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(Guardian)   Solar power is the fastest growing energy sector. It's almost like the sun is beaming down on all of us about 50% of the time we're on this earth resulting in life as we know it. How could that be better than old fossil deposits?   ( theguardian.com) divider line
    More: Cool, renewable energy, renewable energy capacity, Photovoltaics, IEA, New solar capacity, Fossil fuel, energy capacity forecast, solar PV capacity  
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698 clicks; posted to Geek » on 04 Oct 2017 at 8:50 AM (2 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2017-10-04 12:05:39 PM  

Snarfangel: The sun is an unshielded nuclear reactor. NIMBY's just like it because it's 93 million miles away.

Besides, it's grandfathered in.


Too bad you're on the opposite side of Oregon, otherwise I would recommend a day trip to the Goldendale observatory and the 2 pm solar show.
 
2017-10-04 12:25:16 PM  

MeSoRonery: SomeAmerican: All Most of our current forms of energy are solar, in a way.

As you correctly point out:

Nuclear utilizes uranium which was produced in stellar novas.

I'm pretty certain old Sol hasn't gone supernova in the past.


No but all elements bigger than hydrogen were fused during a star's lifetime.
 
2017-10-04 12:26:22 PM  

andrewagill: The sun is mass of incandescent gas, a gigantic nuclear furnace where hydrogen is built into helium at a temperature of millions of degrees.  Yo ho it's hot, the sun is not a place where we could live, but here on earth there'd be no life without the light it gives.


The sun is a miasma of incandescent plasma.  If you really want to be accurate and you've watched the commentary on one of their DVDs.
 
2017-10-04 12:50:11 PM  

EvilEgg: harleyquinnical: All I can hear is people saying the sun is not a renewable source of energy because it will eventually consume the planet, ignoring the fact that if we do not embrace solar energy, we will probably doom everyone long before the sun consumes the planet.

There really is no renewable source of energy. Everything will eventually descend into entropy.


What if we channel entropy itself?  They all laughed at my ideas at the academy, but I'll show them.  I'll show them all!
 
2017-10-04 01:02:33 PM  

SomeAmerican: All of our current forms of energy are solar, in a way.


Bingo. Everything is effectively solar powered.

Solar is clean but inconsistent and requires some form of buffering mechanism to remove the noise... which translates to losses in transmission. The touted cost savings are BS as the industry is heavily subsidised for a whole variety of ridiculous reasons. Those panels come from somewhere and their structural makeup is not great.

As far as fossil fuels are concerned, nuclear has the greatest energy density and the least immediate environmental impact. However they are all plugged into over-sized kettles with an abysmal energy translation rate of around 35%.

Want to save the world? Stop breeding like mindless rabbits.
 
2017-10-04 01:05:03 PM  

Gergesa: Some coal state farker was talking about being in a medical clinic and somehow solar power got brought up and how it was changing the industry.

One old timer said to another one "but coal will be here forever."

People nodded in agreement.


I'm going not voting Funny because there's no Sad button.
 
2017-10-04 01:06:11 PM  

cannibalparrot: Gergesa: Some coal state farker was talking about being in a medical clinic and somehow solar power got brought up and how it was changing the industry.

One old timer said to another one "but coal will be here forever."

People nodded in agreement.

I'm going not voting Funny because there's no Sad button.


*only voting

/farking on the go
//stupid autocorrect
///obligatory
 
2017-10-04 01:09:37 PM  

nulluspixiusdemonica: SomeAmerican: All of our current forms of energy are solar, in a way.

Bingo. Everything is effectively solar powered.


What about nuclear power and geothermal?
 
2017-10-04 01:18:45 PM  

Mad_Radhu: asciibaron: dragonchild: asciibaron: have you been to a wind farm? serious question. i have and i will tell you, they are a terrible blight on the landscape.
Mountaintop removal and fracking aren't exactly a chocolate fondue party with bikini supermodels either.

i never said other methods of extracting energy were better.  i pointed out that wind farms are terrible.  the real issue is the modern world's hunger for energy.  if you don't work where you live, you are selfishly consuming energy resources.  all those electronic gadgets are wasting energy.

we need to reduce our baseline per person energy use.  my electric bill is stupid small, i pay more to be a customer than i do for commodity and delivery.  turn your lights off, kill the vampire gadgets. 

the first step is reducing YOUR requirements for energy.

Actually, my gadgets have helped my power use over the last few decades. Instead of a desktop computer with a 300W power supply and a big 21" CRT monitor suck down the mains power, I have a laptop that sips energy in comparison. Plus I use my phone for the internet much more often than my laptop and it requires even les power to run, as a single overnight charge will keep it going all day long. My 65" 4K television barely consumes more power than my 32" Sony Wega tube television despite being much larger, and my smart LED light bulbs consume a fraction of what my incandescent bulbs do. Overall, technology has trended to being a lot more power efficient in the last decade or so.


how much energy was used to make and transport your cool things?
 
2017-10-04 01:21:01 PM  

Gergesa: asciibaron: have you been to a wind farm? serious question. i have and i will tell you, they are a terrible blight on the landscape. these are right next to a wilderness area. you can hear them for miles.

If sound is the complaint I don't see it as compelling.


i don't think you know what 50 turbines on a ridge sound like...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=79aARWPalt4
 
2017-10-04 01:50:42 PM  

harleyquinnical: All I can hear is people saying the sun is not a renewable source of energy because it will eventually consume the planet,


Are you really hearing people say this? Because that's about the dumbest thing I've ever heard, even for Republicans.
 
2017-10-04 01:53:34 PM  

Shakin_Haitian: MeSoRonery: SomeAmerican: All Most of our current forms of energy are solar, in a way.

As you correctly point out:

Nuclear utilizes uranium which was produced in stellar novas.

I'm pretty certain old Sol hasn't gone supernova in the past.

No but all elements bigger than hydrogen were fused during a star's lifetime.


Fusion runs out at iron.  After that it requires energy to fuse rather than releasing energy.  So all the heavier elements were produced by the energy released in a nova.  The really heavy elements were produced by supernovae.  So it is correct to say that nuclear power was produced by a star.  But it wasn't produced by our star so it isn't "solar."
 
2017-10-04 02:01:53 PM  

asciibaron: Mad_Radhu: asciibaron: dragonchild: asciibaron: have you been to a wind farm? serious question. i have and i will tell you, they are a terrible blight on the landscape.
Mountaintop removal and fracking aren't exactly a chocolate fondue party with bikini supermodels either.

i never said other methods of extracting energy were better.  i pointed out that wind farms are terrible.  the real issue is the modern world's hunger for energy.  if you don't work where you live, you are selfishly consuming energy resources.  all those electronic gadgets are wasting energy.

we need to reduce our baseline per person energy use.  my electric bill is stupid small, i pay more to be a customer than i do for commodity and delivery.  turn your lights off, kill the vampire gadgets. 

the first step is reducing YOUR requirements for energy.

Actually, my gadgets have helped my power use over the last few decades. Instead of a desktop computer with a 300W power supply and a big 21" CRT monitor suck down the mains power, I have a laptop that sips energy in comparison. Plus I use my phone for the internet much more often than my laptop and it requires even les power to run, as a single overnight charge will keep it going all day long. My 65" 4K television barely consumes more power than my 32" Sony Wega tube television despite being much larger, and my smart LED light bulbs consume a fraction of what my incandescent bulbs do. Overall, technology has trended to being a lot more power efficient in the last decade or so.

how much energy was used to make and transport your cool things?


My wife and I don't plan to have children so we're already way ahead of most couples when it comes to our environmental impact. We could roll coal in F-150s all day long and still have way less of a carbon footprint long term than a family with 2.5 kids.
 
2017-10-04 02:08:07 PM  

dragonchild: SomeAmerican: Add in some batteries and you can do a pretty good job matching production with demand.
It doesn't need to be batteries; it just needs to be some form of energy storage.  You could heat a bunch of water or salt or power an endothermic process to make fuel for all I care.


The very simplest is to just preheat or precool your house while the sun is up, using it like a big ol' thermal battery.
 
2017-10-04 02:08:38 PM  

asciibaron: Gergesa: asciibaron: have you been to a wind farm? serious question. i have and i will tell you, they are a terrible blight on the landscape. these are right next to a wilderness area. you can hear them for miles.

If sound is the complaint I don't see it as compelling.

i don't think you know what 50 turbines on a ridge sound like...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=79aARWPalt4


Thank you for that fascinating video.  See my previous comment.
 
2017-10-04 02:09:46 PM  

asciibaron: Northern: Solar and wind jobs are growing, profitable, and better for the local and global environment.
have you been to a wind farm?  serious question.  i have and i will tell you, they are a terrible blight on the landscape.  these are right next to a wilderness area.  you can hear them for miles.
[img.fark.net image 768x544]


I have been right underneath wind farms (I also like to take pictures of them) and I have barely heard anything. Kind of a "whoosh" noise. Kind of like the wind.
 
2017-10-04 02:32:53 PM  

hashtag.acronym: 2: sell it to the Ferengi for a Dyson Ring on another star



Niven Ring.

Dyson didn't come up with the concept.
 
2017-10-04 02:34:43 PM  

MeSoRonery: Shakin_Haitian: MeSoRonery: SomeAmerican: All Most of our current forms of energy are solar, in a way.

As you correctly point out:

Nuclear utilizes uranium which was produced in stellar novas.

I'm pretty certain old Sol hasn't gone supernova in the past.

No but all elements bigger than hydrogen were fused during a star's lifetime.

Fusion runs out at iron.  After that it requires energy to fuse rather than releasing energy.  So all the heavier elements were produced by the energy released in a nova.  The really heavy elements were produced by supernovae.  So it is correct to say that nuclear power was produced by a star.  But it wasn't produced by our star so it isn't "solar."


So you are saying that if you have a solar panel and it generates a KWh, that KWh is only solar power if the solar panel was on Earth and not for example on another planet orbiting another star?  Seems an odd distinction to make.
 
2017-10-04 02:41:10 PM  

SomeAmerican: So you are saying that if you have a solar panel and it generates a KWh, that KWh is only solar power if the solar panel was on Earth and not for example on another planet orbiting another star?  Seems an odd distinction to make.



If it was being generated through PV panels on a craft orbiting our nearest stellar neighbor, would it be Centauri power?
 
2017-10-04 04:49:10 PM  

andrewagill: The sun is mass of incandescent gas, a gigantic nuclear furnace where hydrogen is built into helium at a temperature of millions of degrees.  Yo ho it's hot, the sun is not a place where we could live, but here on earth there'd be no life without the light it gives.


Now that's you've given me that earworm, I feel compelled to spread it:

They Might Be Giants - Why Does the Sun Shine? (The Sun is a Mass of Incandescent Gas)
Youtube 3JdWlSF195Y

 
2017-10-04 06:59:12 PM  

Muta: Solar energy makes electricity from the sun.  The sun is not visible at night so solar does not work.  It is dark at night so I need to use electric lights but they won't work because the sun is not visible to make solar electricity.


Cigar box, limerick!
 
2017-10-04 07:40:35 PM  

SomeAmerican: So you are saying that if you have a solar panel and it generates a KWh, that KWh is only solar power if the solar panel was on Earth and not for example on another planet orbiting another star?  Seems an odd distinction to make.


There are many stars.  Ours is one of them.  One of our particular star's names is "Sol."  That's where the word "solar" comes from.  I didn't invent how these things work, and I don't know what people will call them if and when we manage to get "solar" panels close enough to another star to function.  But the word "solar" is more specific than "stellar."  It refers to one particular star; ours.
 
2017-10-04 08:19:20 PM  
Haven't you cockservatives never heard of "suns out guns out"?  If you oppose solar you oppose guns.
 
2017-10-04 08:41:07 PM  

MeSoRonery: SomeAmerican: So you are saying that if you have a solar panel and it generates a KWh, that KWh is only solar power if the solar panel was on Earth and not for example on another planet orbiting another star?  Seems an odd distinction to make.

There are many stars.  Ours is one of them.  One of our particular star's names is "Sol."  That's where the word "solar" comes from.  I didn't invent how these things work, and I don't know what people will call them if and when we manage to get "solar" panels close enough to another star to function.  But the word "solar" is more specific than "stellar."  It refers to one particular star; ours.


Even the most pedantic alt-write is rolling their eyes.
 
2017-10-04 09:33:11 PM  
The dictionary.  Can you use it?
 
2017-10-04 10:24:44 PM  

EvilEgg: When you people have sucked up all the sunlight, what will we grow our vegetables with?


Republicans oppose vegetables anyway, so no problem.
 
2017-10-05 04:08:20 AM  

Martian_Astronomer: Sometimes I kind of wish that solar advocates would push the "energy security" angle a little more. Which is more vulnerable to disruption: A large number of small generation and storage facilities that require periodic maintenance but no fuel, or a small number of large facilities that need to be constantly supplied by thousands of miles of railroads and pipelines?

Sure, maybe we're not willing to shoulder the expense of steering our grid towards renewables for environmental reasons, but what about doing it to "Keep Americans SafeTM?" I guarantee you it'll be better for national stability than some wall in the desert.


There's a large start up cost to this and it requires a vast ammount of infrastructure. Grids can still be damaged by wind storms and military action. A distributed grid would be more secure in it's power sourcing but also more difficult to secure by a single governing entity. It's certainly less profitable for said same politicians, who've got no actual interest in national self sufficiency since every last one of them profits from fuel markets.

Things like walls and head counts on soldiers and ships are an easy sell because people understand their value. It's a known thing, and a thing like solar has yet to prove itself to most people.
Recent events have proven its value to me, and so I'm thinking this is an argument that will be won in small stages.
The only thing preventing millions from switching to it is the cost of equipment and ignorance of its value. As adoption increases production, which lowers the entry fee, it becomes easier for advocates to demonstrate the value.

/I know a guy who is, in a disaster zone that's been hit by two cat5 storms, presently running his air conditioner.
/that's a pretty powerful argument for going off grid.
 
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