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Signs o' the Apocalypse in the news... - oldviolin - Dec 15, 2017 - 10:18am
 
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And the good news is.... - miamizsun - Dec 13, 2017 - 10:17am
 
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Happy holidays, everyone! - KurtfromLaQuinta - Dec 12, 2017 - 12:52pm
 
how do you feel right now? - kurtster - Dec 12, 2017 - 12:22pm
 
Geomorphology - miamizsun - Dec 12, 2017 - 12:12pm
 
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Religion + Politics - miamizsun - Dec 12, 2017 - 4:16am
 
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black321
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Posted: Dec 6, 2017 - 2:27pm

Google Says It Will Run Entirely on Renewable Energy in 2017

MINCO, Okla. — Last year, Google consumed as much energy as the city of San Francisco. Next year, it said, all of that energy will come from wind farms and solar panels.

The online giant said on Tuesday that all of its data centers around the world will be entirely powered with renewable energy sources sometime next year.

well sort of...read on:

https://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/06/technology/google-says-it-will-run-entirely-on-renewable-energy-in-2017.html


aflanigan
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Posted: Nov 30, 2017 - 8:08am

I've tended to side with L8 on the skeptical side of alternative energy boosterism; much of the insistence that non-hydrocarbon-based energy represented a viable alternative to coal, oil, and natural gas power generation to satisfy the huge demand in the US and other economic powerhouse nations seemed overly optimistic. I'm beginning to rethink my skepticism.
Electricity Prices Plummet as Gas, Wind Gain Traction and Demand Stalls


haresfur
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Posted: Oct 17, 2017 - 2:50pm

This is cool. I talked with the person who has been running the project managing the rising water levels in the mines and he said it might work with some modifications.

Bendigo pumped hydro takes step forward

The Bendigo goldfields had the largest concentration of deep shafts in the world, reaching over 1400 metres at its deepest point.

It’s a unique underground environment where seven separate mine workings remain to this day, steadily accumulating groundwater.

Potentially, these conditions are ideal to provide Bendigo’s own pumped hydro scheme.

The plan is believed to be the first of its kind in the world – certainly the first to be totally underground using man-made mines.

In daylight hours, excess solar and other renewable energy would be used to pump water from one reef system held at a low water level to an adjacent reef at a higher water level where it would be held in storage.

When a peak electricity demand comes, or overnight when the sun is not shining on solar panels, the water would run back down to the lower level, turning a turbine and generating electricity.



The pumped hydro plan involves using excess renewable energy to pump water to higher levels, before releasing it back down, turning a turbine.

 The pumped hydro plan involves using excess renewable energy to pump water to higher levels, before releasing it back down, turning a turbine.

“If found viable, the BSG would love to see the community be able to own the Bendigo mines pumped hydro project.

“Bendigo is the ideal mid-sized regional Australian city to be the test case and to lead down, with strong government support, a path to a large-scale community-owned renewable energy future.”

Community-owned wind projects already exist in regional Victoria, including the Hepburn wind farm and the Coonooer Bridge wind farm near Charlton.

In Bendigo, a combination of household solar PV, commercial-scale solar, wind power, and waste-to-energy and biomass could be scaled up to help the city – and possibly the region – approach 100 per cent renewable.

Pumped hydro and batteries could then provide the energy storage to meet peak demand periods and times when the renewables are generating little or no energy.

Mr Corr said their goal was for Bendigo to become a net exporter of renewable energy.

At this stage, the pumped hydro groundwater plan has the backing of the state government.

Energy minister Lily D’Ambrosio described it as an “intriguing” idea that could deliver “tremendous benefits” to Bendigo.

“We’re backing this study because solar pumped hydro has the potential to store and generate significant levels of energy capacity,” she said.

“Studies like this one help position Victoria as a world leader in renewable energy technology.”

 

Proclivities
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Posted: Oct 17, 2017 - 11:26am

 ScottFromWyoming wrote:

I just don't want to be inconvenienced by the Ball of Fiery Death. 

 
It won't be inconvenient; it'll be terrific - I'm telling ya'.  The best...Ball of Fiery Death...ever - way better than Obama's - which was the worst, most embarrassing BoFD in the history of our nation...SAD!  With this BoFD, you'll be incinerated so conveniently that you'll wish you could do it again.  #MABoFDA!
ScottFromWyoming
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Posted: Oct 17, 2017 - 11:21am

 maryte wrote:


Coward.

 
I just don't want to be inconvenienced by the Ball of Fiery Death. 
maryte
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Posted: Oct 17, 2017 - 11:09am

 ScottFromWyoming wrote:

I'm against it.

 

Coward.
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Posted: Oct 17, 2017 - 10:59am

 Lazy8 wrote:
 ScottFromWyoming wrote:
Also, batteries are nasty. 

There's the whole dying in a fiery cataclysm thing...

 
I'm against it.
cc_rider
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Posted: Oct 17, 2017 - 10:33am

 haresfur wrote:

There are cleaner and more efficient solar power systems like Stirling engines that could be made by re-tooling an auto assembly line. They have their own issues - you need to have a dish that tracks the sun but on the other hand they can run on natural gas when the sun isn't out.  Just one example:

Could this be the world's most efficient solar electricity system?

 
Years ago my uncle, an actual Rocket Scientist, proposed using solar energy to heat liquid to generate steam, to drive turbines. He suggested liquid sodium in a closed-loop system. I'm sure he's not the only one to come up with the concept. One advantage is the ability to use conventional fuels when necessary.
Lazy8
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Posted: Oct 17, 2017 - 10:14am

 ScottFromWyoming wrote:
Also, batteries are nasty. 

There's the whole dying in a fiery cataclysm thing...
ScottFromWyoming
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Posted: Oct 17, 2017 - 9:49am

 Lazy8 wrote:
Tesla has a vested interest in selling battery systems, and for remote locations (where the cost of extending the grid might never be recovered) they make a lot of sense, but as a global solution (especially in an urban setting) they aren't a good fit.
 
Also, batteries are nasty. 
Lazy8
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Posted: Oct 17, 2017 - 9:10am

 miamizsun wrote:
the problem with solar panels?

they don't do well in storms

Why Solar Microgrids May Fall Short in Replacing the Caribbean's Devastated Power Systems

Hurricane Maria scrambled Puerto Rico's Humacao solar power plant

Hurricane Maria scrambled Puerto Rico's Humacao solar power plant

After the destruction inflicted across the Caribbean by hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, renewable energy advocates are calling for a rethink of the region's devastated power systems. Rather than simply rebuilding grids that delivered mostly diesel generation via damage-prone overhead power lines, renewables advocates argue that the island grids should leapfrog into the future by interconnecting hundreds or thousands of self-sufficient solar microgrids. 

“Puerto Rico will lead the way for the new generation of clean energy infrastructure. The world will follow,” asserted John Berger, CEO for Houston-based solar developer Sunnova Energy in a tweet before meeting in San Juan with Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rosselló this week. Rosselló appears to be on board, inviting Elon Musk via tweet to use Puerto Rico as a “flagship project” to "show the world the power and scalability” of Tesla’s technologies, which include photovoltaic (PV) rooftops and Powerwall battery systems.

 

Centralized systems like the one shown in tatters above don't do well in storms but rooftop-based systems can be hardened effectively. Those systems are going to be way out of reach for most of the island's residents, however. The battery storage systems (which aren't so much microgrid as gridless) are even more costly, and still unproven. Puerto Rico (and the rest of us) are going to have to rely on some kind of grid structure for the foreseeable future.

This isn't a bad thing. It enables better efficiency than battery systems; if you're not using as much power as you're generating and the batteries are full what you generate goes to waste and grid storage captures that otherwise-lost energy, offsetting less environmentally benign generation sources. It also provides revenue to help offset the cost of the installation.

Tesla has a vested interest in selling battery systems, and for remote locations (where the cost of extending the grid might never be recovered) they make a lot of sense, but as a global solution (especially in an urban setting) they aren't a good fit.
miamizsun

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Posted: Oct 17, 2017 - 8:29am

the problem with solar panels?

they don't do well in storms

Why Solar Microgrids May Fall Short in Replacing the Caribbean's Devastated Power Systems

Hurricane Maria scrambled Puerto Rico's Humacao solar power plant

Hurricane Maria scrambled Puerto Rico's Humacao solar power plant

After the destruction inflicted across the Caribbean by hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, renewable energy advocates are calling for a rethink of the region's devastated power systems. Rather than simply rebuilding grids that delivered mostly diesel generation via damage-prone overhead power lines, renewables advocates argue that the island grids should leapfrog into the future by interconnecting hundreds or thousands of self-sufficient solar microgrids. 

“Puerto Rico will lead the way for the new generation of clean energy infrastructure. The world will follow,” asserted John Berger, CEO for Houston-based solar developer Sunnova Energy in a tweet before meeting in San Juan with Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rosselló this week. Rosselló appears to be on board, inviting Elon Musk via tweet to use Puerto Rico as a “flagship project” to "show the world the power and scalability” of Tesla’s technologies, which include photovoltaic (PV) rooftops and Powerwall battery systems.

 



miamizsun

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Posted: Jul 28, 2017 - 3:27pm

for obvious reasons i'm not a fan of the wind

however the price of solar is dropping 




miamizsun

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Posted: Jul 28, 2017 - 3:08pm

 aflanigan wrote:

Next you'll be trying to convince us that there IS NO Easter Bunny.

 
maybe he doesn't like popcorn
aflanigan
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Posted: Jul 28, 2017 - 2:47pm

 Lazy8 wrote:
Remember the Solar Freakin' Roadway that was such a brilliant idea it was going to revolutionize everything and everybody shared it on Facebook and it raised a gajillion dollars in an Indiegogo campaign and all the skeptics said it was stupid and ha ha we're building it anyway because the future?

Yeah, turns out to be stupid.

They spent $60K (out of $4.3 million total so far, including a stack of federal and state grants) building a small (150 ft^2) walkway in Sandpoint, ID. You can see the power output by day here.

It has averaged .62 KW-h of energy per day since it went online in March. The best day it had (that I could find—it takes dome patience to scroll around) was in June, where it produced all of 1.21 KW-h.

It was hyped with the promise of lights embedded in the road to form dynamic traffic signals and heaters to melt ice and power to pump into the grid. It has produced enough to pop several bags of microwave popcorn a day.

There are no magic bullets.  A slick computer animation isn't the same the same as actual engineering. A popular idea isn't necessarily a workable one. Wanting something doesn't make it possible.

 
Next you'll be trying to convince us that there IS NO Easter Bunny.
Lazy8
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Posted: Jul 28, 2017 - 11:09am

Remember the Solar Freakin' Roadway that was such a brilliant idea it was going to revolutionize everything and everybody shared it on Facebook and it raised a gajillion dollars in an Indiegogo campaign and all the skeptics said it was stupid and ha ha we're building it anyway because the future?

Yeah, turns out to be stupid.

They spent $60K (out of $4.3 million total so far, including a stack of federal and state grants) building a small (150 ft^2) walkway in Sandpoint, ID. You can see the power output by day here.

It has averaged .62 KW-h of energy per day since it went online in March. The best day it had (that I could find—it takes dome patience to scroll around) was in June, where it produced all of 1.21 KW-h.

It was hyped with the promise of lights embedded in the road to form dynamic traffic signals and heaters to melt ice and power to pump into the grid. It has produced enough to pop several bags of microwave popcorn a day.

There are no magic bullets.  A slick computer animation isn't the same the same as actual engineering. A popular idea isn't necessarily a workable one. Wanting something doesn't make it possible.
haresfur
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Posted: Dec 15, 2016 - 1:53pm

 Red_Dragon wrote: 
There are cleaner and more efficient solar power systems like Stirling engines that could be made by re-tooling an auto assembly line. They have their own issues - you need to have a dish that tracks the sun but on the other hand they can run on natural gas when the sun isn't out.  Just one example:

Could this be the world's most efficient solar electricity system?


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Posted: Dec 15, 2016 - 12:11pm

 miamizsun wrote:


one of the the big problems with solar is that the reactor is 93,000,000 miles away

if anything gets in the way you're in big trouble

just ask the dinosaurs or the peeps that experienced the year without summer

i prefer my nuclear setup close by

 
It does appear that sulphates from Tambora were responsible for global cooling in the year without a summer, much like after Pinatubo, but the jury is still out on how much these aerosols actually do reduce the solar influx, possibly just a few percentage points. And after a year or two they precipitate out of the stratosphere to the troposphere, where they get washed out by rain.

And while we are at it, super volcanos erupt more ash than sulphides. Ash doesn't rise as high as SO2 aerosols and falls back to earth quickly. There is very little correlation between super volcano eruptions and global cooling.

So I don't really know what could come between the sun and your solar panel. Maybe a black hole but then we would have other issues. 


miamizsun

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Posted: Dec 15, 2016 - 5:47am

 Red_Dragon wrote: 
solar is going to get more efficient and dirt cheap

exponential tech will probably change swanson's law/observation drastically

it will become very popular and politicians like it because folks think it's green

and tesla and solar city are making a beautiful solar home/car setup



one of the the big problems with solar is that the reactor is 93,000,000 miles away

if anything gets in the way you're in big trouble

just ask the dinosaurs or the peeps that experienced the year without summer

i prefer my nuclear setup close by


Red_Dragon

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Posted: Dec 15, 2016 - 5:04am

How clean is solar power?
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