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Only 100 square miles of solar panels are required to power the entire United States

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posted on Apr, 2 2019 @ 10:01 AM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

sad state of the world that we have so many willing to seek personal gain at the expense of others and over the suffering of others , our animals and our planet !

totally sad , one generation selling out the next forever until its all gone , the earth is a desert and the rivers are all dead , the seas too
the air unbreathable unless you can afford to live in a fancy habitation dome , or in an off world colony on the moon or mars !

the working classes left to work to death on a dying world !




posted on Apr, 2 2019 @ 10:29 AM
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a reply to: cooperton


Most people are connected to the grid so you dont need batteries if you sell surplus during the day, and buy at night.

And with that, you just explained the problem with this 100-mile square solar grid.

When you are connected to an existing, operating power grid, you are supplementing it. A grid-tie inverter allows your low-voltage DC power to be synchronized with the higher voltage AC power, and power will flow both ways as needed. Yes, you can contribute to the amount of power available during peak sunlight times, and yes, you can be reimbursed for that power. However, that does not work if the solar supply is the grid.

In a typical AC power grid, the actual frequency and phase is determined by a constant battle, if you will, between competing suppliers. All power producers have control over both frequency and phase of their power output, and that frequency/phase adjustment is tied to the frequency/phase of the grid itself. If two equally-contributing competing suppliers have their phase 10% from each other, each will automatically adjust their phase by about 5%. Smaller power suppliers have less of an impact on the grid. Home based supplies have absolutely no effect on frequency/phase; they simply read the grid and adjust their frequency/phase accordingly. That's what the grid-tie inverter does.

All this is necessary to prevent short-circuiting the grid. If one takes both 'hot' leads from a 220 VAC dual-phase outlet and connects them together, the result is a dead short (and tripped breakers, along with the possibility of fires,,, do NOT do this!). But both lines contain the exact same power so far as voltage and frequency... only the phase is different, in this case by 180 degrees. Thus, if your inverter were to find itself far out of phase with the grid, it would short out the grid (meaning tripped breakers in your home, possibly tripped substation breakers, and your inverter literally melting).

If there is no preponderance of AC power on the grid, the adjustments do not work. If you ran two grid-tie inverters of equal size on a connected line without the AC power input, they would likely fry each other as they tried to battle it out over which one would get to follow the other.

Solar power is a fabulous niche source. I use it to power projects that are too difficult to hook to the power grid. But it is not an acceptable solution for main power, and to be honest, I do not see that changing any time soon. if you want to hook home solar to the grid, please, by all means, do so! It can be a good idea in certain climates. Do not, however, try to insist that solar is the answer to a completely different question... because it's not.

(Incidentally, you might be interested in a few economic realities of a home-based solar power station: you will sell your power to the power company for the lowest price they pay for electricity that month. Power is bought and sold based not only on how much is used, but also on when it is used. Peak power can cost your distributor several times as much as off-peak power. Commercial suppliers keep track of the amounts of power sold and when they were sold to accomplish this; you cannot do so. Also, make sure you have a disconnect in place; should there be a brown-out or black-out in your area, the grid can pull all of your home-generated power into the grid instead of into your home otherwise. Some grid-tie inverters automatically disconnect from the grid during a power drop; that's the ones you want, although they will cost more.)

TheRedneck



posted on Apr, 2 2019 @ 10:36 AM
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a reply to: sapien82

Well, there's a flip side of that same coin too, and this is all the doom-sayers who say the sky is falling with nothing more than an agenda to get rich by stealing people's money as justification. People who create an urgency where one does not yet exist.

As a responsible society we absolutely should be looking into renewable energy, but not because the sky is going to fall tomorrow, but rather because it makes sense, and because it's the responsible thing to do. Everybody's car runs out of gas sooner or later


The people who up the hype are just as shameful as the sharks swimming around down below, eager to feed on those who are duped into believing it. In between the two is where reality exists and where the majority of us all reside.



posted on Apr, 2 2019 @ 03:59 PM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

Well said.

There is no doubt, that moving away from fossil (a misnomer, IMO) is a good idea, but that isn't going to happen over night, barring some unforseen breakthrough in fusion, or a comparable technology.

The main issue with solar, at this time, is power storage. Nearly all current "battery" formats, are ecological nightmares. The manufacture of the panels, themselves, also
have detrimental consequences, but not to the same extent.



posted on Apr, 2 2019 @ 04:30 PM
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originally posted by: Mach2
Are there any "numbers", to back up Musk's claim?

You know, like total US electric usage vs real output per sq ft?

You know, like amp hour storage capacity of the battery bank required?

You know, like energy loss, through dc/ac conversion, and transmission over such distances as Nevada to NY?

Actual costs of infrastructure requirements, and upgrades?

...

In other words, get back to me when you can show me how it works, both mathematically, and financially.


You mean there are nontrivial issues stopping this simple plan from happening tomorrow? Shocking!

Add to that the ~25 yr useful life span of solar cells and the cost of replacement every 25 years (and we need 20% or so extra arrays to cover degradation in the meantime).

Solar power is great, but it's not magic.



posted on Apr, 2 2019 @ 04:33 PM
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considering the negative impact on the environment that has already been recorded with much smaller solar farms, I would hate to see which species would get wrecked with a 100 sq mile farm.



posted on Apr, 2 2019 @ 04:44 PM
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originally posted by: RadioRobert

originally posted by: Mach2
Are there any "numbers", to back up Musk's claim?

You know, like total US electric usage vs real output per sq ft?

You know, like amp hour storage capacity of the battery bank required?

You know, like energy loss, through dc/ac conversion, and transmission over such distances as Nevada to NY?

Actual costs of infrastructure requirements, and upgrades?

...

In other words, get back to me when you can show me how it works, both mathematically, and financially.


You mean there are nontrivial issues stopping this simple plan from happening tomorrow? Shocking!

Add to that the ~25 yr useful life span of solar cells and the cost of replacement every 25 years (and we need 20% or so extra arrays to cover degradation in the meantime).

Solar power is great, but it's not magic.


Meh....we both know there there is no problem so large, that it can't be solved through massive taxation, and governmental beurocrocy, and waste.

Damn the economy, and ppls standard of living.....full speed ahead.



posted on Apr, 2 2019 @ 04:45 PM
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originally posted by: Irishhaf
considering the negative impact on the environment that has already been recorded with much smaller solar farms, I would hate to see which species would get wrecked with a 100 sq mile farm.


Check your math. It's 10,000 sq miles.

Op is as misleading, as a plastic compass needle.
edit on 422019 by Mach2 because: Add last line



posted on Apr, 2 2019 @ 06:08 PM
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Stupidest post ever. First, 100 x 100 = 10,000. That’s 25% of the area of Ohio! We already have wind power!



posted on Apr, 2 2019 @ 09:55 PM
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a reply to: nOraKat


100 miles by 100 miles is not 100 square miles. it is 10,000 . . . .



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 10:46 AM
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a reply to: Dfairlite




Oh please, are you trying to kill all life on earth? Why would you want to scrub plant food from the air?


For the same reason one would want to scrub plant food from water. (ie nitrites which cause cancer)
Very simple really. Use your noggin.



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 10:48 AM
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a reply to: ElectricUniverse




Wrong... You "scrub carbon from the air" and you will not have any trees, or any plant life on Earth, which would mean all other lifeforms on Earth will die... Seriously, could you "science deniers" ever side with real science?...


It depends on how much carbon you remove. Simply returning carbon levels to pre industrial levels would not kill plant life. Do you understand that..lol



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 10:50 AM
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a reply to: ElectricUniverse




BTW, what will you substitute asphalt with? What will you substitute medical equipment that needs plastic with? What about the plastic in electronic circuits, or even motherboards? What will you substitute the plastic used to make pacemakers? What will you use to substitute them with? What about prosthetics? What will you substitute them with?



Look I am not here to educate your ignorance. If you are intrested go and have a look at non petro plastic alternatives.

Very simple. For the love of all things sacred use your noggin even if its a bad one.







posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 11:03 AM
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a reply to: conspiracytheoristIAM

He's a Common Core Math graduate.



posted on Apr, 3 2019 @ 07:56 PM
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originally posted by: TheRedneck

And with that, you just explained the problem with this 100-mile square solar grid.

When you are connected to an existing, operating power grid, you are supplementing it. A grid-tie inverter allows your low-voltage DC power to be synchronized with the higher voltage AC power, and power will flow both ways as needed. Yes, you can contribute to the amount of power available during peak sunlight times, and yes, you can be reimbursed for that power. However, that does not work if the solar supply is the grid.


Yeah good point you would definitely need batteries for the system described in the OP, I was referring to residential individuals who could start to make a difference at the personal level.



Solar power is a fabulous niche source. I use it to power projects that are too difficult to hook to the power grid. But it is not an acceptable solution for main power, and to be honest, I do not see that changing any time soon. if you want to hook home solar to the grid, please, by all means, do so! It can be a good idea in certain climates. Do not, however, try to insist that solar is the answer to a completely different question... because it's not.


My point was that at this point due to low costs it can be a net positive investment for residential individuals. While also generating green energy.



(Incidentally, you might be interested in a few economic realities of a home-based solar power station: you will sell your power to the power company for the lowest price they pay for electricity that month. Power is bought and sold based not only on how much is used, but also on when it is used. Peak power can cost your distributor several times as much as off-peak power. Commercial suppliers keep track of the amounts of power sold and when they were sold to accomplish this; you cannot do so. Also, make sure you have a disconnect in place; should there be a brown-out or black-out in your area, the grid can pull all of your home-generated power into the grid instead of into your home otherwise. Some grid-tie inverters automatically disconnect from the grid during a power drop; that's the ones you want, although they will cost more.)

TheRedneck


Thanks for the info, was not aware.



posted on Apr, 4 2019 @ 03:55 AM
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a reply to: cooperton


Yeah good point you would definitely need batteries for the system described in the OP, I was referring to residential individuals who could start to make a difference at the personal level.

In some areas, solar has developed to the point where it actually has a somewhat reasonable payback ratio... but beware of the equipment you get. Poor quality equipment can wear out and need replacement before the payback period ends.

Also, one should look at the cost of time when calculating this payback period; many do not. If I gave you a choice between $1000 right now and $1000 in two months, which would you take? Obviously, you would prefer to have the money now. That means $1000 right now is worth more than $1000 in two months. There are actually equations for this, based on prevailing interest rates (which is nothing more than the time value of money).

Still, some people do manage to save a little over the lifetime of their equipment. A lot of the hype, though, is due to the excitement of realizing that the dreaded electric bill is gone, without realizing that, in essence, you just paid it ahead of time in the equipment cost.


Thanks for the info, was not aware.

No problem. Glad to help.

I have watched several hundred, probably, videos and read about as many tutorials on how to set up a home solar system. The simple truth is that the vast majority, I would say 95+%, at some point wind up doing something that is unsafe and could lead to either massive failure of the system (best case) or cause a fire (worst case). I would be willing to bet that most of the laws against "off-grid" living are there because someone who did not understand what they were doing listened to someone else who had no clue what they were saying and caused a fire. Household power is quite dangerous if not properly installed; that's why we have building codes.

I have started several times to write a book on the proper way to design and install a self-sufficient power system; it is possible, but it also requires some lifestyle changes. Solar (which is arguably the easiest to install and the most universally available) is quite capable of powering lights (if LED lighting is used), communication/entertainment (radio, TV, computer, network, video games), and even some kitchen appliances (blenders, toasters, even microwave ovens for short times). The problem comes in with heating... not just heating the home, but hot water and a traditional electric stove are simply beyond what most solar can handle.

These things can be handled with propane gas, of course, but in some ways that defeats the idea. One must pay for propane (not to mention it is a "fossil fuel").

In a typical house, the highest draw devices are, in order, heating/cooling (60-100+ amps), electric stove (50 amps), electric dryer (30 amps), and water heater (20 amps). Everything else is actually sort of inconsequential compared to those. However, should any of those "inconsequential" devices short out, they can still draw 15-20 amps before a typical breaker trips, which translates to 1.8-2.4 kW of power. That's plenty to start a fire, especially in wire sizes typically used for outlet circuits (12 gauge copper). If your home unit does not put out enough current to trip the breaker in case of an overload, the short will not be interrupted by the breaker, and a fire will result... likely within a few minutes. So the system must be designed to provide enough power to accept a worst-case failure (the ratings listed above are breaker ratings).

To give an example, suppose your are watching TV and a mouse happens to find its way into the circuitry. It starts chewing on a wire, as meeces tend to do, and picks the wrong one. Suddenly in mid-chew, the circuit shorts out and electrocutes the mouse, resulting in the body of the now fried mouse shorting out the circuit. Normally, the current draw would ramp up almost immediately to as much as 100 amps, but only long enough for the breaker to trip (under a second, typically). The power is cut off before anything overheats, and all the damage is the overly-warm body of a rodent inside your TV.

Now say you are using a home generation system that is struggling to keep up with the demand. The wire shorts, the circuit is shorted, and the amperage ramps up... but this time the unit can only give it 14 amps and the breaker never trips. Now, over 2 kW of power is flowing through the wires in your home and through the guts of your TV (not to mention of the mouse), heating it up. Within a few minutes, things are getting very hot, and you're still sitting there getting angry with the remote because the TV went off. After maybe 5 minutes, the inside of the TV and the wires in your home are at kindling temperature for the materials around them. Oops!

It gets much easier to maintain safety when one has the electric grid as that backup. It's like you, as a user of energy, are riding on a freight train. The solar generation is like you getting a bicycle to help push the train. Does it help? Technically, yes, you are creating extra thrust... but you're not going to make a difference overall. For every time you give that extra pound or two of thrust, there will be times when that freight train with hundreds of tons of thrust is helping you along.

That metaphor is not an exaggeration, BTW.

Point is, beware doing the work yourself or relying on "experts" for advice (especially if they're on YouTube). Get a contractor to install everything for you, and make sure they are licensed and insured. And get an iron-clad guarantee. Hopefully, you'll never need it.

TheRedneck




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