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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-07 07:25am
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That solar power chart is given for two days at the end of may. I would be interested in daily solar power generation chart for entire year.



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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-07 02:42pm
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Kane Starkiller wrote:
That solar power chart is given for two days at the end of may. I would be interested in daily solar power generation chart for entire year.

I chose those (or rather found those quickly), just to show how stupid Irbis' comment about solar being unable to power anything except maybe a desk lamp was.

For what you want, this website is an excellent resource.

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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-08 12:56am
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D.Turtle wrote:
Kane Starkiller wrote:
That solar power chart is given for two days at the end of may. I would be interested in daily solar power generation chart for entire year.

I chose those (or rather found those quickly), just to show how stupid Irbis' comment about solar being unable to power anything except maybe a desk lamp was.

For what you want, this website is an excellent resource.

Did I miss something, or is their calculation of 30-40% capacity factor for photovolatics wildly optimistic? The data I'm looking at is admittedly out of date, but it's claiming a 2-year average in Arizona gives 19%. Cite.

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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-08 12:10pm
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Versac wrote:
Did I miss something, or is their calculation of 30-40% capacity factor for photovolatics wildly optimistic? The data I'm looking at is admittedly out of date, but it's claiming a 2-year average in Arizona gives 19%. Cite.

They use actual data from a large minority (roughly 13% or so) of actual PV plants/system installed in Germany, combined with the official data (monthly, I think) about total installed capacity. They then use some modeling in order to fill in holes in the data and extrapolate that to total production.

You can look at the data for each day, and see roughly how much was produced. So while today saw peak production of roughly 15GW (out of total installed capacity of roughly 29 GW), on February 23, there was peak production of only 3.5 GW (out of 25 GW) because of bad weather (February 22 saw peak production of 12.5 GW).

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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-08 01:39pm
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D.Turtle wrote:
Versac wrote:
Did I miss something, or is their calculation of 30-40% capacity factor for photovolatics wildly optimistic? The data I'm looking at is admittedly out of date, but it's claiming a 2-year average in Arizona gives 19%. Cite.

They use actual data from a large minority (roughly 13% or so) of actual PV plants/system installed in Germany, combined with the official data (monthly, I think) about total installed capacity. They then use some modeling in order to fill in holes in the data and extrapolate that to total production.


I'm sorry, but that's some seriously fucked up modeling they're using. Capacity factor is a very simple calculation, take the installed capacity in GW, multiply by 24, then multiply by 365 to arrive at the maximum theoretical energy production in GW-hours for the year. Then take the actual measured amount of energy generated during the year in GW-hours and divide that by the max theoretical GW-hours to arrive at the capacity factor. Or you can do it monthly or weekly by adjusting the number of days and measuring the actual energy generation for that time period.

Going by this table which seems to agree with everything I could track down in a 5 minute Google search, the capacity factor is in the 8%-9% range with the first half of 2012 being well above the average for whatever reason. And the numbers look reasonable given that Germany is a lot further north and less sunny than Arizona, it would make sense that their capacity factor is about half of what it is in the sunny desert.



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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-08 01:59pm
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aerius wrote:
I'm sorry, but that's some seriously fucked up modeling they're using. Capacity factor is a very simple calculation, take the installed capacity in GW, multiply by 24, then multiply by 365 to arrive at the maximum theoretical energy production in GW-hours for the year. Then take the actual measured amount of energy generated during the year in GW-hours and divide that by the max theoretical GW-hours to arrive at the capacity factor. Or you can do it monthly or weekly by adjusting the number of days and measuring the actual energy generation for that time period.

Going by this table which seems to agree with everything I could track down in a 5 minute Google search, the capacity factor is in the 8%-9% range with the first half of 2012 being well above the average for whatever reason. And the numbers look reasonable given that Germany is a lot further north and less sunny than Arizona, it would make sense that their capacity factor is about half of what it is in the sunny desert.

How about you not be a lazy ass talking about shit you obviously haven't taken a look at.

That website does not show the total capacity factor for some time frame or whatever. What it does is show PV production in Germany in 15 minute increments. In order to show that data, it colors zip code areas according to the modeled current production of peak output. Nowhere is a crude calculation of capacity factor included. Instead its quite a nice and intuitive overview of PV production in Germany.

All of which you could have seen if you had clicked the link instead of running off chasing something that your mind cooked up.

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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-08 04:38pm
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So in other words it's just calculating instantaneous power, and from that you're claiming that it can run an industrialized country. Nevermind the fact that it generates a low single digit percentage of Germany's yearly electrical needs despite an installed capacity equal to around 40% country's peak power consumption. Do you even understand the difference between power and energy and why this is important to electrical generation or did you fail high school physics?



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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-08 11:18pm
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D.Turtle wrote:
Versac wrote:
Did I miss something, or is their calculation of 30-40% capacity factor for photovolatics wildly optimistic? The data I'm looking at is admittedly out of date, but it's claiming a 2-year average in Arizona gives 19%. Cite.

They use actual data from a large minority (roughly 13% or so) of actual PV plants/system installed in Germany, combined with the official data (monthly, I think) about total installed capacity. They then use some modeling in order to fill in holes in the data and extrapolate that to total production.

You can look at the data for each day, and see roughly how much was produced. So while today saw peak production of roughly 15GW (out of total installed capacity of roughly 29 GW), on February 23, there was peak production of only 3.5 GW (out of 25 GW) because of bad weather (February 22 saw peak production of 12.5 GW).

Right, should have spotted that on my own; instantaneous rather than averaged. Still, it emphasizes the issues with using solar for a baseline source, even with hypothetical shifting of energy use towards the middle of the day. That's a huge amount of power you're driving into and out of storage on a daily basis. Sure, you could offset that somewhat using solar thermal that retains heat, but then one is ceding the decentralization advantage and that strikes me as one of solar's main advantages.

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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-09 01:40am
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aerius wrote:
So in other words it's just calculating instantaneous power, and from that you're claiming that it can run an industrialized country. Nevermind the fact that it generates a low single digit percentage of Germany's yearly electrical needs despite an installed capacity equal to around 40% country's peak power consumption. Do you even understand the difference between power and energy and why this is important to electrical generation or did you fail high school physics?

You are missing the point. I used that to address the ridiculous claim by Irbis that solar is incapable of powering something like a microwave - let alone a country. Instead, solar has already at one point provided 40% of the electrical needs of Germany. Obviously, there has to be a storage solution in order to use it for base power. Nobody has denied this. So fucking stop addressing made-up strawmen you conceive in that tiny mass of matter in your head others like to call a brain and fucking stay on point.

Versac wrote:
Right, should have spotted that on my own; instantaneous rather than averaged. Still, it emphasizes the issues with using solar for a baseline source, even with hypothetical shifting of energy use towards the middle of the day. That's a huge amount of power you're driving into and out of storage on a daily basis. Sure, you could offset that somewhat using solar thermal that retains heat, but then one is ceding the decentralization advantage and that strikes me as one of solar's main advantages.

Yes, it shows quite clearly the huge amount of variation on a daily basis in solar, and why a storage solution is needed. I quite like he concept of power-to-gas in order to address that, as that way you can use decentral power production, but central power storage. In addition, it doesn't really require any really new technology (unlike batteries) or large infrastructure (unlike hydro-storage). The first few prototype plants are going up already, even though this is a relatively new idea.

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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-09 04:15pm
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Singular Intellect wrote:
aerius wrote:
PS. To replace all global electrical generation with solar would require about 5.5 trillion m2 of solar panels. I leave it as an exercise for the reader to calculate how much material this would require.

Where are you getting your figures from?

World wide energy consumption for the entire year of 2008 was 474 exajoules (474×1018 J=132,000 TWh).

Divide by 365 days in a year and daily energy consumption is roughly 362 TWh daily.

Take your 5.5 trillion m2 and assume a pathetic 1kWh m2/day (real world average is 6 kWh m2/day, never mind we'd obviously setup solar harvesting in solar rich areas), and we have a yield of available energy of 5,500 TWh. Assume only 10% efficiency of solar collecters and you're down to 550 TWh per day, 188 TWh more than necessary. Using pathetic solar panel efficency and pitiful insolation figures.

If I were to use the more standard 15% efficiency of solar panels and the real world average insolation figure of 6 kWh m^2/day, your 5.5 trillion square meters would yield 4,950 TWh per day, almost fourteen times the total energy consumption of everything.

I ask you again, where the fuck are you getting your figures from? That, or show the flaw in mine.

Do you realize that even if his estimate was off by a factor of 100, that would still require 55 billion square meters of solar panels at today's worldwide consumption, right? You realize that is still an absolutely nutty amount of panels, right? Also, keep in mind that solar panels degrade and produce about 0.5% to 1% less power each year. And again keep in mind that the energy-repayment period for PV panels is still on the order of years.

Seriously, have any of the solar fanboys in any of these threads ever put forward a single credible reason why solar is preferable to nuclear power, despite being an order of magnitude more expensive? Because I haven't seen a single one.

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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-09 04:37pm
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Magis wrote:
Seriously, have any of the solar fanboys in any of these threads ever put forward a single credible reason why solar is preferable to nuclear power, despite being an order of magnitude more expensive? Because I haven't seen a single one.

A number of them have pointed out that solar power has a reduced risk of causing everyone for twenty miles downwind to experience new and interesting kinds of cancer when corners are cut on maintenance. Even I have to admit they have a point about that.



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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-09 07:16pm
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Magis wrote:
Seriously, have any of the solar fanboys in any of these threads ever put forward a single credible reason why solar is preferable to nuclear power, despite being an order of magnitude more expensive? Because I haven't seen a single one.

Then you haven't looked very hard.

One big ass reason: No matter what somebody might think is the best solution, if one wants to look at the real world, one has to factor in politics. And nuclear power has not been politically viable in a large part of the world for quite some time.

Of course there also non-political reasons for going towards solar and not nuclear, things like the cost of nuclear (and most other conventional) power plants going up, while the cost of solar has been constantly dropping and is continuing to drop and will continue to drop (because the costs are mostly technology/development- and not resource-based). Things like the fact that solar can be done through tons of small-scale investments, while nuclear requires huge investments (on a per-project basis). Things like solar power not requiring large amounts of highly trained specialists to keep running, while almost any idiot can run a solar plant on their property.

Of course, one huge problem with nuclear power is that a large amount of the costs are pushed back into the far future and then socialised. But hey, if a city or two needs to be abandoned, you sure can't ask the power companies who reaped huge profits off of those plants to pay for it...

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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-10 06:34am
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Broomstick wrote:
Electric cars are fine for short, local hops. For long trips - such as the 1,000 mile round trip I'm going to make starting tomorrow morning - they are are a stupid choice. No electric car carries enough energy to make that journey without a recharge, and recharge takes too fucking long, requiring the traveler to halt more often than with a gas-fueled car. What I can travel in one day in my gas car will take at least two in an electric, and the requirement of overnight lodging wipes out any personal savings I get from using electric even at today's gas prices.

Batteries don't store energy as efficiently as gasoline, and while "recharging" my car with gas takes less than 5 minutes recharging an electric car takes hours.

I foresee a market for electric cars for short and local travel, but for long trips in places lacking the train networks of Europe it will either be "rent a gas-powered vehicle" or "own a hybrid that runs on both electric and gas" to extend the travel range. We might switch from gasoline to biodiesel or something, but liquid fuel for vehicles is just too damned handy to abandon.

While I agree with the rest of you post, I have to jump in here and rebut this. You are only looking at current EVs. We are only in the early stages of EV development, most manufacturers don't even have a single model on the market, yet. It's been what, five years, since the first hybrids became viable for anyone but rich treehuggers? VW has just recently announced a car they plan to produce from 2013 on that is a hybrid and makes 235 mpg. IMHO this is the direction car development is heading to. Lighter and more efficient cars that run purely electric for these little urban hops but have the ability to make those rare huge trips powered by an internal combustion engine. There are even (rough) plans/ideas to put electromagnetic coils into roads to power cars through induction while they are driving. But even if your car is purely electric, that doesn't mean you are stuck with recharging for hours. The VW car I mentioned will be rechargable in halve an hour. There are also other ideas that don't depend on the charging speed of Lithium batteries. Flywheels are used in busses, the new Prosche GT3, and winning with Audi at LeMans. Another idea would be an exchangable battery pack. And once someone solves the hydrogen storage (and esp. refuelling) problem, we won't even have any of these problems anymore.



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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-10 08:46am
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Magis wrote:
Seriously, have any of the solar fanboys in any of these threads ever put forward a single credible reason why solar is preferable to nuclear power, despite being an order of magnitude more expensive? Because I haven't seen a single one.


I see lots of discussions on this matter and so many people appear to line up behind one technology and try to diss all the others. It simply isn't a matter of choosing the most effective technology, it's about choosing the best collection of different technologies to form an effective energy strategy.

Nuclear will not give all the answers. Nor will solar, wind, oil, gas, tide, bioenergy or human powering of dynamos. Saying we should concentrate all our efforts on Nuclear is as much folly as pretending we don't need it at all. There will be places in the world where solar power is more effective than nuclear. There will be advantages to using small scale solar systems in the home, for using windmills, for producing biogas from agricultural waste. These things are all happening in a cheap and effective way in parts of the world where grid electricity is expensive or impossible to get. There's no reason why these can't be scaled up to provide part of the energy solution. These are also less dangerous technologies than nuclear (which will ALWAYS carry a risk to the local community, even if this is much less than the scaremongers suggest) which surely carries some form of benefit.

In short, anyone who thinks we can ignore any form of energy generation because they don't like it needs to open their eyes.



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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-10 09:14am
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Shhh! You can't expect people to accept nuanced answers without a clear one-size-fits-all solution! What I prefer HAS TO BE the best for everone, everywhere. If you don't agree with me, you have to be either retarded, a dirty NIMBY treehugger or a corporate apologist!



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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-10 10:27am
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D.Turtle wrote:
Yes, it shows quite clearly the huge amount of variation on a daily basis in solar, and why a storage solution is needed. I quite like he concept of power-to-gas in order to address that, as that way you can use decentral power production, but central power storage. In addition, it doesn't really require any really new technology (unlike batteries) or large infrastructure (unlike hydro-storage). The first few prototype plants are going up already, even though this is a relatively new idea.


How much it will cost?
IIRC Germany has target of producing 80% of electricity from renewable sources in 2040. or 2050. I suppose main sources are meant to be wind, solar and biomass. Biomass is ok because it can be burned when needed, but solar and wind will be highly variable. During winter it is easy to have prolonged period with little wind and next to no sunlight. Solar power plants in winter in Germany even if it is sunny will produce little power because day is short. So other generation sources will have to take over. With so much unstable solar and wind capacity installed in the future most often it will be either too little power generated because it happens to be cloudy and also little wind or during cases when both solar and wind run at close to maksimum capacity there may be 5 - 6 times more electricity produced than needed.
Dumping several hundred GW of power into storage will not be easy. Even if electricity to gas conversion works as planned that is huge amount of power to manage. Power grid will need massive upgrade to transfer that much power, Gas pipe network also likely will need upgrade to handle sudden large influxes of gas.
I fail to see how it could be done without massively increasing cost of electricity. Expensive electricity is bad for economy because it forces industry to relocate to countries with lax environmental laws where power can be generated cheaply by burning coal.

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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-10 02:29pm
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Sky Captain wrote:
How much it will cost?


Let's do some math. Bottom line is it costs over twice as much as nuclear and that's assuming a 20% capacity factor which is twice as high as what Germany's been able to achieve. Adjust the capacity factor accordingly and cost will double so it ends up costing 4 times as much as nukes. Add in energy storage and account for the losses there and the cost goes up yet again. Pumped hydro will end up with about a 10-20% loss going to and back while the proposed gas conversion schemes will whack you with a 50-60% loss. Did I mention DC to AC conversion losses? Yeah, add that one in too.

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I fail to see how it could be done without massively increasing cost of electricity.


It's easy - assume exponential increases efficiency & capacity along with decreases in cost. Who cares if the math & physics don't work, or it uses up the entire yearly global production of key materials several times over.

And for the people who keep claiming that solar is clean & non polluting, I refer you once again to this. How many people have those highly toxic pollutants, carcinogens, and greenhouse gases killed or maimed?



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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-11 05:06am
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aerius wrote:
And for the people who keep claiming that solar is clean & non polluting, I refer you once again to this. How many people have those highly toxic pollutants, carcinogens, and greenhouse gases killed or maimed?

Of course it's not entirely clean. However, "uses dangerous chemicals in its prodcution that will cause bad river pollution if not handled with care" is in a fairly different league to "uses highly radioactive material in its generation that will make a wide area uninhabitable for decades if not handled correctly".

Again, why the hell is it necessary to choose between the two?



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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-11 06:44am
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Hillary wrote:
Nuclear will not give all the answers. Nor will solar, wind, oil, gas, tide, bioenergy or human powering of dynamos.

human powering of dynamos, hehe. if you are a somewhat athletic person (unlike me) and would crank out something around 100W on an ergometer for half an hour a day (as part of your daily exercise routine or whatever) that totals up to about 18kW per year not accounting for conversion losses.

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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-11 08:55am
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Hillary wrote:
Of course it's not entirely clean. However, "uses dangerous chemicals in its prodcution that will cause bad river pollution if not handled with care" is in a fairly different league to "uses highly radioactive material in its generation that will make a wide area uninhabitable for decades if not handled correctly".


http://www.forbes.com/sites/jamesconca/ ... ways-paid/

Solar only kills 5 times as many people as nuclear per unit of energy produced. But those people don't count since they're in some country on the other side of the world, and deaths from exposure to toxins & pollutants doesn't make the news. It's like how everyone flips out when a jumbo jet crashes and kills 300 people, yet many times more people die in car accidents and no one notices or cares.



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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-11 02:31pm
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Shadow6 wrote:
Can anyone more knowledgable than I comment upon the feasibility of large scale solar thermal schemes such as this (pdf)? (Full report and website here.)

Even if you dispute the feasibility of wind as a major component of baseload, or converting to electric transportation, or the overall economics of the plan, the CST plants still sound rather attractive for baseload electricity generation.


All CST energy storage schemes rely on a mix of sodium & potassium nitrates, it's usually a 60/40 mix. Problem is the energy density is crap at only 12 watt-hours per kilogram. How bad is this? Well let's do some math. Assume we have a 1GW powerplant and 12 hours of darkness to get through, this would require 12GWh of storage capacity, which is to say 1 billion kilograms of molten salt, which is a million tons, of which 400kT is KNO3. Remember that number, we'll come back to it in a sec.

Now we come to the fun part, nearly all potassium production in the world goes into fertilizer use for agriculture. 1.4 million tons of potassium nitrate is used to make fertilizer in a year, so in theory we can build a bit over 3 1GW plants a year if we used up the entire global production of KNO3. Which won't even be enough to keep the lights on in my city. Nevermind the fun of constructing reservoirs to contain 3 million tons of molten salt. Let's see, 1.7 tons/cubic metre, that's a bit under 1.8 million cubic metres or about a 100x100x180 metre tank made of high grade insulated stainless steel. An insulated tank with the volume of 6 giant supertankers made of stainless steel, that's gonna cost a few billion right there.

Could you run a smaller town with solar? Sure, especially if it's in a place where there's lots of sun. But scaling it up to run a large city or industrial complex is a whole different story, especially once you move away from the equator. If you want to run Germany on 100% solar you'd need nearly 10 times the current global installed capacity of solar. Have fun with that. Or we could build 12 large CANDU nuke plants and call it a day.



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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-11 10:02pm
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Skgoa wrote:
While I agree with the rest of you post, I have to jump in here and rebut this. You are only looking at current EVs. We are only in the early stages of EV development, most manufacturers don't even have a single model on the market, yet.

Actually, this is the second time around for electric cars. In the very early 20th Century there were a number of electric cars, just as there were steam cars. They lost out to gasoline and diesel engines. The problem with electric cars has ALWAYS been range and recharge times. Battery exchanges are nothing new - there was one such provided by Hartford Electric Light Company in Connecticut for a line of electric trucks from the early turn of the 20th Century up until the early 1920's. Chicago had a similar service for electric car owners during the same time period.

In other words these are NOT new! It's been done before. Gasoline/diesel won. The only thing making electric cars even close to viable again today are improved batteries and right now lithium-ion is the peak of that technology. Maybe we'll have better in a year or two. Or ten. Or 20. Or 50. It was 70 years between the first heyday of the electric car and a revival of interest. A gap like that in technological advance could occur again.

Sure, right now electrics are a viable choice for short distance driving, such as in a heavily urban area. They suck at long distance travel. Depending on where you live that may or may not matter. As someone who completes a 1600 km round trip several times a year (including this very week - hence my delay in replying to you) I'm sorry, an electric car does not serve my needs. A hybrid that runs on electric the first, oh, 300-400 km of that trip then gets inferior gas mileage the remainder due to having to haul around discharged batteries as deadweight until I can locate a charger and take the time to do the recharge sort of sucks, too.

Quote:
VW has just recently announced a car they plan to produce from 2013 on that is a hybrid and makes 235 mpg.

And how is that number determined, hm?

Is that an average with both engines running, or mainly using electric, or what? How's the mileage when the battery is drained, such as might happen on a long-distance trip? Is it mainly electric driven with gas-assist, or mainly gas-driven with electric assist? Are you even aware there is a difference?

Quote:
There are even (rough) plans/ideas to put electromagnetic coils into roads to power cars through induction while they are driving.

What a fucking stupid idea - do you have ANY idea how much that would add to the cost of road building? How does that hold up to actual weather conditions? My area regularly has an annual temperature swing from -25 C to +35 C, and some years the extremes run from -28 C to +38 C. We already have a problem with pavement cracking/buckling/deteriorating due to just the temperatures, much less the ice, ground heaving, etc. What the hell will that do to your in-pavement induction coils?

That idea is not suitable to vast swathes of the temperate zones. Forget it, outside of a very few limited areas with extraordinarily stable climate.

Quote:
The VW car I mentioned will be rechargable in halve an hour.

Nowhere near good enough. I can refuel my gas-powered car in 5 minutes. If I'm covering 800+ km in a day (which I've done) I do not want to fucking wait around for a half an hour for the goddamn car to recharge, especially when there are two drivers to switch off so we really don't need to pause longer than it takes to piss, swap seats, and refuel.

Quote:
Flywheels are used in busses, the new Prosche GT3, and winning with Audi at LeMans.

Flywheels are not without drawbacks as well.

Quote:
Another idea would be an exchangable battery pack.

That has only ever been successful in a small urban area, not in cross-country travel. Granted, cross country travel has changed considerably since way back then (such as the building of the US Interstate System, which greatly facilitated the whole process in the US) but the logistics and technicalities of an interstate battery exchange are just... nightmarish.

Quote:
And once someone solves the hydrogen storage (and esp. refuelling) problem, we won't even have any of these problems anymore.

Then it wouldn't be an electric car anymore if it runs on hydrogen, right?

Hydrogen storage comes with its own headaches that I doubt will be solved any sooner than the electric car issues, and probably much later if at all.

Of course, if the petroleum is ever truly all gone, or gone to the point of being hellish expensive (at least an order of magnitude more cost per unit than now), we might not have a choice and will settle for second-best propulsion in automobiles. That doesn't erase the fact that the gasoline/diesel powered internal combustion engine is still superior on quite a few points. I fully applaud the attempt to give us viable alternatives but let's not kid ourselves, or pretend that hypothetical technologies actually exist at this point in time.



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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-11 10:57pm
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Broomstick wrote:
Skgoa wrote:
VW has just recently announced a car they plan to produce from 2013 on that is a hybrid and makes 235 mpg.

And how is that number determined, hm?
Is that an average with both engines running, or mainly using electric, or what? How's the mileage when the battery is drained, such as might happen on a long-distance trip? Is it mainly electric driven with gas-assist, or mainly gas-driven with electric assist? Are you even aware there is a difference?


Some searching around on google gives me this. It appears to be an electric with gas assist, and with only 46hp on the gas engine it's going to be a borderline safety hazard in the mountains when the battery pack runs dry. Power to weight ratio is similar to the Chevy Volt and that car is a gimp in the hills when the batteries are depleted.

Quote:
Quote:
The VW car I mentioned will be rechargable in halve an hour.

Nowhere near good enough. I can refuel my gas-powered car in 5 minutes. If I'm covering 800+ km in a day (which I've done) I do not want to fucking wait around for a half an hour for the goddamn car to recharge, especially when there are two drivers to switch off so we really don't need to pause longer than it takes to piss, swap seats, and refuel.


Here's the even better part, the electric only range is 22 miles at best, half an hour charge to go 22 miles. Might as well just dump a couple gallons of diesel in the tank and drive it. Half hour charging is useless unless you're running errands in the city.

Quote:
Quote:
Flywheels are used in busses, the new Prosche GT3, and winning with Audi at LeMans.

Flywheels are not without drawbacks as well.


You could say that again, the flywheels in those vehicles are used in quick bursts to get the cars up to speed, they only store enough energy for a few seconds of use. In the case of the Porsche and Audi, you only get 6-10 seconds of full power.

Quote:
Quote:
And once someone solves the hydrogen storage (and esp. refuelling) problem, we won't even have any of these problems anymore.

Then it wouldn't be an electric car anymore if it runs on hydrogen, right?
Hydrogen storage comes with its own headaches that I doubt will be solved any sooner than the electric car issues, and probably much later if at all.


That opens up a giant can of worms. You basically double the amount of energy required for transportation needs. How much energy is 33 quadrillion BTUs? That's more than double Germany's TOTAL energy consumption. Just to keep the cars moving in the US.

Quote:
Of course, if the petroleum is ever truly all gone, or gone to the point of being hellish expensive (at least an order of magnitude more cost per unit than now), we might not have a choice and will settle for second-best propulsion in automobiles. That doesn't erase the fact that the gasoline/diesel powered internal combustion engine is still superior on quite a few points. I fully applaud the attempt to give us viable alternatives but let's not kid ourselves, or pretend that hypothetical technologies actually exist at this point in time.


If it gets that that point we'll likely be doing a mix of electric and coal to liquids programs to keep vehicles moving. The US has a shitload of coal that they could turn into petroleum products for use in high efficiency vehicles, and electric cars can be used to supplement them in urban settings. This takes advantage of the existing oil & gas distribution network and takes care of storage problems.



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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-12 06:09am
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Broomstick wrote:
Skgoa wrote:
While I agree with the rest of you post, I have to jump in here and rebut this. You are only looking at current EVs. We are only in the early stages of EV development, most manufacturers don't even have a single model on the market, yet.

Actually, this is the second time around for electric cars. In the very early 20th Century there were a number of electric cars, just as there were steam cars. They lost out to gasoline and diesel engines. The problem with electric cars has ALWAYS been range and recharge times. Battery exchanges are nothing new - there was one such provided by Hartford Electric Light Company in Connecticut for a line of electric trucks from the early turn of the 20th Century up until the early 1920's. Chicago had a similar service for electric car owners during the same time period.

In other words these are NOT new! It's been done before. Gasoline/diesel won. The only thing making electric cars even close to viable again today are improved batteries and right now lithium-ion is the peak of that technology. Maybe we'll have better in a year or two. Or ten. Or 20. Or 50. It was 70 years between the first heyday of the electric car and a revival of interest. A gap like that in technological advance could occur again.

How many engineer alive today were around back then? How many companies have gained experience on doing this? How many computer simulations have been done back then and is the data from that in single or double precission? :roll: Vehicle technology and engineering as a whole has changes a lot in the last 100 years. We are only beginning to explore other propulsion options in this context. We can do things today that we couldn't do ten years ago. That's why even ten years ago EVs weren't viable for the population at large at all. Now they have become viable for a growing subset of drivers.


Broomstick wrote:
Quote:
There are even (rough) plans/ideas to put electromagnetic coils into roads to power cars through induction while they are driving.

What a fucking stupid idea - do you have ANY idea how much that would add to the cost of road building? How does that hold up to actual weather conditions? My area regularly has an annual temperature swing from -25 C to +35 C, and some years the extremes run from -28 C to +38 C. We already have a problem with pavement cracking/buckling/deteriorating due to just the temperatures, much less the ice, ground heaving, etc. What the hell will that do to your in-pavement induction coils?

That idea is not suitable to vast swathes of the temperate zones. Forget it, outside of a very few limited areas with extraordinarily stable climate.

"Old woman yells at clouds." :roll: I don't know much about building roads, so I'm just going to put my faith in the fact that the actual experts are saying "we are looking into it." It might very well cost much more than putting down a strip of tarmac. But e.g. the german Autobahn costs millions per kilometre to build anyways.



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This is pre-WWII. You can sort of tell from the sketch style, from thee way it refers to Japan (Japan in the 1950s was still rebuilding from WWII), the spelling of Tokyo, lots of details. Nothing obvious... except that the upper right hand corner of the page reads "November 1931." --- Simon_Jester

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 Post subject: Re: 50 months to avoid climate disaster PostPosted: 2012-10-12 06:20am
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aerius wrote:
Broomstick wrote:
Skgoa wrote:
VW has just recently announced a car they plan to produce from 2013 on that is a hybrid and makes 235 mpg.

And how is that number determined, hm?
Is that an average with both engines running, or mainly using electric, or what? How's the mileage when the battery is drained, such as might happen on a long-distance trip? Is it mainly electric driven with gas-assist, or mainly gas-driven with electric assist? Are you even aware there is a difference?


Some searching around on google gives me this. It appears to be an electric with gas assist, and with only 46hp on the gas engine it's going to be a borderline safety hazard in the mountains when the battery pack runs dry. Power to weight ratio is similar to the Chevy Volt and that car is a gimp in the hills when the batteries are depleted.

Broomie: The number comes from the standard for mileage calculation. I don't have the formula on me ATM and obviously it's not exactly what people will see IRL but it's the number that is used to compare different cars.
aerius: So? That is the entire point of an EV with ICE range extender. And you can make the same kind of argument against ANY small car. My mom's Hyundai Atos wouldn't go up a step hill without us switching of the air con.


aerius wrote:
Quote:
Quote:
The VW car I mentioned will be rechargable in halve an hour.

Nowhere near good enough. I can refuel my gas-powered car in 5 minutes. If I'm covering 800+ km in a day (which I've done) I do not want to fucking wait around for a half an hour for the goddamn car to recharge, especially when there are two drivers to switch off so we really don't need to pause longer than it takes to piss, swap seats, and refuel.


Here's the even better part, the electric only range is 22 miles at best, half an hour charge to go 22 miles. Might as well just dump a couple gallons of diesel in the tank and drive it. Half hour charging is useless unless you're running errands in the city.

Broomie: Then put fuel in the tank. Once again, that's the entire point of that engine train. But most people WON'T ever exceed that 22 mile/trip limit.
aerius: See above.

aerius wrote:
Quote:
Quote:
Flywheels are used in busses, the new Prosche GT3, and winning with Audi at LeMans.

Flywheels are not without drawbacks as well.


You could say that again, the flywheels in those vehicles are used in quick bursts to get the cars up to speed, they only store enough energy for a few seconds of use. In the case of the Porsche and Audi, you only get 6-10 seconds of full power.

So? I can find a million flaws in everything. The point here is that we are exploring different options.


aerius wrote:
Quote:
Quote:
And once someone solves the hydrogen storage (and esp. refuelling) problem, we won't even have any of these problems anymore.

Then it wouldn't be an electric car anymore if it runs on hydrogen, right?
Hydrogen storage comes with its own headaches that I doubt will be solved any sooner than the electric car issues, and probably much later if at all.


That opens up a giant can of worms. You basically double the amount of energy required for transportation needs. How much energy is 33 quadrillion BTUs? That's more than double Germany's TOTAL energy consumption. Just to keep the cars moving in the US.

Broomie: you can burn Hydrogen in an ICE or you can use it to produce electricity in a fuel cell one of those is more like today's cars and open is more like an EV.
aerius: And once again you fail to realize that not everything has to magically switch to the same techology. Or maybe your argument relies on that to work. :roll:


aerius wrote:
Quote:
Of course, if the petroleum is ever truly all gone, or gone to the point of being hellish expensive (at least an order of magnitude more cost per unit than now), we might not have a choice and will settle for second-best propulsion in automobiles. That doesn't erase the fact that the gasoline/diesel powered internal combustion engine is still superior on quite a few points. I fully applaud the attempt to give us viable alternatives but let's not kid ourselves, or pretend that hypothetical technologies actually exist at this point in time.


If it gets that that point we'll likely be doing a mix of electric and coal to liquids programs to keep vehicles moving. The US has a shitload of coal that they could turn into petroleum products for use in high efficiency vehicles, and electric cars can be used to supplement them in urban settings. This takes advantage of the existing oil & gas distribution network and takes care of storage problems.

Broomie: Alcohol and other biofuels will always be there. You know better than anyone here that the way we produce most plants/plant products right now can be drastically improved IF it makes economic sense. The point I was trying to make is that there are several different "paths" in propulsion technology we only recently started explorin in ernest. That doesn't mean we are all switching to one type of technology. But it does mean that we won't continue to use only one type of technology, even when in that use case something else makes much more sense. This already happened somewhat with the new diesel engines. They have improved so much that petrol is the fuel that has t catch up. Liquified natural gas is another fuel that getting more and more traction and that simply makes more sense economically for a certain subset of drivers.



http://www.politicalcompass.org/test
Economic Left/Right: -7.12
Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -7.74

This is pre-WWII. You can sort of tell from the sketch style, from thee way it refers to Japan (Japan in the 1950s was still rebuilding from WWII), the spelling of Tokyo, lots of details. Nothing obvious... except that the upper right hand corner of the page reads "November 1931." --- Simon_Jester

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