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Regarding Energy, Electricity, Transportation & Environment

PostPosted: 02.03.16 10:16pm
by Remnants
One of the most decisive topics of our time, for sure. Whether it's for the future we leave for future generations or what's in it for your wallet, there is a lot to talk about. Here we can discuss or even debate what is it that's going to happen, what's needed or how things are to be implemented to the best of our knowledge. I trust we can keep it civil around here.

Electricity is where I'm the most prepared to talk about since that is where my interest is strongest. I'll get right on that first.

How do I keep this short and concise...

Obvious challenges to the adoption of wind and solar energy include their intermittent nature. The sun doesn't shine at night and sometimes it's cloudy during the day. As for wind, the wind doesn't always blow. For anyone to begin to try and solve the puzzle to these two energy types in particular, it is necessary to collect data. But first let's talk Capcity Factor, which is defined as: "the ratio of its actual output over a period of time, to its potential output if it were possible for it to operate at full nameplate capacity continuously over the same period of time." Whether you are for or against solar and/or wind, it's important to know what the capacity factor is. According to the EIA, Wind power's capacity for 2013 and 2014 were 32.4% and 34.0% respectively. By averaging the monthly capacity factors of the year 2015, I got 29.3%. I wish I could get more and better data but what I'm trying to say from this is that the capacity factors or the total energy output for wind and solar tend to be more consistent on a yearly basis.

That being the case, it is possible to make a reasonable prediction of how much energy they would have produced over a year -- the catch is, it is hard to predict how much they will produce from one minute to the next but over a large span of time, their total output tend to become more consistent. Hourly averages vary more than daily averages, daily averages vary more than monthly averages and monthly averages vary more than yearly averages. Because of this, solar and wind (on their own) can only, only displace fuel but not generating capacity! This is what must be clear here and now. Solar and wind cannot displace existing generating capacity but instead they can only displace fuel. In other words, solar and wind can only increase the fuel-efficiency of the grid rather than power it. At the end of the day, there has to be something around to compensate for fluctuations and (pumped) hydropower is ideal for doing this.

I think it's best I leave it at that for the time being to prevent things from getting too exhausting. What I'd like to get into in more detail is the rapid developments in battery energy storage into the MWh-scale of capacity. The question of choosing between expanding energy storage assets and expanding the electric grid might seem silly now but with energy storage costs set to decline and technically improve, installing batteries to pull down the peak load closer towards the average may one day be preferable to installing new cables and power lines to carry larger peak demands. (That turned out to be a mouthful...)

A quick comment on electric vehicles, economically and environmentally they make more sense when they are charged from green power sources in your own home.

Re: Regarding Energy, Electricity, Transportation & Environm

PostPosted: 02.03.16 10:39pm
by Zynux
I know nothing on this topic.

Not sure if possible and probably expensive but it would be cool if your general energy output was Solar/wind until the system detects that energy inefficient (whether sun going down or wind slowing) and then it automatically switches to electricity or something similar. That way you are using natural resources and also have backup electricity simultaneously.

Re: Regarding Energy, Electricity, Transportation & Environm

PostPosted: 02.04.16 8:35pm
by Remnants
I can only see wind and solar going 100% if you couple them with energy storage and even then, all would have to be cheap enough have some level of redundancy. This would mean that some energy storage capacity may go unused for most of the year as well as some renewable energy getting curtailed. Right now, people would prefer to squeeze every bit of profit and benefits out of every Watt of installed renewable energy and the same goes for every Watt-hour of energy storage capacity.

In other words, a non-nuclear 100% green electricity infrastructure would require that wind, solar and storage become so cheap that they enter into the territory of being disposable. Well, solar seems to be heading in that direction... Has anyone heard of Swanson's Law? It states that every time the cumulative shipping volumes of solar PV modules double, the price per module goes down 20%. See the following curve:
Image
Do keep in mind that we're talking about module costs. When installing modules, other costs such as labor, real estate and additional equipment come into play. Normally, the capital costs of solar PV and also wind are denoted in $/W. With the price of solar modules dive-bombing like it is, soon enough we'll have to start denoting the capital cost in $/kW, especially as the price starts to enter into the pennies per Watt. That's what we're likely to see some time in 2020.

"Disposable solar energy" has an interesting ring to it, doesn't it?

Re: Regarding Energy, Electricity, Transportation & Environm

PostPosted: 10.11.16 9:31pm
by metroidsuperfan11
I have something to add in terms of enviorment.


If you are a home owner and to all homeowners out there I recommend highly that you install the efficient newer and yet cheaper at the same time than they used to be geothermal temperature control systems. The older systems ran themselves dry after 10 years or so but these issues have been fixed and are now completely renewable and efficient. If the entire world switched over to this temp control system carbon emmisions would be cut drastically because well they don't produce carbon emmisions or at least not nearly as much extremely minimal damage to the enviornment it recovers quite quickly. Also will save on heating and cooling bills in the long run which means more money for you.

http://energyblog.nationalgeographic.co ... d-cooling/



Second thing I've learned is that biofuels are really counterproductive sense mass production top soil has been eaten away for an energy source that is not really worth the losses just look at whats happened to Ohio for an example.


Lastly while carbon dioxide is dangerous if there is too much but methane is way, way, way worse it causes the earth to heat up way faster than initially predicted ... and the world uses it all the time though mostly for farming. Personally I think it needs to be banned for other uses but that's just me.

Re: Regarding Energy, Electricity, Transportation & Environm

PostPosted: 10.17.16 6:17pm
by Remnants
I have something to add in terms of enviorment.


If you are a home owner and to all homeowners out there I recommend highly that you install the efficient newer and yet cheaper at the same time than they used to be geothermal temperature control systems. The older systems ran themselves dry after 10 years or so but these issues have been fixed and are now completely renewable and efficient. If the entire world switched over to this temp control system carbon emmisions would be cut drastically because well they don't produce carbon emmisions or at least not nearly as much extremely minimal damage to the enviornment it recovers quite quickly. Also will save on heating and cooling bills in the long run which means more money for you.

http://energyblog.nationalgeographic.co ... d-cooling/
I've heard about Geothermal Heating & Cooling (or Geothermal HVAC). I've heard quite a lot about the potential savings from it. There is a lot of potential energy savings with this technology.
Second thing I've learned is that biofuels are really counterproductive sense mass production top soil has been eaten away for an energy source that is not really worth the losses just look at whats happened to Ohio for an example.
Kinda why the only biofuels I push for are made from waste streams. A good example of this would be biodiesel made from used cooking oil. Another general example would be the anaerobic digestion of waste organic matter. Landfill gas is a good example here. My argument against fuel crops is how it's essentially doing the same thing as charging batteries using solar panels but with orders of magnitude less efficiency. Fuel crops basically store solar energy into chemical energy after all -- exactly what would happen when charging batteries using solar energy.
Lastly while carbon dioxide is dangerous if there is too much but methane is way, way, way worse it causes the earth to heat up way faster than initially predicted ... and the world uses it all the time though mostly for farming. Personally I think it needs to be banned for other uses but that's just me.
Methane is only an issue if let loose into the atmosphere but not so much if combusted. Personally, I prefer natural gas over coal. The former emits 117.0 lbs CO2 per million BTUs while the latter emits 215.4 lbs CO2 per million BTUs -- almost twice as much. (Source.) Again, if methane is utilized and combusted instead of let loose, it's more beneficial to the climate than burning coal. This isn't even touching on the subject of much nastier pollutants (NOx, SOx and particulates) that have much more immediate effects on public health.

Re: Regarding Energy, Electricity, Transportation & Environm

PostPosted: 10.20.16 8:24pm
by metroidsuperfan11
I didn't know that about methane.


I have 3 things on transportation that somewhat involve enviorment and energy but to what degree I don't know.

1) There has been a theoretical construction idea floating about but for whatever the reasons may be it has not been done as of yet and considering which countries it connects it's unlikely it will ever happen this is just a fun fact. So there is this location on earth called the baring strait. crossing it leads to russia or united states alaska depending on where you are going. The problem is this area is bombarded with glaciers all the time and and even modern ships would have trouble passing through it. The idea is to have an incredibly durable and top of the line bridge that could be reasonably sustainable. The bridge would have 3 layers the surface layer would be for cars middle layer is either a 2 way oil pipeline or a oneway pipline one line being for gas and the other oil. the 3rd or bottom layer would be highspeed train travel which overall might improve relations due to more acceptance for russia and us trade. Canada and china would still be higher up the trade list though. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bering_Strait_crossing

2) More bullet trains. Seriously the entire developed world needs to adapt this. it's faster, more efficient just ... it should happen is all im saying.

3) The united states needs to do some serious overhauling on its infastructure. Bridges falling down, train stations and railway's falling apart, airways are clogged like crazy, roads are overpopulated, our electric grid (my theory for that is because other countries have pathetic tornado's while the united states gets tornados that are actually dangerous and do serious damage but I have no proof of this just a theory) ect. http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-i ... SKCN0Y12K6

Re: Regarding Energy, Electricity, Transportation & Environm

PostPosted: 02.06.17 5:10pm
by metroidsuperfan11
http://www.zmescience.com/ecology/renew ... n-reactor/

fusion reactor in progress in the u.s.a

Re: Regarding Energy, Electricity, Transportation & Environm

PostPosted: 02.08.17 9:51am
by Remnants
http://www.zmescience.com/ecology/renew ... n-reactor/

fusion reactor in progress in the u.s.a
Good to see that each new iteration brings us one step closer to getting fusion power to work. I still don't think its use will become widespread during my lifetime.

Re: Regarding Energy, Electricity, Transportation & Environm

PostPosted: 02.09.17 9:49pm
by metroidsuperfan11
Oh don't worry about that humanity will surely crash again the question is what exactly it will be
Energy?
no society will collapse before all coal and oil stores are gone completely
pollution?
china would be a great example ... except they're doing it purely economical if they would just implement the pollution reducing technology they would not have that problem. http://www.fossil.energy.gov/education/ ... _cct2.html
Resources.
This is what will end modern society, trapping humanity on this doomed rock. lack of vital resources to sustain the modern world
how can we fix this?
Space!
Can we do it now?
no.
Can we do it before it's too late?
up for debate.

Anyway this is about environment

http://science.howstuffworks.com/nature ... years1.htm

Not only is desertification happening in the u.s it's also happening around the world

this one's about transport

http://www.sfgate.com/technology/articl ... 921113.php

I hope this becomes a reality if we can't have flying cars lets at least have self driving cars that would be neat ... my opinion at least. I'll trust them once a million people have them by that point most bugs would be dealt with I'd think.

Re: Regarding Energy, Electricity, Transportation & Environm

PostPosted: 02.10.17 10:00am
by Remnants
Desertification is definitely a problem. A potential solution to the problem of scarce arable land does exist. Have you heard of Aquaponics? It's a hybrid term from Aquaculture and Hydroponics. This video explains the gist of the working principle. Best choose a type of fish whose feed can be grown inside the system itself. With that taken care of, all that would be needed is sunlight for the plants, electricity for the pumps and just a little bit of water for what might escape the greenhouse. This is the kind of farming system I could see working in an extraterrestrial colony. Sadly, as the Earth becomes less habitable for humans -- slowly but surely -- it'll become increasingly necessary to employ extraterrestrial solutions to continue to survive on Earth.

As for resources, as far as recyclable resources like metals go, I'm optimistic enough that for-profit recycling industries will pick up the mantle after mining dwindles due to the costs soaring too high. One example this article on Forbes gives is the problem of abandoned vehicles the USA had. There used to be millions of abandoned cars. A number of factors including rising commodity prices made recycling old vehicles profitable and this is how the country now has only a tiny fraction of the abandoned cars it used to have. A storm of high commodity prices and technological automation will only help to make the circumstances more conducive to for-profit recycling.

Or are we talking about non-recyclable resources?

Re: Regarding Energy, Electricity, Transportation & Environm

PostPosted: 02.10.17 12:23pm
by metroidsuperfan11
I'm more referring to consumption rates being higher then both production from mining and what is possible to salvage from recycling right now we're having gains but eventually the losses will be greater than the gains.

For example human consumption of lead is crazy high yet it's necessary for nuclear fission which produces massive amounts of energy (waste can be recycled by the way though it's not really economical). Anyway here's a link below

http://www.visualcapitalist.com/forecas ... ach-metal/

See how "long" we have left?

... unless this is outdated news and you can find something to debunk all/some of this

Also the u.s recycling system is ... well it has seen better days

http://fusion.net/story/294609/state-of ... n-america/

Re: Regarding Energy, Electricity, Transportation & Environm

PostPosted: 02.10.17 4:54pm
by Remnants
To me it just means that this high-consumption lifestyle cannot be sustained. On one hand, this looks like Peak Oil all over again. Supposedly by now, energy would be at a ridiculously high price. Instead we saw the price of crude oil crash to USD 30 per barrel and right now it's just hovering over USD 55 per barrel. That's still halfway from oil being priced at USD 110 per barrel throughout 2010 when all the peak oil hype was circulating.

Ultimately, what this is telling me is that commodity prices could sky-rocket which bring me back to a previous point: high commodity prices makes recycling profitable and when recycling goes from a charitable project to a business opportunity, entrepreneurs will jump on it like fresh meat in a den of hungry wolves. As for what price point this will work, that remains to be seen. Right now, a particular balance exists between mining and recycling. we'll likely see the scales tip further toward recycling.

Something else should be brought up as well: substitution. This is something I've been seeing happen in the battery industry: the search for the utilization of earth-abundant minerals. The only real example that I could give that you could buy on the market right now would be Aquion Energy's Aquious Hybrid Ion battery. A very simplistic description would be to call it a "Sodium-Ion battery." Sodium can be mined from table salt.
There's another article I just found about a new concept for a battery made from Aluminum, Graphite and Urea.
For batteries, the pressure is on to bring the costs down because of there being a growing demand for large-scale energy storage and it's looking like this will bear fruit.

Though ultimately, I don't think all this will do much to sustain the infinite-growth economic paradigm. Even with sci-fi-esque recycling technologies, at some point there just won't be enough materials or even energy to go around to grow more. For any change to really happen, consumers would need to boycott the infinite growth economy... and needless to say that's very daunting, to put it optimistically. If anything, Open Source Ecology looks rather interesting.

Re: Regarding Energy, Electricity, Transportation & Environm

PostPosted: 02.10.17 7:12pm
by metroidsuperfan11
1) Nice battery concept everything works out ... except for aluminum which is mined as aluminum oxide which requires electricity to make it useful and it's a high electrical cost not as much as it use to be but still high (though not high enough for it not to be profitable) though this might be canceled out by recycling I'm not sure

2) Ok so open source ecology seems to be a good Idea

3) So how is the whole robots taking our jobs in not just manufacturing but eventually everything ... thing solved?

no seriously check these out

http://www.techrepublic.com/article/chi ... ion-soars/

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/ ... r-humanoid

(partially replacing janator jobs which could lead to slightly lower wages but I can't confirm this -->)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roomba

http://factor-tech.com/connected-world/ ... l-by-2035/

https://news.thestreet.com/independent/ ... -food.html

These and most likely more seems to be a problem should we solve this by banning this tech?

should we make laws that only allows for tech to change jobs if it cooperates with humans instead of outright replacing them such as an iPad in restaurants that is specifically made for a restaurant chain and then all people make the order, send it, it digitally is sent to a computer in the kitchen saying what table it was from, the chefs don't have to wait as long and ideally everything is faster? Is this the peak of humanity and we've created a problem that we just can't solve because it's beyond our collective mental capability?

EDIT:

Aquaponics just like vertical farming is an optimist's dream

How?

It offers a small population's solution yet does not address the core issue. The reason for desertification in the united states has little to do with global warming it has to do with over farming and the accelerated drain of nutrients in the soil this is similar to the dust-bowl in the 30's a u.s problem in which overfarming caused unnatural (despite what some sources want you to believe) dust storms and cuts to u.s food production eventually farmer's learned and employed methods to salvage the midwest it is now certainly much better than it was back then. The soil erosion needs to be fixed not worked around there are some things that need to be fixed directly here are some ways this can be done

http://www.arc2020.eu/2013/11/how-do-we ... -our-soil/

Don't get me wrong this is good for colonies but not good for 7 billion people ... small villages can benefit from this but they don't have the money to afford it so that would require some charity and where will you get that from? minimalist farms with as little electrically powered tech as possible will typically have a larger yield then vertical farming though this could change in the future. As a final critique of these 2 ideas they mostly grow cabbage, lettuce and small fruits which doesn't bring much nutrition to the table overall as it doesn't address the meat/proteins issue (supplements are not reliable http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-11371/wh ... wders.html ) At least that's how they are now. If the idea takes off further this could end up being increasingly untrue.

PS. Don't take any of this personally ... please.

Re: Regarding Energy, Electricity, Transportation & Environm

PostPosted: 02.10.17 9:02pm
by Remnants
Oh, don't worry, I've traded comments on youtube so I know a polite rebuttal when I see one 8B

Well, aquaponics for some reason has been having trouble scaling and since it's far from new... there's probably a reason behind it.

Oof, job automation... Measures such as diversifying the job sector, better access to job training and protectionism, at best, would simply delay things or amount to the equivalent of putting a band-aid on a wound over twice its size. Some ideas have been floating around and one of them is Universal Basic Income. I recommend watching the video not only because it explains the concept well, more importantly it takes a very constructive tone on having the discussion since such a topic would be very polemic due to its political connotations.

Another idea would be to exit the centralized, industrial infinite-growth economy and instead look for work in decentralized local production like in Open Source Ecology. Again, all that might do is delay the inevitable a while longer.