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By Robert Rapier on Nov 10, 2011 with 30 responses

Despite Solyndra’s Death, the Future of Solar Energy is Sunny

This week on R-Squared we have a guest post by Steven Pleging. Mr. Pleging is CEO/President of Quantum Solar Power Corp. I am in general agreement with the points made below; in fact I reiterated several times at this year’s ASPO conference that I believe solar power will be the renewable sector that makes the biggest long-term impact in our effort to wean away from fossil fuels.

Since I wrote A Solar Thought Experiment in 2007 (and the follow-up Replacing Gasoline with Solar Power), prices for solar PV have plummeted and made my pricing assumptions obsolete. In the thought experiment(s) I calculated the area required to equal all U.S. electrical generating capacity (and later gasoline consumption) with solar power. Of course there are still some technical challenges that need to be solved before the thought experiment could be realized, but the price tag has dropped by trillions of dollars in the past four years.

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Despite Solyndra’s Death, the Future of Solar Energy is Sunny

By Steven Pleging

I believe that the loss of industry players Solyndra, Evergreen, and SpectraWatt opens the market for more innovative solar companies to succeed with smarter tactics and mainstream products that fit into existing manufacturing models. Remember when the dot.com bubble burst in 2000 and, seemingly overnight, some companies ceased making millions hand-over-fist?  Flash forward to 2011, when nearly everyone is online, Internet technology has become more accessible and fortunes continue to be made. Real innovation always finds its pot of gold.

We’ve seen a considerable reduction in solar panel costs, but that is exactly why there is reason to be optimistic. Lower prices open markets that were previously barred economically. I believe most people fail to understand the solar sector. Unlike other established markets the solar industry is still a tiny fraction of the overall energy production worldwide. Solar’s competition is really fossil fuel, or in other words, the established way electricity is being generated. With subsidies long in place for nuclear, coal and gas in the U.S. along with the cheap cost of production for coal and natural gas, solar is essentially competing with that $0.10/kWh average cost of electricity in the United States and globally.

It is not only wise we devote our resources toward solar technology; it is essential. We are already facing serious ramifications of fossil fuel emissions. Increases in carbon dioxide concentration along with global surface temperatures are showing a decline in agricultural yields due to climate change [1]. This along with melting glaciers and shifts in climate zones do not bode well for climate change stabilization without drastic efforts in greenhouse gas abatement. There are also the obvious human costs of other sources of energy, from water quality issues related to gas fracking and the loss of mountain tops and streams with coal mining to the shocking failure of the Fukushima Daichi nuclear power plant reactors in March of 2011 that has forced one hundred thousand Japanese in a twelve mile radius to evacuate.

Yes, solar energy does need to arrive at end-user costs that are closer to fossil fuels, and concurrently, our research and development areas need to lead us beyond current solar PV technologies. The recent fall of Solyndra is a lesson in over-specialization but is not a damning of solar’s viability. The U.S. has 1,750 MW of PV planned for 2011 and currently employs 100,000 people, more than coal mining or steel manufacturing. Solyndra was producing a PV product that did not fit within traditional balance of system (BOS) solar industry structures. Their novel cylindrical solar modules which have a capacity to capture sunlight from 360º (if rooftops are painted white) and resist snow and dust, also required a shift in the industry as a whole in order to adopt them. Unfortunately, Solyndra’s timing was terrible, global poly-silicon supplies caught up with rising demand, going from a high of $500 per kilogram in 2008 to a mere $35 on spot markets today. Combined with a Chinese manufacturing boom, that lowered the overall cost of panels by 40 percent this year, Solyndra was unable to compete. On October 19th, seven solar PV manufacturers filed a federal trade dispute claiming China is dumping solar panels in the US below their own manufacturing cost, which likely in part, explains the 40 percent decrease in panels. Unfortunately, for Evergreen and Solyndra, that filing is too late.

The United States spends almost $500 billion annually purchasing energy from other countries. About $4 billion of taxpayer money is allotted to nuclear, natural gas, and nuclear company subsidies, even when many geothermal sources are reaching or have reached, capacity. We need a better paradigm. New solar technologies can change this. The U.S. has vast regions that offer some of the sunniest places on earth, and you don’t need to live in the desert to harness solar power. New Jersey is second only to California in adoption of solar infrastructure. Despite the announcement recently that Germany will be lowering their feed-in tariffs in January of 2012, they remain 40% of the total solar market globally while receiving less average daily solar radiation than New Jersey [2].

In the U.S., we are seeing a likelihood of long-term thin-film implementation when we develop the right technological fit. Within a few years, we expect at least a dozen markets will be economically viable without subsidies. Tariff reductions are occurring throughout Europe as the EU struggles with the Greek financial crisis. Despite this the solar market there has increased 65 percent as opposed to the 82 percent increase in 2010. While changes in policy are lowering European expectations slightly, the U.S. market is projected to increase by as much as 9 percent this year. The global solar market is expected to install 22 MW of electricity in 2011.

Of course, the largest solar demands will be coming from China and India. From a purely economic standpoint, there will be no reason for China to remain with silicon when better alternatives become available. Solar PV installations in Asia grew by over 57% from 2006-2010, and 2010 showed an incredible 100% increase from 2009 [3] and yet China still exports nearly 95% of their total PV production. However, China recently announced a national feed-in tariff program, increasing 2012 solar market projections.

Many venture capitalists have established funds dedicated to launching green technology initiatives. First Solar, the largest thin-film manufacturer in the world, will see approximately $3.75 billion [4] in revenue this year, and there are a number of solar companies emerging with very attractive growth opportunities precisely because there is so much room for improvement in terms of efficiencies and a reduction in materials costs. As with the dotcom crash, the death of Solyndra, Evergreen and others will usher in a more robust solar industry — not signal the disappearance of PV as a viable alternative for future energy needs. Both companies were a tiny fraction of an enormous and rapidly growing global market. The egalitarian balance is one that will afford large-scale, global installation of solar energy panels at a price people can manage.

Steven Pleging is CEO/President of Quantum Solar Power Corp. a U.S. based public company engaged in developing and commercializing a revolutionary new solar power technology.

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[1] http://www.care2.com/causes/climate-change-affects-global-crop-yields.html, http://www.sciencemag.org/content/early/2011/05/04/science.1204531

[2] Annual average solar insolation for New Jersey is 4.5 – 5.0 kWh/m2/day as compared with Germany which averages 3.0 – 3.5 kWh/m2/day, according to maps provided by NREL and Solargis.info.

[3] “Research and Markets; Asia Pacific Solar Photovoltaic Market Outlook to 2015 – China and Taiwan Leading the Demand.” Energy Business Journal. Atlanta: Oct 28, 2011. pg. 38.

[4] http://blogs.barrons.com/techtraderdaily/2011/10/18/fslr-goldman-sets-new-six-month-90-target-cuts-estimates/

  1. By Rufus on November 10, 2011 at 2:03 am

    Great. An expert. I have a question. A watt of thin-film installed in Houston, Tx (latitude approx 29 degrees N. should produce how many kwhrs/yr?

    If you went inland to San Antonio (also, approx 29 degrees N) would it make any appreciable difference. Thank you in advance.

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  2. By moiety on November 10, 2011 at 4:21 am

    Robert Rapier said:

    I believe solar power will be the renewable sector that makes the biggest long-term impact in our effort to wean away from fossil fuels.


     

    In general I agree but not for a long time. I am pretty in line with the IEA expectation of solar producing 10% of global electricity demand from PV and CSP. The costs of solar are still far too high and incur heavy subsidies. The feed in tariff for solar in Germany alone is 5 times more that that of spot industrial prices and it is a similar story for Greece http://www.energy.eu/#Industrial-Elec. I am also wary of thin film projections as these types are derived for rare earths such as tellurium which wlll increase in price rapidly. Crystalline will fare better but also depend on palladium and that could be a long term issue.

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  3. By robert on November 10, 2011 at 9:47 am

    http://www.solarpanelsplus.com…..on-levels/

    One watt in Houston,Tx produces 4.72 watt hours per day which is 1.72 kWh/year. San Antonio is slightly better at 4.83 watt hours per day.

    The Gulf Coast isn’t that good because it is cloudy all the time. El Paso is a great place for solar. Something like 7 watt*hours/day.

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  4. By Wendell Mercantile on November 10, 2011 at 9:55 am

    If you went inland to San Antonio (also, approx 29 degrees N) would it make any appreciable difference.

    Rufus~

    The difference between Houston and San Antonio would be whether there are external factors that could restrict the flow of solar energy to the surface — for example average cloud cover and humidity.

    I’ve spent time in both places and would expect a higher output in San Antonio. Houston seems to rarely have crystal, clear days and is often muggy and overcast.

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  5. By robert on November 10, 2011 at 10:05 am

    http://www.google.com/imgres?h…..&ty=69

    Here’s a national map where you can see the difference between West Texas and East Texas. The gulf coast isn’t any better than New jersey.

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  6. By Benny BND Cole on November 10, 2011 at 3:52 pm

    There are several areas where each year improvements are made, such as palm oil yields, batteries, and solar. The big q is when such technologies poke their head up into being bona-fide freestanding market-ready products.

    If solar improves by 5 percent a year, if palm oil yields improve by 4 percent a year, if batteries get better by 7 percent a year….then someday. O think we are talking 10 years or less, meaning that a long-term ceiling on oil prices and consumption is ahead, within a decade. We may be there now.

    Peak Oil came and went with a whimper.

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  7. By Rufus on November 10, 2011 at 6:42 pm

    Robert,

    Many Thanks. I appreciate it.

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  8. By biocrude on November 10, 2011 at 9:53 pm

    Kudos to California as it’s Million Solar Rooftops Initiative, announced yesterday they have surpassed 1GW of “installed” solar capacity.  Why doesn’t the solar industry report on actual production, rather than installed capacity?  I think that would be a much more meaningful and relevent metric. Either way, it’s good to see the solar industry growing, prospering and creating jobs.  

     

    Next stop, Tunica, Mississippi…:)

     

    http://www.environmentcaliforn…..ig-success

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  9. By carbonbridge on November 10, 2011 at 10:12 pm

    Benny BND Cole said:

    Peak Oil came and went with a whimper.


     

    Benny,

    Based upon everything which I’ve researched, I wholeheartedly agree with you on your point above…

    Yet I don’t agree AT ALL with your misguided enthusiasm for planting, fertilizing, watering, weeding and harvesting a (agri-based) living plant or tree for its renewable OIL content.  And I’ll include ALGAE in this category as well.  (if palm oil yields improve by 4 percent a year,…)   All oils, including uncombusted oils – phase separate from water bodies as well as from the planetary atmosphere of water vapor. 

     

    A carbon atom is a carbon atom is a carbon atom when isolated, newly derived and (somehow) reconfigured as a energy fuel building block.  Personally, I believe that future green carbon atom building blocks will soon fade from being derived via an agricultural perspective – and farmers will once again be growing only food, not (carbonaceous) fuel feedstocks. 

    Seasonally growing any annual crop is simply too inefficient and this element is being reflected directly in the bottom line…  The first green is the money (profits) and the second green will be the pro or con near-term environmental consequences.  Please always keep in mind biodegradability factors FIRST – and OILS, even plant oils, don’t readily biodegrade.  Alcohols containing the missing Oxygen atom instantly become water soluble (oil soluble and coal soluble too) and feed bugs and plants with a free lunch when accidently spilled.  I’m repeating myself here…  :-)   Palm oil isn’t gonna pencil – yet perhaps for reasons which you still are not interpreting.

    -Mark 

     

     

     



     

     

     

     

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  10. By walter-sobchak on November 11, 2011 at 12:22 am

    The real problem with solar power is not the solar panels, it is the sun, which does
    not shine 4380 hours per year, because of night. That does not include
    twilight, clouds, and dirt. Therefor, every watt of solar must be
    supplemented by an equal or greater amount of generating capacity or of
    storage. So you have to pay for two systems instead of one.

    Second, solar requires land. To make commercially useful quantities of electricity you need land measured in square miles.

    Maybe you can get your cronies in the Obama Administration to give
    you the land, otherwise it will cost money, and lots more to grade the
    land, install roads and drainage, build mounting systems for the panels,
    buy maintenance equipment, wires, inverters, transformers, and
    switches. All of that is expensive, even if the cells are free.

    Between unavoidable real world costs and the cost of a second system, solar will never be commercialy viable.

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  11. By tennie davis on November 11, 2011 at 2:42 am

    Climate change shrinks global crop yields (rolls eyes)
    I like solar energy as much as anyone, but not the agw religion so much.

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  12. By russ on November 11, 2011 at 3:17 am

    robert said:

    http://www.solarpanelsplus.com…..on-levels/

    One watt in Houston,Tx produces 4.72 watt hours per day which is 1.72 kWh/year. San Antonio is slightly better at 4.83 watt hours per day.

    The Gulf Coast isn’t that good because it is cloudy all the time. El Paso is a great place for solar. Something like 7 watt*hours/day.


     

    Actually 1 watt DC of thin film PV panel in Houston produces 12 kWh AC annually -or about 1.18$ of power per year at local power costs

    The annual average insolation for the Houston area is given by PV Watts as 4.79 kW/m2/day – you then adjust for various inefficiencies.

    El Paso has an annual average insolation level of 6,53 kW/m2/day. That would provide approximately 16.5 kWh AC/year per watt DC of panel installed.

    I have no idea where Solar Panels Plus gets their data but they should try PV Watts which is based on long term NASA weather/insolation data. Too many out there make up their own numbers to suit their sales pitch.

    A link to PV Watts   http://mapserve3.nrel.gov/PVWa…..index.html

     

     

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  13. By russ on November 11, 2011 at 3:19 am

    Biocrude said:

    Kudos to California as it’s Million Solar Rooftops Initiative, announced yesterday they have surpassed 1GW of “installed” solar capacity.  Why doesn’t the solar industry report on actual production, rather than installed capacity?  I think that would be a much more meaningful and relevent metric. Either way, it’s good to see the solar industry growing, prospering and creating jobs.  

     

    Next stop, Tunica, Mississippi…:)

     

    http://www.environmentcaliforn…..ig-success


     

    A state that is already broke is shovelling money off the back of the truck in well to do neighborhoods – heck of a plan!

     

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  14. By moiety on November 11, 2011 at 5:05 am

    Biocrude said:

    Kudos to California as it’s Million Solar Rooftops Initiative, announced yesterday they have surpassed 1GW of “installed” solar capacity.  Why doesn’t the solar industry report on actual production, rather than installed capacity?  I think that would be a much more meaningful and relevent metric. Either way, it’s good to see the solar industry growing, prospering and creating jobs.  

     

    Next stop, Tunica, Mississippi…:)

     

    http://www.environmentcaliforn…..ig-success


     

    In principle all electricity generating stations do this. However the capacity factors for most traditional stations are constant and high so the figures are not too far from the truth. With solar and wind capacity factors are must lower so they are being disingenuous. However they would probably say that they are following industrial practice.

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  15. By robert on November 11, 2011 at 10:05 am

    Why doesn’t the solar industry report on actual production, rather than installed capacity?

    I don’t think the solar industry has that number. They don’t go around reading everyone’s meters. If a government entity has a feed in tarriff, I would expect somebody has a figure on how many dollars went out the door. But not everybody does it that way. My solar panels make my electric meter run backwards so the only number that exists is the difference between the amount of electricity I used and the amount I produced. That’s what I get billed for.

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  16. By Rufus on November 11, 2011 at 10:22 am

    Well, isn’t his a heck of a “how do you do.” Robert states, emphatically, that a watt of solar in Houston produces 1.72 kwhrs/yr, and Russ, authoritatively counters with 12 kwhrs/annually.

    We need a Tie-breaker. :)

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  17. By Rufus on November 11, 2011 at 10:31 am

    We have something like 3.5 Million Sq Miles of land area in the United States. I suspect we can spare a few square miles of desert for Solar.

    As for back-ups: it’s never happened yet. If you’re looking for more electricity at “Peak” in Dallas,San Antonio, Phoenix, or San Diego, you’re looking at Hot Summer Afternoons When the Sun is Shining (not when it’s overcast, or rainy.) Gee, I wonder what type of generation would be best during a time such as that?

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  18. By robert on November 11, 2011 at 10:37 am

    My source could easily be wrong but it is in the ballpark. With panels costing $1/watt, you are not going to produce $1.18/year for every $1 invested. There’s still a 5-10 year payback period (before subsidies).

    I accept PV Watts 4.79 kWh/m2/day figure. I don’t know how we get from there to 12 KWh annually. When a manufacturer says a panel will produce 1 watt, they mean it will produce 1 watt under illumination of 1kW/m^2. So using PV Watt figures, 1 watt will produce 4.79 watt*hours/day. Compare to my source’s 4.72 watt*hours/day. From there I multiply by 365 days/year and .001 kilowatts/watts to get 1.72 kWh/year.

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  19. By Rufus on November 11, 2011 at 11:47 am

    Thanks for the follow-up, Robert. I admit, I was expecting to see numbers more similar to yours, than to Russ’s, but I, also, realize that I have a lot to learn about the nuts, and bolts of Solar. And, some info is a little harder for an “internet-challenged” hillbilly to find than I would have thought.

    One way, or the other, I’m going to save that very interesting map that you linked. Some of the takeaways (such as the difference in San Antone, and El Paso) are striking.

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  20. By drunyon on November 11, 2011 at 12:01 pm

    robert said:

    My source could easily be wrong but it is in the ballpark. With panels costing $1/watt, you are not going to produce $1.18/year for every $1 invested. There’s still a 5-10 year payback period (before subsidies).

    I accept PV Watts 4.79 kWh/m2/day figure. I don’t know how we get from there to 12 KWh annually. When a manufacturer says a panel will produce 1 watt, they mean it will produce 1 watt under illumination of 1kW/m^2. So using PV Watt figures, 1 watt will produce 4.79 watt*hours/day. Compare to my source’s 4.72 watt*hours/day. From there I multiply by 365 days/year and .001 kilowatts/watts to get 1.72 kWh/year.


    http://www.solarbuzz.com/facts…..ule-prices

    indicates lowest thin film module prices at $1.25/peak watt and modules are about 40% of the cost of the solar system.  That would indicate about $3.25/watt, or is my arithmatic or data source incorrect?

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  21. By Rufus on November 11, 2011 at 12:27 pm

    Drunyon, one thing, those prices on your link Are based on a “one module purchase.” I imagine the proposed installer of a Large Farm could beat that price, handily (if not today, at least after the first of the year.)

    I’ve said, for awhile, now, that we will soon be seeing professional installation crews that will contract the larger projects for much less than is currently being billed.

    I think I’ll stick with a prediction I made a couple of months, ago, that by the end of 2012, we’ll hear of at least one large project bid at $2.00/Watt, installed.

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  22. By Wendell Mercantile on November 11, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    We have something like 3.5 Million Sq Miles of land area in the United States. I suspect we can spare a few square miles of desert for Solar.

    Look close Rufus. I suspect there are more that a few square miles in Tunica County to spare for solar.

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  23. By not Kit P on November 11, 2011 at 3:14 pm

    “My solar panels make my electric meter run backwards so the only number that exists is the difference between the amount of electricity I used and the amount I produced. ”

     

    Amazing, no not amazing that the meter turns backwards (my meter does not turn at all it is digital). Amazing that an expensive system to make electricity would not have an inexpensive meter to measure how much electricity is produced.

     

    Rufus, will you come out of retirement to sell me $1000/month in insurance? Let me tell you upfront that that I do not care how much coverage that buys, I just want to fell good about having $1000/month in insurance. I how that answers your tie breaker question in the context you can understand.

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  24. By Rufus on November 11, 2011 at 5:14 pm

    First, we have to figure out where to install the Wind Turbines, Wendell. In area such as ours (a bit better than average wind/a bit better than average sun) it makes the most sense to install the solar close to the wind farms/electricity lines.

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  25. By Rufus on November 11, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    $2.00 Watt, or thereabouts, for “Peaking” power in El Paso (according to Robert’s figures: 2.55kwhrs/yr) is a heck of a deal. In 15yrs, or so (depending on how the bond/financing is set up) that sucker will be producing free, no cost-of-feedstock electricity for another 40, or 50 yrs, or longer.

    Anyone care to guess what the cost of natural gas, coal, or any other “finite” fuel will be in 30 years? I didn’t think so.

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  26. By robert on November 11, 2011 at 10:29 pm

    It might be possible to tease out how much power I produced out of my inverter but I don’t know how to do it. They’ll sell you a package to send your power data to a personal computer if anyone likes looking at a wall of numbers. In any case there’s no reason to believe the solar industry has access to these numbers.

    “Grid Parity” is going to come to different locations at different times. Think about $2.00 a watt in southern california where they want 33 cents for a peak kilowatt today.

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  27. By russ-finley on November 12, 2011 at 5:25 pm

    I’m a big fan of solar but this article has a few major flaws, IMHO. The biggest mistake was to promote solar by critiquing nuclear, especially after highlighting the importance of switching to low emission energy. That’s a contradiction.

    … the shocking failure of the Fukushima Daichi nuclear power plant reactors in March of 2011 that has forced one hundred thousand Japanese in a twelve mile radius to evacuate.

    What I find shocking is that you find the failure of a few reactors, after being hit with a magnitude 9 quake and 30 foot high tsunami …shocking, but not the fact that this natural disaster killed 20,000 and cost $240 billion. A study last year suggested that upwards of 100,000 poor may be dying prematurely from nutrition related illness thanks to biofuels exacerbating food price increases. That’s shocking. Over 100,000 people are killed in cars …annually. That’s shocking.

    There is no need to denigrate nuclear to promote solar. Solar will need a low carbon source of following and base load power assist. Nuclear, particularly the small modular designs currently being promoted by the DOE fit that bill nicely. Nuclear can maximize the potential of solar. Stop critiquing it as part of your promotion of solar. You should be promoting it as part of the promotion of solar.

    There is a great deal more to the cost of a solar powered grid than the panels and nobody seriously thinks solar will replace more than a small fraction of our energy in the foreseeable future.

    Just got back from a kid’s birthday party where the parents had invited me to give the participants a ride in my Nissan Leaf. In fact, all of the kids got solar powered toy cars as share presents. I brought along a full sized solar panel and a 12 volt automobile car bulb just in case the sun peaked out. The sun didn’t come out and I could not light that bulb at 1:00 in the afternoon, and none of the toy cars would move either.

    Solar and wind cannot in the foreseeable future, economically replace other sources of electric power alone because they need help compensating for their intermittent, non-dispatchable nature.

    The United States spends almost $500 billion annually purchasing energy from other countries

    I don’t see how displacing coal and natural gas (primarily domestic sources) with solar reduces that expenditure.

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  28. By Rufus on November 12, 2011 at 6:56 pm

    Russ, we import oil, to make diesel, to power trucks. A lot (most?) of those trucks can be replaced by Solar/Wind Powered Rail.

    Those cars should have had small batteries (charged by Solar, or Wind,) and you could have backed up your solar demo with a small windmill.

    We have to start looking at this thing as a complete “system.” (that includes Biomass.)

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  29. By russ on November 18, 2011 at 1:51 am

    For the recodr and to stop some of the loony numbers that are bouncing around

    From PV Watts for Houston – based on long term climate data from NASA. For a 1 kW DC PV panel array.

    Not too hard – just divide by 1000 Rufus.

    “Station Identification”
    “City:”,”Houston”
    “State:”,”Texas”
    “Lat (deg N):”, 29.98
    “Long (deg W):”, 95.37
    “Elev (m): “, 33
    “PV System Specifications”
    “DC Rating:”,” 1.0 kW”
    “DC to AC Derate Factor:”,” 0.770″
    “AC Rating:”,” 0.8 kW”
    “Array Type: Fixed Tilt”

    “Array Tilt:”,” 30.0″
    “Array Azimuth:”,”180.0″

    “Energy Specifications”
    “Cost of Electricity:”,” 9.7 cents/kWh”

    “Results”
    “Month”, “Solar Radiation (kWh/m^2/day)”, “AC Energy (kWh)”, “Energy Value ($)”
    1, 3.68, 84, 8.15
    2, 4.12, 84, 8.15
    3, 4.82, 107, 10.38
    4, 4.98, 105, 10.18
    5, 5.24, 112, 10.86
    6, 5.53, 112, 10.86
    7, 5.43, 113, 10.96
    8, 5.44, 114, 11.06
    9, 5.40, 111, 10.77
    10, 5.19, 111, 10.77
    11, 4.33, 92, 8.92
    12, 3.34, 75, 7.27
    “Year”, 4.79, 1220, 118.34$

    1220 kWh annually from a 1 kW system divided by 1000 equals 1,22 kW/installed watt of panel.

    The average insolation figure of 4,79 is only part of the calculation.

    Rufus – every time you start talking about solar and wind you make a complete mess of it – but I suppose that is true with ethanol/methanol as well.

     

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  30. By Anonymous One on December 9, 2011 at 5:42 pm

    1220 kWh annually from a 1 kW system divided by 1000 equals 1,22 kW/installed watt of panel.

    You mean, equals 1.22 kWh/year per installed watt

    Which is a lot closer to Robert’s number than your original 12 kWh AC annually. Robert’s number didn’t include derate factor.

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