How does a satellite get energy in space?





Question:

Answer: As you can imagine there are no refueling stations for satellites in space so they need to be able to run indefinitely on their own. The most common way this is done is using solar panels. Solar panels are a great source of energy in space because the lack of atmosphere means they operate at even higher levels of efficiency than on Earth. However, this isn’t the only source of energy used. Some satellites which have low power requirements are built with fuel cells or batteries that contain enough charge for the satellite to carry out whatever its goal is. Nuclear power is also used occasionally although this occurred more regularly at the start of the space age than it happens now. Once a satellite is put into orbit it requires very little energy to maintain that orbit. Some satellites that have to change their orbits (such as spy satellites) are equipped with rocket fuel and thrusters allowing them to make large changes in their orbits. These satellites will still have solar panels or other sources of energy for their electrical components.

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