The Market Ticker
Rss Icon RSS available
Fact: There is no immunity or protection against The Law of Scoreboards.
Did you know: What the media does NOT want you to read is at https://market-ticker.org/nad.
You are not signed on; if you are a visitor please register for a free account!
The Market Ticker Read Message in The Market Ticker
Top Forum Top Login FAQ Register Clear Cookie Logout
Page 4 of 5  First12345Last
 Reality vis-a-vis Energy And The Economy
Packetcap 1k posts, incept 2021-07-23
2022-01-04 12:15:57

@Bluto it is even worse than what you described for residential solar maintenance...

First, the parts in these systems are not reliable. There are multiple single points of failure, in particular, the inverters can fail after a few years. That's a few thousand $ to replace.

Second, the battery units in solar systems have a lifespan, most are warranted for ten years. To get to 10 years on a daily recharging/discharging cycle, the batteries are capped to 80% of capacity charge rates, and turn off when they reach 20% of capacity. On a 10kW battery that gives you 6kW of usable capacity. The first battery in my system failed after three months and it took six months to get a replacement installed (LG battery). BTW the LG product is crap.

Third, the average residential customer is reliant on their solar contractor to do the system maintenance. Lead times for new parts measure in months and it can take days to get someone out to look at a problem. If you intend to have a residential system for "off grid" living good luck with that. You need a backup generator.

Last, the impact of cloudy or rainy days cannot be stated enough. My experience shows that a rainy day can take a system that produces 35kW a day down to 1kW during a big storm, though usually the number is around 5kW. What are you going to run when you produce 5kW? not much! Likewise, smoke from wildfires can also have a big impact.

Jadedamber 93 posts, incept 2019-07-30
2022-01-04 12:41:19

Heaven help you if you were stuck on I95 for nigh on 24 hours AND you were driving an EV.
Mjeff87 2k posts, incept 2021-11-22
2022-01-04 13:41:15

@Keenan

We have a huge solar array on the rooftop of my work building (one of Oblama's "shovel ready projects.....). About 400 commercial panels, all feeding a humongous DC inverter. We just had a snowstorm of sorts down this way yesterday, anywhere from 5-16" of heavy, wet snow depending on where you were). I checked the power metering this morning here, and it was putting out a whopping ZERO amps, and about 2 kw of power. Now that the sun's been out a bit, I figure the panels are slowly starting to shed their load.....it's up to 4kw, and about 10A. It's comical. Luckily, it's just supplemental power for our facility, we still have a tie in to the local utility (400A service).

ETA: the company that installed the entire solar system is long since defunct as well. It will slowly die an untimely death, one component at a time.....


----------
Si Vis Pacem, para Bellum

Light travels faster than sound.
That is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.

Reason: add info
Drifter 1k posts, incept 2016-02-11
2022-01-04 13:44:28

A survivalist I know put $80k into a windpower system in 2005. Only put out half the juice as promised then a storm took out the propellers a few years later. The install company is defunct, so warranty is worthless. Blades are many thousands each-- he decided to abandon it.

Green energy. Greenbacks for some, that is.
Rangeishot 2k posts, incept 2021-11-18
2022-01-04 13:59:51

@Bluto & @Packetcap

For all the reasons you outlined, I couldn't make the numbers work when we designed and built our house in 2006, and it has a huge south-facing rooftop surface with nothing blocking it. The best I could do on paper -- and those were best-case numbers I didn't trust -- was break-even at the estimated 30 year panel replacement timeframe.

Instead I went with a 24kW Generac and through multiple hurricanes I've learned I can run absolutely everything for 8 days on 200 gallons of LP... three HVACs, even the pool pumps (which, in the case of a hurricane, prevents the pool from overflowing -- which translates into the yard mixing with your pool).

Someone mentioned new battery tech. I found the following interesting (because Crown is a well-respected name in high-reliability batteries for RVs and commercial/industrial systems) -- haven't heard anything more about it, though:

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases....

----------
Welcome to TF: The "T" stands for "Thoughtcrime"
Kgmqt 281 posts, incept 2013-08-19
2022-01-04 14:00:21

TG,

Thanks for the quick figures. I try to make sure things are as apples to apples when talking to others.

I have a friend with a Tesla. He also did a home solar install. His numbers look good, but gets kinda butt hurt when you ask him about how long it will take him to pay back the subsidies he got to install it. When he parks at home and charges off his solar/battery array, or goes to work which gives him a 'free' charging station his personal point in time costs look very good. But he never is willing to figure in the costs outside of his direct miles driven energy costs.

Last spring he traded his minivan off on a second Tesla. He then went on to say that driving both Teslas on a family camping trip (because he couldn't fit everything in one) was still more efficient than taking the minivan.

And this guy is smart. Computer science guy, always good with money. Bought and flipped a house by 22, had his second house paid off by 27. But he is so hung up on solar, wind, and EV as the only way forward.
Tickerguy 193k posts, incept 2007-06-26
2022-01-04 14:01:03

He's full of shit.

----------
The difference between "kill" and "murder" is that murder, as a subset of kill, is undeserved by the deceased.
Redjack 1k posts, incept 2018-01-29
2022-01-04 14:46:21

Whitehat.

You are correct again sir.

I am a national Merit scholar, which helped me with scholarships here, but a good engineer from say Germany or the Eastern bloc countries blows us away.

Even with that, there is a huge blind spot. One gentleman I knew worked with me on boiler/power generation design for a project. Something were we HAD to know pretty much exactly how much energy we were putting out as steam, heat, and electricity.

He loved EV's. Not as "I love the torque and acceleration of EVS!" like my auto head friend does but as a solution to the coming energy crisis. When I asked him were the electricity was going to come from, he either got mad or said "That is someone else's problem!"

Here is the thing, we were working with transmission loss. It wasn't a thing he had never dealt with, but we were trying to figure out how to run internal power lines the best way to limit power loss (a bit out of my ball park to be honest, but once you treat it like pressure drop in a pipe, I can grok it!).

It is a cult. Or maybe the stark horror of the Three Laws Of ThermoDymanics is such that a rational man runs away from the implications. Namely, you can not win, you can not break even, and you can not quit.
Redjack 1k posts, incept 2018-01-29
2022-01-04 14:47:02

On our holiday travels, I went through western Iowa on I80.

For those that haven't been there, there are a large number of windmills MidAmerican put in a while ago.

On this trip, my wife was driving and I noticed something. Many if not all of the generators have bene replaced. They are all less than 10 years old.

There are boilers out there making steam for power that were built in the 60s.

When you talk "Green" what you mean is "Disposable."
Abelardlindsey 1k posts, incept 2021-03-26
2022-01-04 15:08:02

In other news, Elizabeth Holmes of Theranos notoriety was convicted on 4 counts of what she was tried for.

----------
Its all in the mitochondria
Traelin0 551 posts, incept 2021-01-28
2022-01-04 19:14:07

Drifter wrote..
Wish we could get some European cars over here. Drove a VW Up, diesel, for two weeks. My god what a fun car and the MPG was insane-- 55mpg.

My solution was perfect for me but it isn't for everyone. 1993 Dodge Cummins W250, manual. Wonderful truck if you don't mind a rewiring project. Everything important is mechanical. Minimal decomputerization necessary.
Evergreen 274 posts, incept 2021-12-26
2022-01-04 19:53:48

Kgmqt,

Absent subsidies, the dollar cost of each option would tell which is most efficient. All elements of cost (ultimately labor; the ore pit doesn't issue receipts) are embedded. When hydrocarbons are penalized and battery systems are incentivized, the buyer doesn't have an apples to apples (Effective Work)/$ metric.

One of the benefits of decentralization of market control is reasonably accurate pricing and fewer market dislocations. You know, the kind of thing that regular people find to be compatible with making a living and just getting along.
Ee4fire 861 posts, incept 2011-03-24
2022-01-05 08:52:45

The linked article below "California releases final root cause analysis of August rolling blackouts" appeared in one of the electrical trade publications I receive.

https://www.utilitydive.com/news/califor....

Two of three conclusions were as follows:

2) The conclusion largely mirrored preliminary findings, reporting that an extreme heat wave caused by climate change led to excessive demand, while resource planning targets under a changing power supply have not kept up with supply-demand, and some market practices exacerbated the supply issues.

3) Renewables and storage advocates said the report is evidence California should be more aggressive in investing in long-term energy storage, to ensure power from intermittent resources such as solar can be available during peak hours.

While 2 is probably a true statement, 3 is complete and utter bovine excrement. Long term energy storage. Long term energy storage of electricity is the use of batteries. Batteries are DC and the power grid uses AC. Do they know how many f'ing batteries they are going to need and of what type? How many acres of solar panels and tens of thousands of windmills will be enough to satisfy the normal and peak power demands of the largest state with almost 40 million people?

Solar panels and windmills can supplement and address peak issues, but their reliability is nowhere near a 99.999% standard some utility customers require from an electric utility. The same people or type of people running the WuFLu response are also running the public service commissions and energy policy branches of gov't.

The obvious solution is better and more efficient generation plants and upgrading the transmission and distribution infrastructure. More redundancy and paralleling of generation and power line circuits will do more to fix the problem panels and windmills.

The Green New Deal Unicorn sellers are at it again. They will build their white elephant "renewable" electric grid in the land of fruits and nuts. The big groundbreaking with all the smiling politicians standing there with their Nazi advocates patting themselves on their backs. The first summer of excessive demand when all the AC and refrigeration units start coming on and staying on, the renewable grid will collapse. Not to mention charging all those electric vehicles once they will have outlawed the internal combustion engine. All those smiling politicians will be ducking for cover under their solar panel farms.


----------
(Politicians), 536 commoditized temple monkeys pawing through the ruins of America in search of bribes. (The District of Corruption) works like a vending machine. You put coins in the slot, select yo
Ee4fire 861 posts, incept 2011-03-24
2022-01-05 08:53:20

@Packetcap

Quote:
First, the parts in these systems are not reliable. There are multiple single points of failure, in particular, the inverters can fail after a few years. That's a few thousand $ to replace.

Second, the battery units in solar systems have a lifespan, most are warranted for ten years. To get to 10 years on a daily recharging/discharging cycle, the batteries are capped to 80% of capacity charge rates, and turn off when they reach 20% of capacity. On a 10kW battery that gives you 6kW of usable capacity. The first battery in my system failed after three months and it took six months to get a replacement installed (LG battery). BTW the LG product is crap.

Third, the average residential customer is reliant on their solar contractor to do the system maintenance. Lead times for new parts measure in months and it can take days to get someone out to look at a problem. If you intend to have a residential system for "off grid" living good luck with that. You need a backup generator.

Last, the impact of cloudy or rainy days cannot be stated enough. My experience shows that a rainy day can take a system that produces 35kW a day down to 1kW during a big storm, though usually the number is around 5kW. What are you going to run when you produce 5kW? not much! Likewise, smoke from wildfires can also have a big impact.


You left out when the parts and wires on the roof fail, there is nothing to turn off the power. When the inverters and wires start shorting you CANNOT turn off the energy coming from the solar panel. There are no switches, fuses, or circuit breakers on any of panels or equipment on the roof. The wiring is fused coming out of the collector boxes down to the solar electrical panel and disconnect at the electric service, but that is it.

You also left out rodents. Squirrels, racoons, and mice love chewing on the series wiring for these installations. If the wiring isn't protected (and most aren't) the rodents will chew away.

You can have 10 or 20kW of unstoppable electrical power on your roof and no way to control when the system fails and sets your roof on fire. Ask Dietz & Watson about their plant in NJ with the entire roof covered in solar panels. The solar panel actually hindered the fire department's suppression efforts.

https://finance.yahoo.com/video/6-alarm-....

Ask the owner of this building:

https://www.dailydispatch.com/StateNews/....

I investigated dozens of commercial and residential solar panel fires. As this equipment ages I will get busier. The electrical activity stops when the roof collapses or the solar panels have been consumed. Of course, the more panels and roof that burn the less electricity there is to ignite combustible materials and shock the fire fighters. Does anyone go up and clean the leaves, nesting debris, and other materials that collect under the panels? In the wintertime the panels are a nice warm shelter for birds and rodents. Just my observations.

The best part about solar is unless you have the batteries and a transfer switch, you can't use the solar panels as backup power during a power outage. Most people do not want to spend the more than $10,000 for the batteries and inverters.


----------
(Politicians), 536 commoditized temple monkeys pawing through the ruins of America in search of bribes. (The District of Corruption) works like a vending machine. You put coins in the slot, select yo
Abelardlindsey 1k posts, incept 2021-03-26
2022-01-05 08:54:41

There are those fusion power start-ups as well. There is even a fusion energy association that many of them are members of.

https://www.fusionindustryassociation.or....


----------
Its all in the mitochondria
Jpg 848 posts, incept 2009-03-23
2022-01-05 08:54:46

Came to a realization a few months back that's related in an ancillary manner to this post via the concept of "created vs. converted energy" - fake/lab-grown meat.

It's made, as best I can tell, from peas.

Humans can derive nutrition from eating peas.

They're basically converting one form of human food to another form of human food.

Cattle (and ruminants in general), on the other hand, convert grass and leaves, from which humans CANNOT derive nutrition, to meat/milk, from which humans CAN (obviously) derive nutrition.

The real question, then is "What's the end-goal of the fake-meat gang in trying to eliminate a major source of human nutrition?".

Several possible answers come to mind, ranging from bad to worse.
Steelpiston71 7k posts, incept 2007-09-05
2022-01-05 10:03:10

"Most people do not want to spend the more than $10,000 for the batteries and inverters."

The weight of those battery banks is ungodly. Shipping costs and then the rack build have to be factored in as well.

----------
"We have resolution authority under Frank/Dodd... How about we USE IT?" Karl Denninger, 10/07/10 on the Dylan Ratigan Show, MSNBC.
Mr_clueless 113 posts, incept 2009-06-04
2022-01-05 10:44:32

A couple of related references.
https://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/....
https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=2212....
Peterm99 9k posts, incept 2009-03-21
2022-01-05 13:05:45

Ee4fire wrote..
Long term energy storage of electricity is the use of batteries.
That is only really feasible for very small-scale storage, and, from what I understand, they are looking at energy, not electricity, storage

What is generally being considered/proposed (already used in numerous smaller-scale installations) is the use of pumps to lift water up to a reservoir during periods of excess power availability and then to let the falling water drive turbines to generate electricity at night or for other periods of lower power production during cloudy and/or windless weather.

In theory, the principle is sound, but there are hellacious energy losses involved, that would require huge overbuilding of wind and/or solar farms to provide the excess power for the pumping of adequate amounts of water to accommodate the sunless/windless periods. I haven't seen the numbers they are using to justify the proposals, but, at a gut level, I believe that the cost/effort to actually make that work on a large (i.e., regional or state-wide) scale would be prohibitive.

----------
". . . the Constitution has died, the economy welters in irreversible decline, we have perpetual war, all power lies in the hands of the executive, the police are supreme, and a surveillance b
Mjeff87 2k posts, incept 2021-11-22
2022-01-05 15:07:31

^^^small scale installation

Look up Smith Mountain Lake, down here in Virginia (southwest). It is an engineering marvel. Scalable? Not without a shit ton of money.

----------
Si Vis Pacem, para Bellum

Light travels faster than sound.
That is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.
Tsherry 12k posts, incept 2008-12-09
2022-01-05 15:29:34

A project I'm peripherally involved in is a laboratory for grid storage level battery research. The amount of money they're throwing at this is insane.

----------
Stay out of the blast radius.
Drifter 1k posts, incept 2016-02-11
2022-01-06 15:36:53

@trae-- my dad has a '92. Getting parts is becoming problematic. His has 600,000 miles, therefore one is going to have issues with reliability-- the tranny just went out, for instance.

I have a Leaf and Tahoe to spare the miles on my '99 and '07 cummins trucks, because I consider these trucks not replaceable-- manual trannies and no exhaust bullshit.

Nashville 139 posts, incept 2018-02-27
2022-01-06 15:59:57

Here in Tennessee, in addition to being 1st in nuclear energy, about 50 years ago we built a small elevated water energy storage facility. I have no idea about the energy losses involved in a cycle.

https://www.tva.com/Energy/Our-Power-Sys....
Nashville 139 posts, incept 2018-02-27
2022-01-06 16:13:50

I can't imagine the time and cost overruns for this project if done TODAY using computers instead of slide rules, plus the required environmental impact studies, and build-back-better money allocation schemes. Here is some pertinent info...

In 1974, the National Society of Professional Engineers named the work at Raccoon Mountain one of Americas most outstanding engineering projects. When completed, the plant would be the largest water-storage facility of its kind in the world.

The project took longer than expected. Originally scheduled for completion in 1973, it wasnt finished until 1979, at a cost of just over 300 million dollars. But it worked well beyond all expectations. The storage reservoir gives the Raccoon Mountain plant a tremendous amount of flexibility to balance the load and supply on the TVA system. The power used for pumping provides needed load during low-demand hours while providing power during peak-demand hours. The plant is also able to change power output very rapidly, thus matching load and supply as well as providing a back-up power source throughout the day.

With its 1.6 million kilowatts of capacity, the Raccoon Mountain Pumped Storage Plant generates 14 times more power than nearby Chickamauga Dam, and it is a major factor in the efficient, reliable operation of the entire TVA power system.

It has done that every day for almost a quarter of a century and, in the wake of the plants current modernization and upgrade in capacity, it will continue to do it for years to come.

I seem to remember Obama spent $500M of our money to fund Solyndra. (nuff said)
Gollum 2k posts, incept 2011-07-31
2022-01-06 20:22:45

I remember about ten years ago ethanol was going to be the answer to all of our liquid fuel problems. I bet half the cars and trucks we looked at were rated for E85. Then all of the sudden you cant find a new car on the lot that is. I suspect thats whats going to happen to electric cars too. Our next vehicles will be the most efficient we can find that are able to meet our needs going forward but its very unlikely theyll be electric.
Login Register Top Blog Top Blog Topics FAQ
Page 4 of 5  First12345Last