Media Alert – Alta Devices: How Can Innovative Solar Technology Improve the Capabilities of High Altitude Pseudo Satellites (HAPS)?

LEIDEN, Netherlands — (BUSINESS WIRE) — February 10, 2019 — Alta Devices:


High Altitude Pseudo Satellites (HAPS) offer exciting capabilities and operational flexibility for earth observation, telecommunications, and navigation. These aircraft are lightweight, autonomous, and designed to operate for multiple weeks or even months at altitudes of approximately 20 km. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), HAPS, and satellites can be enabled by solar technology, but shouldn’t that technology be designed specifically for each of these? Innovative HAPS designs need innovative power technology. To maintain continuous operations, HAPS require a renewable energy solution that is lightweight, powerful, robust, and specially tailored for the unique demands of their environment.

The right solar technology can meet this challenge and can be applied to a wing or curved surface to provide autonomous power for extended periods. It is high efficiency, lightweight, thin, and flexible. This technology will also withstand the stresses of UV radiation and temperature variations at stratospheric altitudes. Alta Devices will discuss the issues faced by HAPS and how the right solar technology can meet these demands.



Tuesday February 12, 4:40pm – 6:00pm
Solar Arrays for Autonomous HAPS

Aarohi Vijh - Head of Product, Alta Devices
Recent advances in solar technology are enabling HAPS. In this poster presentation, thin-film gallium-arsenide solar cells designed specifically to power autonomous systems and manufactured by Alta Devices, will be discussed. The potential of this technology will be examined in the context of power-to-weight, durability, and ease of application. Some of the unique issues faced in the HAPS environment will also be considered.

Why: Innovative HAPS, UAV, small satellite, and automotive designs need solar power to match. Lightweight, thin, and flexible gallium-arsenide solar cells from Alta Devices enable designs that are not possible with other solar technologies. Alta cells provide a new level of mechanical and design flexibility for the unmanned systems industry due to their high power-density combined with the ability to bend around curved surfaces. Alta Devices is the world-record holder for single junction solar cell efficiency at 29.1%. The newest generation product from Alta demonstrates a significant weight reduction from the previous version resulting in an improved power-to-weight ratio.

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