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Five Students Led by Jaffe Participate in the Semifinals and Finals of the International Space Solar Power Student Project Competition 

ISDC 2017 Semi-finals in St. Louis with representatives from each of the student teams.
ISDC 2017 Semi-finals in St. Louis with representatives from each of the student teams.

This past spring, five graduate students in Dr. Paul Jaffe’s course Introduction to Space Solar participated in the first annual International Space Solar Power Student Project Competition sponsored by SPACE Canada, the International Astronautical Federation (IAF) Power Committee, the Global Space Solar Power Working Group (GSSP-WG) of the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA), the National Space Society (NSS) International Space Development Conference (ISDC) SSP Track, and the IAF Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC). This faculty-advised, student-conducted international research and engineering research/paper competition engenders new, meaningful and credible student research projects in the broad field of Space Solar Power, and supports the presentation of the best of the various projects in an international forum including explicit recognition of the best research with a formal prize.

The students that participated in the competition were Electrical and Computer Engineering graduate students Reid Hyland, Joshua Rogers, and Zeyu Zhang, and Aerospace Engineering graduate students Charles Esty and Alex Walts. 

The papers that were presented in the semi-final round included “Comparative Study of Power Generation Methods for Mars Mission: Potential of Space Solar Power (SSP) System” submitted by Zhang and Co-author Walts, and “The Feasibility of Space Solar Power for Forward Operating Bases,” submitted by Walts and Co-author Esty. The semi-finals were held during the International Space Development Conference (ISDC 2017) on May 25-29 in St. Louis, Missouri. The paper that made it to the final round titled “Impact of Emerging PV Technologies on a Space Solar Power System” was submitted by Rogers, and was presented at the finals that were held during the International Astronautical Congress (IAC 2017) on September 25-29 in Adelaide, Australia. The students were provided with travel and registration support to both ISDC and IAC 2017, and were given formal certificates of recognition.

Dr. Paul Jaffe serves as a lecturer for the Aerospace Engineering Department at The University of Maryland (UMD), College Park. He is an Electronics Engineer and Principal Investigator at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory and has over 23 years of experience in spacecraft integration and electronics development for dozens of space missions, and has been the principal investigator of ground-breaking technology development efforts. Jaffe received a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from UMD in 1996 and a M.S. in Electrical Engineering at the Johns Hopkins University, graduating with honors.  He earned a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from UMD in 2013.

November 8, 2017


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