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Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms

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krisi
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
krisi   9/7/2012 5:02:09 PM
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Economics of wind energy is already hard enough...wait until we have a plane crash due to wind turbine activity...clearly understanding risk is very important here...Kris

KB3001
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
KB3001   9/7/2012 7:27:33 PM
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I personally do not know who and what to believe anymore. There is just too much public money involved in green energy R&D. It's inviting corruption at an alarming proportion in science and engineering :-(

krisi
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
krisi   9/7/2012 8:25:33 PM
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Corruption risk always exists...but much serious problem in public money R&D is waste, in my mind large portion of teh money awarded is typically wasted...typical application grants are checked carefully when you apply but after the fact nobody bothers to check what you have done with the money

KB3001
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
KB3001   9/8/2012 1:41:17 PM
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The direct subsidies to green energy firms is also a worry to me.

krisi
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
krisi   9/9/2012 4:12:28 PM
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But sometimes you need direct subsidy to get certain technology going if the barrier to entry is very high

KB3001
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
KB3001   9/10/2012 10:19:07 PM
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Appreciate that but the stakes are very high if we get this wrong. I am rather in favour of an international Manhattan-style project to develop the next big sustainable energy technology, a project that is void of commercial interests and whose outcomes are free and open for everyone. I dream of course as there are too many powerful vested interests....

krisi
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
krisi   9/10/2012 10:25:39 PM
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I am in favour of Manhattan like project too but I don't see the any western goverment having guts to do it...what China is doing is close though

KB3001
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
KB3001   9/11/2012 7:00:01 AM
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@iniewski, would you please develop more on China's efforts in this regard? Thanks.

krisi
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
krisi   9/11/2012 1:35:26 PM
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They take long view (20-30 years ahead) and put goverment money into technologiesw that might not produce any short term profits but have long term significance...look what happened with solar panels, they killed everyone else and are the only providers of paneslf ro the entire world

DL2
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
DL2   9/9/2012 6:08:26 PM
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More concerning are the effects of wind turbines on weather and soil moisture. Google "wind turbine turbulence soil moisture" and you will find a slew of articles, both simulation and measurements, that the additional turbulance near the ground surface level causes moisture to evaporate and dew not to form on the ground. Add this to the location of the wind farms, at least in California, which reduce the flow of air from the cooler and moister sea to inland hot and dry areas, I am concerned about the potential for negative climatic effects. The bird kill problem (google "wind turbine bird kill"), if it were from any other "less green" energy source would be quickly addressed. Personally I'm hoping for liquid thorium fluoride reactors (lftr) development - these can be used to consume the waste we are keeping in so many cooling pools and are afraid to bury - they produce much less waste with much shorter half lives by avoiding creating the long lived actinide series elements. This is probably why our early ltfr reactor was killed in the cold war - it made no plutonium for weapons. LTFR reactors can not melt down - they are already liquid! They are hot enough to efficiently generate hydrogen without electrolysis and have good efficiency even without using water cooling (though better efficiency with a cool sink). They are operated at atmospheric pressure, with liquid salt cooling loops, so radioactive steam leaks are avoided. Thorium is present at about 10 ppm in most soil, and North America is one of the large reserves. Using these reactors to consume the stock of waste fuel rods rather than burying them would probably be less expensive than burying them and the waste that remains mostly decays within 60 years and is to a background level in 300 years rather than 10,000 years.

krisi
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
krisi   9/10/2012 10:27:29 PM
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LTFR reactors is a new thought in this green energy topic...what prevents high tech companies jumping on this technology if it is so beneficial? Kris

DL2
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
DL2   9/11/2012 12:02:55 AM
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All reactor design requires government approval. Several companies are working toward LTFR, as are China and India, among others. We had a working model in the 60's. Main obstruction is likely lobbying - the fuel for a 1GW plant is approximately $10k instead of $10M - at least that is my guess. India is looking at a sub-critical design using an accelerator as a neutron sourceinstead of a critical mass.

DL2
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
DL2   9/11/2012 12:10:48 AM
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The US had a working LTFR reactor - got shutdown because it did not generate plutonium. Safety wise, they used to just pull the power on Fridays, the freeze plugs would allow the liquid core to drain into a non-critical configuration (too spread out). Monday morning they would kick on the heaters to liquify the salt again, pump it back in and continue! Designed to safely dump if the cooling was lost! To my reading, several are in the process of getting clearance to move forward. I wish one candidate or the other would embrace an energy TVA - cheap reliable energy would be a good draw to help bring manufacturing back on shore, and not sending out $700B/year would help a lot. Combine an efficient route to H2 production and our supply of coal, liquid fuels could be a great portable energy source while we are figuring out better batteries. It would be nice to be a net energy exporter!

KB3001
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
KB3001   9/11/2012 4:06:36 PM
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@iniewski, yes but they take the long term view for narrow national interest, and not necessarily for the globe's interest. What I want is a truly international long term view, void of commercial interest. It's the only true solution in my opinion - we share this planet and our faith is common, whether we like it or not.

krisi
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
krisi   9/11/2012 4:13:37 PM
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Sounds nice but utopian I am afraid

DL2
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
DL2   9/11/2012 4:20:12 PM
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I do not object to working together with India and China on the LTFR projects - having us not end up in war-like competition over energy would significantly help long term prospects for peace. I just would like to move toward geting it going here ASAP. Google "liquid fluoride thorium reactor china" and liquid fluoride thorium reactor India" to see what efforts they are pushing. There is significant activity going on. It would just be a shame to be left behind when we were so far ahead on this technology.

Jack.L
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re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
Jack.L   9/12/2012 1:06:51 PM
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CANDU nuclear reactors, based on a heavy water moderation of unenriched uranium cycle can run thorium cycle with very little modification. Unfortunately, the CANDU technology has always been though reliable and inherently safe, expensive. The production side of the business has been sold from the Canadian government to a commercial company. That could drive down the price. On the wind side, the economics of the actual generation of electricity is very good when all the actual costs of other fuel sources is considered. Sure dirty coal is cheaper, but when you look at clean coal solutions, then they are close to parity. The issue with wind and all renewable is storage or the lack thereof. Cheap storage would be the game changer. That said, thorium cycle nuclear is definitely something that needs a lot more interest.

krisi
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CEO
re: Simulations show pilots should steer clear of wind farms
krisi   9/12/2012 2:06:47 PM
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Good point about energy storage, that is probably #1 for renewable energy...but I doubt that the economics of wind energy is close to cheap natural gas

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