solar energy generator

Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Suppliers

James asks…

what are solar energy converters?

i need to do a presentation on solar energy converter…can someone please suggest me a site where i can look for matter related to the topic….

admin answers:

A solar energy converter includes: a light-concentrating instrument; an electron emitter in an insulated vacuum vessel, emitting electrons in a vacuum as a temperature rises by sunlight; an electron accelerator within the light-concentrating instrument; a cathode on a surface of the electron emitter opposite to a surface which is irradiated by sunlight, and electrically connected with the electron emitter; an electric field supplier having a positive terminal and a negative terminal; and an electron collector in the vacuum vessel, collecting the emitted electrons flying from the electron emitter toward the electron accelerator; wherein the electron accelerator is connected with the positive terminal and the cathode is connected with the negative terminal to generate an electric field, and the electron collector is used as a negative generator electrode and the cathode is used as a positive generator electrode in which the collected electrons migrate to the electron emitter to generate electricity.

Sandy asks…

what are the main european power stations?

admin answers:

The EU use various sorts of power, ranging from fossil fuels to renewable energy: coal, gas, solar thermal, hydro, wind, nuclear.

If you want the names of a few major power companies…

RWE npower is one of the UK’s leading electricity generators. Its parent company, RWE is one of the leading international utility companies. The company provides customers with electricity, gas and water as well as services related to these products. The company’s core markets are Germany, the UK and Continental Europe.

There are other national energy supply companies such as Eon in Germany and Gaz de France. There is also the power supplier E.ON UK.

In addition, EDF already has a significant presence in the UK energy market with its purchase of London Energy, Seeboard Energy and SWEB Energy. The company operates 58 atomic reactors in France and is expected to be among those firms bidding to build the new nuclear plants.

The E.U. Already imports half of its energy. By 2030 that figure is set to rise to 70 percent. While Europe has managed to reduce its dependence on oil since the crises of the 1970s, imports still account for three quarters of oil consumption and are expected to approach 90 percent by 2030. In Europe, natural gas is expected to be the largest energy source after oil, but before coal and lignite. Already 15 percent of electricity comes from gas power stations.

At present, nuclear power generates 35 percent of electricity within the E.U. The popular alternative to coal for electricity generation is natural gas. Already 15 percent of electricity comes from gas power stations, and this is expected to rise to 40 percent by 2030.

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Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Cost

Ruth asks…

How hard is it to install solar panels on a swimming pool?

I was thinking about adding a solar heater to my swimming pool. The panels seem very affordable, but is this something I could install myself with no experience or do i need a professional?

admin answers:

Not hard. This web site provides you a step by step process to build a devise that generates solar and wind energy. Not only will it provide electric for your pool, but can lower your utility bill. The cost to build this generator is under $200.

Carol asks…

What are the best Deep Cycle batteries to use when storing energy from a wind generator and a solar panel?

I hear the forklift batteries are the best but they are to heavy to transport so I was thinking something a bit smaller but still capable of storing a lot of energy.
Well thank you very much !

admin answers:

Deep cycle batteries are the correct choice for renewable energy systems. Unlike your car battery, deep cycle batteries are made to be deeply discharged and recharged many times over the life. When selecting batteries for solar and wind systems, flooded lead acid (FLA) batteries are the most cost effective. They also require maintenance -i.e. Regularly checking the fluid level to ensure longest life. FLA batteries offer the largest storage potential, and batteries can be up to several hundred pounds each.

Besides FLA batteries there are also sealed gel cell and absorbed glass mat (AGM) batteries for RE applications. These batteries are more expensive than FLA batteries and are generally smaller in storage capacity. They are good for remote applications where maintenance would be difficult, and because fluid levels do not need to be maintained, they have a shorter lifespan than the FLA batteries.

Remember to be conservative when calculating battery size for a stand-alone solar or wind system. If your battery bank is undersized, you will not be able to supply the energy you had planned. Battery bank is size is directly dependent on the amount of Watt-hours you are supplying; how many days of autonomy you will need; the depth of discharge; and inverter efficiency. Be sure to look at the battery warranty as well. Rolls-Surrette batteries are known for their quality and are also a bit more expensive upfront. But high quality batteries, if properly cared for, will outlast cheaper batteries and save money in the long run.
Good luck!

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Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Companies

Linda asks…

solar energy used in a real life for what ? and is it successful?

1.successful example of solar power in use of the real life .where in the world it’s successful and why can all sources be used in any country?
2.why not success economically?what improvement have been made ?

admin answers:

You are asking a big question so I advise you to do some research. I will offer some of what I’ve learned.

Solar is getting cheaper at a rapid rate. The solar industry was one of the hotter sectors in the stock market in the last year. Prices are expected to reach grid parity over the next ten years, depending on where you live.
Grid parity means solar is competitive in price without subsidies. Till then we have subsidies.
Some photovoltaic panel makers are saying they may be at grid parity in two to five years.

In sunny areas like California, which also have high electricity prices, prices are already competitive.
In California, the three power companies have already signed on for solar power plants totaling 3 gigawatts. One gigawatt would power San Francisco, for comparison.
These are both photovoltaic and solar thermal power plants.
They are hundreds of megawatts each, and plants as big as 900 megawatts have been proposed. That’s 9/10 of a gigawatt.

Solar thermal power plants use the heat from the sun to generate electricity, usually by boiling water to drive a steam turbine generator. The heat from these plants can be stored and electricity generated at night. Solar thermal plants also won’t fade when a cloud goes over them.
They are fairly competitive now, with claims of 8-12 cents per kilowatt hour.

There is also concentrating solar photovoltaic power plants.
Both these and solar thermal plants, use parabolic mirrors, mirrors that track the sun, or fresnel lenses to concentrate sunlight up to 1000 fold onto a receiver, either thermal, or photovoltaic.

Using less than 1% of our southwest desert lands, solar power plants could power the whole country. This is an area 92 miles by 92 miles, an area which is less than the land now used for coal mining. The January 08 issue of Scientific American featured an article called “A Solar Grand Plan”, a proposal, which you can read online, to do just that.
It proposes building solar thermal and concentrating photovoltaic power plants and a network of high voltage DC transmission lines to distribute the power to other parts of the country. This HVDC distribution system is the same thing that T Boone Pickens is recommending to move wind generated power from Texas to the rest of the country. This will have the added benefit of beefing up the grid, something that is needed anyway.
There is no shortage of good ideas out there. At, you will find another plan called “A Blueprint for U.S. Energy Security”. This plan shows how we can achieve energy security and meet the goals of reducing the threat of global warming, using current technology. It calls for plug in hybrid cars, which would achieve an overall 100 mpg for the average driver. Once the grid is clean energy, it can power much of our transportation as well.
At that point, electric cars will make perfect sense and will have had more time to perfect the technology.
If you study these two plans and that of T Boone Pickens, you will see they have much in common. By combining the best ideas of these and other similar plans, we can get the job done. For instance, Pickens wants to use natural gas as a cleaner alternative to gasoline in cars. How about plug in hybrid natural gas powered cars? Plug in Partners website has good information on plug in hybrids.
Pickins’ argument for natural gas for cars is a good one, it’s cheap, it’s abundant, it’s cleaner than gasoline, and it’s ours.
And he’s right about something else, we can’t drill our way out of it, and oil is killing our economy.

Those in power want you to believe that these solutions will be too expensive. Nothing could be further from the truth. For example, the solar proposal published by SciAm calls for spending about $400 billion in public money, over a period of about 40 years. This is less public money, than we spent to build the high speed information highway over the last 35 years. And that is about how much we give to oil companies, in the form of tax credits and subsidies, every five years. So by spending about 1/8 of what we now give away to oil companies, we could power the entire nation with solar energy in the southwest.

Add to this solar panels on rooftops, large scale arrays on the ground and such all over the country, and you have both distributed energy and centralized energy, all from solar.

Wind has huge potential too and is cheap.
Both wind and solar large projects are quicker to get up and running than nuclear or coal plants. Cheaper too!

Green Wombat has lots of articles on related issues, with several stories about solar power plants in the southwest.

One thing that is helping is power purchase agreements and other financing designed so that a homeowner, for instance, could install solar panels with no money down. This is also being done in larger commercial installations and utility scale installations.
Berkeley California just voted to finance solar for homeowners. They will sell bonds to finance solar panels for any homeowner that wants them, with no money down. Each year, along with your property tax, you will pay down part of the loan. If you sell your house you can pass on the solar and the debt. It’s a win win.

It no longer will take 20 years to pay off a solar system as someone else said.

There is much dis information out there. Big powers are trying to convince us that renewable energy can’t power the country. It is not true.
All we lack is the political will.

Nancy asks…

how do ordinary people buy and install green technology such as solar and wind in Michigan?

I know these things are MADE in Michigan and TV shows people doing this, but when I search all I get are companies looking to do business with other companies or sites that have no buying info just product info. I don’t understand why there is this disconnect with TV and the Internet. TV pushes the new technology while the internet seems to just now be admitting it exists.

admin answers:

Let me start off by saying we (my family and I) live completely, 100% “off of the grid and are completely self sufficient”

The house is built utilizing natures natural elements, in the shape of an octagon with 8ft wide arch doors on every wall to catch every angle of wind (typical 4 sided homes have half the chance as one with 8 sides. A circle being the most efficient design). Woodburning stoves, solar chimney, solar AC, solar heating, solar water heating (pool and home), solar stove, solar power, wind power, hydrogen powered back up generator, hydrogen back up water heater, hydrogen stove, 2 hydrogen powered trucks, 1 EV (electric vehicle) and satellite internet.

There are no utility lines, no water lines, no roads, tv, cell service, etc. On our ranch. EVERYTHING needed is produced here. All electricity comes from 27 solar panels, 2 main wind gens and a back hydrogen generator if needed (typically we can last 9 days with all luxuries of sunless windless weather, hasn’t happened yet). Water is caught and storaged from the rain. Hot water is made with solar batch water heaters with an on-demand hydrogen hot water heater as backup. Even our vehicles use alternative energy (2 hydrogen trucks, 1 EV electric vehicle converted). Because of this we have no bills, no debt and no mortgage.

The fallowing steps were taking directly out of a DIY guide I offer to those who would like to run their homes on solar power safely, reducing their monthly utility bills or even selling power back the the electrical companies. The entire guide is available at www agua-luna com. Its pretty simple but if you have any problems feel free to contact me directly I can walk you threw the process.

Materials you will need
A sheet of copper flashing from the hardware store. This normally costs about $5.00 per square foot. We will need about half a square foot.
Two alligator clip leads.
A sensitive micro-ammeter that can read currents between 10 and 50 microamperes. Radio Shack sells small LCD multimeters that will do, but I used a small surplus meter with a needle.
An electric stove. My kitchen stove is gas, so I bought a small one-burner electric hotplate for about $25. The little 700 watt burners probably won’t work — mine is 1100 watts, so the burner gets red hot.
A large clear plastic bottle off of which you can cut the top. I used a 2 liter spring water bottle. A large mouth glass jar will also work.
Table salt. We will want a couple tablespoons of salt.
Tap water.
Sand paper or a wire brush on an electric drill.
Sheet metal shears for cutting the copper sheet.

The first step is to cut a piece of the copper sheeting that is about the size of the burner on the stove. Wash your hands so they don’t have any grease or oil on them. Then wash the copper sheet with soap or cleanser to get any oil or grease off of it. Use the sandpaper or wire brush to thoroughly clean the copper sheeting, so that any sulphide or other light corrosion is removed.
Next, place the cleaned and dried copper sheet on the burner and turn the burner to its highest setting.
As the copper starts to heat up, you will see beautiful oxidation patterns begin to form. Oranges, purples, and reds will cover the copper.
As the copper gets hotter, the colors are replaced with a black coating of cupric oxide. This is not the oxide we want, but it will flake off later, showing the reds, oranges, pinks, and purples of the cuprous oxide layer underneath.
The last bits of color disappear as the burner starts to glow red.
When the burner is glowing red-hot, the sheet of copper will be coated with a black cupric oxide coat. Let it cook for a half an hour, so the black coating will be thick. This is important, since a thick coating will flake off nicely, while a thin coat will stay stuck to the copper.
After the half hour of cooking, turn off the burner. Leave the hot copper on the burner to cool slowly. If you cool it too quickly, the black oxide will stay stuck to the copper.
As the copper cools, it shrinks. The black cupric oxide also shrinks. But they shrink at different rates, which makes the black cupric oxide flake off.
The little black flakes pop off the copper with enough force to make them fly a few inches. This means a little more cleaning effort around the stove, but it is fun to watch.
When the copper has cooled to room temperature (this takes about 20 minutes), most of the black oxide will be gone. A light scrubbing with your hands under running water will remove most of the small bits. Resist the temptation to remove all of the black spots by hard scrubbing or by flexing the soft copper. This might damage the delicate red cuprous oxide layer we need to make to solar cell work.
Cut another sheet of copper about the same size as the first one. Bend both pieces gently, so they will fit into the plastic bottle or jar without touching one another. The cuprous oxide coating that was facing up on the burner is usually the best side to face outwards in the jar, because it has the smoothest, cleanest surface.
Attach the two alligator clip leads, one to the new copper plate, and one to the cuprous oxide coated plate. Connect the lead from the clean copper plate to the positive terminal of the meter. Connect the lead from the cuprous oxide plate to the negative terminal of the meter.
Now mix a couple tablespoons of salt into some hot tap water. Stir the saltwater until all the salt is dissolved. Then carefully pour the saltwater into the jar, being careful not to get the clip leads wet. The saltwater should not completely cover the plates — you should leave about an inch of plate above the water, so you can move the solar cell around without getting the clip leads wet.
Now place in the sun with the magnefied on top.
The solar cell is a battery, even in the dark, and will usually show a few microamps of current.
That’s it it’s that simple. If you’d a more detailed process and some pics (ouldn’t put them here) it’s available along with some other DIY alternative energy projects at www agua-luna com

Hope this helped, feel free to contact me personally if you have any questions if you’d like assistance in making your first self sufficient steps, I’m willing to walk you step by step threw the process. I’ve written several how-to DIY guides available at www agua-luna com on the subject. I also offer online and on-site workshops, seminars and internships to help others help the environment.

Dan Martin
Alterative Energy / Sustainable Consultant, Living 100% on Alternative & Author of How One Simple Yet Incredibly Powerful Resource Is Transforming The Lives of Regular People From All Over The World… Instantly Elevating Their Income & Lowering Their Debt, While Saving The Environment by Using FREE ENERGY… All With Just One Click of A Mouse…For more info Visit:

www AGUA-LUNA com
Stop Global Warming, Receive a FREE Solar Panels Now!!!

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Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Price

Jenny asks…

I wan to install solar panels in all my windows. Any help and can I get enough energy?

I am living in a high rise apartment. I have heard of solar panels use for all sorts of things but I have not heard of solar panels being install in any window. Windows are normally inserted vertically. If it can be done, I would save a lot of money on my electrical bills on all electrical ancillary items. It is so scary to have electrical bills going up everyday with the increase onwards of fuel prices.

admin answers:

Solar power windows can save you a lot of money on your energy bill. This type of window actually doubles as a solar panel for the home. The are generally designed to keep cold air out of the home. If you’re looking to improve your home and to make it a green home, then purchasing solar panel windows and installing them is a project you will want to do. Follow this guide to install your new solar power windows.

Step 1 – Understand What the Window Is

Before you install the new windows, you should understand what they do. Solar power windows are made with solar panels. The solar panels allow the passage of light through the window into the home. In addition, it also produces energy for the home. In 2008, scientists created a much more powerful solar paneled window for home use. Some research shows that these newer panels are 10 times more effective in drawing out energy for the home. If the home has a generator that can connect the solar power to produce energy, it will become much more efficient in energy production and less dependent upon traditional energy resources.

Step 2 – Remove Old Windows

Remove the old windows from the home. Tape up the hole that you just created, especially if you don’t plan on installing the new windows just yet. You can usually pull out the old window by removing the window framing and the window sill. The window should just pop out.

Step 3 – Add the New Solar Window

Installing solar powered windows is similar to installing a regular window. It comes with a frame and a sash, a sill and any necessary hardware. Install the window from the outside of the home to the inside. It will usually pop into place. Be careful not to scratch the surface of the window, as the solar properties will reduce if the window is damaged. Add the sash, the sill and the frame. Nail into place.

Step 4 – Connect to the Generator

Follow the directions on your solar powered window. There will be instructions on how to appropriately connect the window to the solar generator. If you don’t have a solar generator, you can skip this step. Understand that in order to harness the solar effects the windows create, you will need to have a generator or power pack that can change this energy from solar into usable energy for your home.

Step 5 – Clean the Window

Using a non-abrasive solution, clean your window. Usually water and newspaper works the best. Don’t use razors or any other types of sharp objects on your window, because you will ruin the solar properties.

Good luck!

Sandra asks…

Why should people use solar panels more for houses?

I need to write a pressuasive essay on why we should use solar panels more than we do. and convince people that their good and stuff.. if u guys could give me some good key reasons why..that would be great.

admin answers:

Hey Dave. There are lots of good reasons why we should use more solar panels. To set one thing straight, panels do not have toxins in their manufacture. Photovoltiac panels, the ones that produce electricity are made up almost entirely of silicone, aluminum and acrylic. The other type, that heat water and air from the sun are made primarily of sheet metal, copper and glass, and have a type of alcohol called glycol running through them. It’s the same type that we use to deice aircraft in the winter.

Whsgreen is quite right on the payback. If you invest properly in solar power today and take advantage of any grants and tax incentives, even if your electric rates do not go up as they are forecast too, you will get your money back over time, well within the lifetime of the equipment, and sooner if there is a rate increase in the future. There are also enviromental benefits. At one time there was an argument that a solar panel will never produce as much power as was used to manufacture it. First of all, this is not correct. The, “Embodied Energy,” in a solar panel is earned back in 2 – 6 years, depending on the type panel, where the raw materials were shipped from, and how it was installed and used in the end. Most panels are warrantied to last at least 25 years, and most last much longer than that. But the argument is not important anyway. We have been living with electricity for over a century now, so it isn’t going away anytime soon. The question is, “What is the best way to produce it?” If you build a panel, and put it along side a similar sized natural gas fired turbine generator for example, which earns back its embodied energy sooner? The answer is the gas turbine never does, because once you build it, ship it and install it, you now have to feed it natural gas for the rest of its life, so it keeps on digging itself a deeper and deeper embodied energy hole that it can never crawl out of. At least the panel has a chance to get even environmentally. So manufacturing and using solar panels in the end releases less pollution into our environment.

There are also mechanical and political benefits. We all know after the oil embargo of 1973, and the gulf war what it means for our country to rely on foreign oil. Wouldn’t it be nice if we only shipped in 20% of our energy instead of 60% the next time something like that happens? Our home has been powered by the wind and sun for years now, but we still remain connected to the electric grid. Last year alone there were two power failures in our county that lasted about a half day each. In both cases, we were not aware of them because our solar array kept on feeding the house. It’s difficult to put a price tag on something like that.

Beyond the mechanical, political and environmental benefits however, lies a less obvious benefit, the social benefit. Right now we pump oil out of the ground, and mine for coal. The process of getting those materials to market involves shipping, military escorts and other activities that use up a good portion of that energy as well as putting lives at risk. Jobs in solar power are higher tech than jobs in coal mining, oil drilling and shipping, and there are more of them. Using more solar power would require us to put more people to work, and increase our education base because the work involved requires certain skills. I would personally like to take all those people out of the coal mines, send them to school and put them to work building solar panels. Nobody would have to die again in one orf those dark holes in the ground trying to find food for our hungry power plants. They could work on a factory floor where they would not be exposed to coal dust, radon and other toxins and dangers. Most of our solar and wind resources are spread pretty evenly over the middle half of our globe, so everyone has access. This puts people in Bogota on a more equal footing with people in Boca Raton by giving them access to electricity, heat and clean water, and the education to use the solar resources that provide those things. Oil, coal and natural gas is generally piled up in a few places, such as Russia and the Middle East. This gives those countries and the richer governments that rule them more horse power in bargaining for the other resources of our planet. These are the things that wars are made of.

So there are lots of good reason to use more solar in our everyday life. Here are some resources to look up and do some of your own reading. Good luck Dave, and take care. Rudydoo

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Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Wikipedia

James asks…

could the weight of a boat generate energy?

in other words can you harness the energy from the rise and fall of the tide with a cable tied to a very heavy boat then to a pier generate energy? or used to pull a flywheel or something? would the weight of the boat pulling on the cable be able to wind something or spin a flywheel?
what about the simple fact that the boat lowering down would pull the cable with the force of the weight of the boat?

admin answers:

Yes, and New York has installed them on the bottom of the Hudson River.

In this case they are using the in flow and out flow of the tide to generate electricity. The installation was shown on the Discovery Channel and the first one installed was bent because they didn’t plan on the force being so great.

There are wave generators and have been for a while they use up and down motion of the water to move a piston harnessed to a wheel that turns a generator making electrical energy.

Since the waves always move you won’t have to worry about not having enough windy days or not. The problem is that if you are not careful with the design ti will break too easily. This is using wave motion not tidal energy.

If you wanted to create a tide generator then you should go to the Bay of Fundy (, which has over 12′ tides each day.

The tides themselves are not that strong, they are only dependent on the gravitational energy of the moon and the sun. The heat of the sun drives the motion of waves and the winds that energy is more consistent and reliable. A more efficient conversion is to take the energy from the original source (the sun) in the first place. Solar panels are a good example of this and recent work in carbon fibers have increased the efficiency of them, once the price of making carbon nanofibers drops (or the price of energy continues to rise) it will become worthy of mass scale production.

There is an idea to use electrical generators on the bottom of the ocean just off the Eastern shore of North America in the middle of the Gulf Stream. The Gulf Stream is a reliable current that constantly runs and the turbines can be made large enough so that they would move slowly so as to not harm fish. It would be just like putting windmills on the floor of the ocean. The only problem of course is making sure to not let the water get in and salt water is very corrosive. A magnetic induction system could solve that problem though.

Steven asks…

what is the political and social effects of geothermal energy?

what is the economical cost ?
what is the opportunity cost?
please help!

admin answers:

Geothermal power requires no fuel (except for pumps), and is therefore immune to fuel cost fluctuations, but capital costs are significant. Drilling accounts for over half the costs, and exploration of deep resources entails significant risks. A typical well doublet (extraction and injection wells) in Nevada can support 4.5 megawatts (MW) and costs about $10 million to drill, with a 20% failure rate.

In total, electrical plant construction and well drilling cost about 2-5 million € per MW of electrical capacity, while the break–even price is 0.04-0.10 € per kW·h. Enhanced geothermal systems tend to be on the high side of these ranges, with capital costs above $4 million per MW and break–even above $0.054 per kW·h in 2007. Direct heating applications can use much shallower wells with lower temperatures, so smaller systems with lower costs and risks are feasible. Residential geothermal heat pumps with a capacity of 10 kilowatt (kW) are routinely installed for around $1–3,000 per kilowatt. District heating systems may benefit from economies of scale if demand is geographically dense, as in cities, but otherwise piping installation dominates capital costs. The capital cost of one such district heating system in Bavaria was estimated at somewhat over 1 million € per MW. Direct systems of any size are much simpler than electric generators and have lower maintenance costs per kW·h, but they must consume electricity to run pumps and compressors. Some governments subsidize geothermal projects.

Geothermal power is highly scalable: from a rural village to an entire city.

A geothermal heat pump can extract enough heat from shallow ground anywhere in the world to provide home heating, but industrial applications need the higher temperatures of deep resources. The thermal efficiency and profitability of electricity generation is particularly sensitive to temperature. The more demanding applications receive the greatest benefit from a high natural heat flux, ideally from using a hot spring. The next best option is to drill a well into a hot aquifer. If no adequate aquifer is available, an artificial one may be built by injecting water to hydraulically fracture the bedrock. This last approach is called hot dry rock geothermal energy in Europe, or enhanced geothermal systems in North America. Much greater potential may be available from this approach than from conventional tapping of natural aquifers.

Estimates of the electricity generating potential of geothermal energy vary six–fold, from .035 to 2 TW depending on the scale of investments. Upper estimates of geothermal resources assume enhanced geothermal wells as deep as 10 kilometres (6 mi), whereas existing geothermal wells are rarely more than 3 kilometres (2 mi) deep. Wells of this depth are now common in the petroleum industry. The deepest research well in the world, the Kola superdeep borehole, is 12 kilometres (7 mi) deep. This record has recently been imitated by commercial oil wells, such as Exxon’s Z-12 well in the Chayvo field, Sakhalin.

System efficiency does not materially affect operational costs as it would for plants that use fuel, but it does affect return on the capital used to build the plant. In order to produce more energy than the pumps consume, electricity generation requires relatively hot fields and specialized heat cycles.[citation needed] Because geothermal power does not rely on variable sources of energy, unlike, for example, wind or solar, its capacity factor can be quite large – up to 96% has been demonstrated. The global average was 73% in 2005.

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Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Suppliers

Michael asks…

I will like set up a solar panel to cut down my eletricity cost in Cameroon.can you allocate me a supplier?

I need a solar panel which can light up 4 full loaded 5 rooms appartment houses

admin answers:

Good idea going solar, i would suggest doing a google search, as their are many suppliers. Then you need to calculate the amount of wattage you think these apartment houses are going to require. Volts x amps = watts. If you are going to be off of the power grid, then you will need a way to store excess energy during good times,( lots of sun) in order to use it during bad times ( no sun ). Or see if you are able to sell your extra power back to your local power company, check because some companies do not allow this. You could even have a generator for emergencies if you go off the power grid. On final note, solar is a pretty sizable investment up front and your profits are seen mainly in the long run, but you will get energy savings immediately, but more likely those savings will go to paying off the solar panels also, you will need a converter to convert the ac (alternate current) produced by the panels into dc ( direct current ) which is used by the apartments. It will tie in to the existing electrical system in the apartments. I know germany is really pushing solar energy and they offer their citizens some pretty sweet deals to go solar. The companies are profiting from this so i would suggest looking for a supplier in germany, first. They may have better deals, or try bp (british petroeum) they have been in the solar business for awhile. I wish you success!

Mandy asks…

how do power stations make electricity?

ok i have the general idea of a power station they use friction to make electric and cole to make gas i guess the gas will cost money to make but what about electric?.

How do they make electricity?
Does it cost the energy supplier anything to make this energy?
is there a reasonable reason for high energy prices? or are they just making it for free and putting a price on it?

next they will tell us using a solar panel costs money to use :p
they say we are running out of resources thats why they want us to cut back on fuel consumption, with the prices raising it begs to wonder how it all works

admin answers:

Most electricity is generated with a “thermal power station” In these something is burned like: Coal or natural gas or heat is produced in some other way like using a nuclear reactor, concentrating the sun or getting heat from volcanic areas deep in the Earth. The heat is used to produce steam which is then used to turn a turbine that mechanically turns a generator that produces electricity.

But there are a few exceptions. Windmills and water turbines in a hydroelectric plant turn turbines directly without using steam or heat. Solar photovoltaic panels convert the sun’s light to electricity directly. There is also another process called magnetohydrodynamics that produces electricity directly without a turbine or a generator. This involves hot charged plasma moving past a magnetic field.

So there are several different fuels and several different processes that can be used to make electricity. What they all have in common is turning one form of energy into another. This is a business and it costs money to operate. Conventional power plants typically have a lower cost for the facility and an ongoing cost for the fuel that is used. Alternative power stations typically have a larger up front cost for the facility but little or no fuel cost. These would include hydroelectric, geothermal, wind and solar power stations. Both have maintenance costs but newer and alternatively fueled stations will cost less for maintenance.

Once fuel was cheap and now it is getting more expensive to supply fuel to older power stations. These older stations are requiring more maintenance so electricity costs rise. But electricity costs have doubled in the last 20 years. Petrol prices have gone up 4 to 6 times in that same period so it is all relative.

There are many factors that go into supplying electricity. Too many plants raises capital costs too few plants requires that electricity to supply the grid must be purchased from somewhere else at a higher cost. Electrical production must meet a constantly changing demand. There are electricity markets to supply too much and too little but very little of it can be stored at this time.

In some places rapid development requires expansion of the electrical grid in order to carry the supplied power to where it is needed. All of this costs money and if it is mostly invisible that is because someone is making it all work. Sometimes they are using your money to make sure it works.

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Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Wikipedia

Michael asks…

What is the establishment cost for a coal burning factory?

I need this for a science assignment. Holy crap do I hate science.
So yeah, what is the establishment cost to set up a coal burning factory? (Where the coal is transferred into energy)

admin answers:

The current establishment cost of a coal fired power station is about $2000 per kilowatt of power produced. Over a 50 year life; this is quite low compared with establishment costs for wind and solar power generation, and a lot (hundreds) of wind generators are needed to produce the same power output of a large coal powered generator. This is why it is proving difficult to replace coal for large scale power generation.

Here’s a wiki ref:

Charles asks…

Year 12 Physics – How do generators and transformers work?

I have a basic idea but am having a little trouble understanding it completely – so i can answer abstract questions in texts… and the textbook is just confusing.
Anyone want to explain a little?

admin answers:

A transformer is a device that transfers electrical energy from one circuit to another through inductively coupled electrical conductors. A changing current in the first circuit (the primary) creates a changing magnetic field; in turn, this magnetic field induces a changing voltage in the second circuit (the secondary). By adding a load to the secondary circuit, one can make current flow in the transformer, thus transferring energy from one circuit to the other.
The voltage in the secondary circuit is in general different from the voltage in the primary circuit.
In electricity generation, an electrical generator is a device that converts mechanical energy to electrical energy, generally using electromagnetic induction. The reverse conversion of electrical energy into mechanical energy is done by a motor, and motors and generators have many similarities. The source of mechanical energy may be a reciprocating or turbine steam engine, water falling through a turbine or waterwheel, an internal combustion engine, a wind turbine, a hand crank, the sun or solar energy, compressed air or any other source of mechanical energy.

In electricity generation, an electrical generator is a device that converts mechanical energy to electrical energy, generally using electromagnetic induction. The reverse conversion of electrical energy into mechanical energy is done by a motor, and motors and generators have many similarities. The source of mechanical energy may be a reciprocating or turbine steam engine, water falling through a turbine or waterwheel, an internal combustion engine, a wind turbine, a hand crank, the sun or solar energy, compressed air or any other source of mechanical energy.


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Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Price

Joseph asks…

How can people say that green energy is inefficient when the lack of investment causes it’s inefficiency?

The financial elite (the 5% of Americans who own 75% of America or the 1% of the world who own 40% of the world, whichever way you want to look at it) invested a lot in the coal and oil energy business because they controlled the coal and oil mines.

They could invest in solar, tide, wind, geothermal etc energy but they can’t sell us any of those things, so even though it would make very positive change for everyone, they aren’t doing it, which is WHY the technologies are still inefficient.

admin answers:

Some of it is inefficient. For example, solar panels can only capture about 20-40% of energy. For the price of the item, no one wants to take that chance. All the investments in the world won’t change the fact that you’re not getting most of it. There is a reason only businesses and celebrities have solar panels. Also, the world tends to get dark from time to time, making it unreliable.

I agree that we should have them. It’s not like surfers and fishermen need the oceans to be pretty and not have wave generators five miles from the coast. It is free and everywhere. But the fact still remains that it isn’t prestigious or cheap enough.

Mark asks…

Solar energy: How to get more wattage from several solar panels?

Here’s the thing. I have this little farm in a far far place where there’s no electrical power. I only have a generator that I can’t afford to have on all day… I have this chickens I need to keep warm at night among other things, like turning on light bulbs (both old and energy saving ones), tv, radio, etc for a few hours.
Here’s the thing, I was looking online and I found a descent price on a 130 watts solar panel, 12 volts output so I was thinking of buying it.
I’ll explain what I know so far so you can maybe help me out with my doubts:
I am supposed to sum up the amount of watts consumed by the devices connected to my panels right ? for instance, if I have three 40 watts bulbs that would mean 120 watts per hour, which means the panel would do the job right ? Let’s assume for a second we have ideal weather conditions. So that would mean that if I need the bulbs on for 4 hours that’s “120*4= 480 watts hour” .. the panels would need to be working under ideal conditions 4 hours as well right ? That would mean “130*4=520 watts hours” so I should be fine, right ? No energy storage involve so far. Just direct energy consumption right?

Now, here’s one of my main question. I couldn’t fine panels that could provide more than 130 watts, so what do I do when I need more energy than that ? am I supposed to connect several panels in parallel to keep the same voltage or am I supposed to connect them in series and deal later with the voltage increase ? My “common sense” tells me that I should connect them in parallel (assuming I’m buying the same panel several times), so I get the same voltage output, to them connect them to a power inverter. But, will I get a wattage increase, will it just keep adding up ? For instance if I have four 130 watts panels in parallel will I get total of 520 watts ? *Crucial question*

Also, among all the doubts I have, I would also like to ask how to select my system. Like I said before, my main issue is to keep the chicken warm. I would like to light up say, 6 old light bulbs just so I can heat up the room for the chickens. Let’s say 60 watts (maybe?). According to my logic that would mean 360 watts so one panel wouldn’t be enough, so how to I get more wattage ? How to I get enough wattage to light up these light bulbs plus a couple other energy saving ones for the surroundings of the farm, and old small tv and maybe a small fan ? The “warming bulbs” would be on all night, that’s the goal.. the other things I intend to power would be on for 4 hours average.

Last but not least, actually this is quite important… how to I store enough energy to keep this things going on once the sun is gone. As you may have figured out already I need energy at night, once the sun is gone, to keep the chicken warm at night an to light up the patio I guess. I’m gonna need an arrangement of batteries for this.. but which ones ? How many ? in parallel (of course?) ? How much time will they need to charge before I need to use them again ? Remember I plan to use them on a daily basis.

So as you can see I’m pretty much an ignorant when it comes to this, but I’m really trying to figure it out. I know this sounds a bit nuts but I’m basically asking you to teach me to set up a whole systems for my needs. Is it even possible ? Given the case that I can’t keep the “warming bulbs” on, I would still like to set up a system to light up the patio with energy saving bulbs, to turn on a small tv and perhaps a fan, that would still help a lot.

Even if what I’m asking is too crazy, do you know of any other affordable way to produce or store enough energy for any of this things ? Like maybe wind energy? or (I don’t know) is there a way to charge an arrangement of batteries with my generator and then use these batteries with an inverter to keep the rest of the things on at night ? Because I don’t keep the generator on all night, it would probably break after a while. Sounds like waste to have such a huge thing on for hours every night just to keep a few bulbs and a small tv on.

Well anyway, thanks for your time. I hope this doesn’t sound too crazy and I hope you can help me out or maybe guide me in the right direction.
ROWLFE: Please, I hope you read this. You seem to be well informed, more than just well. Thanks by the way.. but I need to flood you with a bunch of other questions if that’s alright. So I assuming I have a established storage battery system (which I don’t, I don’t even know where to start, but let’s just assume I have it) would it matter if I have a 130 watts panel or a bazillion watts panel ? What I mean is, since I’m using the power almost strictly when the sun is gone, then I can’t consider the panel a “battery” as you said. I absolutely need the so said storage unit… so if I had this unit, any panel would do the trick to charge it ?
I don’t know if I’m explaining myself well, what I’m trying to say is that my energy consumption will be strictly supplied by my batteries, the solar panel in this case is just one of the many ways to charge those batteries. If I could charge the batteries with anything else then I would.. but I need pow
but I need power at night to light up incandescent light bulbs. So would I need an specific solar panel to charge an ARRANGEMENT OF BATTERIES THAT HAS ALREADY BEEN DESIGNED TO POWER MY NEEDS ? or any panel/wattage would do the job since I would not be feeding directly from it ?

By the way, since I have no clue where to start, do you think you could maybe recommend some panels/wattage for what I need ? and batteries, specially batteries. I know I can’t use just regular car batteries since they are not designed to be charged and discharged so often. I heard something about golf car batteries, I don’t know. Man if you could maybe show some quick schematics/designs of a system that might work for my needs, that would help me out a lot. Even if its just a block diagram… I’m sorry to sound so stupid but this is the first time I try to do something like this so I’m still on the trial and error stage. I promise I’m a bit smarter than this. Thanks for your help!

admin answers:

To keep a 12v system, mount multiple panels in parallel. That increases available watts leaving volts constant.

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Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Cost

Mark asks…

what type of battery should I use?

I am going to be making a small solar generator, what type of battery should I use for the longest lasting quality.

admin answers:

I think lead acid batteries are the lowest cost for the energy stored. But charge/discharge cycles degrade the plates, especially high capacity types intended for motor starting. So either you use over sized starting batteries, so you don’t discharge them very deeply each day, or you buy deep cycle versions that degrade much less for each deep charge/discharge cycle.

Also, low maintenance types (absorbed glass mat and especially gel cells) are very easily damaged by too fast charging or overcharging, since either of those conditions produces gas on the plates. This gas consumes the water in the starved electrolyte (absorbed glass mat types) drying them out, or makes permanent bubbles in the gel of gel calls, damaging them. Flooded cell batteries allow you to replace the water lost to gas production, so that less than perfect charging is a lot less damaging to them.

But any battery will last longer if its charge is controlled by a charge regulator circuit than if it is just charged with whatever the solar cells put out.


John Popelish

Lisa asks…

How do I do a science fair on solar energy with a thermoelectric generator? How would I ask the question?

For example, if I wanted to see how much waste energy from a house can be turned into usable electricity with a thermoelectric generator, how would I do that?

Or any more ideas?
And how would I word that into a question? “How much electricity can a thermoelectric generator power from waste heat from a house?” or something? PLEASE ASAP

admin answers:

The first question would be “How does the temperature of a thermoelectric device effect the electrical output?” You can measure the temperature fairly easily while measuring the intensity of sunlight is more difficult.
The most likely question about waste heat would be one of these two: “Can electricity be produced from the low level of waste heat from a house heating system?” “Is it cost effective to install thermoelectric generators in the heating system of a house?”

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Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Companies

Daniel asks…

How can i produce my own electricty?

I have bought this countryside land of 10 acres and it has this pond of water that is about 1/2 acres could I use that to generate electricity. I am also planning on putting several solar panels and generators that generate energy through a bikecycle. so when I exercise it produces and saves electricity. would this work out or not.

The water pond does not have a continuous water as it its does not flow through the whole land but is set in that 1/2 acre of space.

I also wanted to know that is there internet connection in a countryside.

admin answers:

You can obtain PowerG 1800 Watt star Generator wherever you’ll never have to be compelled to worry a few equipment failure once more. This star high-powered battery backup is that the good power answer for remote cabins, looking lodges and notwithstanding you only need to prevent giving your hard-earned cash away to the electrical company. This star generator will run all of your essential electrical devices and it even has space for enlargement with the choice for doubling your backup power capability. This star generator off-grid battery backup kit comes with a a hundred and forty watt solar array, 50′ star cable Associate with an integrated charge controller.

Charles asks…

How do I plug the output of an AC generator into a power meter?

I have a solar powered AC generator (5hp AC motor spun by a stirling engine), and I want to put the outputted energy into the power grid. However, I don’t know how to connect it so that the engine will spin the motor (producing current) rather than the motor spinning the engine (sucking current).
Any (good) ideas?

Thanks in advance!

admin answers:

You need to talk with your power company before you attempt to connect anything. There are serious safety concerns with supplying power back to the grid and a special meter is required if you want to get paid for it in most locations. When I say serious I mean you can kill somebody besides yourself.

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Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Price

Lizzie asks…

Is it better to store a solar battery in the sun or in a drawer?

I have a 4000 mah, portable solar battery. I got it to charge my e cigs and cell phone, while I’m partying I’m the woods next summer. Would it be better to keep it in my window where it gets charged every day or should I put it in a drawer or somewhere out of the light, until I need to use it.

admin answers:

Without batteries to store energy you would only have power when the sun was shining or the generator was running. This tutorial describes the 4 basic types of batteries & provides some good tips on the care & feeding of your batteries to maximize their performance and life.

1) RV / Marine / Golf Cart : RV or Marine type deep cycle batteries are basically for boats & campers and are suitable for only very small systems. They can be used but do not really have the capacity for continous service with many charge/discharge cycles for many years. Regular or Car type batteries should not be used at all because they cannot be discharged very much without internal damage. A very popular battery for small systems is the Golf Cart battery. They are somewhat more expensive than deep cycle recreational batteries but are probably the least expensive choice for a small system on a budget.

Industrial strength : Flooded, Gel, and AGM sealed batteries
The next 3 types are the heavier industrial type batteries. They are all also considered Deep Cycle and are usually Lead Acid types with much thicker internal plates that can withstand many deep discharge cycles. These next 3 are all designed for alternative energy systems.

2) Flooded types : These are Lead acid batteries that have caps to add water. Many manufacturers make these types for Solar Energy use. Trojan, Surrette, and Deka are probably the most well known. They are reasonably priced and work well for many years. All flooded batteries release gas when charged and should not be used indoors. If installed in an enclosure, a venting system should be used to vent out the gases which can be explosive.

3) Gel : Not to be confused with maintenance free batteries, sealed gel batteries have no vents and will not release gas during the charging process like flooded batteries do. Venting is therefore not required and they can be used indoors. This is a big advantage because it allows the batteries to maintain a more constant temperature and perform better.

4) AGM : Absorbed Glass Mat batteries are in my opinion the best available for Solar Power use. A woven glass mat is used between the plates to hold the electrolyte. They are leak/spill proof, do not out gas when charging, and have superior performance. They have all the advantages of the sealed gel types and are higher quality, maintain voltage better, self discharge slower, and last longer. The Sun Xtender series by Concorde Battery is an excellent example of AGM batteries. They are more expensive, but you usually get what you pay for. You will find this type of battery used in airplanes, hospitals, and remote telephone/cell tower installations.

Sandra asks…

What is the best type of battery to use for a solar battery bank?

And where can I find them at a decent price in central Florida?
And what is an appropriate gauge for the battery cables?

admin answers:

HEY READ THIS ARTICLE … I have attached the link too … I like the question … Wanted to learn … So i looked up 🙂

Solar Power 101

By Jeffrey Yago, P.E., CEM

This article is the first in a series of what will be a beginner’s course in solar electricty. Simultaneously we have instituted a Home Energy Information ( section on our website where you can ask questions of Jeff Yago, the author of this series. Yago is a licensed professional engineer and certified energy manager who has writtten many energy articles for BHM. He has extensive solar thermal and solar photovoltaic system design experience, and is author of Achieving Energy Independence — One Step At A Time, which includes many solar system wiring examples. It is available from the Backwoods Home Bookstore or by calling 804-457-9566. Those interested in solar electricity will want to save these articles for future review when planning your solar system.

I am getting numerous requests from readers wanting very specific guidance on how to install their own solar electric systems. Many have already found that this process is a little like trying to build an automobile by purchasing parts from a NAPA dealer. For example, you can buy a brake drum, wheel bearing, and oil filter, but since your car does not yet exist, how do you know what parts you need, what parts will fit with other parts, and how should these parts be wired together.

During the next few issues, I will take you through the “basics” of solar system design and installation, and answer your specific questions as we go along. This course will continue on the Backwoods Home Magazine website ( under their new Home Energy Information ( section. You will be able to e-mail your installation questions and offer suggestions for future home energy saving articles.

Before I can help you design your own solar power system, you have to understand that there are actually many different types of solar power systems, for many different applications.

System types
Some solar power systems are 12-volt DC due to the many low voltage RV and boating lighting and appliances available, and do not have a utility line connection. These DC only systems can be used to power several DC lights in a remote cabin, or a DC well pump in a field for watering cattle. Some solar power systems have an inverter to convert a 12, 24, or 48-volt DC battery voltage into 120-volt AC power to operate standard household appliances. Some grid connected solar power systems are designed for direct connection to your utility line and do not use any batteries at all.

Hybrid solar power systems can include a battery bank, a solar array, a generator, and even a wind turbine to provide power at all times with the utility grid serving only as backup. Inverters and solar arrays are available in many different styles, voltages, and wiring configurations. Some solar arrays are mounted on the roof, some on the top of a pole, and some are ground mounted, with each having different wiring rules.

If you visit a solar home that has a well designed and properly installed solar power system, you will find the concept is actually fairly simple. The hard part is knowing what wiring layout was best for this specific home, what size and quantity of each system component was required, and what wire size and fuses were needed to keep from burning down the house.

One of the most misunderstood parts of a solar power system is the battery or battery bank, and that is where our class begins. Some solar battery banks use wet cells, like golf cart batteries, while others use sealed or gel cell batteries, and each have different temperature, mounting, and ventilation requirements.

Every battery is designed for a specific type of charge and discharge cycle. Car batteries have thin plates to keep their weight down and are designed for a heavy discharge lasting a few seconds, followed by a long period of slow re-charge. A 6-volt golf cart battery (size T-105) is the minimum battery I recommend for a residential solar application. You will need to buy these in “pairs” to make 12 volts. Golf cart batteries have very thick plates and are designed for hours of heavy discharge each day, followed by a fast recharge in only a few hours each night. This is similar to the duty cycle of a residential solar application, only in reverse. A solar battery must be able to provide long periods of deep discharge each evening and night, followed by a full recharge in only a few hours of sunlight each afternoon. Very few batteries can take a deep discharge-recharge cycle every day, and the 6-volt golf cart battery is the least expensive and easiest to find locally that can.

For some reason, everyone wants to use a sealed marine battery for their homegrown solar system. I strongly recommend that you do not. Included is a photo showing a sealed marine battery that “exploded” after being connected to a small solar charger for several months.

Even though this was a small 12-volt DC 5-amp solar charge controller powered from a single 50-watt solar photovoltaic module, this was enough energy to gradually overcharge the battery and evaporate all of the electrolyte even though this battery was “sealed.” A low electrolyte level can expose the plates which will gradually warp or “grow” in thickness as they oxidize. This can cause an internal short circuit and ignition of the hydrogen gas.

Plate damage can also occur when there is a large buildup of sediment after the upper plate areas become exposed from reduced water levels and begin to “flake” off. Most liquid acid batteries do not vent gasses while discharging. However, near the end of a typical charging cycle, when the battery is almost “full,” the sulfuric acid and water electrolyte will begin to break down into hydrogen and oxygen—a very explosive combination.

When ignited by a nearby spark or flame, an “explosion” can result, but this flash lasts only a fraction of a second, which is usually too fast to ignite nearby walls. However, this is still a very explosive reaction, with plastic battery parts becoming acid-covered shrapnel. While using a hand grinder one day in a shop, I accidentally directed the sparks towards several car batteries being charged about 30 feet away. There was a very loud explosive sound with acid and plastic hitting every wall of the large shop, yet I did not see a flame and there was no fire. Regardless, it was not a pleasant experience.

Always wear eye protection and acid proof gloves when working around batteries, and have lots of water and baking soda nearby. This will neutralize any acid spills from battery refilling and prevent further corrosive damage.

A typical 6-volt golf cart battery will store about 1 kilowatt-hour of useful energy (6 volt X 220 amp-hr X 80% discharge = 1056 watt-hours). Since this would only power two 50-watt incandescent lamps for 10 hours (2 X 50 X 10 = 1000 watt-hours), your alternative energy system will most likely require wiring several batteries together to create a battery bank. Since each golf cart battery weighs almost 65 pounds, there are weight considerations as well as battery gas venting issues to think about.

An area of a garage or storage building having a concrete floor is the most common location for a battery bank, although some large systems have their own specially designed battery room. I am going to assume you are installing a much smaller system and will only require four to eight batteries.

If you need more than the 220 amp-hr capacity contained in each golf cart battery, I suggest switching to the larger “L-16” size traction battery, having a 350 amp-hour rating, which may allow using fewer batteries. This battery is the same length and width as a golf cart battery, but is much taller and twice as heavy. This is an excellent battery for solar applications and can take very heavy charge-discharge cycling. This industrial rated battery may be more difficult to find, as it is only available from battery wholesale distributors.

Batteries can lose over half of their charge when exposed to extreme temperature swings, so be sure your proposed battery location stays in a 50° to 80° F range, or you will need to insulate the battery box. Since liquid batteries require refilling and battery terminal cleaning to remove corrosion several times each year, the floor area selected should be able to take an occasional acid spill and water wash down.

Battery venting is very important as discussed earlier, and if you build an enclosure around your batteries, it should be designed to direct all vented gasses to the outside. A 2-inch PVC pipe makes a good vent, but be sure it is located at the highest point in your battery enclosure where the lighter hydrogen gas will accumulate. Be sure it also includes a screened vent cap to keep out rain and insects. Do not locate your battery bank near a gas water heater or other open flame appliance that could ignite any accidental hydrogen accumulation.

A battery box can be built using standard 2 x 4 framing construction, with pressure treated plywood lining the interior surfaces. A hinged top door is needed for periodic battery maintenance, and should include a gasket to prevent gases from entering the room. Note how the top of the site-built battery box shown in these photos slopes up to a high rear area where two PVC vent pipes are located. The interior plywood surfaces of this wood frame construction were painted with several coats of fire and acid resistant paint. Since batteries lose capacity with lower temperatures, your batteries should not rest directly on a cold uninsulated concrete floor.

Pressure treated 2 x 4s on edge, spaced every 6 inches and covered by a fiberglass laminated concrete board, makes an excellent base for your battery box. This heavy sheet material is sold in most building supply outlets as a backing behind ceramic tile work in wet shower stalls, and is usually available in smaller 2-foot by 4-foot sizes. By careful planning, you may be able to use the entire sheet without cutting or splicing.

If you can afford to invest in the more expensive gel or absorbed glass matte (AGM) batteries, you will have more flexibility in locating your battery bank, since these batteries do not need to be refilled and do not normally generate explosive gasses. The photo shows a large battery bank with the batteries mounted close together in a vertical steel rack. You do not need a vapor proof enclosure or vent pipe when using these batteries, however they cost almost 30 percent more without providing any additional life or storage capacity.

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Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Companies

Steven asks…

How do the energy companies generate ac power?

and how could I build myself an ac generator, can it be done with photovoltaic cells or would that be dc, Im trying to emphasize using a power inverter powered by solar charged 12 volt batteries, would this work. Any help apprciated.

admin answers:

Various ways, but in the US, mainly coal fired boilers driving turbines, which drive generators.

Some oil fired, some hydroelectric, some wind, some solar, some nuclear.

You can buy a solar array and use that to keep a battery charged, and run an inverter from the battery to generate 120 or 240 VAC. You will need a charge controller between the solar array and the battery, which regulates the charge to the battery.


Maria asks…

Do power companies store excess energy during times of low demand?

Power companies always shut down generation plants when there is low demand in the power grid, but they always have to maintain a safety margin – perhaps 10% or more power than the grids demand.

Do they STORE this excess/unused power? what happens to unused power.

admin answers:

I read up a bit on this and here what I’ve found:
Like your car’s Alternator there is no “extra” power that is created without demand. Meaning if everyone shuts off their A/C’s in a big city the power plant’s generators simply slow down or shut off.

The safety margin is that they try to preemptively have power “potential” that is on the ready – maybe some turbines spinning, ready to accept load. Given, running a power generation source without load is wasteful but it is acceptable since even the power companies cannot tell when exactly or how much demand will change. They usually make up the needed power from providers while they increase capacity – if they can.

You car’s alternator is good example – once you get up to speed above an idle, it is making more power than the engine, the basic accessories and the battery needs. If you could monitor the drag or draw of the alternator on your car as you turned devices on a off you would see how load makes the alternator put out more power – while spinning at the same rate. Your engine has to absorb the drag of the alternator by increasing fuel consumption or idle speed. Your alternator is simply using regulating the voltage going out and its’ speed determines the amperage potential. At about 2500 rpm your alternator is putting at about 70% of capacity.

The easiest way to see this is turn on all your accessories at idle and you should see the headlights dim a bit. Raise the engine speed and notice that they brighten but only so much.

Overall the generators that power company’s use are far more efficient than the alternator in your car so any waste is simply there to feed our ravenous need for power.

The only utilities that are planning for storage for solar and wind, since the sun sets and winds change. Those methods range from air compression, to molten salt to flywheels and many others.

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Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Suppliers

Mark asks…

Does the excess solar power you make from your home solar panel go back into the grid?

I know someone that has solar panels on their house. They say that the extra electricity they make goes back into the grid and they get paid for it.

Now i was wondering, as they have no way of storing the electricity(elec) they make, that this means that any elec they make must be used at the time of making the elec, i.e if they happened to be boiling the kettle and the sun was shining then they could immediately use their solar generated elec.

But what if the sum of the elec they generate is greater than what they immediately need?

Then this extra elec goes back onto the grid?

If so how does the grid manage this extra supply of elec(even if it is tiny, it’s still surplus?) as i would imagine the grid already has some way of knowing how much elec should be needed.

Or does this extra supply go back to some storage batteries or however the grid may store elec.

Confusing i know, but basically how does the grid manage the elec they need plus any extra from home users?

If you imagine a river with lots of little streams pouring into it, the more rain the more these streams fill the river adding surplus water, same idea with the elec.

admin answers:

Sending your excess energy to the grid is a very convenient arrangement and small suppliers normally get paid as much (sometimes more!) for the kWh they supply as for that which they draw; often ending up with net income. So you notice no inconvenience or interruption with your power supply due for example to the vagaries of batteries.

No one seems to address your central question about where the supplied energy goes. Well, it may, as you say, ever so slightly upset the balance of input and output power on the grid and this will cause all the generators and the grid frequency to speed up just a tiny amount. Because of such imbalances between supply and consumption occurring from minute to minute on the grid, the frequency is constantly monitored and generator loads are always being adjusted to maintain the frequency which can nevertheless vary by 1 or 2 percent from its nominal value at any time. Over a whole day the frequency is adjusted so as to achieve exactly the correct total number of cycles, which keeps any mains-powered clocks at the correct time. So an extra 2 kW that you supply may be taken by a load which happens to switch in at the same time and if not then ultimately the load being supplied by a generator somewhere will be reduced by 2 kW. In the end then, there is an energy storage buffer in the grid in the form of the kinetic energy of its connected generators but it is not much and requires pretty continuous control to stabilize it.

James asks…

Anyone know where I could access solar panel and wind generator for small home from reliable supplier? Thanks?

Try to help small village home with their drought, electricity, farming, small industry, pump and water problems. They got plenty of wind and sunshine but rather dispense with fuel operational cost. Perhaps wind generator and solar panel generator could be the solutions. Besides being a good standby reliable no cost operation it also help prevent greehouse emission. Looking for a reliable products and supplier both for sosial and commercial purpose. Appreciate any website you could introduce me to. Thank you.

admin answers:


i know that tractor supply company carries solar panels but they are not high producing. Each set cost around 300 bucks not including the batteries. I’m going to use complete solar energy for my house. I figured that it would take 3 sets of solar panels from tsc. Each set using 4 marine batteries would cost 2500 to 3000 bucks and it would produce enough power run my most basic energy needs. As far as wind mills i haven’t checked that idea out yet but i will soon enough. I hope that you find what you need. Good luck.

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Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Cost

Betty asks…

What is the cheapest type of generator to use?

I’m thinking about using a generator for outdoor use but the price of petrol and diesel is too expensive and wondering of there’s any other types of generators that cost a lot cheaper to run. I was actually thinking about buying a Diesel one and running it on red diesel but I don’t know where to buy red diesel.
Over here in the UK you need to prove what you want red diesel for like if you own a farm or something to run tractors. It isn’t easy to buy because people will use it to run diesel cars as its tax free.

admin answers:

Solar cells or wind powered turbines, but initial cost is horrendous.

However, in the UK at the moment there are Government backed schemes for these Green Energy sources where you can actually put power back into the National Grid, when you are not using it, or generating an excess for your own usage and get paid for it. Again initial costs are mind blowing.

Jenny asks…

Why doesn’t set up a deep water siphon to lift deep cold water power running on solar and?

Energy to power, generators for the pumps that lift the water,

is cost the only factor or are there any

ideas on generating electricity from noise as it’s everywhere,

like a static powered watch only higher

levels of current for houses ?

Cheers & Thanks to all answers, Mars Mission.

admin answers:

Cost seem to be the key factor and the lack of Research on it.

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Your Questions About Solar Energy Generator Wikipedia

Ken asks…

What are the best three electrical energy suppliers?

[Location no object] Can anyone give me the details of three electrical energy suppliers that offer the best value for money?

And any additional details about the company…(Website etc…)


admin answers:

Ecologically speaking

the Sun
Solar energy is the radiant light and heat from the Sun that has been harnessed by humans since ancient times using a range of ever-evolving technologies. Solar radiation along with secondary solar resources such as wind and wave power, hydroelectricity and biomass account for most of the available renewable energy on Earth. Only a minuscule fraction of the available solar energy is used.

Solar power technologies provide electrical generation by means of heat engines or photovoltaics. Once converted its uses are only limited by human ingenuity. A partial list of solar applications includes space heating and cooling through solar architecture, potable water via distillation and disinfection, daylighting, hot water, thermal energy for cooking, and high temperature process heat for industrial purposes.

Solar technologies are broadly characterized as either passive solar or active solar depending on the way they capture, convert and distribute sunlight. Active solar techniques include the use of photovoltaic panels, solar thermal collectors, with electrical or mechanical equipment, to convert sunlight into useful outputs. Passive solar techniques include orienting a building to the Sun, selecting materials with favorable thermal mass or light dispersing properties, and designing spaces that naturally circulate air.

Wind power is the conversion of wind energy into a useful form, such as electricity, using wind turbines. At the end of 2008, worldwide nameplate capacity of wind-powered generators was 120.8 gigawatts.[1] Although wind produces only about 1.5% of worldwide electricity use,[1] it is growing rapidly, having doubled in the three years between 2005 and 2008. In several countries it has achieved relatively high levels of penetration, accounting for approximately 19% of electricity production in Denmark, 10% in Spain and Portugal, and 7% in Germany and the Republic of Ireland in 2008.

and Waves,(as in ocean waves)
Ocean waves are caused by the wind as it blows across the sea. Waves are a powerful source of energy.

The problem is that it’s not easy to harness this energy and convert it into electricity in large amounts. Thus, wave power stations are rare.


Today the largest use of hydropower is for the creation of hydroelectricity, which allows low cost energy to be used at long distances from the water source. Hydroelectricity is electricity generated by hydropower, i.e., the production of power through use of the gravitational force of falling or flowing water. It is the most widely used form of renewable energy. Once a hydroelectric complex is constructed, the project produces no direct waste, and has a considerably different output level of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide (CO2) than fossil fuel powered energy plants. Worldwide, hydroelectricity supplied an estimated 715,000 MWe in 2005. This was approximately 19% of the world’s electricity (up from 16% in 2003), and accounted for over 63% of electricity from renewable sources.[1]

Some jurisdictions do not consider large hydro projects to be a sustainable energy source, due to the human, economic and environmental impacts of dam construction and maintenance.


Daniel asks…

where do you find info on converting fruit waste into energy?

ok im in 8th grade advance science and i want to do a science fair project on converting fruit waste into energy but im having issues on finding Information help me please???!!

or if you have a better idea on how to wow the judges but have the experiment be something that has to do with environment that would be much appreciated.

admin answers:

There are 3 ways to utilize organic waste for energy.
1 biodiesel -corn/soybean/any oil
2 methane -mostly animal waste
3 ethanol -sugar/starch vegetables

Since fruit has a high sugar content you will want to produce ethanol. You will want to search the web for wine making(drinking alcohol is wine) The process is simple, just add water and yeast to the container and keep it sealed at room temperature.

Tip: If your fruit waste is clean i would put it strait into a container. If its not, I would cook it first to make sure all the bacteria is killed. You wan the only think living in the container to be yeast otherwise it wont work.

Here are the steps to energy production:

1. Fruit waste
2. Yeast creates ethanol from sugars
3. Remove Juice (compost the solids)
4. Distill the juice( to seperate the ethanol from the other stuff)
5. Burn the ethanol with alcohol burner (you can use a peice of cotton rope poked through the top of a container filled with ethanol)

This would be a very cool project. The alcohol burner is simple, but it represents ethanol being used in a car, generator, etc.

For a first attempt you may want to add some sugar with your fruit waste just to make sure it works. Once you have the process down you can remove the sugar.

This is a hard project. If you run into stumbles, ask lots of questions. If your project doesn’t go fully as planed, explain to the judges the process, what you learned and what you would change.

Best of Luck!

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