Dr. Peter Schubert

Dr. Peter Schubert is a Senior Systems Engineer at Delphi Delco Electronics in Kokomo Indiana. He has 12 US patents through Delco, and 4 more pending, ranging from integrated circuit manufacture and sensor design, to crash-sensing algorithms and hydrogen storage for fuel cells. Peter studied physics at Washington University in St. Louis, where he worked as a research assistant at the McDonnell Center for Space Sciences. He completed his Masters of Science in Electrical Engineering at the University of Cincinnati under a Fellowship grant from the Whirlpool Corporation. After working 2 years at Delco, which was a subsidiary of General Motors at that time, he was awarded a GM Fellowship to obtain his Ph.D. at Purdue University, where many of our nation’s astronauts studied engineering. His doctoral dissertation introduced a new form of silicon epitaxy for making radiation-hardened electronics. A transistor built on this epitaxy demonstrated such incredible performance that Purdue placed his thesis in a secret vault for 3 years while the patent went through. He has more than 25 technical publications to his name, and is lead author on a book chapter to be published by the Society of Automotive Engineers in early 2004. Dr. Schubert has focused on solar energy after discovering how far fusion technology still had to go. While researching the solar power satellite concepts in the published literature, he has discovered a means by which raw materials can be extracted from in-situ materials in space. After filing for patent in 1999, the Patent Office directed his invention to a special bureau for sensitive technology. The examiner granted nearly all claims earlier this year, and the patent is scheduled to issue in just a few months. He is currently pursuing funding from university and government sources to begin the long road to full deployment of his isotope separator concept. During the interview, we will be discussing these subjects, space-based manufacturing and more.

Broadcast 137 (Special Edition)

Dr. Peter Schubert discusses the use of solar powered satellites and lunar-based manufacturing facilities to beam solar power to Earth via microwaves. Dr. Schubert discusses the economics of this type of facility. He also describes his invention, the isotope separator, and why this is so important for solar powered satellites. In addition to this being a technical discussion, we also talk about the politics and social implications of being able to integrate space solar power with our terrestrial energy grid.

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