Home › Forums › SUSTAINABLE CONSTRUCTION, ENERGY and WATER CONSERVATION › Sustainable Energy & Energy Conservation › Impossible or possible?
February 22, 2010 at 5:03 am #251495
This picture is doing the rounds of various websites. If it’s factual, you’d wonder why we just don’t get on with it and do it.February 22, 2010 at 5:04 am #454481
Ave a goMember
What picture?????February 22, 2010 at 5:08 am #454482
Here it is Matt. Have had to downsize it so much that it’s difficult to read. Sorry.February 22, 2010 at 5:26 am #454483February 22, 2010 at 5:34 am #454484
Ave a goMember
hmmm, never seen that one before…..
Any ideas on the source??????
Seems like one of those things that look too good to be true….February 22, 2010 at 6:21 am #454485
It is my understanding that a problem with solar panels on roofs feeding the grid and larger systems is that electricity is not stored so that if there is rain or night time then there is little or no power production. It takes a long time to power up a coal fired station or hydro so the electriciy companies are running the power stations any way. The solar systems may ease the load on the power stations during the day but basically the stations are ready to run at full capacity at any time. The grid connect systems at the moment are good for the householders pocket but not really any different for the environment.
To have solar alone would be good but I dont think there are enough consumers that really care how they get power as long as its there all the time!
MaxFebruary 22, 2010 at 8:23 am #454486
bloody big batteries or dark nightsFebruary 22, 2010 at 9:00 am #454487
or go to bed early :lol::lol:February 22, 2010 at 9:56 am #454488
Another problem is that electricity is lost the further it travels along a wire, so whilst the Sahara or the Australian desert is an ideal place to harness a whole lot of solar energy, distributing it is a lot harder. Solar energy is only effective locally, but then usually those local areas produce less sunlight to capture.
Still if this leads one more person to use solar energy over less sustainable sources all the better 😀February 22, 2010 at 12:14 pm #454489
hmmm food for thought.
and yes locally we can do much more to help enviromental issuesFebruary 22, 2010 at 7:02 pm #454490
Distance & storage are the big factors. But solar collection doesn’t need to happen in remote areas. Every building has a roof & right now we’re using a miniscule fraction of the rooves that could be harvesting energy.
And there is a lot of exciting research happening in storage. Batteries are still big, but so were mobile phones once. Here’s how not-so-big they can be already. http://www.redflow.com.au/February 22, 2010 at 7:54 pm #454491
Now those are very cool things, Kippen.February 23, 2010 at 1:25 am #454492
Oh yeah!February 23, 2010 at 2:27 am #454493
The new technology does sound interesting and i hope it continues in development. I have stand alone solar so the better that electricity storage can be made is good for me.
They show a Lead acid battery unit in 3 sizes, my battery set is twice as big as their biggest unit, my batteries cost 7k 4 years ago so I would estimate the unit they have in the enclosure all wired up etc would cost 20k or more. Our house runs on about 3kwh a day, so it will only power a very efficient house.
The new Zinc bromine ststem has a 10kwh a day capacity so it will power a very energy efficient house, it has 5kva continuous output so no welder or big loads. They use figures that the zinc bromide is chaper in the long run than lead acid batteries, this is probably with a huge cost of labour factored in for maintaining the lead acid batteries.
I dont know what the ZincBromide system would cost but it will be a lot more than lead acid so well in excess of 20k to keep one energy efficent house in power.
So please dont think me negative, this sort of stuff is very important to me as I use batteries for electricity storage now, but there is a long way to go before storage of electricity will be cost effective. The only reason I have stand alone and not mains was the cost at the time of putting mains to our property vs time to get it done and the quickness and a bit of naivety on my part.
MaxFebruary 23, 2010 at 5:27 am #454494
I can’t help thinking tat the solar panels of the future will be tiny, maybe portable so we can carry them around with us – like we now do with a laptop and mobile phone. It was only in the 1970’s that business computers filled entire rooms – compare them to an ipod!
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