Archive for the ‘Solar panels’ Tag

Eclipse Watch – Partial Solar Eclipse 20th March 2015   33 comments

 

Mysterious Winds of the Solar Eclipse – Strange and Eerie!

         

Unusual weather and wind conditions may occur during Friday’s (20th March) partial solar eclipse which will obscure between 84 and 97% of sunlight as the moon crosses the sun face and a shadow is cast over the Earth.

During the partial solar eclipse of 1999 the wind speed and direction both changed, an average drop of 3 degrees C occurred in the air temperature in what has been described as an “eclipse wind”. In Cornwall observers reported experiencing mysterious, eerie eclipse winds. Scientists believe this was a result of the drop in air temperature.

 

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clip_image004This Friday’s eclipse when the moon’s orbit will see it travel in front of the sun, casting a shadow over Earth is expected to start around 8.24am in London and will peak at around 9.31am. It is due to end at 10.41 am.

The Shetland Isles will enjoy 97% eclipse coverage, and the skies are expected to become dark enough to require car headlights being turned on in regions experiencing 95%+ coverage. This will be the first rush-hour eclipse so drivers eyeballing the partial solar eclipse should take extra care to avoid crashes! Scotland will enjoy 94% coverage of the sun, London 84% and Manchester 89%.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

Solar eclipse- created electricity blackouts across Europe

 

              

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Whilst Britain obtains only 1.5% of its energy from solar power and therefore should not experience undue problems, approximately 3% of Europe’s total energy supply is obtained from solar power. The temporary dip in light due to the solar eclipse could lead to electricity black-outs across Europe as solar power grids battle to handle this. Although solar panels do turn off at night, the light dip is much more gradual than it will be during the solar eclipse. When they will probably not only power-down but also shut down altogether in full and well-timed synchronisation. It is planned that in order to counteract this situation extra electric from alternative power stations will be utilised.

Night time shut-downs do not usually pose problems because demand for electric is much less at this time, but the morning solar eclipse will hit right in the middle of peak time usage. – European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E)

“35,000 MW of solar energy will fade from Europe’s electricity systems, before being gradually re-injected. This will be ‘all in the space of two hours.” European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E)

During the solar eclipse of 1999 solar energy was not a widespread energy source so there is no previous experience to draw on regarding Friday’s eclipse and its impact on the power grids. Studying the effects on the solar panels and the power grids coping mechanisms during the eclipse will hopefully provide the necessary information required for future protection against grid instability issues.

The End of the World! NOT!!

   BoostGrad tint

The end of the world will not be occurring on Friday morning! Contrary to the suggestion of a certain religious individual the world will still be functioning very nicely and will still be happily in existence despite the solar eclipse! We will all live to see another day…another sunrise and another sunset! No need to panic!!

Bubble, Bubble, Toil and Trouble   44 comments

Beijing Bubbling Towards A Smog-Free

 Future?

china_beijing_air_pollution_Photo_EPABeijing smog alert! Recently raised to Level Orange – the alert system’s second highest smog threat category (levels consisting of blue, yellow, orange and red) which can lead to outdoor sports class cancellations and transport usage restrictions, highlights the shocking air quality crisis in China’s capital city. Citizens have been advised to stay indoors and to wear face masks if they do have to go out. This is the first time the pollution level has reached the smog alert system’s second worst threat level, and is a direct consequence of the notorious combination of coal burning power plants and the excessive number of cars on Beijing’s roads.

Levels of PM2.5 – tiny pollutant particles in Beijing’s atmosphere have been recorded as standing at 400 micrograms per cubic metre. The acceptable limit is 25 micrograms per cubic metre.

Park in a Bubble

Orproject – a London-based, British architecture and design company have a dedicated team working on the innovative idea of a dome-covered botanical garden which would be large enough to also enclose offices, shops and residential buildings.

Bubbles

bubble-Photo_OrprojectThe Bubble as it is known, would be helpful to those living with environmental pollution, and although it is not an alternative to finding ways to control pollution destroying the environment, it would offer a safe haven; a clean-air environment in a dangerously polluted city.

Costing in the region of £400/square metre the bubbles would be constructed with the same material as has been used in the Eden project (Cornwall, UK) inside the biomes panels. As it would not be designed using glass the structure would be much lighter and consequently far more cost effective. Highly heat resistant this stretchy plastic – a polymer known as ETFE (ethylene tetrafluoroethylene) also has the potential to reduce energy costs and has already been tried and tested at the Beijing 2008 Olympics, both at the Aquatics Center and the Birds’ Nest National Stadium.

An interesting idea is the dome’s roof which the designers would craft by combining technology with nature, using a computer algorithm with the ability to initiate and grow roof-top patterns such as those on butterfly wings and on leaves…

Structural surface solar panels would provide electric for the clean-air bubble and humidity and temperature would be controlled internally. By necessity the bubble would be airtight therefore the air pumped into the proposed park and the buildings contained within it would have to be filtered beforehand.

Source: metro.co.uk

Fukushima Solar Fire   21 comments

 

Japan’s Renewable Energy Village

Fukushima Farmers Solar Rays of Hope in a Dark Land

renewable_energy_wno.org

 

Deserted Minamisoma_City_Office_wikimedia creative commons licenseDeserted_Lawson_Haramachikitahara_Shop_wikimedia creative commons licenseContaminated and deserted_Fukushima Prefecture_March 2011

Radio-active farmland in the Japanese prefecture of Minamisoma, a coastal city contaminated by nuclear fallout from the Fukushima Daiichi N-Plant in March 2011, is now leading the way in building a blueprint for modern Renewable Energy Villages.

Construction has already begun on this community run project to build the foundations of its Renewable Energy Village.

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Roughly two-thirds of the Minamisoma farmland is located inside of Fukushima’s radio-active exclusion zone.

Hi level contamination Minam.outskirts_greenpeace.org

  • To date the Renewable Energy Village (REV) prides itself on 120 photovoltaic panels, generating 30 kilowatts of power which is sold to a local utility.
  • Locating wind turbines on some of the land is another innovative idea currently in the planning stages.
  • Recreational and educational facilities as well as an astronomical observatory are also being aspired to depending on the availability of further funding.

Solar-SharingFukushima Farmers Solar Rays of Hope

renewable-energy-world_nuclear-news.netThe basis of this project is known in Japan as "solar sharing"growing crops beneath raised solar panels. Most other large-scale solar parks in Japan whether already operational or still in the planning stages have/will have solar panels resting on the ground itself, which makes growing crops impossible.

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The largest solar park to be built in Japan of this nature will also be located in Minamisoma causing Project Leader Ryozo Hakozaki for the Renewable Energy Village (REV) some concerns; "If farmers decide to sell up their land, entire communities will be wiped off the map." However Sohei Takahashi, Project Chairman believes the Renewable Energy Village project offers a workable solution to this problem. "Through the project we can protect farmland and communities, and with two parallel revenues create increased prosperity compared with before the disasters."

 

Rapseed_anagarden.seTakahashi also plans to conduct research into crops that can tolerate radioactive contamination. One crop, rapeseed, has already been planted, as its oil is contaminants-free, although the actual plants do absorb a percentage of radioisotopes such as those of caesium. The project is supported by generous ‘feed-in tariffs’ the government set and which were introduced in mid-2012.

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All proceeds from the crops and energy will go back into the REV project, the hope and aspiration is that the model will inspire and be copied by farmers whose livelihoods were decimated by the nuclear disaster. "People evacuated from areas closer to the plant have given up ever farming their fields again. There might be an amusement park feel to the project, but we’re trying to show them what the future could hold." Project leader Ryozo Hakozaksolar-energy-panels-and-wind-turbine

Source: New Scientist