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16525Re: [SB-r-us] Re: May 2014 was hottest May on record

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  • Sherwood Botsford
    Jun 29, 2014
      The ratio between available solar and available wind area depends a bunch of factors.

      A:  Size of unit.  

      Solar power costs are fairly linear once you get above about one KW.  If going from 1 to 2 kw costs 2000 bucks, then so will the increase from 4 to 5 KW.  It also lends itself to incremental increases,.

      Wind power gets MUCH cheaper with larger units.  Larger units are on larger towers.  Which are taller and get into the wind that blows with more consistency.

      B:  Location

      Where I live is, I think, class IV.  Average wind speed of 4-5 m/s.  It's barely worth installing wind here unless you have to be off grid.  South of here, at Pincher Creek, the wind blows so hard and steady that local trees are flagged -- branches only grow on the downwind side.

      We get pretty steady sun in summer.  And often when it's bitter cold in winter we have good sun for the few hours we have any sun. (Latitude 54 degrees)

      Wind and solar complement each other very well here.  Winter is worst for sun, but best for wind.  


      Grid connection:  We have a pretty good setup now for grid connected net metering.  If you are doing that, it makes the most sense to install as much solar as you can afford, and optimize it for max production over the year. (Solar is much cheaper per KW to install until you have run out of roof.) 

      Storage:  There's the rub.  At present storage starts to get unreasonable when you are talking about more than a single day's power.  Some of the new technology involving flow through batteries (You have 4 tanks for electrolyte, and they move through the battery by pumps.) decouple the power rating and energy capacity.  But such setups are large, expensive, and you better be a good plumber.   

      A breakthrough in storage that allowed you to store a week's worth of power in a closet; one that maintained the charge for a couple months, and had in indefinite number of charge/discharge cycles, and cost under $100/kWh to install would change the world.


      Sherwood of Sherwood's Forests

      Sherwood Botsford
      Sherwood's Forests --  http://Sherwoods-Forests.com
      50042 Range Rd 31
      Warburg, Alberta T0C 2T0

      On 28 June 2014 14:26, ndgray@... [SB-r-us] <SB-r-us@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

      Somewhere I remember reading that one night's wind was worth three days of sun in your battery bank.  
      I too remember those discussions.  I wonder what those folks are thinking now that climate chaos  is virtually undeniable, not that many don't still try.  David Gray

      Sent from my iPad

      On Jun 26, 2014, at 3:44 AM, "Frank Tettemer frank@... [SB-r-us]" <SB-r-us@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


      Well stated, Derek. Thanks for bringing that up.

      One of my OCD traits has been to watch the weather, for the past fifty
      We've had a lot of trends to consider and observe.

      In the early seventies, solar heating was a daily possibility, all
      Winter long, after the cloudy period of November and December, during
      freeze-up. After freeze-up, all the moisture was "frozen" out of the
      air; it was clear, non-cloudy, and cold.

      In 1995, I had observed a change in the amount of Winter sunlight in
      Ontario Canada. I started telling inquiring minds to put their interest
      in wind power and less in solar power. I was predicting then, that the
      weather was becoming more and more unsettled, (windy), and less and less
      clear and sunny.
      Through the sixties , seventies, and eighties the trend was towards more
      and more cloud cover, through January into March. This had
      traditioonally been very cold and clear and sunny, with temps rising to
      -15 C in daylight, and -20c to -30C at night.

      It was easy to get most all our home electricity from photo voltaic
      panels all Winter, after freeze-up, when the air turned crisp, clear and

      These current days it is very different. These days, it is mostly cloudy
      all Winter, and cloudy even in the Summer, here in the previously crisp
      and crystal-clear North Country.
      These days, we get over fifty percent of our household electrical supply
      from our 13' diameter wind turbine, and less and less from our 1800 watt
      photovoltaic array.

      /"Put your money in Wind, sonny-boy. But make sure that there tall tower
      is built stronger than you'd think"/.
      That's my "sage" advice of 2014.

      Frank Tettemer
      Living Sol ~ Building and Design
      613 756 3884

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