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#26 2023-01-25 11:47:35

From: Northern England, UK
Registered: 2019-08-18
Posts: 2,336

Re: Exposed: The smear tactics against wind and solar

Void, that's a good find.  I think the various options for thermal storage are probably the best approach for managing the problems associated with intermittency.  The hot brick and crushed rock heat stores would be very useful in towns and cities if we could construct local district heating networks around them.  Trying to build networks covering entire cities would be daunting.  But more local networks can be installed incrementally.

"Plan and prepare for every possibility, and you will never act. It is nobler to have courage as we stumble into half the things we fear than to analyse every possible obstacle and begin nothing. Great things are achieved by embracing great dangers."


#27 2023-01-25 19:00:33

Registered: 2015-01-02
Posts: 6,370

Re: Exposed: The smear tactics against wind and solar


On the go-forward, I would like to have less polluted water, rather than more.  Unfortunately, increasing reliance on electronics and batteries is at-odds with that goal.  They all contain various metals that are not compatible with human physiology.  This is unfortunate, but most energetic substances are also a little toxic.

The cheap Chinese photovoltaic panels contain Lead, despite false advertising claims about being Lead-free.  We know this because the EPA has test reports on the amount of Lead, Arsenic, and/or other heavy metals (Cadmium, mostly) leached from cracked or damaged Chinese photovoltaic panels.  They contain less Lead, but the Lead is still there.  If the glass didn't crack, then the heavy metals would remain inside the panels until recycling.  Since that doesn't happen in real life (glass cracks when struck with a hard object), we get water pollution in our quest for cheapness.

The Lead is present because making high quality soldered connections without Lead is more difficult.  The Arsenic and Gallium are a natural part of the photovoltaic cell.  Lithium is a natural part of Lithium-ion batteries.  What the EPA did not know, prior to testing, was how rapidly rainwater would leach those elements / chemical compounds from the damaged panels.  The Chinese are much like the Russians / Soviets.  They'll do anything, however ill-advised, to save and pocket that last dollar.  That was what gave us the Chernobyl accident.  Between the poisoned Chinese baby formula, toxic drywall, and Leaded photovoltaic panels, there's an object lesson in there, pertaining to what a dollar buys.

Fast, cheap, and/or high-quality- pick any two, because you can't have all three in one product.  Since something has to give in order to meet production schedules, it's nearly always quality that suffers.  Fast and cheap is much easier to do, so that's what the Chinese do, and we keep buying what they produce, so there's no incentive to change.  The Chinese know their customer.  Their customer may complain endlessly about quality, but they'll keep buying the product, and that's pretty much all that matters to the Chinese.

I think it's probable that people conflate what one person might be willing to do, at great personal expense, to achieve some form of "energy independence", with what's practical to do at a national or global scale.  Powering every home in Texas using photovoltaic panels, for example, is utterly impractical, even though Texas gets plenty of sunlight, year-round.  The issue has always been about storage.  The moment you add storage into the mix, costs rise far above the costs of coal / oil / gas  / nuclear.  If the storage involves the use of any form of battery built using existing technology, then it's an immediate non-starter on cost grounds, because energy cost is then measured in dollars per kWh, rather than cents per kWh.

Has anyone else noticed that Tesla's "grid battery stunt" has never been repeated by their customer in Australia, and that the energy their battery bank provides is a fraction of what's needed to make it through a single night, and that it only powers a few hundred thousand homes for about 4 hours, IIRC?  If it was practical to do, then why don't they have 12 hours of grid battery storage by now?

This is why thermal engines and hydrocarbon fuels are still required.  There are living / working examples of utility-scale solar thermal power stations with 12 hours of energy storage.  They do not use any form of battery.  They store sensible heat energy in molten salt or in natural materials (rock, oil, sand, etc).  That heat energy is later used to spin an electric generator to produce power when the Sun ceases to shine.  None of those power plants are "cheaper than coal" or "too cheap to meter", but they do represent the cheapest form of solar power that is a real power plant that provides 24/7/365 power.

Similarly, you're not going to run a practical car off of steam.  It can be done and has been done in the past, but internal combustion engines replaced steam and batteries because the concessions that had to be made to use batteries were so great that they were deemed sub-optimal solutions that consumers weren't interested in purchasing when better alternatives were available.


#28 2023-01-27 06:13:47

Registered: 2011-12-29
Posts: 5,380

Re: Exposed: The smear tactics against wind and solar

I picked up this video this morning:

I don't require consul on the bad side of solar panels and wind power.  This is a "Measurement".

I am not preaching a religion, I am taking a reading.

So, I feel it will be interesting to see, if very special places on the planet which may become like oil rich regions/nations.

Even more interesting may be if they do eventually begin to do some kind of "Power to fuel" process.

That is all.  It is an observation of an opinion.

I do not require any punishments thank you very much.




#29 2023-01-27 19:58:29

From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 27,185

Re: Exposed: The smear tactics against wind and solar

It's one of the reasons to look at all choices other than paying the electrical company since all they are going to do is keep rising the rates that you pay.

So, the solar concentrator is a do able for the most part with site selection planning to size it to generate while you can at the highest level of thermal capability.

It uses well defined parts from base board water heating systems including tanks that while they are meant for oil can be used for other sections to aid in fabrication such as a sand battery storage. You also need a tank as well for the excess store of water heat as well to make use of for bath and other uses. 

Now if you can get the temperatures up via a more concentrating system to create steam then you now have supplemental power to not only power the flow of the pumps and for electrical elsewhere in the system. If the only means is net metering to bank the excess that is what you do for later when you need it.

All these activities will reduce the amount of solar PV panels and batteries if so desired. It will also reduce the need for fuels to run things and for power generation as well.


#30 2023-01-27 22:50:35

Registered: 2015-01-02
Posts: 6,370

Re: Exposed: The smear tactics against wind and solar

From "The Electric Viking":

In the world’s largest grid…. This is a fascinating story.  It shows you, it proves that the cost of energy will fall massively once we use solar and wind generation and batteries as our primary method and means for producing electricity.  In fact, here in Australia there’s a state where the cost of electricity is more than 50 percent cheaper because use renewables versus other states where they use primarily coal power.  Very bizarrely, the state of South Australia here in Australia is seen as a world first.  It says the future of a renewable energy grid, in fact it’s like a test monkey.  People are looking at it to to say, “hey will renewables work on the grid or will they not and why are they doing that?”  Well, the reason is because this is the biggest grid in the world that runs primarily on renewable energy.  In fact, it’s a fascinating examination of the future of global electricity.  Seriously, it’s absolutely intriguing what’s happening, and it just gives us a glimpse into what the world will look like in 10 years from now.

Unless he's talking about the United States or China or Europe, none of which are NOT primarily powered by wind and solar, then the very first statement out of his mouth is blatantly and obviously wrong in a meaningful way.  Electricity rates paid by actual consumers in South Australia haven't gone down at all.  In point of fact, they've gone up considerably.  This is likely due in part to increasing gas prices, which I will readily concede to anyone asking, but actual factual information appears to be an issue with this "Electric Viking" fellow.

I've no idea where his "very fascinating story" is sourced from, either, because it comes with no references.  It's just an opinion of something he personally likes.  This is typical of his YouTube videos, though.  He simply says things without bothering to cite where he heard or read what he repeats in public forums.  I will chalk that up to excitement on his part over something he personally likes, which is fine, but it's still unfounded opinion that he's asserting is factual information.

There's nothing wrong with being a cheerleader for something that works at some level.  I'm glad wind and solar are working for South Australia.  It's about time they worked well enough for someone, somewhere.  I think I can explain why that is, though.  Their installed capacity, in terms of wind and solar (just over 2,000MW for each), is roughly double their peak seasonal demand.  Moreover, their peak seasonal demand over the past year looks like a lot like a horizontal line.

Australian Energy Regulator - Seasonal peak demand - regions

Hello my friends.  Welcome to the channel.  I’m the electric Viking.  Great to see you.  My name is Sam Evans and I’m coming to you from Melbourne Australia.  I’m very, you know what, I’m very proud of these people in South Australia in general.  They’ve embraced renewable energy in an incredible way.  You know, they embraced the Tesla gigawatt batteries when the Prime Minister of this country openly mocked them, said they were a joke and they wouldn’t work.  Well, they did.  Adelaide was right they were forward thinking.  Our government were just clueless, didn’t know what they were talking about.  I mean our government didn’t like maths.  South Australia, they went, “you know what, let’s think about this logically, and well, here we are.  We’re in a position where they have transformed their state in a way that’s truly truly remarkable.

There is no Tesla "gigawatt battery" in South Australia.  I have no clue what he's talking about, nor does Tesla, apparently.  I don't think he does, either.  There is a 150MW / 193.5MWh Tesla "MegaPack" deployed there.

According to their 2020 to 2021 financial year, South Australia's total electricity consumption was 11,614GWh.  From this I derived average consumption.  Every hour, they consume 1,325,799,087 Watt-hours (1.325GW) of electricity.  Their Tesla MegaPack battery can supply electricity for a whopping 8.76 minutes of their average hourly electricity consumption, if ever their wind and solar systems quit producing electricity.  In practice, the massive "Hornsdale Power Reserve" batteries are used to stabilize the frequency on the grid, due to the massive power output fluctuations caused by wind and solar, at a cost of $172 million dollars.

For about $1,178,000,000, South Australia can have 1 hour of power reserve.  For $14,137,000,000 South Australia can have 12 hours of reserve power.  South Australia's GDP is $117.739 billion.  To purchase 1 week's worth of reserve power, in terms of Lithium-ion batteries, they'd spend almost their entire yearly GDP.  South Australia also contributes about 5.6% to the national economy.  In terms of overall value-add to the nation of Australia, whatever they're doing down there adds very little net economic value.

That's probably why they afford to do stuff like this.  Someone else is paying for it, namely the consumer.  To that point, part of how they funded their giant battery was charging $14,000MWh back when they were having grid stability issues brought on by wind and solar.  I guess that's one way of funding your ideology, but I think it would be akin to usury in most other places.  The median age in South Australia is also 40, so they've worked long enough to obtain a fair bit of money.  As all those people near retirement, it'll be time to completely replace all the photovoltaic panels, wind turbines, and batteries (for the 2nd time).

As near as I can tell, Electric Viking's assertions that batteries are cheaper than coal is based upon nothing and further proves that he doesn't know what he's talking about.  8.76 minutes of power reserve is very close to nothing at all.  If South Australia's grid ever has any serious problem with production, then it's going down and staying down for days to weeks while their grid operators reconnect all the loads.  He made some vague assertion about "the maths" in his video, but I see very little in the way of "the maths" from him.  I hope he understands what will happen without greater storage capacity, which they are presently building, with a price tag very close to my projection.  Hopefully it's enough.

I put him on fast forward to make it through the rest of his video, so apologies for that, but reality doesn't align well with his outlandish claims.


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