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And since the crops would be grown with artificial lighting, servers, sensors and robots, the cost of labor would consist of a single computer technician's salary.
this system doesn't create energy it uses it
Our ultimate goal was to provide renewable fuels from the Ocean. Initially this would have been done by extracting the CO2 from the surface of the ocean and electrolyzing the hydrogen from the salt-water. With this process, we can produce both ethanol and methanol. By harvesting algae and kelp (high vegetable oil content) by roaming mid-ocean fuel ships, we could produce biodiesel. Large ship-mounted wind-turbines would produce continuous electricity for energy requirements to run the electrolyzers. The only by-product of the process (biodiesel) was glycerine, which can be made into soap or sold in raw form in the cosmetics industry. Our other research may lead us to producing SCP animal feed via methanol enhanced growth, including single cell protein, yeast, algae and C3 plants (which exhibit up to a 30 percent growth increase when methanol is applied directly to foliage). Methanol can also be used in sewage treatment plants to increase the rate of sewage processing by encouraging growth of bacteria and algae.
Ethanol has also been criticized because it contains only a little more energy than is used in growing the crop, making the fuel and getting it to cars. The ratio is about 1.4 energy units out for every one in. But that is still higher than the net energy ratio of hydrogen, and it can be improved upon. When ethanol is made from sugars from cellulose, an abundant substance found in grasses, corn stalks, wheat straw, trees, kelp and urban organic wastes, the ratio should exceed 2 to 1.
Originally posted by Long Lance
Do you know how fertilizer is produced and how much energy it takes? on top of that, it should be obvious that farmland is much too valuable a resource to exhaust for some fuel, IF we get hit by an energy crisis, fertilizers will no longer be available in current quantities, depletion of soil will have dire consequencs then.
Burning food (that's what you're essentially doing when using crops for fuel) in times of surplus is still unwise.
Originally posted by sardion2000
Hybrids are more underpowered then a Firefly
The Honda (HMC) Accord hybrid is the fastest family sedan on the market. The Lexus Rx400h and Toyota Highlander Hybrid share the same 270 horsepower system. The Lexus GS 450h hybrid sedan, expected later in 2006, will exceed 300 horsepower with 0-to-60 performance below six seconds. And the Toyota Volta concept is a 408-horsepower scream machine. (See Hybrids for more information).
Originally posted by sardion2000
Corn needs to be grown right? It is illigal to leave fields fallow right(which contributes to topsoil growth)? Do you know how many acres it takes to sustain a population the size of the US(roughly 25% the landmass of N. America)? Now add in the extra amount needed to sustain an ethonol based infrastructure and you'll see it's not entirely sustainable. Topsoil used to be above 20 feet in the 19th century. Now it's barely a meter on average and in some places it can be measured in inches.
Topsoil is basically fertile soil that is necessary for our current agriculture technology which despite widespread technology proliferation is still primarily stuck in the Victorian age when it comes to the method of farming. Composting can help remediate this problem but not completely. Conservation of energy and such.
[edit on 2-2-2006 by sardion2000]
1. It is not illegal to let farmland lie fallow. There are controls on how MUCH corn you may grow if you are borrowing govt money, but private property means you choose what to grow on land that you own outright. In fact, in many states, you can participate in a "cronservation reserve program" where the department of ag will PAY you to let the land rest for 10 years at a stretch.
2. Topsoil varies with microclimate. In the glacial moraines, the soil can be 20 ft. thick; but that geography is not typical of North America. In much of the desert southwest, the topsoil is an inch or less, and has been so for 10,000 to 100,000 years.
3. Low evaporation irrigation has revolutionized American farming. In 1972, the Department of Agriculture estimated that the Ogalala aquifer, which stretches from Helene Montana to Lubbock Texas, would be depleted by 1995. The study was repeated in 1992, and it was estimated that the aquifer will last for at least another 100 years at present rates.
4. The average american farm laborer produces enought food for 300 people, roughly 3 times the US population, which means the vast majority of the food (mostly corn) is exported at low profit margins. This is why proponents of ethanol and biodiesel are often from the corn belt!
" corn based ethonol requires how many pounds per gallon of ethonol again? "