Author Topic: Solar power cost calculator  (Read 6668 times)

Doctor_K

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Re: Solar power cost calculator
« Reply #15 on: August 11, 2008, 09:40:25 AM »
Here's an interesting article, relating to this discussion:
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/11/business/11solar.html?partner=rssyahoo&emc=rss
Quote
Giant Retailers Look to Sun for Energy Savings
By STEPHANIE ROSENBLOOM
Published: August 10, 2008

Retailers are typically obsessed with what to put under their roofs, not on them. Yet the nation’s biggest store chains are coming to see their immense, flat roofs as an untapped resource.

In recent months, chains including Wal-Mart Stores, Kohl’s, Safeway and Whole Foods Market have installed solar panels on roofs of their stores to generate electricity on a large scale.
Rest of the article at the above link.  Interesting stuff.
"Imagination is more important than knowledge. For while knowledge defines all we currently know and understand, imagination points to all we might yet discover and create."  -- Albert Einstein

BridgeTroll

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Re: Solar power cost calculator
« Reply #16 on: August 11, 2008, 01:57:47 PM »
Great article Doc...  I have often thought these are the entities who can afford the initial cost of installation.  Large companies and government.  Think of all the huge rooftops some of these companies own... warehouses, manufacturing plants, etc.  This makes more sense to me than covering the desert or prairie with these panels...

An interesting factoid from the article...

Quote
Booming demand in recent years has driven up the price of solar panels, and analysts say it costs far more to generate electricity from solar energy than from coal.

Coal generation costs about 6 cents for a kilowatt hour, which is enough electricity to run a hair dryer for an hour. Natural gas generation costs about 9 cents a kilowatt hour, said Reese Tisdale, a senior analyst with the consulting firm Emerging Energy Research. In comparison, “best case” for power from solar panels is about 25 to 30 cents a kilowatt hour, he said.

In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

Doctor_K

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Re: Solar power cost calculator
« Reply #17 on: August 11, 2008, 03:26:38 PM »
Quote
This makes more sense to me than covering the desert or prairie with these panels...
Agree.  You're right on with the warehouses, distribution centers, factories, etc. that are owned by business conglomerates.  How about all the Federal, State, and Municipal government properties?  Courthouses, offices, jails, post offices, and on and on.  The rooftops of Washington DC should be covered with solar panels as far as the eye can see.

Furthermore - if the government gets on board, and this trend with corporations continue, would that not in the long run bring down the price of such panels?  Production would conceivable ramp up to meet demand, thus dropping prices.  Then us commonfolk could more readily get in on the action like we're wanting to.
"Imagination is more important than knowledge. For while knowledge defines all we currently know and understand, imagination points to all we might yet discover and create."  -- Albert Einstein

BridgeTroll

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Re: Solar power cost calculator
« Reply #18 on: August 11, 2008, 05:15:02 PM »
I have always felt that conversion to solar or wind will happen when it makes economic sense not ecologicol sense or mandated by government.  When Exxon or GE can make a profit providing cheap and clean energy to everyone they will be the first ones to abandon the expense of drilling for oil or the unpredictability of foriegn governments.  Oil must be found, extracted, refined and transported, all at enormous cost before the first dollar is made.  The problem is that solar and wind energy still costs more to create than oil.  Until it at least equals oil gas and coal it will remain an alternative energy source only...
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

JeffreyS

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Re: Solar power cost calculator
« Reply #19 on: August 16, 2008, 09:12:53 AM »
I have always felt that conversion to solar or wind will happen when it makes economic sense not ecologicol sense or mandated by government.
What about when it makes national security sense.
Ok you are probably right it's all about the dollar money.
Lenny Smash

BridgeTroll

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Re: Solar power cost calculator
« Reply #20 on: August 16, 2008, 09:50:10 AM »
I have always felt that conversion to solar or wind will happen when it makes economic sense not ecologicol sense or mandated by government.
What about when it makes national security sense.
Ok you are probably right it's all about the dollar money.

Its not "all about the money"  no more than the silly "its all about oil" argument.  When you reduce your argument to Bumper stickers and slogans you loose credibility Jeff...
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

JeffreyS

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Re: Solar power cost calculator
« Reply #21 on: August 16, 2008, 10:52:39 AM »
It was just breivity. I didn't mean to be too extreem just agreeing the ecconomics will be the driving factor. Even if I wish there was more to it.
Lenny Smash

JeffreyS

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Re: Solar power cost calculator
« Reply #22 on: August 16, 2008, 11:11:36 AM »
Also if your bumper sticker slogan is true it is as credible as a 500 page text book on whatever subject. 
Lenny Smash

BridgeTroll

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Re: Solar power cost calculator
« Reply #23 on: August 16, 2008, 11:30:55 AM »
Also if your bumper sticker slogan is true it is as credible as a 500 page text book on whatever subject. 

But they seldom are... the presidential race is a prime example.  You hear plenty of empty rhetoric, slogans and bumper stickers in replacement of real discussion of the topics.  Sadly most americans seem to favor this style of debate...
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

JeffreyS

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Re: Solar power cost calculator
« Reply #24 on: August 16, 2008, 11:41:38 AM »
I get what you are saying.  I do however think simple statements are often true and often wrong. They are no more or less valid because of their style.  They do have a tendency I will grant you to be too powerful and limit debate or close minds.
Lenny Smash

BridgeTroll

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Re: Solar power cost calculator
« Reply #25 on: August 16, 2008, 12:02:45 PM »
This brings me back to this topic... Many seem very enthusiastic about solar power until they get to the nuts and bolts.  So many people epecially on this site tout solar as one of the answers to our energy problems but NO ONE has yet to act on it.  I am more than a bit surprised that not one person has yet to claim ownership of a system or decided to invest in one...  My guess is that it really is "all about the dollar..."
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

JeffreyS

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Re: Solar power cost calculator
« Reply #26 on: August 16, 2008, 12:09:10 PM »
You are right.  In fairness we had a poster put pics up of their solar system not log ago, but generally you are correct.
Lenny Smash

lindab

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Re: Solar power cost calculator
« Reply #27 on: August 29, 2008, 03:26:11 PM »
My solar hot water heater supplies 98% of my hot water.  Electric back up was only on during the last Northeaster in March and last week during Fay.

My 5KW, grid-tied P/V system supplies about $130 of electricity per month (at this month's rate!) which is more than half of my usage in the summer.  In the winter I have to give my surplus to JEA for no compensation and no carry forward of the KWH credit.  They then CHARGE ME a minimum "service" charge for the connection.  Hope that policy changes.  JEA is behind the other utilities in the State in this.

Someone on this site HAS made the move.

BridgeTroll

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Re: Solar power cost calculator
« Reply #28 on: August 29, 2008, 04:19:22 PM »
I am glad to hear that you did... Would you mind sharing your costs?  Have you broken even yet?  How big is the array?
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."