As a rule, solar panels are rigid structures made up of many photovoltaic modules. The American space agency NASA last Sunday conducted the first in its kind of experiment in Earth's orbit: using the manipulator Canadarm-2 on the International Space Station was deployed experimental flexible solar panel model ROSA.
The ROSA panel looks like a giant scroll, and weighs a scroll of 325 kilograms. But even with such an impressive weight, the flexible panel is 20% lighter than traditional rigid solar panels. The deployment of the photovoltaic panel is carried out due to the fact that the two guides, twisted on the Earth, when heated by sunlight take the original form and unfold the canvas. The mechanism does not use any additional drives or motors.
Below you can see the video of the experiment. To save you time, NASA specialists accelerated the deployment process three-fold. The new photovoltaic panel will work on the ISS for a week so that scientists can evaluate its effectiveness and endurance to extremely unfriendly space conditions.