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Becomes First Team Ever to Win the NASA-Sponsored Competition
LaserMotive, an independent research and development company specializing in laser power beaming technology, has set new scientific records for laser power beaming and earned a prize of nearly $1 million at the 2009 Space Elevator Games, marking the first time any organization has won this NASA-sponsored competition since its origin in 2005.
Part of the NASA Centennial Challenges program, the Games are designed to foster technologies that can be used in the Space Elevator, but which are also applicable to nearer-term NASA programs. LaserMotive won the Power Beaming Competition, which focuses on wireless energy beaming technology that can power remote ground stations, aerial vehicles, satellites, planetary rovers, or even an Elevator to Space.
To win, LaserMotive demonstrated a complete power beaming system that was used to power a robotic climber to a height of 3,280 feet. It was the only entrant to develop its own laser system, which was built around infrared laser diode arrays supplied by DILAS Laser Diodes Inc.
Among the records LaserMotive set at this year's competition include:
* Greatest distance for laser power beaming: 1 km (3280 ft., 0.62 miles)
* Most power transferred to a receiver: over 1 kW
* Highest efficiency power beaming: over 10%, DC power to DC power
* Fastest climbing speed up a cable at this competition: 3.97 m/s (8.88 miles per hour)
"Now that we have dramatically demonstrated the capabilities of laser power beaming, we will be going on to new projects," said Dr. Jordin Kare, chief engineer for the project. "We look forward to working with NASA and DOD, as well as with our industrial partners, to develop laser power beaming systems for aerospace and military applications. We also hope to develop commercial products based on our technologies. We will be evaluating several possible markets over the next few months."
Headquartered in Kent, Wash., LaserMotive is a privately-held R&D company specializing in laser power beaming for commercial applications. The company was co-founded in 2006 by Dr. Jordin Kare, one of the foremost experts on laser propulsion, and Tom Nugent, former director of research for LiftPort Group – the Space Elevator Companies. Its industry partners include some of the leading companies in aerospace and lasers, including The Boeing Company, DILAS, Andrews Space, MS Kennedy, Glendale, 4D Optical, and In-Tec. For more information, including a technical overview on LaserMotive’s winning entry in the Games, please visit the company website at www.lasermotive.com.
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Belinda Young Public Relations
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