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The Solar Power Scam

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posted on Apr, 14 2012 @ 12:47 AM
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Originally posted by phantom150
At the moment I am doing as the OP has suggested and refusing entry to replace the dial meters with the "Smart meters".
The best part is YOU have to pay for the solar meters and the ongoing metering costs!


The "smart meters" forcing everyone to install are to prevent people from using the old meters to "sell" back electricity to the grid at the same price we buy it from them.

The power corporations have basically tricked people into becoming generators for them. Basically, they can sell you back power you generated yourself at an inflated price.




posted on Apr, 14 2012 @ 12:59 AM
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People should make houses that are self sustaining, but power companies would throw a fit and make lawmakers to make up some law you cain't do that. OH WAIT, i'm sorry, they already do that now.



posted on Apr, 14 2012 @ 01:21 AM
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Originally posted by Ex_CT2

Originally posted by babybunnies
If you install enough solar panels, you can unplug from the grid entirely.

Ah-HA! But some people believe that all this recent solar activity means the sun is about to go dark. What are you gonna do with all those solar panels then? You'll be right back to begging the electrical utility to take your money....


thats why you use a combination of solar, wind, and water.
could even use magnets
edit on 14-4-2012 by infowarrior9970 because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 14 2012 @ 08:50 AM
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Originally posted by phantom150
I 100% agree with the OP, I've just installed 6k worth of solar panels on my place in Melbourne Australia and have been conned by the power companies/Oligopoly's.

My power company quoted me 35cents feed in, 22cents onpeak, 12 cents offpeak which I jumped and signed the contract.
Once installed they ran me around the legal maze and changed it to 35 cents feed in, 33 peak, 25 shoulder, 12cents offpeak...This effectively means I would be loosing money despite feeding in 14kw/d as I was already paying 22 cents peak, 12 cents offpeak.

At the moment I am doing as the OP has suggested and refusing entry to replace the dial meters with the "Smart meters".
The best part is YOU have to pay for the solar meters and the ongoing metering costs!

The power companies were sold off to private companies from the goverment (like our water and most of our infrastructure) and no maintenance is spent on it, its only when it needs maintaining (ie fatal bush fire started) when it fails do tax payers need to pay again despite paying our power rates.

Another quick thing, many large companies get reduced power rates from these companies and offset it against the residential sector which only use ~30% of the nations power.

Star and Flag to the OP, good work
edit on 13-4-2012 by phantom150 because: (no reason given)


Disconnect from the grid entirely.

Use your solar panels off grid.

For more power at night use a 11.8 KW quiet diesel generator made by Kubota.

- SQ-1120 model -



posted on Apr, 14 2012 @ 09:52 AM
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anyone using/have used solar panels have a recommendation on what brand or type would be best?
2nd thanks n advance.



posted on Apr, 14 2012 @ 09:55 AM
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Originally posted by Anishnaabe
anyone using/have used solar panels have a recommendation on what brand or type would be best?
2nd thanks n advance.


Try Samsung 240 watts.

Buy them online.

Use an inverter from Solectria.



posted on Apr, 14 2012 @ 10:38 AM
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The companies offering solar package installation deals make the terms absolutely conditional on a 'smart' import/export meter being installed because part of the paperwork signs over all RECs (Renewable Energy Credits) to that company forever and these meters are necessary to measure your actual solar output for that purpose. Granted that it isn't much per customer with RECs paying about $40/MWh currently but if you have enough customers, well


There's a bit of a panic to get rid of current stocks of panels & inverters before the end of the financial year because gov subsidies are tipped to cease like those that were offered for solar HW installations were cut off recently so there are some pretty good deals going for the next couple of months. Seriously considering jumping in myself because even if my actual energy import is just offset by solar power I'll be saving considerable cash in the long term. The major concern is that solar panel technology is constantly on the improvement cycle so what you pay a heap for this year will certainly be totally outdated and inefficient well before you get anywhere near the break-even point. However, if you're going to jump in, you need to actually jump sometime.



posted on Apr, 14 2012 @ 12:33 PM
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In my area, the "smart meters" are being exposed as a scam in favor of the power companies and many individuals who were tricked with "savings" to install them are furious with their bills and are having them removed from their homes. here are some sites against "smart meters";

stopsmartmeters.org...

www.refusesmartmeters.com...

The video below is from the 1st link, they bring up some other concerns with the smart meters aside from the cash grab being discussed in this thread;




Here's a site to see what the cost of a "hybrid" system would be (sun & wind);

www.wholesalesolar.com...

Here's an example of someone I'm striving to be like (self sufficient power & food);

sunshinedome.com...


S & F to you OP

edit on 14-4-2012 by Ericthenewbie because: add video link



posted on Apr, 14 2012 @ 11:55 PM
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Edit: Someone beat me to it.
edit on 14-4-2012 by OccamsRazor04 because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 15 2012 @ 03:50 AM
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Originally posted by Eurisko2012

Originally posted by Anishnaabe
anyone using/have used solar panels have a recommendation on what brand or type would be best?
2nd thanks n advance.


Try Samsung 240 watts.

Buy them online.

Use an inverter from Solectria.


Make sure it's a grid tie inverter if you are connecting it to the grid.

For off grid, I recommend a pure sine wave inverter, which is the type of frequency the grid uses. You can use cheaper modified sine wave inverters (which are not sine wave at all, but square wave) but the frequency they put out can be a bit harsh on electric motors and other appliances. I personally wouldn't use them for any expensive appliances (plug a fluorescent light into one and you will see it will flicker a lot more at the ends of the tube).



posted on Apr, 15 2012 @ 10:21 AM
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Originally posted by Ex_CT2

Originally posted by babybunnies
If you install enough solar panels, you can unplug from the grid entirely.

Ah-HA! But some people believe that all this recent solar activity means the sun is about to go dark. What are you gonna do with all those solar panels then? You'll be right back to begging the electrical utility to take your money....


i think electricity will be the last of his or anyone elses worries if the sun goes out.



posted on Apr, 15 2012 @ 10:29 AM
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Originally posted by Chadwickus
reply to post by NuclearPaul
 


How about some sources for this?



You and your sources.
You don't know what a damn deep-cycle battery is without your sources??



posted on Apr, 15 2012 @ 10:45 AM
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reply to post by swan001
 


A deep cycle battery does this does it?



See, the import export meter seperately monitors how much power you use from the grid, and how much you supply to the grid. This gives them the opportunity to charge a different amount for what you use and what you supply. So, in typical corporate fashion, they are going to start charging more and more for what you use, and less and less for what you supply. Eventually, they will pay you nothing for what you supply them, while selling it to your next door neighbour for big dollars.



posted on Apr, 15 2012 @ 11:11 AM
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Originally posted by Chadwickus
reply to post by swan001
 


A deep cycle battery does this does it?



See, the import export meter seperately monitors how much power you use from the grid, and how much you supply to the grid. This gives them the opportunity to charge a different amount for what you use and what you supply. So, in typical corporate fashion, they are going to start charging more and more for what you use, and less and less for what you supply. Eventually, they will pay you nothing for what you supply them, while selling it to your next door neighbour for big dollars.



I think the OP was referring to the energy produced by solar panels and sold to the Grid, compared to the energy you need to buy. The qote you qoted was not referring to deep-cycle batteries.



posted on Apr, 15 2012 @ 11:20 AM
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The whole solar power thing is a good example of misinformation gobbled up by the public.

First the solar cells: expensive compared to power output and bulky in the extreme. The expense can be directly attributed to corporatism, as the same cells included in a low-power lawn light cost more than the light itself, even when buying the panels from surplus suppliers. The voltage produced by a solar cell in direct sunlight is on the order of 0.5 volts; the higher voltage panels use several cells in series to achieve higher voltages (at the expense of current). The maximum energy output of the sun at the Earth's surface is approximately 1366 W/m², and that includes all frequencies. Solar cells absorb one range of those frequencies. Now consider that nothing is 100% efficient, especially solar cells, and you are lucky to get maybe 400 W of power from a square meter in direct sunlight.

Adjust that again for the angle of the sun and for the number of hours of nighttime you will encounter and you've got a perfect example of moving a mountain with a spoon. Now remember that you have to store power to compensate not just for nighttime, but for rainy days, cloudy days, etc. Batteries to store that kind of power are expensive and even deep-cycle lead-acid batteries only last a few years before they need replacing.

Second the AC power conundrum: We use AC power because transmitting DC power over long distances is an exercise in futility due to power losses (not to mention the difficulty in changing voltages with DC power). The common household power in the US is a 60 Hz sine wave, dual-phase, 240 volts. The first step is to transform low-voltage DC power into high-voltage AC power, and that means an inverter. Not the little boxes you plug into your car to charge your laptop; an entire home can pull 44kW of power before tripping a 200-Amp main. Just a kitchen stove can draw a quarter of that, and the water heater can pull over 4 kW by itself. A clothes dryer can top 6kW.

That's a lot of power to be converted. Someone mentioned Solectria inverters, and they will work fine. The PVI 82KW-480V will peak at 198 Amps at 240V output... just enough to fully power a house. Look at the price in that link: almost $27,000. That's without batteries. It also requires a minimum DC input of about 300V.... that's 600 solar cells arranged in a single series circuit in direct sunlight.

Thirdly, the tie-in to the grid. The grid uses AC power and is synchronized. In order to put power back in, you have to synchronize your power to the grid. A 180 degree phase difference in AC power is a dead short. So yeah, you aren't allowed to short out the power company's grid and have to have the correct equipment to perform that synchronization. And yeah, they're not going to pay you as much for your power as they charge for theirs. That difference pays for the power lines, their equipment, the employees who keep the power up and working, and all the other business expenses. You want paid the same as they charge? Provide the same service.

My advice if you want to get off the grid is to find something besides solar: running water, wind, geothermal thermoelectrics, something... and use it. Separate your circuits into smaller ones so you can use a smaller inverter and give up the electric stove and clothes dryer and heat strips. Solar is fine for isolated needs for low-voltage,low-power DC applications, but it is not easily scalable.

And give up trying to be a power company.

TheRedneck



posted on Apr, 15 2012 @ 11:18 PM
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reply to post by TheRedneck
 


I agree with most of what you've said there but surely your typical individual domestic demand isn't as large as estimated. The peak diversified domestic usage here is around 3-5kW (depending on the affluence factor of the neighbourhood and the season) and that's the peak usage. Normal energy usage with an all-electric dwelling would amount to around 25kWh per day or around 1kW overall average which makes it possible for a home here with 4kW or more of solar peak output to nullify their overall energy import (no bills apart from service charges). I know a few who actually get paid by the electricity supplier.

I don't have a spa, heated pool or aircon and use wood heating on & off for about 3 months of the year (lucky to live in such a good climate zone I guess). There's an off-peak electric water heater so my current demand is a TV, PC, a few low energy lights and 2 refrigerators cycling occasionally; overall less than 1kW so I'd be exporting energy with even a small solar installation (1.5kW).

Also, DC transmission is far better than AC for long distance application because you eliminate all the reactive power losses and only incur resistive (I^2.R) losses which are minimized by operating at very high voltages. Many DC links use ground return so only a single conductor is required (cheaper construction costs) but chlorine concerns might make coaxial type cable necessary for submarine cables (to protect sea life the cable sheath acts as the return). We have a DC link here that's over 300km end-to-end, operates at 400kV and can move around 600MW. It has other advantages like frequency controllers enabling it to respond to system faults (providing FCAS).



posted on Apr, 15 2012 @ 11:41 PM
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reply to post by swan001
 


So why did you bring deep cycle batteries up then..?

I wanted sources showing that power companies are shafting customers who are putting electricity back into grids.

I already know that people are being shafted with reductions in solar rebates but haven't heard anywhere yet of them doing it through the meter.



posted on Apr, 15 2012 @ 11:54 PM
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reply to post by Pilgrum

You are correct in your energy estimates. While my home is small, I have estimated power usage at about 3.6kW average based on my electric bills. Of course that also does not include heating or AC.

The problem comes in when you realize that this is average... that means that there will be times when power usage is much higher. Whatever inverter you choose must be able to supply that needed surge of power, which in a typical residence can be up to 200 amps at 240VAC, for 48 kW. Anything less and you run the chance of prematurely damaging the inverter or encountering a thermal shutdown.

The batteries must be sized sufficiently to allow for this average usage over the longest expected time period of outage. In the case of solar power, I would not recommend using a time period of less than 3 days (72 hours) to allow for storm systems to move through. That's 3.6kW times 72 hours for a total of about 260 kWh. Dividing by the most common lead-acid battery voltage, 12 volts, that's 21,700 Amp-Hours of battery! An 8-D Marine battery can deliver 225 Amp-Hours, so one would need 96 of them. Figure $10,000 for that many 8-Ds if you shop around.

3.6kW would also require about 9 square meters of solar cells. Taking into account the amount of nighttime and lack of sun during cloudy days, that figure should be multiplied by a factor of three to give 27 square meters of solar cells... that's approximately a 16-foot square. At surplus price, that's about 1500 5" square solar cells for a total cost of over $10,000.

That's 20 grand and you still need an inverter, another 26 grand if you go Solectria.

How long will it take at $100 a month (expected electric bill for that average usage) to pay for $46,000 worth of equipment? 460 months or over 38 years. The batteries have a maximum expected life-span of 6 years.

Now, as to AC versus DC... don't forget to take into account how hard it is to convert high voltage DC into DC of a manageable voltage. That makes the transmitted power using DC much less usable at the receiving end, and the power losses converting the voltage are typically much higher than any inductance encountered.

TheRedneck



posted on Apr, 16 2012 @ 12:01 AM
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reply to post by TheRedneck
 


A property I work on has over AU$300,000 worth of panels, batteries and associated equipment to be completely self sustained off the grid.

The majority of that cost was in batteries of course and they take up their own small shed all on their own.

The irony here is that to get mains power to this property it was going to cost $400,000!

Makes the 300k seem like chump change!



The owners are also planning to add a wind turbine and more batteries in the future too, this place will have enough juice to run a small town soon.



posted on Apr, 16 2012 @ 12:13 AM
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reply to post by Chadwickus

That sounds about right, and it does show one of those instances where solar power is a viable alternative. I do think they will realize more result from wind power, however.

The price drops dramatically as the power usage needed drops; if anyone is considering trying to go fully solar, my first suggestion is to find alternatives to electricity whenever possible before making the conversion. 12V lighting, alternate heat (wood, geothermal, etc.), perhaps a solar water heater instead of an electric one (more efficient), etc. are all ideas to consider. Then check your bill and make the calculations like I did above.

TheRedneck





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