The Sun is the main driver of climate change. Not you. Not carbon dioxide.

太阳能电池板上的大草原 - 希望和失望

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我被告知加拿大人是一个有价值的投资,并且他们提供能量独立和投资回报 - 有时甚至可以将系统挂钩到电网时发电。目前,草原气候中心正在宣称农场上的风力涡轮机和太阳能电池板的视频将带您避免“危险” - 可能是吹捧的工业规模安装highly subsidized by taxpayersSo, if the public are paying for these adventures in alternative energy, we should know how well they work. Here’s a small scale example for consideration.

A Canadian farmer living in a remote prairie location installed a solar system hoping to benefit from the claims many government officials make about solar panels – that they provide suitable back-up power, potential return on the grid and that there is a positive cost-benefit on investment.

We received the following unsolicited commentary and photos from the individual who preferred to remain anonymous, but they did agree to share their experience for the benefit of others. The following has been nominally edited for clarification.

我决定踏上这个旅程有两个原因......

我想首先是为了方便。因为阿f continued interruptions of electric service in my region, I wanted to have a backup system to protect my appliances and not be compromised during electric outages. Secondly, I have been interested in solar power for decades and do believe in harnessing energy that is provided to us every day to use as efficiently as possible.

I have an array of eight panels that are connected to batteries and then an inverter to supplement my consumption and provide electricity to select parts of my house during power outages. I also have an array of 10 panels that connects directly into the power grid and operates on a bi-directional power meter with the utility company. Both arrays are ground mounted. The second array is also monitored through the internet by a company called Enphase Energy and provides me with up to the minute energy production reports.

照片1 - 安装的太阳能系统技术细节

Photo 2 – Solar panel array

The system has been operating now for 14 months and works reasonably well.

自2016年10月至2018年1月至2018年1月以来,我已经消耗了33894千瓦时,并从10面板阵列向网格发送了2394千瓦。8面板阵列为12伏,并与系统和电池连接,逆变器

Performance Challenges – Clouds and Snow

The first thing I became aware of is the reduced production even whenlayers of clouds block the sun. If I do not have direct sunlight on the panels, there is非常减少从保险箱报告中观察到的生产。我观察到的下一件事是,甚至在面板上雪的轻微雪将防止电力生产。即使以60度或更多的角度倾斜到地面,面板似乎似乎神奇地吸引雪,有时达到10厘米或更长时间的显着深度。当太阳出现时,它会慢慢融化,但通常我们的冬天连续云覆盖。如果天空确实清晰,它通常是下午晚些时候,左边是大自然,在阳光下没有足够的热量来清除面板。我用扫帚手动清除雪,以便尽可能多地捕获能量。

Photo 3 – Dec. 15, 2017

Photo 3, taken on Dec 15, 2017, is rather unique as it shows an overnight snow shower – the thickness of the snow as it slides off the array tilted at 45 degrees – as it heats up from the midday sun.

The above photo shows very little snowfall on the surrounding area but already a significant pile on the ground in front of the array, snow that I have swept off the panels. I have a broom that I use to clean the panels almost every morning in the winter time and we have been known to have snow in this area typically eight months of the year. This makes me wonder what happens in large commercial units. The snow does eventually melt off but depending on the depth and with only intermittent sun during most days, it can take several days for the panels to clean themselves which means lost production opportunity. Also, with the added weight of snow, I wonder how many roof installations will damage the structure underneath.

Summer offers best production – But you most need power in Winter

I can tell you that my best month of production in 2017 was July of course and the bank of 10 panels produced 432 kw hours. Monthly production in 2017 starting with January – 201, 234, 252, 398, 414, 369, 432, 383, 266, 261,162, and 160. Needless to say, I am disappointed especially when considering the investment. I would like to see our Minister McKenna install a system on her own home at her own cost and try to live off the grid as she suggests the citizens of this country should.

I built my own support structure and as such I am able to tilt it as the sun’s declination angle changes. I do not know if that has any benefit though. It’s kind of like the analogy of checking the pressure in your car tire

Photo 4 – March 7, 2017

■确保它们处于最佳状态,以便在甚至小风头上或尾风中甚至会影响您的里程数百倍时获得更好的储气里程。一艘云极大地减少了生产和阴云密布的天空。这我可以通过观看我的阐明监视器的条形图来证明每隔几分钟更新

A photo of the arrays in the middle of a blizzard on March 7 2017. Even with strong winds, the panels are covered in snow.

Does it Pay?

I have invested about $25000.00 in my system but that includes having to upgrade the power panel in my house but does not include the cost of the structure to hold the arrays as that was built from my own material.

无论如何,回答你的问题 - 我的院子里有一个双向仪表,测量我从网格中消耗的电力,当我的消费量很低时,我也可以测量面板产生的多大电力,即我在持续的基础上发送回电网。

Do I get paid for that? The short answer is yes – it shows up as a credit on my power bill. Unfortunately, I consume way more than I send back so my power bills have not decreased significantly. I designed the system based on my previous power consumption but then added some high energy fixtures before I had the system up and running making it difficult to compare current to previous costs. Objectively, most of my energy consumption occurs outside of daylight hours for light and heat so logically the panels are not producing when I need them most.

其他问题

My last huge concern is the disposal of these panels at the end of their lifespan which I am told is about 30 years. I live in a very sparsely populated area and can predict that the panels with all their contaminants (mercury) will end up in a local landfill instead of being recycled because of the cost and availability of a recycling service. At my age, I don’t expect to be around to worry about it but somebody someday will have to deal with it. The cost of disposal is a very real cost that needs to be added if you are trying to calculate efficiency of solar production.

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Additional Reading:

剑桥迈克尔J.凯利教授的重量风和太阳能作为“疯狂的总”- 他们没有解决气候变化,也没有支持基本社会,更不用说先进的文明。

2 Comments

  1. Tom Green

    已经领先先锋早期的太阳能heating industry I am pretty well informed on the positive and negative factors related to many solar factors. Simple to say that without the help of government subsides the efficiency of ‘pure solar’ is not really exciting. For water heating such as swimming pools it is a truly wonderful adjunct more than doubling the comfortable use of the pool. However when we talk about HOT water the performance only meets a low percentage unless the water is also a like small amount.

  2. Lee Wilkerson

    Have you tried any sort of slickee coating on the panels such as RainX? You could also build a windshield wiper for them.
    Solar panels are not very efficient because of the huge waste of energy being reflected back out, but engineers have created tri-color panels which are nearly 6 times more efficient.

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