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 Hope for solar power after all?
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the_ignored
SFN Addict

2558 Posts

Posted - 10/21/2008 :  08:16:33  Show Profile Send the_ignored a Private Message  Reply with Quote
From Myers' site:

This is promising news, and also illustrates why we need to fund basic research -- these are the kinds of discoveries that can't be simply planned and forced into existence, but require the liberty of the research enterprise to explore new ideas freely.

Don't get too excited just yet, though. The research has uncovered useful properties of a combination of molecules that have only been tested in minute quantities. It remains to be seen if it can be scaled up efficiently, if it can be made cost-effective, and whether it can be simply made to work at a practical level. It's still an exciting idea -- they're talking about nearly 100% efficiency.


We can only hope...Myers has the links for further reading on his site. It'd be nice to be able to start weaning ourselves off of oil to some extent, though even if this did pan out to its full potential, there'd still be the problem of oil products being used for clothes, plastics, etc.

>From: enuffenuff@fastmail.fm
(excerpt follows):
> I'm looking to teach these two bastards a lesson they'll never forget.
> Personal visit by mates of mine. No violence, just a wee little chat.
>
> **** has also committed more crimes than you can count with his
> incitement of hatred against a religion. That law came in about 2007
> much to ****'s ignorance. That is fact and his writing will become well
> know as well as him becoming a publicly known icon of hatred.
>
> Good luck with that fuckwit. And Reynold, fucking run, and don't stop.
> Disappear would be best as it was you who dared to attack me on my
> illness knowing nothing of the cause. You disgust me and you are top of
> the list boy. Again, no violence. Just regular reminders of who's there
> and visits to see you are behaving. Nothing scary in reality. But I'd
> still disappear if I was you.

What brought that on? this. Original posting here.

Another example of this guy's lunacy here.

Edited by - the_ignored on 10/21/2008 08:17:58

astropin
SFN Regular

USA
970 Posts

Posted - 10/21/2008 :  08:44:50   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send astropin a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Nice. I think solar power is a viable alternative even at current efficiencies. Approaching 100% would outstanding!

I would rather face a cold reality than delude myself with comforting fantasies.

You are free to believe what you want to believe and I am free to ridicule you for it.

Atheism:
The result of an unbiased and rational search for the truth.

Infinitus est numerus stultorum
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Robb
SFN Regular

USA
1223 Posts

Posted - 10/24/2008 :  20:35:40   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Robb a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I may be missing something but even if the efficiency is 100%, doesn't the sun provide on average 10 watts per sqft? The average household use is around 30 kwh per day and more in the summer? Peak power consumption may be around 3 kW or more. If so, I would need about 300 sqft of solar panels on an average day to supply my home at peak time. Installed cost is around $7/watt. So a 3 kW system would cost me $21,000. If my average monthly bill is $150, it would take me 140 months or almost 12 years for it to pay back. This does not include and maintenance cost that will be needed. Why would I do this? I think there is other reseach that may provide better results, such as biodiesel and fuel cell technology. Or nuclear power which has been ssafe and reliable for years.

Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master. - George Washington
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Ricky
SFN Die Hard

USA
4907 Posts

Posted - 10/24/2008 :  22:11:08   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Ricky an AOL message Send Ricky a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Wikipedia states:

The solar constant is equal to approximately 1370 watts per square meter at a distance of one AU from the Sun (that is, on or near Earth). Sunlight on the surface of Earth is attenuated by the Earth's atmosphere so that less power arrives at the surface—closer to 1,000 watts per directly exposed square meter in clear conditions when the Sun is near the zenith.


1 square meter is about 10.7639 square feet, so that would be 92.90313 watts per square foot, but you were pretty close...

However, to suggest that solar power should be the sole source of energy is just about as ludicrous as not being excited (even if still pessimistic) over this news.

Edit: The 10 watts per square foot you quoted is what you can currently expect to get out of current generation solar technology, though I have yet to find out exactly what type this is.

Why continue? Because we must. Because we have the call. Because it is nobler to fight for rationality without winning than to give up in the face of continued defeats. Because whatever true progress humanity makes is through the rationality of the occasional individual and because any one individual we may win for the cause may do more for humanity than a hundred thousand who hug their superstitions to their breast.
- Isaac Asimov
Edited by - Ricky on 10/24/2008 22:21:08
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26013 Posts

Posted - 10/24/2008 :  22:20:06   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Robb, I think the numbers you've got are current solar efficiencies, and not total solar power. Here in Northern Virginia, insolation is about 4.5 kWh/m2/day, or 418 Wh/ft2/day, or maybe 35 w/ft2. If my math is correct, and the rest of yours is correct, then a 100% efficient system here in my area would pay for itself in about 3.3 years (assuming the cost is the same).

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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Robb
SFN Regular

USA
1223 Posts

Posted - 10/24/2008 :  23:44:50   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Robb a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Dave W.

Robb, I think the numbers you've got are current solar efficiencies, and not total solar power. Here in Northern Virginia, insolation is about 4.5 kWh/m2/day, or 418 Wh/ft2/day, or maybe 35 w/ft2. If my math is correct, and the rest of yours is correct, then a 100% efficient system here in my area would pay for itself in about 3.3 years (assuming the cost is the same).
Yes, your correct. My 10 w/sqft is with current technology. Thanks for the correction.

Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master. - George Washington
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