GT MPT Symposium Dec 2011

The Microwave Power Transfer Symposium concept came this past summer when Darel Preble and I were brainstorming ways to generate some interest in space solar power. Actually, I was initially interested in learning more about this topic, since most of my activity in microwave power transfer has come from very low powered field of sensors and RFID. After inheriting the senior-level Antenna Engineering in Fall 2011, which was coincident with the graduate Fall Satellite Communication & Navigation Systems class, we decided to do a mini-symposium on Microwave Power Transfer.

With a standing-room audience of over 60 very attentive attendees, Dr. Little delivered an excellent culminating talk on Microwave power transfer. His slides for "Opportunities and Challenges in Wireless Power Transmission" as well as the design project posters from both classes are included in the MPT Proceedings at Propagation Lab.
The  seven graduate student teams in ECE6390, Satellite design, were given a detailed class project description to design a Space Solar Power System using microwave power to beam GigaWatts back to electric power utility rectennas on Earth.  Darel Preble invited Dr. Frank Little from Texas A&M's Space Engineering Research Center, who gave a truly excellent one hour keynote on Space Solar Power.    Everyone had a good time over pizza reviewing and admiring all the projects in both project tracks.
The seniors in Antenna Engineering,  ECE4370 , would work on 5.8 GHz energy-harvesting antennas and charge pumps that would be used in a fun competition for the longest distance for receiving transmitted energy to light a diode from a 1 watt transmitter.  The results of their excellent project shootout were: Group 1 won out with a range of 4 feet, narrowly beating out Group 3's range of 3.5 feet. It should be noted that the combination of Group 1's charge pump with Group 3's antenna resulted in an extremely impressive range of 9 feet!

Special thanks to Darel Preble for his determination and willingness to promote the symposium, to Blake Marshall and Marcin Morys for running the rectenna competition, to Dr. Frank Little and to all the participants. Well done, everyone!

Keep Shooting for those Stars!
Prof. Gregory D. Durgin
Georgia Tech School of Electrical and Computer Engineering

General Chair: Darel Preble, Space Solar Power Institute
Executive Chair: Gregory D. Durgin, Georgia Tech Propagation Group
Keynote Speaker: Dr. Frank Little, Texas A&M, Space Engineering Research Center,
Competition Co-chairs: Blake Marshall and Marcin Morys, Georgia Tech
Special Thanks to Chris Valenta, ECE 6390 class, ECE 4370 class, Prof. Narayanan Komerath