Ben Bova: May 15, 2011 ... To get the most of our solar energy, we must rise above atmosphere

May 15, 2011 | Posted by: roboblogger | Full story: Naples Daily News

Several readers have pointed out that my recent column about the relative safety of nuclear power did not consider either solar or wind power.

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LessHypeMoreFact

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#1
May 15, 2011
 
Unfortunately, space travel was derailed by the idea of the 'space truck' that would never have been able to assemble a SPS. You need ground to LEO rockets capable of carrying hundreds of tons for less than a dollar a pound. They had designs for such 'heavy lift' rockets but they were sidelined by the drama of relatively expensive manned flights.

SPS are a hopeless dream for at least a generation, if not forever (given the fossil fuel lobbies efforts to block alternatives to their 'gravy train').

Since: May 11

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#2
May 15, 2011
 
Do we really have to rise above atmosphere to get solar energy effectively? I don't really think so, solar panels are able to get good amount of sun energy, which has many uses..
LessHypeMoreFact

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#3
May 16, 2011
 

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SunFusion Solar wrote:
Do we really have to rise above atmosphere to get solar energy effectively? I don't really think so, solar panels are able to get good amount of sun energy, which has many uses..
Not exactly. Efficiently, yes. The solar power available to a SPS is 1430 watts per square meter, with no problems for clouds, rain, etc.

The average solar power on the ground over the US would be about 200 watts per square meter or about one seventh because of the latitude (slant of solar influx), overcast, and the lack of solar power during the night.

So one meter of solar cells in an SPS is about 7 times as effective as a meter of solar cells on the ground, and it is STEADY power, not affected by day/night or weather.
ACME INC_

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#5
May 18, 2011
 
LessHypeMoreFact wrote:
<quoted text>
Not exactly. Efficiently, yes. The solar power available to a SPS is 1430 watts per square meter, with no problems for clouds, rain, etc.
The average solar power on the ground over the US would be about 200 watts per square meter or about one seventh because of the latitude (slant of solar influx), overcast, and the lack of solar power during the night.
So one meter of solar cells in an SPS is about 7 times as effective as a meter of solar cells on the ground, and it is STEADY power, not affected by day/night or weather.
200W/sm ??? You have to be kidding,right ?? You taking your readings at the north pole?
LessHypeMoreFact

Orangeville, Canada

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#6
May 19, 2011
 

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ACME INC_ wrote:
<quoted text>200W/sm ??? You have to be kidding,right ?? You taking your readings at the north pole?
http://www.altestore.com/howto/Tools-Calculat...

Say an average of maybe 5 KwH/day divided by 24 hrs gives you 208.3 w/square meter influx so 208.3 Watt Hours per Hour.

Enthusiasts tend to look only at peak sunshine on a hot August day, and may ignore the nighttime, overcast, etc. Try being a bit more pragmatical.
24ktgold

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#8
May 19, 2011
 

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LessHypeMoreFact wrote:
<quoted text>
http://www.altestore.com/howto/Tools-Calculat...
Say an average of maybe 5 KwH/day divided by 24 hrs gives you 208.3 w/square meter influx so 208.3 Watt Hours per Hour.
Enthusiasts tend to look only at peak sunshine on a hot August day, and may ignore the nighttime, overcast, etc. Try being a bit more pragmatical.
Averages are very deceiving and don't always give accurate results. Averages can be configured to show anything the user desires. Get educated on solar and get back with us. Folks like you clearly are agenda driven.

“I Luv Carbon Dioxide”

Since: Dec 08

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#9
May 19, 2011
 

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LessHypeMoreFact wrote:
Not exactly. Efficiently, yes. The solar power available to a SPS is 1430 watts per square meter, with no problems for clouds, rain, etc. The average solar power on the ground over the US would be about 200 watts per square meter or about one seventh because of the latitude (slant of solar influx), overcast, and the lack of solar power during the night. So one meter of solar cells in an SPS is about 7 times as effective as a meter of solar cells on the ground, and it is STEADY power, not affected by day/night or weather.
The Earth's atmosphere absorbs heat, so we can live. Man made CO2 doesn't make much difference, it has been impossible to experimentally test man made emissions or captures of greenhouse gas from the atmosphere, to measure a climate effect.

Solar panels are great for space exploration and inefficient waste on your roof.
LessHypeMoreFact

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#10
May 20, 2011
 
Brian_G wrote:
<quoted text>The Earth's atmosphere absorbs heat, so we can live.
<quoted text>

Nonsense. Anyone with a grade school education or a moment to watch the heat waves rising knows that the sun heats the GROUND. And then convection, conduction and radiation control the heat emission to space. It needs to get to the upper atmsophere before it has a chance of radiation to space and the more GHGs, the higher it must flow before it has a 50/50 chance of a photon escaping without being intercepted by a GHG molecule.
Brian_G wrote:
<quoted text>
Man made CO2 doesn't make much difference, it has been impossible to experimentally test man made emissions or captures of greenhouse gas from the atmosphere, to measure a climate effect.
Nonsensical ignorance. They know the physics of the atmosphere in detail so that they can model it is great detail and science has also shown that the variations in solar, aerosols and GHGs completely explain global temperatures from the last century. THey also have compelling evidence from paleoclimatology events of known magnitude (GHGs and warming).
Brian_G wrote:
<quoted text>
Solar panels are great for space exploration and inefficient waste on your roof.
Finally you get to the subject. But the point is that SPS solar arrays have about seven times the average power and are not affected by weather or day/night cycles. If only there were a decent heavy lift rocket.

“I Luv Carbon Dioxide”

Since: Dec 08

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#12
May 20, 2011
 

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LessHypeMoreFact wrote:
Nonsense. Anyone with a grade school education or a moment to watch the heat waves rising knows that the sun heats the GROUND. And then convection, conduction and radiation control the heat emission to space...
Let me try to understand, is it geothermal heat that warms the atmosphere, not sunlight? Why would the air only warm from the bottom, isn't the sun hot enough to make the atmosphere warmer? Do GHG molecules know whether heat is coming up from the ground or down from the sun?
lazertag

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#13
May 20, 2011
 

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Brian_G wrote:
<quoted text>
Solar panels are great for space exploration and inefficient waste on your roof.
You evidently have no solar panels. They lower or eliminate electric bills just as they are intended to do. Not a waste at all.

“Happy, warm and comfortable”

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#14
May 21, 2011
 

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LessFactMoreHype wrote:
Try being a bit more pragmatical.
Pragmatic is the word you seek, Mr Undoubtably Spelt Fourty,'pragmatical' is incorrect.
Didn't you once tell me that your English spelling was good?
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
The point is that I learned 'correct English spelling' very well and will use it even if MS-word takes over the rest of the world. SOMEONE has to maintain their integrity from these 'revisonists'.
Why don't you just come out of your closet and admit the truth, it could save you a lot of embarrassment?
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
You cannot correct a common corruption that has taken root around the world by referring to the 'current corruption' in recent dictionaries. I fully agree that the American spelling has become endemic. I was merely pointing out that **I** use the correct spelling as I was educated in English, rather than indoctrinated in American
You argued long and hard about spelling, I saved most of your posts to file.
You either know you're wrong or continue to believe you're right, which is it?

“Happy, warm and comfortable”

Since: Oct 10

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#15
May 21, 2011
 

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lazertag wrote:
You evidently have no solar panels. They lower or eliminate electric bills just as they are intended to do. Not a waste at all.
Would you fit solar panels to rented accomodation?
Where would you fit solar panels if you lived on the 5th floor of a ten storey apartment block?
I have a solar panel to heat water, but it doesn't save any electricity, because my home hot water system is oil fired.
Some details here:
http://www.sustainability.ie/payback.html
I checked out the payback (ROI) time for photovoltaic panels and wasn't too impressed, but this Wiki article covers the subject:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photovoltaics
DragonLady

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#16
May 21, 2011
 
Earthling-1 wrote:
<quoted text>Would you fit solar panels to rented accomodation?
Where would you fit solar panels if you lived on the 5th floor of a ten storey apartment block?
I have a solar panel to heat water, but it doesn't save any electricity, because my home hot water system is oil fired.
Some details here:
http://www.sustainability.ie/payback.html
I checked out the payback (ROI) time for photovoltaic panels and wasn't too impressed, but this Wiki article covers the subject:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photovoltaics
If you rent,that's your problem and your choice. As for wiki, not a reliable source of info.

“Happy, warm and comfortable”

Since: Oct 10

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#17
May 22, 2011
 

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DragonLady wrote:
If you rent,that's your problem and your choice.
I haven't rented since 1968, but millions of people either have to or choose to.
DragonLady wrote:
As for wiki, not a reliable source of info.
Is that all you can say?
What would you like, a peer reviewed paper from NAS on the ROI of photovoltaic solar panels?
The only places you'll find good reports on payback time are those who sell the product.
There's an old saying in the UK, "The adverts speak highly of their products."
OK, so why not work it out for yourself, then get back to me?
-
How to Calculate the Return on Investment for Solar Panels

Read more: How to Calculate the Return on Investment for Solar Panels | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/how_4710760_calculate-ret...
DragonLady

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#18
May 22, 2011
 

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Payback comes pretty fast when it eliminates the electric bill. If i must pay a bill,it might as well be for something I own. Many owners I know have paybacks in 7 to 10 years,depending on usage and electrical rates. I have read the reviews by many who actually don't know what the systems will do,not having experience with them.
LessHypeMoreFact

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#19
May 22, 2011
 

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DragonLady wrote:
I have read the reviews by many who actually don't know what the systems will do,not having experience with them.
Dirtling is very good at speaking with authority on issues he has never actually learned anything about, much less tried.

“Happy, warm and comfortable”

Since: Oct 10

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#20
May 22, 2011
 

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DragonLady wrote:
Payback comes pretty fast when it eliminates the electric bill. If i must pay a bill,it might as well be for something I own. Many owners I know have paybacks in 7 to 10 years,depending on usage and electrical rates. I have read the reviews by many who actually don't know what the systems will do,not having experience with them.
I live in a very sunny area, 340 days of sunshine per annum.
My solar water heater is about two years old and although it works quite well, it doesn't look like paying for itself within the time-frame you mention.
What the people you 'know' say and what the truth is, are probably very different, find something you can cite from an unbiased source, in other words a source other than someone who has nothing to gain by praising solar panels.

“Happy, warm and comfortable”

Since: Oct 10

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#21
May 23, 2011
 

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LessFactMoreHype wrote:
Dirtling is very good at speaking with authority on issues he has never actually learned anything about, much less tried.
Being nice is your, "fourte," Mr Undoubtably Spelt Fourty.
Now let's see how 'authoritative' you can be:
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
With calving you don't get more than a small difference in the endpoint. You don't 'calve' a chunk of ice 2.7 square miles in extent.

http://www.topix.com/forum/news/global-warmin...
Have you worked out what a PoP forecast means yet?
Have you discovered that the USA has more than two political parties yet?
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
In case you need a refresher course, your country has only two parties. Republicans and Democrats.
Anything else I can help you with?
Remember this one?
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
The majority of LARGE offshore windmills are made by Enercon which has been gearless for quite some time.
How about this one?
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
Deforestations is a consequence of AGW,....
Or this:
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
Scientists use 'forecasts'. The misuse of the term 'predictions' for forecasts can be seen by the fact that science is never absolute (forecasts have percentages). Predictions are for astrologers since they claim perfect accuracy.
They get better:
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
Most fruiting plants are [polinated] because those are the ones that have food values and thus something to give the bee an incentive to [polinate]. Weeds rarely have benefit to the bees.
This is a question that sounds intelligent only until you look closer..
And better:
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
the science isn't going to change.
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
While the science doesn't change rapidly it does change.
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
And nowhere is there 'skepticism' of the science.
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
the equator doesn't HAVE season.
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
Meaningless noise. It is settled science whether the public understands it or not.
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
I have no interest in reading the emails and data. Out of ALL that, there are only about three real 'zingers' which, on careful reading, don't really say what the clueless claim.
A really good one:
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
Western Europe was. But there is NO good evidence that Greenland was warmer. Note that the vikings were ADAPTED to 'nordic temperatures' and wouldn't know how to live in a melting Greenland.
A classic:
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
According to YOUR theory, no car can be charged with hitting a pedestrian unless the pedestrian is already dead or too crippled to move.
Even better:
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
This occurred when land life was limited to insects and plants so there were no species TO drive to extinction.
And all from the guy who wrote:
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
I am certainly bordering on being an intellectual.
LessHypeMoreFact

Orangeville, Canada

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#22
May 23, 2011
 

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Earthling-1 wrote:
find something you can cite from an unbiased source..
Well, that leaves YOU out. You are about as biased and clueless as they come. The economics should give you a payback in no more than five to ten years.

Show me the math. How many people served. Average electricty costs. What initial cost for system, controller, installation. How many 20 minute showers a day for the household. etc. etc.

“Happy, warm and comfortable”

Since: Oct 10

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#23
May 23, 2011
 

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LessFactMoreHype wrote:
Well, that leaves YOU out.
Out of what?
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
You are about as biased and clueless as they come.
Says Mr Undoubtably Spelt Fourty.
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
The economics should give you a payback in no more than five to ten years.
Are you drunk?
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
Show me the math.
You show me the maths.
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
How many people served.
With reference to what?
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
Average electricty costs.
What is the, "average?"
LessFactMoreHype wrote:
What initial cost for system, controller, installation. How many 20 minute showers a day for the household. etc. etc.
Thanks for proving my point.

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