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Private industry made several attempts to address the need for additional in-space assembly and repair techniques. A big motivator for this was the energy crisis in the mid-1970s that led engineers to look at alternative energy sources. One such source was the concept of a Solar Power Satellite (SPS). Grumman and Boeing were among the companies that looked into the possibility of constructing a large SPS truss structure in space to serve as a platform for giant solar panels and microwave transmitters to beam power back to Earth. Grumman even designed a space fabrication demonstration system, named the Beam Builder (Ref. 3), for an automated assembly of the truss structure in space. The Beam Builder used resistance spot welding to join thin aluminum struts.