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"How a Solar-Hydrogen Economy Could Supply the World's Energy Needs"

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posted on Sep, 7 2009 @ 11:36 AM
The Link

Abbott argues that a solar-hydrogen economy is more sustainable and provides a vastly higher total power output potential than any other alternative. While he agrees with the current approach of promoting a mix of energy sources in the transition period toward a sustainable energy technology, he shows that solar-hydrogen should be the final goal of current energy policy. Eventually, as he suggests, this single dominant solution might supply 70% of the world's energy while the remaining 30% is supplied by a mix of other sources.


This is the part that really impressed me:

"My starting point is as an academic who always thought nuclear was the answer, but who then looked at the figures and came to an inescapable conclusion that solar-hydrogen is the long-term future," Abbott told "I did not come at this as a green evangelist. I am a reluctant convert. I deliberately don't even mention the word CO2 once in my paper, in order to demonstrate that one can justify solar-hydrogen simply on grounds of economic resource viability without any green agenda."

So often the topic of alternative energy sources is over looked as a enviro-wacko ideology that is fundamentally flawed. ACC (anthropogenic climate change) is always dragged into the conversation and arguments ensure and no real discussion of the technology is ever, well rarely, addressed.

This is cool this reason and also because it is a scientist who formerly believed in nuclear energy as the solution to our future energy needs who has decided that solar / hydrogen is in fact the end game solution.

Anyway, if you are into the world of energy technology this is a great read.


posted on Sep, 8 2009 @ 03:48 AM
reply to post by Animal

Solar energy is incredibly nice! Hydrogen energy just make things more complicated:

-Conventional conversion of hydrogen requires electricity, why not just use hydrogen directly to eliminate any conversion costs?

-Biological conversion of hydrogen may require raw materials or solar energy. Solar energy which can be also harnessed by solar cells directly to electricity. Introduction of chemicals or other materials makes the system more complicated....

I vote for solar energy only + other forms like wind and water, but not hydrogen. Hydrogen is metaphorically like an electric battery but with less efficiency due to lots of excess heat produced, and of course, Internal Combustion Engines tend to be complicated and not as reliable as electric motors.

A valid case of hydrogen if used as fuel cell and if hydrogen can be produced more economically and recharged just as efficiently as other batteries.

posted on Sep, 8 2009 @ 05:42 AM
my insight on this subject points me in the direction of air breathing , hydrogen fuel cell , electrical power genaration .

untill the air breathing hydrogen fuel cell it prefected , solar hydrogen will be a fast drive into a solid wall , with an ugly out come .

the energy needed to make the hydrogen , is insain if it is burn'd like alcohal .

gasoline , deisel , alcohal or any bio/ petrol flud combution can not compete with the energy/ volume of a direct conversion from hydrogen to electrical..... but problem is simply....

the 28vdc / 50 amp air breathing hydrogen fuel cell costs 10's of thousands of dollors and its membrains are flat (need to be rolled in tubes ) , sensitive to contamination , and are heavy .

currently ... walking robotic's needs a 2-3 pound relyable fuel cell in the 28vdc / 30-50 amp .
what works in walking robots , will work in air craft and cars .

posted on Sep, 8 2009 @ 06:13 AM
My understanding is that solar has an exceptionally low power density and low capacity factor that makes it unsuitable for providing large scale hydrogen production. How does one supply the world one a capacity factor of 20%? That only works AT ALL during the day? India has designed a 600mw thermal (very small) Nuclear reactor that produces 80,000 cubic meters per hour of hydrogen, while still producing 18 megawatts of electricity and 9,000 cubic meters of fresh water per day.

-Conventional conversion of hydrogen requires electricity, why not just use hydrogen directly to eliminate any conversion costs?

Because you cannot get Hydrogen directly? You have to convert it.

(the biggest being the $6 billion cost to decommission after a 30- or 40-year lifetime

Try 40 - 60 year (depending on design) lifetime excluding any extensions... 6 billion? Even with older reactor designs it does not come close to that.

In addition, nuclear fission isn't sustainable: if fission hypothetically supplied the world's energy needs, there would only be five years' supply of uranium

And a practically unlimited supply in the water...

Further, a typical 1.5-MW wind turbine requires 20 gallons of lubricating oil every 5 years, which would become unsustainable in a few decades.


And electrical generators need what exactly? Generators? That use oil, right?

In some cases, geothermal is also known to trigger unwanted seismic activity,


And the effect of 8% of the Earths desert area worth of solar panels would be what on the environment?

Where does this guy get his data?

[edit on 8/9/2009 by C0bzz]

posted on Sep, 8 2009 @ 07:17 AM

Originally posted by C0bzz

-Conventional conversion of hydrogen requires electricity, why not just use hydrogen directly to eliminate any conversion costs?

Because you cannot get Hydrogen directly? You have to convert it.

Sorry. that was a typo, it should be "Why not just use electricity directly"

I agree with the rest of you said that introducing hydrogen into the plan would just mess it up given the immature hydrogen technology.

Even worse, greedy companies will just try to make money sinks in all the hype of hydrogen, while I agree, it can easily give sportiness qualities into vehicles but at the cost of bad overall system efficiency.

posted on Sep, 8 2009 @ 07:31 AM
Thanks, from the comments of the source, apparently it takes 9 units of electrical energy to create 1 unit of Hydrogen energy. High temperatures can also be used in a thermo-chemical process, rather than electrochemical process, too.

[edit on 8/9/2009 by C0bzz]

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