoltaics is currently only about 1/3 of that of con-ventional photovoltaics, a membrane based array can already achieve better mass/power ratios. A 50 kW array requires an area of approximately 20 m x 20 m. In a first step, DLR develops a fully functional 5 m x 5 m demonstrator partially covered with thin-film photovoltaics, using the DLR small satellite platform S2TEP. Space compatible thin-film photovoltaics need to be select-ed and tested. They are integrated on standardized generator modules that will be assembled into a large, foldable and deployable membrane. A controlled deployment of structure and membrane, and a sufficiently stiff support structure for operation are key development topics. We present the conceptual design of the GoSolAr demonstrator, the main requirements, prelimi-nary technical budgets and the development strategy. An overview will be given on the selection and the maturity of the key technologies and subsystems, such as deployable membrane with in-tegrated photovoltaic generators; deployable CFRP booms including deployment mechanisms; photovoltaic cell selection and integration to generator units; the array harness concept as well as the electronics concept, for operation and photovoltaics characterization. Furthermore, an over-view of the first manufactured breadboard models and their testing will be presented, e.g. com-bined testing of booms and mechanically representative generator arrays to evaluate deployment and interface forces for the preliminary design.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/129452/
Document Type:Article
Title:Concept for a Gossamer solar power array using thin‑film photovoltaics
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iDORCID Put Code
Spröwitz, TomUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-5369-6919UNSPECIFIED
Grundmann, Jan ThimoUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-8809-0981UNSPECIFIED
Hillebrandt, MartinUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0003-1248-9504UNSPECIFIED
Reininghaus, NiesUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-9509-274XUNSPECIFIED
Sasaki, KanameUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0003-0365-4539UNSPECIFIED
Seefeldt, PatricUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-2067-9458UNSPECIFIED
Sznajder, MaciejUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-9917-0581UNSPECIFIED
Wippermann, TorbenUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-0354-6557UNSPECIFIED
Zander, Martin E.UNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-5972-2938UNSPECIFIED
Date:17 September 2019
Journal or Publication Title:CEAS Space Journal
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:Yes
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
EditorsEmailEditor's ORCID iDORCID Put Code
Keywords:Solar Arrays, deployment Systems, flexible photovoltaic, environmental testing, deployable structures, mechanisms
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Space System Technology
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R SY - Space System Technology
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Systemtechnologien (old)
Location: Bremen
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Space Systems > Mechanic and Thermal Systems
Institute of Composite Structures and Adaptive Systems > Functional Lightweight Structures
Institute of Networked Energy Systems > Urban and Residential Technologies
Institute of Space Systems > Quality Management
Deposited By: Spröwitz, Tom
Deposited On:14 Oct 2019 04:24
Last Modified:21 Nov 2023 07:03

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