Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
A couple of random comments on your post:

  1. What are the circumstances under which you will have losses of 25% on long-distance electricity transport? Using higher voltages (up to 1MV) will help. So will going to DC instead of AC. Superconducting cables may not be necessary.

  2. Solar thermal power plants and concentrating PV need a sunny climate, but normal PV works quite fine in climates with less solar radiation since it also uses the diffuse light (light from the sky and clouds).

  3. Raw material constraints are not an issue for solar thermal power plants. For PV your kilometrage varies. ECN in the Netherlands did a study of how much of each type of PV you could possibly use given the constraints of raw materials. For silicon-based PV the limit is so high that you could produce several times the total power needs of the world using only Si-based PV before you run out of the limiting raw material (silver). For other technologies the limits are a bit more severe (something like 1/3 of the total power consumption of the world).

  4. Running an electric car with a battery will be a bit different from your normal petrol/diesel car, but not that different. You should still be able to go a few hundred km between charges. And I see no fundamental reason why you can't have battery replacement stations the way you have fuelling stations now. Someone recently suggested to do just that in Israel. I would say that having an electric car with a range half that of a petrol car is much less disruptive than your suggestion that we may have to do without individual transport at all.

  5. Storage of energy is an issue for solar energy if it reaches really high penetration in the energy production of society. But in this case electric car batteries will actually help, since all the cars in Europe together would have a lot of storage capacities in their batteries.


Real capricorns don't believe in astrology.
by tomhuld (thomas punkt huld at jrc punkt it) on Sat Mar 15th, 2008 at 06:15:33 PM EST
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