Could water (steam) be used as an effective power source for a manned spaceship headed to Mars?
The basic idea is simple... Heat the water on the sunny side of the spacecraft, allow the steam to turn a turbine to produce power (to run computers/electrical equipment). Cool the water on the dark side of the spacecraft and rinse/repeat.
Most spaceship designs/proposals utilize a form of solar power. Is there a reason steam power gets overlooked? (Is it feasible? Is the weight/complexity greater then a solar panel system?)
Given the importance of water, there likely is already enough water on the spacecraft to run a steam powered generator. The water is just sitting there, inert... It seems more effective to use the water as a renewable power resource too. Is there something obvious that I am overlooking?
The ISS, while in the sun, can receive temperatures of 250F+ -- enough to boil water.ISS temperature differences
Water can be used as a form of radiation shielding. (AKA: Assume the ship already has water on all sides of the ship) Water-Powered Spaceship