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"I went [to the top of] Vehicle Assembly Building and looked down, and tears burst from my eyes. The size of this cathedral where the Rockets take off to go to the moon is so amazing."
- Ray Bradbury

Solar Station Switch Room  
  A power station for the entire solar system.  

The switch-room was a vast metal chamber along whose wall were nine gigantic switchboards. They controlled the flow of power from the Solar Station to the nine different planets. Engineers of all races — Mercurians, Venusians, Earthmen, Jovians and others, kept watch over those great panels.

The polaroid windows in the opposite wall looked out upon a desolate scene. A barren, burning plain of blackened rock stretched beneath the stupendous glare of a blazing sun. The temperature out there was far above the terrestrial boiling point — for this was the famed Hot Side of Mercury, the hottest place in the Solar System.

Out there in the sun glare towered hundreds of huge, gleaming cylinders. They were monster photo-electric cells, colossal tubes lined with sodium, that drew torrents of electric power from the stupendous solar radiation that beat on this world. Heavy cables brought the power from the cells to this domed, air-tight central building, whence it was transmitted by high-frequency radio-beam to the other eight planets.

Stanton could hear voices from audio-phone-speakers all along the row of switch- boards, speaking from far-off worlds to the engineers and switch-men here at the Solar Station.

“Increase to ninety million kilos on the Pluto beam,” called the husky voice of a man on distant Pluto from a speaker.

Dial-needles jumped, and the great radio-electric generators in the lower levels of the Station building throbbed louder.

“Cut load on Neptune beam to one hundred and twenty million kilos,” another, shriller voice was calling from an audio-phone.

Power from the sun, changed into electrical energy by the monster photoelectric cells out there, and sent out along high-frequency radio beams to the other eight worlds as they needed it! This Solar Station was the heart of the whole System’s power supply.

From Doom Over Venus, by Edmond Hamilton.
Published by Thrilling Wonder Stories in 1940
Additional resources -

Compare to the near-space solar energy collector from Star Maker (1937) by Olaf Stapledon, the solar energy beam from Masquerade (1941) by Clifford Simak, the solar station from Isaac Asmov's 1941 story Reason and the solar beam from The Long Way (1944) by George O. Smith.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Doom Over Venus
  More Ideas and Technology by Edmond Hamilton
  Tech news articles related to Doom Over Venus
  Tech news articles related to works by Edmond Hamilton

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