Lots of companies will make big money on solar power. Good luck to them, they have to take huge punts on what technology will win out and not all will succeed. That's the free market for you. That it needs to happen is surely beyond dispute.
Told you I was right ,the wigged one.
(90 posts) (29 voices)
I'm not sure the global warming debate needs to happen:
- We need an alternative to petrol as it's running out / to use less of it as it's getting so expensive;
- We need an alternative to gas/oil/coal energy as they're running out / to use less as they're getting so expensive;
- We need an alternative to landfill as the land's nearly filled;
The motive behind making changes isn't important if the result is the same.
So the world can stop arguing.
Plus there's energy security.
Relying on gas and oil allows the Russkis and the Arabs to screw with us.
And if power generation is decentralised rather than focussed in large nuclear and fossil fuel burninig power stations, it's much harder for the terrorists to take out. (you know, multi-nodal, like the internet).
If you state the case for renewable energy in these more macho terms, and spend less time trying to make the case for polar bears, you might be able to give a whole new constituency a massive hard-on for this stuff.
If you put the space after the comma, I wouldn't get so hot under the collar; maybe that would help.
Thanks for bringing this back Umpire..
Yes, global catastrophe I can take or leave, but poor punctuation does my head in.
As I've said elsewhere, that punctuation is far more disturbing than all the clap trap.
In other words, never mind the bollocks, get the punctuation right. I know it may smack of snobbery and elitism, but if the spaces and commas are in the wrong place, it devalues your 'argument.'
So the question now Arrghhmelody is, where do you stand on apostrophes?
I think many people mentioned that they should follow scientists for these important decisions and ignore common sense.In July last year the USDA recommended that good old Hormone laden product MILK and milk products.I believe ,the USDA has scientists working for them .If scientists can openly encourage kids to drink American milk,I am sure that if the world is getting warm or not scientists will twist the truth especially if cannot be proved.If you really believe the Pro warming scientists you are very naive if you think they will not lie.
Now he's yamashow. Hopefully, like Dr Who, there will only be 12 incarnations.
Imported Solar Panels bought in bulk from China/India cost around $1.25c per watt
plus bulk shipping costs.
this makes it around £1 per watt generating power.
a 2 kw installation would have £2k panels
plus a decent Inverter for about £1700
allow about £1300 for installation, (including 5 weeks paid holiday a year, plus days off to watch Royal weddings etc)
total cost about £5k
This allows the companies to trouser about £5k
Not bad, I bet they can see the face of Jesus in every panel.
Watch out though, new Nano technologies could bring panels with efficiencies far higher than the current ones (about 24% best). by capturing a far greater frequency range of the energy from sunlight.
One could even imagine that the self opinionated might one day be able to purchase a pair of solar powered pants which could fulfill their energy needs using the Sun which shines out of their own backside.
I've got an idea.
Steam engines used gas to force the pistons to move. To get that gas, you had to burn coal to heat up water.
Why not produce the gas without burning fossil fuels.
Get some carbonated water, and drop some sugar in it. Hey presto, masses of gas. And the pressure of a fixed mass of gas.... er,
Arrgharry we can seeeeee you.
Damn. Exposed again
Well Stoop your name is a bit of a give-away...
Rowly thanks for the info on the panels,what is taking so long with the nano?
@rowly. If it's the multijunction indium gallium arsenide/phosphate etc( compound semiconductor) ones you're on about they can get over 40% efficiency in the lab on very small areas, but the materials and manufacturing techniques are still really expensive so the default is still silicon, with cadmium telluride panels in second place. Only 15 ~ 17% energy conversion (170W per m^2) for silicon, and about 11% for CdTe, but much much cheaper to make.
GaAs/InGaP has been used on space craft where power per weight is the issue rather than cost. For terrestrial applications, you can concentrate (lenses or mirrors) sunlight onto small chips of the stuff so you can get more solar energy onto less of this super expensive material, but then you need direct (not diffuse) sunlight, and you need a tracking system to make sure the sun's light stays focussed on the chip of photovoltaic material as the sun moves across the sky. The lenses and tracking system add cost etc etc. And you need 300+ days of clear skies because you can't focus light on a cloudy day.
You could have huge CPV systems in the sahara and then a big fat cable to Europe. But even then silicon or cadmium telluride might still be cheaper.
@ Yam & Golgo
The development I was referring to was Nano "antennas" which vibrate at the frequency of the light absorbed & produce a high frequency electric current.
Standard PV cells use the energy of a photon to knock an electron off the semiconductor.
so the new "antennas" method is potentially much more efficient.
The length of the Nanotube(s) can be made to suit the wavelength of the light to be harvested, including infra red, which will help to minimise problems with scattering.
these could even work in the dark!!
one of the big problems at the moment is being able to make nano rectifiers which can operate efficiently at the very high (light) frequencies.
This again comes down to silicon technology.things can be done in the Lab, but getting them into production at a viable cost needs much more work.
@ Rowly - Thanks, interesting article. Are you the author?
I'd never heard of these. Certainly sounds like they've got some hurdles to overcome, though. Do you know if any companies are involved in/investing in the development, or is it just academia at the moment...?
There are a few other potentially disruptive technologies coming from the opposite direction promising ultra-low production cost, acceptable efficiency, (who needs high efficiency if you can churn out material at 10c/Wp, right?)
Now he's Rowly. 5 down, 7 to go...
There is another technology emerging - using solar energy to reduce boron oxide to boron. Boron reacts with water to release copious hydrogen which can be used in internal combustion. This technology is already at the demonstration stage - essentially solar furnace technology is at the heart of the system, and the car would carry boron and water.
wish I was the author, i would be paid more than I get.
Totally agree about the low cost, low output developments emerging.
my guess is that many technologies will become viable within a few years.
proves my point. I really have to read a lot to try to keep up with what is being developed, I had not studied this one!
Big investors are bankrolling the best ideas coming out of the universities.
UK leads the way in many areas.
micro generation, in a variety of forms, will be good. As G said, like the internet, it will be too diverse for any company/oil producer to hold us to ransome.
I take some small comfort from being myself & use my own name (which is rare on this site)
Anyway I am too vain to be multiple personality.
Don't believe that marketing crap about German Energy storing windows.
You could store more energy in a pair of swinging testicles, during a Jog or a Jiggy Jig than a German window.
What they really mean is something else.
If anyone is interested, I could explain
I agree with Golgo that piece was quite interesting ,I am interested.I wonder if a pair of testicles can be seen through those German windows ? maybe that is their selling point!
gerade ein Gedanke
You've got a point, Garry, with Johnny Ball on your side, whinging about his lost career, and 100's of thousands of true professional scientists on the other side, you may be onto a winner.
Maybe, just maybe, JB should be spending some of his enormous intellect on understanding why a very small minority of folk just cannot get to grips with the problem. It's not an intelligence issue, it's an emotional issue - the problem is so enormous and out of our experience that it's easier to go for the comfortable option that human-caused Climate Change doesn't exist.
Now that politicians are starting to understand the enormity of the problem, the remaining sceptics are irrelevant.
PS, for other readers, I suspect industrial nanotechnology is 10-20 years away, and therefore not a pragmatic solution. It has to be today's technology that cures this blight we've created - and that has to be nuclear or massive arrays of solar cells; wind, wave and tide just aren't enough for future energy demands.
There are thousands of Scientists on Johnny (he's on the) Ball side too .
maybe people should stop trying to brainwash people.
This video is straight out of a right wing dictatorships library.
Sorry to re-open this sore but...
Having read the 1st 2/3 I am moved to mention the following:
1. Climate change is natural and normal but human activity would appear to be affecting the rate of climate change.
2. If you make a reasoned hypothesis based on empirical evidence or previously proven knowledge then that theory stands until disproven; That's what a theory is. This is how science works. Anyone taking this logical and sensible route is a "scientist". If you have no knowledge but choose to come up with a theory based on what you heard in a pub you are a fool. If you insist people listen and act upon this theory then you are a dangerous fool.
3. There is no for or against climate change. There is neccesary research into the extent to which we may be affecting it and what we can do to avoid affecting it detrimentally.
4. There are innevitably political reasons for whipping up hysteria such as raising fuel prices and surpressing industrialisation of developing countries.
Having said all that: A girl walks into a cocktail bar and asks for a Double Entendre, so the bar man gives her one.
Rowly Golgo,do you know how the water in a roof top solar heater works ?
After the water is heated from the sun does it pass into the holding tank waiting to be used or is there some kind of heat transference that heats the water in the tank before it is used ,cheers.
I have an idea for a very simple solar water heater .
I find this whole debate fascinating because I'm a climate change sceptic but I like green technology because it's a sort of insurance policy.
But can everyone put a gag at the end of each post, to keep my interest up?
Remember, this is Digital Publishing, and we must write 'engaging content'.
If Charles Dickens was alive today, he'd be writing engaging content, designed to please the algorithm writers of Google's search engines.
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