[oclug] [OT] Solar / Renewable Power Generation
je_linux at kronos.honk.org
Mon Aug 12 15:41:39 EDT 2002
On Sun, 11 Aug 2002, Mike wrote:
> My brother currently runs his house off of a small Honda generator and
> propane. His previous house had 6 solar panels and propane. he's was
> trying to decide how many panels are needed now and with fuel prices so
> low he's finding it cheaper to keep running the generator to charge the
www.utilityfree.com has a sizing guide. I ran through it this AM and,
what I came up with is this:
I need, in worst case (winter), a system capable of generating 30kW (since
the solar hours are considerably reduced in the winter in this area - only
about 2.35hrs of power generating sunlight/day, compared with about 4.6 in
the summer). This means, I'd need 758 40W/2.36A panels at around 38' x
17' x 12.6lbs ea. That translates to two arrays (24V system) sized about
20' x 87'. For a three day reserve (in case we get some seriouly cloudy
days common in winter), I'd need 74 265Ah batteries. Without even
figuring all the costs for mounting structures, wiring, inverters,
controllers and anything else I'd need, I think the above would be
horrifying expensive to build.
Compare the prices of PV systems to the emerging fuel cell tech - the
equivalent fuelcell system for my house (two 4.5kW cells) would run me,
right now, about $50k.
Some folks I've read on the net, suggest hybrid PV/wind systems.
> There was an Ottawa solar and wind in one of the outlying towns they were
> mentioned recently. They run a mix of solar and wind and did not make
> many changes to their previous lifestyle.
Yeah, there was a lady in Metcalfe. I called her last week, and she told
me that she's out of the biz - apparently, the market for alternative
energy sources never materialized due to the very low energy costs in
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