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Re: [hreg] Cost in energy of producing a PV panel vs. it's lifetime return

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  • BASHIR A SYED
    It s an interesting question to think. According to law of Conservation of Energy, the process of making it from Silicon, of course, requires energy, and sure
    Message 1 of 6 , Aug 31, 2003
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      It's an interesting question to think. According to law of Conservation of Energy, the process of making it from Silicon, of course, requires energy, and sure enough some energy is wasted in the form of heat etc. But in the end, the Solar Cell is a device for converting Visible electromagnetic (wave) energy into electrical energy. It's not that one looks at the Renewable Energy devices from the point of view described in your question but comparing it with other modes of Energy Conversion and their impact on Environment, Reliability, and overall cost over a period of twenty years (i.e. free solar energy vs. cost of fossil fuel imports,  cleaning up the environment, and providing health care for sickness caused  the pollutants).
      I hope, this answers your question in terms of overall economics and protection of environment.
       
      Bashir A. Syed
      VP, EnerTech Enterprises, Inc.
      Houston, TX
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: Joseph
      Sent: Sunday, August 31, 2003 2:58 PM
      Subject: [hreg] Cost in energy of producing a PV panel vs. it's lifetime return

      I was wondering where I can get some data on the energy it takes to make
      a PV panel in comparison to the energy that same panel will be able to
      produce during it's operational lifetime.

      Any ideas?

      Joseph Davis



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    • Roxanne Boyer
      Joseph, The answer is not easy because the technology is advancing rapidly. Ten years ago, it may have taken as much energy to make a solar panel as would the
      Message 2 of 6 , Sep 1, 2003
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        Joseph,
        The answer is not easy because the technology is advancing rapidly.  Ten years ago, it may have taken as much energy to make a solar panel as would the solar panel produce over its life time.  Right now, modern plants produce solar cells that will produce about 4 to 5 more time energy than went into them.  However, from what I read, it is scarry to build a plant right now, as soon as you build it, the technology is obsolete.  They say the solar panels will produce about 10 time more energy than required to build them in the next few years.  That is equivalent to the "efficiency" of today's American oil well.
         
        Two good sources are:
        1) "Renewable Energy World" July-August 2003, Vol 6, No4.  Contains several articles.
        2) "Renewable Energy" Godfrey Boyle, Oxford Press.  1st Edition 1996.  2nd Edition comming 2004.
         
        Regards,
        Chris
        ----- Original Message -----
        From: Joseph
        Sent: Sunday, August 31, 2003 2:58 PM
        Subject: [hreg] Cost in energy of producing a PV panel vs. it's lifetime return

        I was wondering where I can get some data on the energy it takes to make
        a PV panel in comparison to the energy that same panel will be able to
        produce during it's operational lifetime.

        Any ideas?

        Joseph Davis



        Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.
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      • BASHIR A SYED
        The Conducting Polymer technology that may produce cheap and disposable Solar Cells is being developed. The 2000 Chemistry Nobel Prize was shared by two
        Message 3 of 6 , Sep 2, 2003
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          The Conducting Polymer technology that may produce cheap and disposable Solar Cells is being developed. The 2000 Chemistry Nobel Prize was shared by two Americans (one an organic chemist, another a physicist) and a Japanese (Ishikawa, who discvered this property). Conducting Polymers coupled with nanotechnology (Composites) show a great promise for new Photovoltaic devices. I published an article in NASA's EEE-Link published by NASA/GSFC about two years ago describing the applications of this new emerging technology, one prominent application is the Organic Light Emitting Diodes or OLEDs. The two sources cited below are very good references.
           
          Bashir A. Syed
           
          ----- Original Message -----
          Sent: Monday, September 01, 2003 10:11 PM
          Subject: Re: [hreg] Cost in energy of producing a PV panel vs. it's lifetime return

          Joseph,
          The answer is not easy because the technology is advancing rapidly.  Ten years ago, it may have taken as much energy to make a solar panel as would the solar panel produce over its life time.  Right now, modern plants produce solar cells that will produce about 4 to 5 more time energy than went into them.  However, from what I read, it is scarry to build a plant right now, as soon as you build it, the technology is obsolete.  They say the solar panels will produce about 10 time more energy than required to build them in the next few years.  That is equivalent to the "efficiency" of today's American oil well.
           
          Two good sources are:
          1) "Renewable Energy World" July-August 2003, Vol 6, No4.  Contains several articles.
          2) "Renewable Energy" Godfrey Boyle, Oxford Press.  1st Edition 1996.  2nd Edition comming 2004.
           
          Regards,
          Chris
          ----- Original Message -----
          From: Joseph
          Sent: Sunday, August 31, 2003 2:58 PM
          Subject: [hreg] Cost in energy of producing a PV panel vs. it's lifetime return

          I was wondering where I can get some data on the energy it takes to make
          a PV panel in comparison to the energy that same panel will be able to
          produce during it's operational lifetime.

          Any ideas?

          Joseph Davis



          Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.
          [Scanned by AwesomeNet Anti-Virus]


          Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.
        • txsolarguy
          ... make ... to ... Hi, this thread goes back to the question on Aug 31. Below is a link to an article on the Home Power website that answers this exact
          Message 4 of 6 , Sep 13, 2003
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            --- In hreg@yahoogroups.com, Joseph <joseph@d...> wrote:
            > I was wondering where I can get some data on the energy it takes to
            make
            > a PV panel in comparison to the energy that same panel will be able
            to
            > produce during it's operational lifetime.
            >
            > Any ideas?
            >
            > Joseph Davis

            Hi, this thread goes back to the question on Aug 31. Below is a link
            to an article on the Home Power website that answers this exact
            question about energy payback vs energy used to produce a PV panel.
            http://www.homepower.com/files/pvpayback.pdf
            It's a fairly long article but the authors published a paper at Solar
            2000: ASES Annual Conference in Madison, Wisconsin on this exact
            question, so I suspect that it's pretty accurate. Which is good
            because the answer is that the payback time is 2-4 years.
            They take into account every step of the process including the
            smelting of the aluminum and the casting of the glass. Both processes
            are very energy intensive. However, the cost goes down as the volume
            goes up so the actual cost for 10 feet or so of extruded aluminum for
            the module frame, for instance, is really not that great.
            Anyway, I hope to see you all at the Roundup. A bunch of us from
            NTREG will be there!
            Jim Duncan, Fort Worth
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