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Energy via elements

 
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dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 40306
Location: yes
PostPosted: Mon May 10, 21 10:22 am    Post subject: Energy via elements Reply with quote
    

thorium

umm some issues with it

the one about copper has some interesting stuff about leccy

the gold one is interesting as well.

tahir



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 44821
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Mon May 10, 21 10:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

Very good series, thorium is definitely worth exploring but you never know, fusion might happen soon! There are several firms in the UK and US that reckon they'll have working reactors by the 2030s. Solar power is becoming more efficient too, hyprid silicon/perovskite cells push efficiency up by almost 15% and perovskites are at a very early stage of development.

jema
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Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 27212
Location: escaped from Swindon
PostPosted: Mon May 10, 21 1:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

tahir wrote:
Very good series, thorium is definitely worth exploring but you never know, fusion might happen soon! There are several firms in the UK and US that reckon they'll have working reactors by the 2030s. Solar power is becoming more efficient too, hyprid silicon/perovskite cells push efficiency up by almost 15% and perovskites are at a very early stage of development.


Fusion seems to have gone from being 30 years away in the 1970's to under 20 years in the 2020's, I'm not holding my breath yet.

tahir



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 44821
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Mon May 10, 21 2:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

In the 70s they were all national or international state funded programmes, there are now several private companies in the field that I guess are under more pressure to deliver.

Lets see.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 40306
Location: yes
PostPosted: Mon May 10, 21 3:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

the physics of fusion is easy, the engineering to boil a kettle rather than make a crater in a fraction of a second very inefficiently is a bit tricky

it can be done, so far it is a few decades in the future

the reactors and/or bangy stuff is a doddle compared to keeping a plasma stable and contained and making more energy than that requires for a useful continuous energy source

iirc a few seconds at lab scale(big lab but not even a few solar panels) of that is best so far

the thing i like with the thorium thing is that if there is a load of nasty carp lying around(500 tons pu is a low estimate of the sellafield stock) it can be used for energy and made safer, if it dont go bang it is a start
ps i know the pu is probably as oxide or similar although maybe not as a lot of that was metallic from the fast breeder experiments as well as assorted mil and civ stocks and still might be
it would not go bang without a bit of work, but knock it down to short half life stuff in a thorium reactor and boil a kettle for leccy has some merit over storing it for a few million years, half life does not mean safe after Hf, just less horrible until half of half of etc is safer

any sort of fission reactor has issues, some more than others, owt that eats plutonium is maybe ok til the Pu runs out, making more is daft.
might buy time to get a fusion kettle working

jema
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Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 27212
Location: escaped from Swindon
PostPosted: Mon May 10, 21 6:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

tahir wrote:
In the 70s they were all national or international state funded programmes, there are now several private companies in the field that I guess are under more pressure to deliver.

Lets see.


The reports I have read, certainly put a more positive spin on things, but then that reminds me of Mandy Rice-Davies!

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 12985

PostPosted: Tue May 11, 21 7:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

In the early 1990s someone claimed to have managed a fusion reactor on the lab bench. As nothing more was heard of it, I assume it wasn't fusion but some other reaction. I didn't know the person, but met someone on a course who did, and they said the claimant was a good experimenter, so probably mistaken reaction. Not heard anything of any successful work since.

I understand some of the most recent work on solar cells is showing very promising conversion rates; up to 20% with the perovskite ones I think. The major thing with solar or any other power form is to use easily available materials, not ones that are rare or scarce.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 40306
Location: yes
PostPosted: Tue May 11, 21 8:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

afaik PV development is going well, cheaper , better and lower inputs

re the cold fusion thing from the 90's, nobody could replicate the results

i conclude they were mistaken or experienced a "strange event" and it has not developed further

re semi cold the ignition lab at livermore did seem to get quite a response when they used many huge lasers and some optics to put a couple of states worth of energy onto a speck of target

there was a video of that making the sealed lab go a funny shade of purple before the cameras failed

re the hot plasma route it is the engineering that needs sorting

tahir



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 44821
Location: Essex
PostPosted: Tue May 11, 21 1:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

Perovskite/silicon cells are at around 28% now

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 12985

PostPosted: Wed May 12, 21 6:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

Knew it was 20 somthing %. Was reading about a new one the other day in Chemistry World, but too tired to remember properly.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 40306
Location: yes
PostPosted: Wed May 12, 21 8:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

pv, gravity and water, wind, geo if you got it

storage for peak and baseline need different kit but both are available

use less more efficiently

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 40306
Location: yes
PostPosted: Sun May 16, 21 6:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

mineral supplies

different materials but 300 times less mass needed for renewable vs fossil does make sense even if it is harder to find.

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 12985

PostPosted: Sun May 16, 21 8:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

The requirement for less common materials could well be a problem. There is development to use alternatives, but reuse is a better bet if at all possible. I must admit it is not a thing I have looked into in detail, but the reuse of the materials from batteries is an obvious one.

Ty Gwyn



Joined: 22 Sep 2010
Posts: 4421
Location: Lampeter
PostPosted: Sun May 16, 21 12:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

And the outlook is much higher electricity charges.

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