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Comment: Re:But (Score 1) 110

I don't think it produces 10x as much steam for a given amount of solar energy. What it does is produce steam at a solar intensity 1/10 of the level at which other things produce steam (the other thing is producing zero steam at the temperature this one is producing steam at).

I think the real result is you need the same amount of reflector as for other schemes, however it can concentrate the solar energy on an area 10 times as large, which may be much less expensive (due to it not requiring as much accuracy, and because the receiver is nowhere near as hot).

Comment: Re:Actual savings? (Score 2) 116

by spitzak (#47365425) Attached to: Renewable Energy Saves Fortune 100 Companies $1.1B Annually

You are certainly correct that the savings are due to increasing energy efficiency.

However it is not from putting in LED lights. They were already using fluorescent lights so this is not helping anywhere near as much. Also LEDs are not that cheap yet. It is from free things: getting all the monitors to go into power-save mode at night, turning down the heat or AC, etc.

Comment: Re:so the 88% is 99% free (Score 1) 304

by spitzak (#47357895) Attached to: Ninety-Nine Percent of the Ocean's Plastic Is Missing

You are confused because two percentages measuring different things are not equal?

88% of the ocean contains plastic debris. The density of this 88% is low enough that this other paper thinks it is only 1% of the plastic that should be in the ocean.

There now, that was not that hard, was it?

Comment: Re:His choices... (Score 4, Interesting) 194

by spitzak (#47352557) Attached to: The Internet's Own Boy

The meme "information wants to be free" is supposed to be read like "water wants to flow downhill". That statement does not mean water has a mind and actively thinks about flowing downhill. It also does not mean dams to stop the downhill movement are immoral or wrong. What it is saying is "a dam is expensive and will not magically appear without active input by a concerned party".

Comment: Re:Stupid argument (Score 1) 441

by spitzak (#47350627) Attached to: Researchers Claim Wind Turbine Energy Payback In Less Than a Year

It does look like the chart resets at midnight, and the "Click here to view yesterday's output" leads to a different graph which has "Small Hydro, Biogas, Biomass, Geothermal" added to the bottom. I would judge that one as showing a low end even smaller than you state, less than 30% of a 1000MW tick, so perhaps 250MW. It says the highest end is 3592MW at midnight (higher than the 2600 at midnight this morning). That is a ratio of 14.4:1 actually, higher than you claim.

However the chart does show that the output is pretty predictable. Some of the contrarian posters here seem to think it varies every minute, which may be why they seem to avoid posting otherwise informative charts like this. I personally doubt land-based wind is going to ever be anything more than a trivial amount of our energy. Offshore is much higher and perhaps more consistent, but solar or nuclear is really what will work.

I use technology in order to hate it more properly. -- Nam June Paik