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  1. #76
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    First solar powered printing press.



    First solar-powered printing press, 1894. Historical artwork showing Frenchman Abel Pifre's invention, a steam press powered by the Sun's rays. When the rays hit the large dish-shaped mirror, they were reflected and focussed upon the boiler in the centre, which heated the water inside into steam. The steam drove an engine (left) which was coupled to a printing press, producing copies of a newspaper appropriately called The Sun. The machine was demonstrated in the Jardin des Tuileries, Paris, France. This artwork was printed in The Picture Magazine, 1894.
    sciencephoto.com.
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  2. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by Umbuku View Post
    Visiting a Nuclear Fusion Reactor

    Functioning test fusion reactor in Oxford.

    ITER nuclear fusion reactor design receives approval | News | The Engineer

    Planned 500MW fusion reactor to be built as a prototype outside of Paris France.

    It is already being done...
    No it isn't. The article says

    "The reactor will mirror the process that generates energy in the Sun: two isotopes of hydrogen are heated to extreme temperatures so they become ions (plasma) and then collided and fused together, releasing a fast-travelling neutron that transfers energy as heat."

    Utter bullshit. Ions are atoms or molecules with a different number of protons and electrons, resulting in either a positive or negative electrical charge. Plasma is the breakdown of all electrical bonds, protons, electrons, neutrons whirring freely.
    99.98% of hydrogen (as in the sun, or on earth) doesn't have a neutron, only the rare and expensive to islolate varieties Deuterium and Tritium do. Please note the crucial difference between 500 MW, and 500 MW/time unit for a proper power plant. That reactor is not able to sustain the fusion for any lenght of time. And it never will be.

  3. #78
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    You do understand that Hydrogen only has one proton and one electron. Therefore when it is a positive ion it is in a plasma state albeit without the high temperature conditions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rainfall
    That reactor is not able to sustain the fusion for any length of time. And it never will be.
    The last actual report I read on the project stated they were aiming to have the plant operational by the mid 2030s. At work now and can't go off searching for esoterica but I will have a look later tonight for the background info.
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  4. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rainfall
    No it isn't. The article says "The reactor will mirror the process that generates energy in the Sun: two isotopes of hydrogen are heated to extreme temperatures so they become ions (plasma) and then collided and fused together, releasing a fast-travelling neutron that transfers energy as heat."

    Utter bullshit. Ions are atoms or molecules with a different number of protons and electrons, resulting in either a positive or negative electrical charge. Plasma is the breakdown of all electrical bonds, protons, electrons, neutrons whirring freely. 99.98% of hydrogen (as in the sun, or on earth) doesn't have a neutron, only the rare and expensive to islolate varieties Deuterium and Tritium do.
    Just read the article.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chico the Fox
    A critical phase of the project will be the injection of plasma – the superhot, electrically-charged gases of the atomic fuel – into the reactor’s vacuum chamber. This plasma, a mix of the hydrogen isotopes deuterium and tritium, will drive the nuclear-fusion reaction.
    The fuel will be deuterium and tritium, so Neutrons are involved. Fusion of just normal hydrogen would be preferable but is much harder to do.

    It is correct that this reaction will not be able to burn continuously. But that's not the plan. It will work pulsed.
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    ITER - the way to new energy

    International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER)

    A joint international initiative by the EU, India, Russia, China, South Korea, Japan and the United States.

    On 21 November 2006, the seven participants formally agreed to fund the creation of a nuclear fusion reactor. The program is anticipated to last for 30 years – 10 for construction, and 20 of operation. ITER was originally expected to cost approximately €5billion, but the rising price of raw materials and changes to the initial design have seen that amount more than triple to €16billion. The reactor is expected to take 10 years to build with completion scheduled for 2019. Site preparation has begun in Cadarache, France and procurement of large components has started.

    ITER is designed to produce approximately 500 MW of fusion power sustained for up to 1,000 seconds (compared to JET's peak of 16 MW for less than a second) by the fusion of about 0.5 g of deuterium/tritium mixture in its approximately 840 m3 reactor chamber. Although ITER is expected to produce (in the form of heat) 10 times more energy than the amount consumed to heat up the plasma to fusion temperatures, the generated heat will not be used to generate any electricity.

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    That raises an unexpected question, where do the neutrons on the sun come from?

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    It gets really really complicated.

    Standard Model - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    In short different types of quantum particles combine to form protons neutrons and electrons. The plasma in a star or fusion reactor rips sub-atomic particles apart which then reform into new sub-atomic particles. From the plasma 'soup' created from destroyed protons and electrons, neutrons are formed.

  8. #83
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    Milan, one of the trendsetting capitals of the world, is applying their avant-garde tactics off the runway as well with 'vertical forests'.

    The city has become one of the most polluted in Italy; with little room for an oxygen-giving forest in the middle of the bustling fashion capital, the only place to go was up.

    Architect Stefano Boeri designed Bosco Verticale, a vertical forest which will plant 900 trees on the balconies of two towers. This vegetation produces the same ecological footprint as 10,000 square meters of forest. And anyway, this way is much more fashion-forward.

    Aside from looking ridiculously gorgeous, the vertical forest has abundant positive eco-effects as well. The plants will produce humidity and oxygen while protecting from radiation and pollution through absorbing carbon dioxide. The towers will use Aeolian and photovoltaic energy systems to increase the buildings' self-sufficiency.

    They will also attract birds and insects, creating a miniature ecosystem. The skyscraper forest was called “the most exciting new tower in the world” by the Financial Times and serves as an inspiration to other industrial spaces wishing to buffer their pollution output.
    World's First Vertical Forest (VIDEO)

  9. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by Umbuku View Post


    It gets really really complicated.

    Standard Model - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    In short different types of quantum particles combine to form protons neutrons and electrons. The plasma in a star or fusion reactor rips sub-atomic particles apart which then reform into new sub-atomic particles. From the plasma 'soup' created from destroyed protons and electrons, neutrons are formed.
    No, electrons don't have a substructure, and you can't smash protons in a star, still too little energy. That needs near-light speed like in the Hadron collider, or a black hole. I read up there is a process called electron capture, a free proton binds a free electron, thereby changing to a neutron, and emitting a neutrino and several photons. That sounds reasonable because a star emits lots of them.

  10. #85
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    You are correct about electrons. They are levels of energy (photon) bound to atoms by the charge in protons. Inverse beta decay (electron capture) is one way neutrons can be formed. My explanation was a simplification of the fusion processes in a star. You really need a physicist to go any deeper into this topic. I only studied physics in 1st year university but maintain a general interest.

  11. #86
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    China gives environmental approval to country's biggest hydro dam

    China's environment ministry has given the go-ahead for the construction of what will become the country's tallest hydroelectric dam despite acknowledging it will have an impact on plants and rare fish.

    The dam, with a height of 314 meters (1,030 feet), will serve the Shuangjiangkou hydropower project on the Dadu River in southwestern Sichuan province.

    To be built over 10 years by a subsidiary of state power firm Guodian Group, it is expected to cost 24.68 billion yuan ($4.02 billion) in investment.

    The ministry, in a statement issued late on Tuesday, said an environmental impact assessment had acknowledged that the project would have a negative impact on rare fish and flora and affect protected local nature reserves.

    Developers, it said, had pledged to take "counter-measures" to mitigate the effects. The project still requires the formal go-ahead from the State Council, China's cabinet.

    China aims to raise the share of non-fossil fuels in its energy mix to 15 percent by 2020, up from 9.4 percent in 2011. Hydropower is expected to make the biggest contribution.

    It has vowed to speed up construction of dams in the 2011-2015 period after slowing it down following the completion of the controversial Three Gorges project in 2005.

    The Three Gorges Dam, which serves the world's biggest hydropower station on the Yangtze river, measures 185 meters.

    The 300-m Nurek dam in Tajikistan in Central Asia is the world's highest, though other taller dams are now under construction. China's tallest dam now, at 292 meters, is the Xiaowan Dam on the Lancang River, also known as the Mekong.

    On completion, the Sichuan project will have a total installed capacity of 20 gigawatts (GW), with annual power generation to exceed 7 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh).

    The government said this year that hydropower capacity was expected to reach 290 GW by 2015, up from 220 GW at the end of 2010. It also said it would begin building a controversial project on the undeveloped Nu River in Yunnan province.
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  12. #87
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    something simple,....


    Portable Solar Charger By WakaWaka Is A Lamp And A Phone Charger

    A company called Off-Grid Solutions has committed itself to eradicating energy poverty for 1.5 billion people worldwide by leveraging sales of its signature product, the WakaWaka Power portable solar charger that combines a mobile phone charger and lamp. On that account we agreed to take a WakaWaka Power out on a test run, and boy are we glad that we did, because that gave us a first hand opportunity to compare Off-Grid’s strategy for addressing energy poverty with a similar goal rather inartfully expressed by ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson at its annual shareholders’ meeting last week.

    The Portable Solar Charger Experience

    If you’ve never used a portable solar powered charger before, the experience is kind of like being hit over the head with a hammer — but in a good way. It’s the kind of life-changing experience that you get from any common tool that makes your life easier every day.

    Pick your own examples but I’ve got two of my own, one being an ergonomic hand-powered can opener (hey I use a lot of cans, what can I say?). The other one was the only other product I’ve ever reviewed, the home water carbonator from SodaStream.

    In the case of portable solar chargers, there are a number of features that you want to look for and WakaWaka Power has them all.

    Start with the compact, handy shape, which is about the size and weight of a typical smart phone. That’s important not only for portability but also for charging, if window space is at a premium where you live or work.

    Then there’s the sleek styling (it comes in black or yellow, btw) and the intuitive-friendly design. The WakaWaka Power has only one button to push, and though it comes with an instruction sheet you can figure it out by yourself after fooling around with it for a few seconds.

    As for set-up, that’s also intuitive and takes less than two seconds. Part of the case pivots out to form a base so you can stand it up for charging, and for using the lamp (it comes in two versions, one of which is lamp-only).

    That large hole in the base is also self-explanatory. Find a bottle about the shape of a liter soda bottle, fill it with water or marbles or whatever, and you can pop the WakaWaka Power on top to make a “real” lamp.


    WakaWaka Power

  13. #88
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    So you need to carry two phone sized devices? Wouldn't it be easier to put the solar cells on the back of the phone?

    Also 9X% of people charge their phones at night!

    Ok for people without electricity but they can't afford to buy them!

  14. #89
    Guest Member S Landreth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VocalNeal View Post
    Also 9X% of people charge their phones at night!
    If you would open the link

    I believe the device holds a charge (you know being able to use it as a lamp ) and you can use the power to recharge your phone at a later date/time/evenings.

    How Well Does The WakaWaka Power Perform?

    As for performance, the company notes that its solar panels are 200 percent more efficient than any other competing product, and we’ll take their word for it. Although I have limited access to direct sunlight at home, my WakaWaka Power still got a 75 percent charge in less than the recommended eight hours. The next day I let my iPhone power down to less than ten percent (you know, the red thingy) and the WakaWaka Power restored a full charge in less than two hours, with plenty left over to run the lamp.

    Now, here’s where the hammer part comes in. Normally when you’re charging your phone and you have to go somewhere before it’s done, you have to pull out the plug and settle for less than a full charge. Well, not so with the WakaWaka Power. I had to go out before my phone finished charging, so I just took the whole thing along with me.

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    Mojave Mirrors: World's Largest Solar Energy Ready to Shine


    More than six years in the making, the Ivanpah plant is now slated to begin generating power before summer's end. It was designed by BrightSource Energy to use more than 170,000 mirrors to focus sunlight onto boilers positioned atop three towers, which reach nearly 500 feet (150 meters) into the dry desert air. The reflected sunlight heats water in the boilers to make steam, which turns turbines to generate electricity—enough to power more than 140,000 homes.

  16. #91
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    Some news,……


    Work on the largest solar project in the southern hemisphere is to get under way, after the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) reached financial close with developers AGL Energy for the A$450m (£267m) development.

    The 155MW project is spread across two sites in Western New South Wales - a 102MW solar plant at Nyngan and a 53MW solar plant at Broken Hill - and will cover a combined area four times the size of Sydney's central business district.

    ARENA will provide $166.7m (£99.0m) and the NSW Government $64.9m (£38.5m) with construction expected to start at Nyngan in January 2014 and at Broken Hill in July.

    The project is scheduled to complete in 2015, delivering enough power for up to 50,000 homes, after which First Solar will operate and maintain the projects for five years.

    _____________________


    Going camping?

    The solar tent’s design is based on Eddie Bauer’s previously released (and quite popular) Katabatic tent, ”three person, four-season expedition tent is the new standard for the world most hostile environments.” Anyone who’s camping in the “fourth season” would probably find a fully-charged GPS and a heated sleeping bag pretty handy, so the Katabatic went on a date with some solar panels.

    The Power Katabatic features a custom-designed, triangular Goal Zero solar panel on top. And word has it that the folds with the tent for storage. Inside you’ll find everything you need to connect the panel to a Goal Zero Sherpa 50 power pack which can store the power inside for nighttime use.


    _________________________



    In a three-continent event today, BMW officially unveiled the all-electric i3.

    Shown off in New York, London, and Beijing, the four-seat compact car marks the start of what the German automaker calls a "new era for individual mobility."

    The $41,350 price tag (before a $7,500 federal tax credit) puts the i3 in between the Tesla Model S (starts at $69,900) and offerings like the Chevy Spark EV ($26,685).

    _________________________


    June 2013 Is Best Month Yet for Electric Car Sales

    Almost 9,000 plug-in electric vehicles have been sold in the U.S. during June of this year, bringing the total in the last 30 months to 110,000 plug-in electric cars.

  17. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by S Landreth View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by VocalNeal View Post
    Also 9X% of people charge their phones at night!
    If you would open the link

    I believe the device holds a charge (you know being able to use it as a lamp ) and you can use the power to recharge your phone at a later date/time/evenings.

    How Well Does The WakaWaka Power Perform?

    As for performance, the company notes that its solar panels are 200 percent more efficient than any other competing product, and we’ll take their word for it. Although I have limited access to direct sunlight at home, my WakaWaka Power still got a 75 percent charge in less than the recommended eight hours. The next day I let my iPhone power down to less than ten percent (you know, the red thingy) and the WakaWaka Power restored a full charge in less than two hours, with plenty left over to run the lamp.

    Now, here’s where the hammer part comes in. Normally when you’re charging your phone and you have to go somewhere before it’s done, you have to pull out the plug and settle for less than a full charge. Well, not so with the WakaWaka Power. I had to go out before my phone finished charging, so I just took the whole thing along with me.
    Bullshit product that rides the wave of environmentalism, and has the opposite effect. Costs more energy to produce them than they generate in a lifetime, and eventually, they'll litter the landscape. What about not having an Iphone that has to be powered?

  18. #93
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    The way I see so called alternate energy is that it is never cheaper than the energy it is supposed to replace. Why?

    Because the business men involved in alternate energy do not want to save us money. They are happy to develop the technology but want from us a very large percentage of the energy saved. The profit model is not based on the manufacture of the product but on the levy placed on the saving.

    Until that model changes very little will happen to make a significant difference.

    There is some neat stuff though, like liquefying air to store energy for recovery on a "rainy day".

    I think location, location, location. Live on a plot at the bottom of a natural stream where water runs by and have a small turbine. Or live in a houseboat on a river and drop a generator in, under the boat. Like a towed generator?
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  19. #94
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    I speculated before that not the battery is the future of mobility, but electricity delivered to the road. There is a system like this in Korea now, cables buried in the road create a magnetic field, which is converted in the vehicle to electricity that drives the motor.

    KAIST Launches First Road-Charged OLEV Electric Buses in South Korea | Inhabitat - Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building


  20. #95
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rainfall
    I speculated before that not the battery is the future of mobility, but electricity delivered to the road. There is a system like this in Korea now, cables buried in the road create a magnetic field, which is converted in the vehicle to electricity that drives the motor.
    I am not sure I like that solution. The losses from the energy transfer are very high. Practical only with very low energy cost.

  21. #96
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    The only losses occur by friction, I think. Electricity and magnetism are essentially the same, just different aspects of electromagnetism. For building the magnetic field you don't need a flow of current, it only flows when the field is weakened by the vehicle.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rainfall View Post
    The only losses occur by friction, I think. Electricity and magnetism are essentially the same, just different aspects of electromagnetism. For building the magnetic field you don't need a flow of current, it only flows when the field is weakened by the vehicle.

    That is absolutely correct. Still there are significant losses in transfer with that kind of open loop.

  23. #98
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    'Critical phase' for Iter fusion dream

    Seems things are coming a long with the fusion project, look at the size of the plot


  24. #99
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    Europe's largest solar rooftop complete


    Eleven hectares of PV roof solar has been installed in Germany with the project becoming the largest self-consumption solar plant in Europe.

    The 8.1MW crystalline rooftop solar plant covers the distribution centre for Pfenning logistics in Heddesheim municipality, south of Frankfurt, with 33,000 modules across two hall complexes.

    Dennis Seiberth, president of international large-scale projects business at the project developer Wirsol said: “In this size we usually build solar parks,” and added that Wirsol was ambitious in aiming to realise the plant in four weeks.

    The plant was connected on-grid at the end of July as planned and can generate enough power for approximately 1,800 families.

    “We are happy that we can now partially generate electricity by ourselves,” said Karl-Martin Pfenning, owner and managing partner of the Pfenning group. “With the photovoltaic installation we can annually save up to 5, 171 tons of CO2.”

    The building, “multicube rhein-neckar” was recently constructed, and as of 2012 owned by Union Investment. The building has a “flexible” building structure and was pre-certified by the German Sustainable Building Council (DGNB) with the highest award in gold for ecological efficiency.

    _______________________

    Fossil fuel power plants to be shut down in Germany because they’re no longer competitive

    RWE has announced in their latest report on their first six months results (press release in German) that they plan to take 3.1 GW of fossil fuel generating capacity off the market.

    The reason they give for that is that wholesale electricity prices are way down in Germany as a consequence of more renewable in the mix. They would be losing money if they needed to sell at these low prices. They don’t, since most of their business is fulfilling contracts from the past couple of years, which still have higher prices, but that effect will be gone soon.

  25. #100
    Pronce. PH said so AGAIN!
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    Lots of very creative thinking on display in the projects in this thread.

    Hopefully the nut will be cracked and an affordable, renewable source of energy will become reality sooner rather than later.

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