Science - and the Media

wrote:


...whoops...
-- Ed Huntress
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<snip>
OK, then you are chasing a perpetual-motion machine. You are accepting a claim, or a possibility, that the laws of thermodynamics CAN be overturned.
And that's why I think somebody is having fun with somebody else here.

Minto's wheel? I don't think so. That was a simple heat engine that didn't violate anything, except that it seems to have dropped out of sight over the past 30 years. <g> It put out less energy than you put in. I tried to build one in the late '70s but I didn't have the tools at the time.

Whoops. You misunderstand how it works. It worked on small *temperature* differentials, like a low-temperature-differential Stirling, but the amount of heat *energy* you put into it was considerable. Remember, solar insolation, at low latitudes and high noon, is around 1 kW/m^2, or slightly more. That wheel sucked up a lot of energy at 1 rpm.

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Ed Huntress wrote:

Ed, we are not comunicating well.
I do not see this as a power source.
It is ineresting as a possible new way at looking at material science.
A possible new approach to manipulating materials at the molecular level.
THE POTENTIAL FOR DOING TO CHEMESTRY WHAT SOFTWARE HAS DONE TO MECHANICAL.
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OK. It's interesting. Whether it's useful is a big question.
-- Ed Huntress

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Ed Huntress wrote:

Agreed - and fully concur.
And, I'll let it go until we see some definitive research.
My respects,
Richard
"All revolutionary ideas ...pass through three stages, which may be summed up by these three reactions: (1) 'It's crazy, don't waste my time.' (2) 'It's possible, but not worth doing.' (3) 'I always said it was a good idea.' "
Arthur C. Clarke 1968
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The big issue, though, is that many people in the news media *do*, through their ignorance of basic science.
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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Ed Huntress wrote: Remember, solar

I have been in power conversion for 30 years. I have been saying for years that if there is a kiloWatt per square meter in sunshine, there is no, and never will be, an energy shortage.
The problem is the media is written by non science thinking left brain reporters that don't understand capitalism either.
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I have to admit I'm not sure of what you're implying in the first paragraph above. I think I know, but would you elaborate a little bit?
-- Ed Huntress
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Ed Huntress wrote:

http://www.energyadvocate.com/allfuels.jpg
If the US annually consumes 100 exaJoules, and we have sunshine 1/3 the time, then we would need some land: Power = Energy/ time P = 100 x 10^18 /[365 x 24 x 60 x 60] = 3 EE12 Watts Area = Power needed [Power delivered/ unit area] A = 3 EE12 Watts/[1kW/m^2] = 3 EE9 square meters mile = 5,280 feet = 1625 meters sq mile = 2.6EE6 sq meters sq miles needed = 3 EE9/ 2.6 EE6 = 1100 sq miles Sunshine only 1/3 the time...3300 sq miles The US has 3.6EE6 square miles We need .1% of our land to meet our energy needs.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_energy_resources_and_consumption As a check, if an American uses 12 kW then they each need 36 sq meters. 300,000,000 Americans would then need 1EE10 sq meters. This would be 100,000 meters on a side of the area. At 1600 meters per mile, that would be 65 miles on a side = ... 4200 sq miles
Close enough.
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Aha. That's what I thought you meant, but I wasn't sure.
Yes, we have plenty of sunshine. And we have some simple technologies for using it replace significant portions of our energy useage, especially residential hot water and space heating. There are huge gains that could be made there and they don't have the ugly side effects of such alternatives as corn ethanol, nor the marginal net energy production of PV.

-- Ed Huntress
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On Sat, 22 Sep 2007 08:37:31 -0700, Clark Magnuson

=======Yes, but how do you collect royalties/taxes on sunshine? Unka' George [George McDuffee] ===========Merchants have no country. The mere spot they stand on does not constitute so strong an attachment as that from which they draw their gains.
Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), U.S. president. Letter, 17 March 1814.
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On Sat, 22 Sep 2007 15:20:57 -0500, F. George McDuffee

You sell time limited extraction licenses for the land to the highest bidder with Government run auctions. Sunshine is a state regulated monopoly controlled by the Weather service. Unlicensed extraction could cause untold repercussions for the environment.
<BEG>
Mark Rand RTFM
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On Sun, 23 Sep 2007 09:52:46 +0100, Mark Rand
<snip> ===================As long as we are discussing alternative energy sources, how about geothermal.
Seems ideal for costal areas [where the majority of the US population now lives] where the sea can be used as in infinite heat sink, high [enough] temperature strata are relatively close to the surface [at least in the tectonic active areas] and the newer heat pipe technology using more dense vapors such as R-123 Freon result in higher turbine efficiency and the transfer of only heat from the tectonic zone to the surface, i.e. no pollution.
This is off the shelf stuff. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geothermal_power http://geothermal.marin.org/pwrheat.html http://www1.eere.energy.gov/geothermal/powerplants.html http://geothermal.id.doe.gov /
As this is existing technology why are we continuing to construct coal, NG and nuclear generating sites? No "piece of the action" on geothermal heat?
Seems like a natural for Los Angeles. Municipal power company drills on municipally owned land, uses municipally owned ocean areas for the heat sink, constructs municipally owned geothermal generator stations, and sells the power to the [local] citizens. No rag heads in the loop and the money stays local [which may be the problem]. Warm seawater may even be good for high value aquiculture such as abalone.
Unka' George [George McDuffee] ===========Merchants have no country. The mere spot they stand on does not constitute so strong an attachment as that from which they draw their gains.
Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), U.S. president. Letter, 17 March 1814.
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