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Old 05-28-2012, 12:23 PM
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Default Germany sets a new world record...

Last Saturday, 40 per cent of all electricity consumed in Germany was produced by solar power plants. No other country ever had this high a share of photovoltaic power in the grids.

A total of 22.2 gigawatts came from the sun... that's enough to send 18 DeLoreans back to the future and keep a reserve of 347 megawatts.


German newspaper report about this here:
Stromverbrauch am Pfingstwochenende: So viel Solarstrom war nie - taz.de

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Old 05-28-2012, 03:21 PM
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That's quite impressive, but I wonder how it'll work on more cloudy periods.
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Old 05-28-2012, 10:10 PM
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That's really an accomplishment. Hopefully, Germany can serve as an example to other nations, if only in this regard.
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Old 05-28-2012, 10:38 PM
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Wow, that's fantastic. I certainly hope other countries take notice of this and follow this great example.
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Old 05-29-2012, 12:49 AM
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The French already generate 80% of their power from nuclear stations.
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Old 05-29-2012, 04:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clarke View Post
The French already generate 80% of their power from nuclear stations.
My reply to that would be in the fake admiring tone of Admiral Janeway, on seeing Korath modifying that Cardassian disruptor: "Impressive..."

(Yes, I watched ST Voyager "Endgame" recently)

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Old 05-29-2012, 04:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aquaplant View Post
That's quite impressive, but I wonder how it'll work on more cloudy periods.
Indeed, to store that power is still the trick to be accomplished - for instance by using it to pump water up to elevated lakes, from where it can be retrieved by then powering water turbines...

During cloudy periods, there's also more wind to be used for power generation, that adding up to the bill of renewable energies.

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Old 05-29-2012, 05:37 AM
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Sehr gut.
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Old 05-29-2012, 03:37 PM
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Impressive! that's 20x the maximum power we consume in Bolivia!
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Old 05-30-2012, 06:48 AM
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solar power plants... yeah, thats awesome
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Old 05-31-2012, 12:49 AM
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Worth a lot on one of the hottest days of the year, if only there was a useful way to actually store it
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Old 06-03-2012, 09:25 PM
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Oh - indeed worth a lot on the hottest day - all those air conditioners can work then...

I think the tactic is for now not to store too much of it. The main tactic is distribution, meaning to build a large network and rely on the fact that in some place in Europe there is always either sunshine or wind blowing and that is just shared to the other places. Germany is currently planning to build 2000 km new power lines and to upgrade the old ones to DC transmission. The gaps in production by combines wind and solar are planned to be filled with water power from reservoirs and natural gas plants that will operate only to fill the gaps. They are currently thinking of ways to finance these because they will of course make less profit if they cannot be run all the time. The third part of the concept for Germany is the smart grid, meaning to increase the number of appliances that are not time-constrained and that can be remotely started in times of high energy production. That way, already now some washing machines, hot water storage systems for homes and chargers for electric cars are working (basically if you leave the house in the morning you load the washing machine and tell it to be finished by evening and when you come back home it is finished, but it was started at any time during the day when there was a lot of solar/wind power. This also has the advantage of taking the cheapest power for that because solar and wind power are actually the cheapest during these times of high production)
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Old 06-04-2012, 02:32 AM
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...DC transmission? That's a major downgrade. DC loses voltage over distance and has higher resistive loss; then entire reason mains supply is AC is for ease of transmission, while most electrical items then convert it to DC for actual use.

Running things when power is cheapest is an interesting idea, but hugely impractical for most things (electric cars for example, even more useless than currently if they can only cheaply be charged when people aren't at home). The idea is a nice idea on paper, but ignores the fact that most load is not shiftable in such a manner.
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Old 06-04-2012, 10:22 AM
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High-voltage direct current - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Quote:
The advantage of HVDC is the ability to transmit large amounts of power over long distances with lower capital costs and with lower losses than AC. Depending on voltage level and construction details, losses are quoted as about 3% per 1,000 km.[14] High-voltage direct current transmission allows efficient use of energy sources, remote from load centers.
Re the smart grids - it is already working in some places. Of course it cannot shift ALL demand or even MOST of the demand - but it does not have to, because while there are fluctuations in power supply that is combined from solar, wind and water, they are on average (e.g. taking all of Europe as a unified grid) not that huge. Electric cars are also an interesting option as distributed energy storage. Of course people would also have to have the opportunity to plug them in at work, not only at home to make that capacity available. Using renewable energy will not come without some changes in peoples daily lives and without some investment. But honestly to install some more charge plugs at workplaces is not that much of an investment compared to lets say building new power plants or electrical grids.
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