Solar underperforms

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BDK
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Re: Solar underperforms

Post by BDK »

A) Battery banks, TMK, are starting to replace the auxiliary plants

B) I really do think they make sense for demand shaving, in appropriate climates. (EG, solar in TX, AZ, NM, FL etc)

Vertical wind towers seem like a better idea. I saw an interesting start up - didn’t seem well-run - to stack them such that the Eddie’s helped maximize the power produced - they could work as wind breaks on fields.
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HTRN
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Re: Solar underperforms

Post by HTRN »

blackeagle603 wrote: Sat Sep 18, 2021 6:37 pm Math has worked out for us in San Dog with a grid-tied system. Even if panels are degrading faster than projected it seems to work.
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Langenator
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Re: Solar underperforms

Post by Langenator »

The best way to reduce CO2 emissions from electric generation is nuclear. If you're not serious about nuclear, you're not serious about CO2 reduction.

Hydro is great too, but there are limited places remaining suitable for building such plants.

Of course, the watermelons hate both.
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blackeagle603
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Re: Solar underperforms

Post by blackeagle603 »

Yes, and you are using them at point of use to either gi into storage or take up specific loads or as a supplement.
Utilities may not like it but decentralizing the grid with increasing use of local storage is IMHO the way ahead. Seems like a more cellular approach would be less vulnerable to mischief by bad actors.
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Vonz90
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Re: Solar underperforms

Post by Vonz90 »

blackeagle603 wrote: Tue Sep 21, 2021 2:53 pm
Yes, and you are using them at point of use to either gi into storage or take up specific loads or as a supplement.
Utilities may not like it but decentralizing the grid with increasing use of local storage is IMHO the way ahead. Seems like a more cellular approach would be less vulnerable to mischief by bad actors.
Utilities have learned to love this stuff, because they are expense and don't generate much and they have to keep building them and they get paid based on a percentage of their investments so that just increases their profits.

Now consumers, that is a different story.
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Netpackrat
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Re: Solar underperforms

Post by Netpackrat »

The sailing channels I watch, they all have solar on their boats and increasingly big banks of lithium batteries for storage. Since their boats spend most of the time in the tropics, it makes a lot of sense for them. Some of the ones who are more "religious" about it pull out their diesel engines and install electric motors, but all that really accomplishes is crippling the boat. A better way to go seems to be putting a massive alternator on your diesel, so at least if you have to motor, your batteries end up fully charged too.
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randy
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Re: Solar underperforms

Post by randy »

Netpackrat wrote: Wed Oct 13, 2021 2:48 am A better way to go seems to be putting a massive alternator on your diesel, so at least if you have to motor, your batteries end up fully charged too.
Why not, worked for the US Navy until the USS Nautilus came along.
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Langenator
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Re: Solar underperforms

Post by Langenator »

randy wrote: Wed Oct 13, 2021 3:06 am
Netpackrat wrote: Wed Oct 13, 2021 2:48 am A better way to go seems to be putting a massive alternator on your diesel, so at least if you have to motor, your batteries end up fully charged too.
Why not, worked for the US Navy until the USS Nautilus came along.
Still works for a lot of navies, including the PLAN.
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HTRN
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Re: Solar underperforms

Post by HTRN »

Netpackrat wrote: Wed Oct 13, 2021 2:48 amSome of the ones who are more "religious" about it pull out their diesel engines and install electric motors, but all that really accomplishes is crippling the boat. A better way to go seems to be putting a massive alternator on your diesel, so at least if you have to motor, your batteries end up fully charged too.
The ideal setup is an electric aux motor, max solar, and a smaller diesel Genset, a big lith ion battery bank, and a smart controller to turn on and off the diesel as needed. Increases max range of sailboat under becalmed conditions. I've seen the vids of people sailing to the Azores, with a dozen or more Jerry cans of diesel strapped on deck Incase the wind dies on them.
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Netpackrat
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Re: Solar underperforms

Post by Netpackrat »

Well, in my prior post I was referring to putting a big alternator on a regular diesel inboard, not having a generator to run an electric motor. I don't think you are going to do better than a dedicated diesel inboard for sustained endurance under power. With the electric motor you might be able to motor periodically over an indefinite period of time for as long as your ability to recharge holds out, but that isn't the same thing as sustained propulsion. Which is a lot more likely to get you out of trouble than being able to motor under battery power for a few hours before needing to recharge, whether you do so via solar or genset.

On the most recent couple episodes of Delos, they are sailing nonstop from Isla Mujeres to Panama, which involves bucking the trade winds, the gulf stream, AND avoiding areas where piracy is a problem (Nicaraguan coast, etc). Island hopping wasn't really an option due to then having to deal with multiple countries' covid restrictions, plus going even further out of their way. Being able to motor directly into the wind and current for days on end (53' boat, lots of internal fuel tankage) is the only thing that made that passage do-able at all.

I watch a lot of sailing videos and the people who are serious about going places and seeing things as their priority tend to have diesel engines. There are quite a few sailing channels using electric boats but my take-away from those I have watched, is that you are effectively engine-less, and you need to have the same mentality as an engine-less sailor when route planning, etc. Yes you have some ability to motor for a few hours but it's mostly a convenience thing for getting in and out of anchorages and/or marinas. One plus of the electric inboard is the ability to run the motor as a generator under sail, to keep the batteries topped up in weather conditions where solar isn't performing, so you can run radios, lights, navigation equipment, etc. But it costs you some speed since the prop is acting like a brake.
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