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Sallyann1234
3rd Nov 2013, 11:49
After just 15 years, another worn-out wind turbine is demolished.
And yet I am paying subsidies for more of these inefficient, environmentally-destructive devices to be built.
LiveLeak.com - Wind Wheel Demolition

cavortingcheetah
3rd Nov 2013, 12:01
You could or you should write a letter to the wife of British Vice Prime Minister Clegg. A woman who, as Miriam Gonzalez Durantez, is a director of Acciona, SA, a Spanish international conglomerate one of whose main money spinners is in windmills.
The rumour in Galicia Spain is that she was offered the appointment the day the UK political coalition was formed. Perhaps you could express the hope that improved quality control, regardless of which company constructed 'your' windmill, had been her main motivational interest in accepting the position.
Acciona Appoints Miriam González Durantez as Director, Gets Financial Backing for Mexico Wind Farm (http://www.ifc.org/wps/wcm/connect/industry_ext_content/ifc_external_corporate_site/industries/infrastructure/news/acciona+appoints+miriam+gonzalez+durantez+as+director,+gets+ financial+backing+for+mexico+wind+farm)

ShyTorque
3rd Nov 2013, 14:55
A few metres of det. cord on a breezy night would improve the skyline quite a lot and do everyone a favour.

VP959
3rd Nov 2013, 15:07
The problem with a lot of these things is that they are really badly made, especially the smaller sized ones typically put up by farmers and the like. Many seem to come from China and are not up to taking any sort of a hammering from the weather, yet the subsidy system has led to hundreds of the damned things being put up all over the place. I had a look at the construction of a 2kW one being put up by a farmer friend (now taken down for insurance reasons) and it was appallingly shoddy, the welding was worse than that seen on very early Japanese motorcycles (those of 1960's/70's vintage).

The big ones in the many tens of kW power output range put offshore and on the really big wind farms seem to be very reliable and able to withstand a fair bit of abuse from the weather. Most of the problems seem to be with ones in the few kW power output range.

Mac the Knife
3rd Nov 2013, 17:19
From Wind, Water, and Solar Power for the World - IEEE Spectrum (http://spectrum.ieee.org/energy/renewables/wind-water-and-solar-power-for-the-world/)

"We don’t need nuclear power, coal, or biofuels. We can get 100 percent of our energy from wind, water, and solar (WWS) power. And we can do it today - efficiently, reliably, safely, sustainably, and economically.

One scenario, projecting to 2030, includes:
3.8 million wind turbines, 5 megawatts each, supplying 50 percent of the projected total global power demand
49 000 solar thermal power plants, 300 MW each, supplying 20 percent
40 000 solar photovoltaic (PV) power plants supplying 14 percent
1.7 billion rooftop PV systems, 3 kilowatts each, supplying 6 percent
5350 geothermal power plants, 100 MW each, supplying 4 percent
900 hydroelectric power plants, 1300 MW each, of which 70 percent are already in place, supplying 4 percent
720 000 ocean-wave devices, 0.75 MW each, supplying 1 percent
490 000 tidal turbines, 1 MW each, supplying 1 percent.

We also need to greatly expand the transmission infrastructure in order to create the large supergrids that will span many regions and often several countries and even continents. And we need to expand production of battery-electric and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, ships that run on hydrogen fuel cell and battery combinations, liquefied hydrogen aircraft, air- and ground-source heat pumps, electric resistance heating, and hydrogen for high-temperature processes."

OR we could build a couple of dozen modern nuclear plants, at a quarter of the price, a 10-thousandth of the space, a tenth of the pollution....etc.

:p

Mac

In China, the true cost of Britain's clean, green wind power experiment: Pollution on a disastrous scale | Mail Online (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/moslive/article-1350811/In-China-true-cost-Britains-clean-green-wind-power-experiment-Pollution-disastrous-scale.html)

Solid Rust Twotter
3rd Nov 2013, 17:22
A few metres of det. cord on a breezy night would improve the skyline quite a lot and do everyone a favour.



Would it be wrong to stand there thrapping like a chimp on speed as the unsightly apparitions all hit the ground in a cloud of failure and uselessness?

Gertrude the Wombat
3rd Nov 2013, 17:32
After just 15 years, another worn-out wind turbine is demolished
Cheaper than decommissioning a nuclear plant after 50 years.

Matari
3rd Nov 2013, 18:30
Natural gas fired turbine power generators in combined cycle have more than 60 percent thermal efficiency, and a lifecycle of more than 30 years. If you're not going to go nukes, then clean, gas fired thermal generation is the only solution to unreliable 'renewable' generation.

Mac the Knife
3rd Nov 2013, 18:40
Cheaper than decommissioning a nuclear plant after 50 years.

Granted, but that's just one out of 3.8 million windmills, who average working life is now being revised down from 15-25 to 12-15 years.

Wave-power machinery is likely to have an even short useful lifetime before it has to be totally rebuilt.

Gertrude the Wombat
3rd Nov 2013, 18:49
Well, the real answer is:

(1) Build lots of solar plant in the Sahara

(2) Run cables under the Med

(3) Run cables under the channel

That way the French get to use the Saharan solar power, and we get to use the French nuclear power without the hassle of having the nuclear plants in our territory :D

G-CPTN
3rd Nov 2013, 19:02
we get to use the French nuclear power without the hassle of having the nuclear plants in our territoryAt what cost?

Sallyann1234
3rd Nov 2013, 19:38
Cheaper than decommissioning a nuclear plant after 50 years.

But divide the cost of decommissioning each by the GWh generated during its lifetime, and you will soon see which is the most efficient.

Sallyann1234
3rd Nov 2013, 19:46
(1) Build lots of solar plant in the Sahara

(2) Run cables under the Med

(3) Run cables under the channel

So instead of relying on Russian gas, we become dependent upon electricity generated in and passing through some of the most politically unstable countries.

In the modern world the only way for a country to have a reliable energy source is to generate it itself. And for us, that can only mean nuclear.

G-CPTN
3rd Nov 2013, 19:52
for us, that can only mean nuclear
I believe that there is more than enough coal available under Britain to supply the energy needed for electricity.
It might need to be incinerated in sealed vessels (remember coal gas?) to keep down emissions.

vee-tail-1
3rd Nov 2013, 20:25
http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj71/vee-tail-1/mikeBHApics007_zpsfceb3296.jpg

Hmnn ... well we here in the rural outer darkness will have few probs if the mains electric gives up.

Did you know 100 years ago there were mills in every city, town, and village, on every usable stream & river. How often do you see Mill lane, mill brook, fullers road, mill field, etc. The average output of those small mills was around 6 KW each. Many of them (or their sites) are still there. So a recent survey suggested renovating these old mill sites, to give an estimated total output equal to a nuclear power station.
Here in this valley we have a mill every mile on our river, and my three nearest neighbours are all generating useful amounts of power. We are debating sharing an electric car, but figure bikes might be a more healthy alternative. :)

Tarq57
3rd Nov 2013, 20:40
vee-tail-1, 6kW, or 6MW?

A kilowatt won't go very far, spread around a few houses. Some lights and doorbells, maybe.

dead_pan
3rd Nov 2013, 20:55
I reckon the Germans know a thing or two about engineering and how to successfully run a modern, industrial economy. So why have they ditched nuclear and built wind turbines across the country? Do they know something we don't?

dead_pan
3rd Nov 2013, 21:01
So a recent survey suggested renovating these old mill sites, to give an estimated total output equal to a nuclear power station.

How many old mill sites are we talking about? You may be aware hydro schemes are popping up all over the place now - at the last count there were over a dozen proposed for the Thames alone.

I heard an interesting stat last week from the BBC journo covering the announcement re new nuclear power stations - he said that it would take a three mile wide swathe of wind turbines from Hinkley Point all the way to Penzance to generate as much electricity as the new power station.

G-CPTN
3rd Nov 2013, 21:18
BBC News - Hexham River Hydro scheme shelved due to cost (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-tyne-22884896)

Sallyann1234
3rd Nov 2013, 21:25
Did you know 100 years ago there were mills in every city, town, and village, on every usable stream & river.

Yes. And did you know why they mostly closed down?

Could it possibly be because industry and homes started demanding huge amounts of electricity that they could not provide?

lomapaseo
3rd Nov 2013, 21:26
Vee-Tail

Love your photo, lots of eye candy (not the guy :) to feast on.

Some serious machines performing a small job.

That chain hoist is impressive as well as the giant electrc motor and belt in the background ?

The light bulbs aren't very impressive though. Is this a private residence or is there a water wheel driven dynamo out of view somewhere?

uffington sb
3rd Nov 2013, 21:55
Here's an interesting site.

U.K. National Grid status (http://www.gridwatch.templar.co.uk)

dead_pan
3rd Nov 2013, 22:00
BBC News - Hexham River Hydro scheme shelved due to cost

I'll see you and raise you:

BBC News - River Thames hydro-power scheme approved (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-oxfordshire-24754768)

I'm not au fait with their economics, but presumably it does make some sense to make use of all that energy stored in those heads of water?

Nuclear makes absolute sense IMO, but we still haven't really bottomed the waste problem after all these years. Its seems crazy to think that we're still talking about sticking it all in a glorified hole in the ground. I've heard thorium reactors show some promise, but then they said exactly that about fusion some years and several billion Euros ago...

PTT
3rd Nov 2013, 22:27
You want long-term, clean and reliable energy? Look no further: The Severn Barrage - Hafren Power (http://www.hafrenpower.com/severn-barrage/)The Severn Barrage will be one of the biggest power stations in Europe. It will produce 16.5 terawatt hours per year, about 5% of the UK's electricity demand, for over 120 years, cleanly, securely, sustainably and predictably. To give an idea of scale, the power from the barrage is equivalent to that of three to four nuclear reactors or 3,000 wind turbines.

Lon More
4th Nov 2013, 07:17
PTT There were similar plans for the Solway and the Wash some years ago but all seen to have sunk without further trace

vee-tail-1
4th Nov 2013, 08:59
lomapaseo : The 'electric motor' is my 110 volt dynamo, driven by a 20 foot diameter overshot water wheel.

dead pan: Imperial College did the survey in England & Wales 10 years ago. They were a bit optimistic, but wanted publicity for a forgotten power source.
Modern development of ultra low speed permanent magnet alternators makes old slow moving water wheels viable.
Like this one:-
http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj71/vee-tail-1/P8160053.jpg

Sallyann 1234: We are hooked on using huge amounts of electricity. My party trick for visitors to the mill is to plug in the electric kettle seen hanging on the chain hoist in the previous pic. The resulting tightening of the belts, grinding of the gears and dimming of the lights shows just how much power we take for granted in our current way of life. We could live well using less, but it would need a change of lifestyle. Plus lots of passive heating and serious insulation. Sorry for the 'hippy' rant , but we are attempting to live the 'simple life' down here, and it's quite hard work most of the time. :ouch:

dead_pan
4th Nov 2013, 09:17
We are hooked on using huge amounts of electricity

I was staggered when I took a look at my leccy bill last week - apparently our household uses an average of 25kW per day! (that's the equivalent of running your average kettle for 8 hours continuously every day). I reckon our biggest usage goes on the tumble dryer, not to mention the 30 or so 50W spot-lights in the kitchen plus gawd knows however many others dotted around the house...

We could live well using less, but it would need a change of lifestyle. Plus lots of passive heating and serious insulation. Sorry for the 'hippy' rant , but we are attempting to live the 'simple life' down here, and it's quite hard work most of the time.

Good for you. Do you keep a blog about your exploits?

cattletruck
4th Nov 2013, 09:56
Methinks the focus is too strongly set at generating electrikery rather than storing it and using it when needed. Maybe exploitation of subsidies are to blame for that.

Batteries have been problematic since the days of the ancient Egyptians with their electroplating techniques. Extrapolation from that point forward doesn't look good.

Could we build a huge super capacitor out of a disused lake, or maybe the gap between New Zealand's islands (and rename them Anode and Cathode Island respectively)? Could we connect the dark side of the planet to the light side and get the most out of our P.V.s?

Solar hot water systems seem to be on the right track - but that is so basic. If only storing large quantities of electricity for later use was as simple.

Sallyann1234
4th Nov 2013, 10:44
vee-tail
Your mode of life is admirable. And the hard work itself means that you need to import less energy to keep warm.
But there are few locations and opportunities for others to follow you. Millions of people in cities have no choice.

vee-tail-1
4th Nov 2013, 10:52
If only storing large quantities of electricity for later use was as simple.
4th Nov 2013 10:17

There are a few ideas being tried ... Here in Wales there is the pumped storage at Dinorwig, using off-peak electricity to fill the upper lake. When released the water brings the generators up to full power in less than 90 seconds.
More pumped storage schemes are being constructed in N Wales, using a closed loop system of two lakes, where the water remains in the system and is not discharged into rivers with the resulting erosion and pollution. Another innovation is to use the grid to direct wind power generated electricity to the pumped storage systems.
One crazy proposal is to construct large reservoirs on top of high cliffs and use sea water pumped up by off shore windmills ... :confused:

dead_pan
4th Nov 2013, 11:14
Picking up on the Severn barrage idea, I've idly wondered whether it would be possible to construct an artificial "estuary" in various of the shallow bays around the UK. For example, I reckon Portland harbour could quite easily be closed in this way; the volume of sea-water flowing in and out from the harbour each day must be vast, if the tidal flow in/out of the Fleet is anything to go by. These would have the additional advantage of doubling as sea defences. The environmentalists wouldn't have too much to complain about either.

cattletruck
4th Nov 2013, 11:23
Interesting point there vee-tail-1. If wind farms were set around these lakes to do mechanical work of pumping water, which I imagine is more efficient than having them generating electricity to drive electric pumps, then bigger generators could be used to better harness the massive potential energy in the lake system (dam) to satisfy peak demand.

Nice to hear about a new type of electrical storage in practice. :ok:

Edited to add that the subsidies should be focussing on generating and storing electricity rather than just generating the stuff. Who knows, prices may actually drop if storage capacity oversupplies demand.