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Comment: Re:Smart meters are not the solution anyway (Score 1) 494

by kipb (#34801198) Attached to: California County Bans SmartMeter Installations
>> If your meter knew the rate, it just needs to report a cost to the power company

> How is that any different than reporting usage? It still has to report back some number.

If the meter knew the price each hour of the day, it could accumulate the usage in dollars rather than kWh, and report the dollars once a day or even once a month. Nobody would know whether you ran the heater at 3pm or 9pm.

Integrate dollars at the meter or at the central office.

Personally, if I were the utility, I'd try to get the kWh and not the $ so I can check the calculations, not be responsible for missing price updates, help customers know why their bill is so high, understand statistics of customer use to be better able to forecast usage and bid forecasted load into the market. Also, be able to offer "demand management" services such as paying you to let the utility reduce your usage during high-priced hours.

Comment: Great, but hydrogen "lost in space?" (Score 1) 2

by kipb (#31818992) Attached to: MIT Researchers Harness Viruses to Split Water
If you imagine an economy based on hydrogen from splitting water, a lot of hydrogen would be lost as H2 is very small and fits through cracks that O2 or N2 or CO2 wouldn't. H2 in the atmosphere easily reaches escape velocity at ordinary temperatures and so is lost to space. While it could take years to get to the scale where this is relevant (much as dumping in the ocean took years to become relevant), this isn't simply a recycling issue, as it is truly lost from Earth. The incentives are there to conserve all H2 generated of course as it's wasted fuel. There is also incentive not to spill oil, but the Exxon Valdez shows us that's not always enough. In the meantime, cheap solar-generated H2 would be great, as long as we remember the Hindenburg disaster from 1937.
Science

+ - MIT Researchers Harness Viruses to Split Water-> 2

Submitted by ByronScott
ByronScott (1646747) writes "A team of researchers at MIT has just announced that they have successfully modified a virus to split apart molecules of water, paving the way for an efficient and non-energy intensive method of producing hydrogen fuel. The team engineered a common, harmless bacterial virus to assemble the components needed to crack apart a molecule of water, yielding a fourfold boost in efficiency over similar processes."
Link to Original Source

+ - "Brain-like" computers are born-> 1

Submitted by dontmakemethink
dontmakemethink (1186169) writes "Discover Magazine has published an astounding article about new "Neurogrid" computer chips which offer brain-like computing with extremely low power consumption. In a simulation of 55 million neurons on a traditional supercomputer, 320,000 watts of power was required, while a 1-million neuron Neurogrid chip array is expected to consume less than one watt. The type of processing is different, like the brain vs a computer, but the potential for extremely complex computations is amazing, and power savings like that are definitely welcome these days!"
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Medicine

+ - Beyond DNA: understanding histone code->

Submitted by futurity.org
futurity.org (1671186) writes "A Princeton University team has engineered a faster, more accurate method for analyzing histones, enigmatic proteins that influence almost every aspect of how cells and tissues function. The approach offers a long-sought tool for studying stem cells, cancer, and other critical areas of biology and medicine.
Despite rapid progress in understanding the information encoded in DNA and genes, scientists have achieved much less insight into the so-called “histone code,” which determines why a gene in one cell functions differently than the same gene in another cell. The new technique reduces by a factor of 100 the time it takes to analyze histones, while requiring far less sample material and achieving much more nuanced results than existing methods. Understanding histones could revolutionize modern medicine as we know it.
From futurity.org"

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Earth

+ - Hydrogen to Hydrino -- huge energy source?->

Submitted by kipb
kipb (529703) writes "Convert hydrogen to an even lower energy form called the Hydrino, thus releasing 200 times as much energy as it takes to generate the hydrogen by splitting water. So claims Blacklight Power (1999 on Slashdot), which also appears in an August 12 Greentech Media article. Blacklight claims that the energy is released as ultraviolet light, which can be readily converted to heat. The resulting product can be converted back to normal hydrogen (or hydrogen-containing substance) by simply heating it. They claim that scientists at Rowan University (Glassboro, NJ) have reproduced the reaction, generating 6.5 times as much energy as could be obtained through known chemical reactions and also agreed that there appeared to be a transition of hydrogen to an energy state lower than the previously known ground state, with emission lines below 80 nm. There was no analysis on whether the universe would implode upon seeding of a star with hydrinos, as in Vonnegut's Ice 9."
Link to Original Source

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