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Thread: solar energy

  1. #1

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    Default solar energy

    Hey All,

    I will be buying property soon and I'm wondering about solar energy. Does anyone in the forum have any personal experience with having solar panels on their homes? Likes, dislikes?

    Thanks!

  2. #2

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    http://www.polkaudio.com/forums/show...nstalled-today.

    I'm still waiting for PG&E to install my new meter so I can start being compensated for the power I am giving them for free. I read in today's paper that PG&E have 90,000 solar customers with 2000 more added each month.

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    Seems to be a few members going Green, good stuff. I love my 6.5kw setup. I often times end up selling back to the grid and making a good bit of money. Go for it and don't look back.
    Shoot the jumper.....................BALLIN.............!!!! !

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    No true solar, although I do have two large windmills on the farm, which are in a string of 75 windmills that are built and managed by a company out of the Netherlands. I have about 2 months left before I start collecting revenue share on the Kw output.
    DKG999
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    We like ours - but I certainly don't have any real expertise on the subject :-P



    I will say this - the "opportunities" for rebates, kick-backs, tax breaks, and/or other incentives vary considerably state-to-state, and can change rather rapidly with time... in MA (where we lived for 22 years) the playing field was complicated and a sort of "Wild West" or "Gold Rush" frenzy of somewhat unctuous, if not downright shady, characters were around every corner. We worked with a group in our old town for quite some time which was trying to start a "community solar garden" as a shareholder-owned, (ultimately) for-profit company to benefit those of us whose properties were (literally) too shady for practical PV implementation... but the town, the state, local abutters, and individual ambitions seemed to thwart the venture at every turn. AFAIK, they still haven't gone-live.

    http://www.harvardpress.com/Home/All...treatment.aspx
    Community solar project seeks sunnier treatment
    by John Osborn · Friday, July 12, 2013
    Nearly two years ago, when 40 Harvard households and businesses signed up to participate in the first phase of a shared, noncommercial solar installation with a capacity of up to 494 kilowatts, most expected the first half of the planned array of photovoltaic panels to be up and running by the spring of 2012.

    The project, the first phase of which is known as the Harvard Solar Garden I LLC, formed in 2011, had qualified for federal and state subsidies, and by voting to make Harvard a Green Community and then approving a site within its Ayer Road commercial district for a sun-powered photovoltaic (or PV) electrical generation facility, Harvard citizens had twice given solar power their support.

    But with a series of zoning challenges now successfully resolved—including objections from abutters and residents over sites originally proposed for the project and denial of a building permit on two separate occasions—the project has once again foundered on two local issues: how much the project should be taxed and how much it should be charged by the town for a building permit and the electrical inspections that will be required. Unless differences between the amounts the town would assess under currrent policy and those a community installation can bear, Harvard Solar Garden manager Worth Robbins (a publisher of this newspaper) wrote recently, construction in Harvard may be "infeasible."
    There's a lot of for-profit speculation into large-scale commercial "solar gardens", too - I know there's a huge one now at the landfill in Acton, MA... but I don't know under whose aegis it was built or will be operated.

    Bottom line - I see having PVs, wind power (which we're also thinking about, as our hillside is quite windy, on the average), or other "alternative energy" resources as all up-side, even if I don't save (much less make) a lot of $$$ as a consequence!

    That didn't help much at all, did it? :-P
    Last edited by mhardy6647; 09-13-2013 at 10:55 AM.
    all the best,
    mrh

  6. #6
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    I have a good friend who has a solar system on their house that provides all of their power, and the remaining they sell back as posted previously. It wasn't cheap to install, and he likes the utility kickbacks, but they loose power often in their area of Montana, and the most important to him was having reliable power every day.

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    Forgot to mention that we did not invest in batteries. In the long(er) term, I think we may use a plug-in hybrid to store any excess juice produced by the PVs - seems like a good, cost-effective idea (and, no, I didn't think of it!).

    FWIW, we have some friends who are poised to build an off-grid house on property they own (near Lake Winnipesaukee, on the other side of NH from us)... their driver is purely economic; the nature of their property is such that it would cost (if memory serves) something like $60k to get electric power lines run back to the house site from the rodeside! :-O

    PS Wind is definitely something we're thinking about, too...


    DSC_7823 by mhardy6647, on Flickr
    all the best,
    mrh

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    If I were going to be totally off the electrical grid I would want a combination of solar, wind, and LP powered generator. And I have to ask a question, is it really "green" to take a remote building site out its natural environment and build a home on it? I don't care how "green" you think you are, at that point you might as well hook it up to the grid because you are only pretending to be green.
    DKG999
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    Music System: Magnepan 1.6QR, SVS SB12+, ARC pre, Parasound HCA1500 vertically bi-amped, Jolida CDP, Pro-Ject RM5.1SE TT, Pro-Ject TubeBox SE phono pre, SBT, PS Audio DLIII DAC

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    well, yeah... point taken :-)
    all the best,
    mrh

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    Well, what building site hasn't been taken out of it's natural environment ? All building sites at one point or another were from nature, yes ?

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    I suspect that's the point - I was actually thinking about this driving home from MA to NH tonight (I am doing the 5 day/2 day commute)... the 'greenest' thing to do, as humans, is probably to build ever-denser, yet ever-"greener" city dwellings. Literally "green" buildings are getting to be more and more common (particularly in Europe); buildings with stuff growing on them :-) and buildings that, in essence, heat themselves. This has lots of positive implications (except for those of us who aspire to our own, "private" personal space!). All human progress is sort of a zero-sum game; Earth's resources are finite, and we seem, at times, hell-bent on proving that.
    all the best,
    mrh

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    Quote Originally Posted by mhardy6647 View Post
    Forgot to mention that we did not invest in batteries. In the long(er) term, I think we may use a plug-in hybrid to store any excess juice produced by the PVs - seems like a good, cost-effective idea (and, no, I didn't think of it!).
    Yes, storage is the future for regions were energy cost are high. The European company I work for is working on some product of the future, hydrogen based Energy Cell, Hybrid Inverter, etc. However, cost are high and don't make sense right now for regions like most of the US where energy is cheap in comparison.

    Fronius Vision for the future, 24 Hours Sun: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xKpNgRb-YJ4 http://www.fronius.com/cps/rde/xchg/...6_ENG_HTML.htm

    Fronius Energy Cell: http://www.fronius.com/cps/rde/xchg/...9_ENG_HTML.htm



    Quote Originally Posted by mhardy6647 View Post
    I suspect that's the point - I was actually thinking about this driving home from MA to NH tonight (I am doing the 5 day/2 day commute)... the 'greenest' thing to do, as humans, is probably to build ever-denser, yet ever-"greener" city dwellings. Literally "green" buildings are getting to be more and more common (particularly in Europe); buildings with stuff growing on them :-) and buildings that, in essence, heat themselves. This has lots of positive implications (except for those of us who aspire to our own, "private" personal space!). All human progress is sort of a zero-sum game; Earth's resources are finite, and we seem, at times, hell-bent on proving that.
    Yes, Europe is waay ahead...for good reason. Many companies over there have a green initiative....and green walls!

    http://www.fronius.com/cps/rde/xchg/...?inc=93989.htm

    Living Wall Inside and out:
    http://ad009cdnb.archdaily.net/wp-co...0-1000x666.jpg
    http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-qwUYTEEsxm...l-garden-2.jpg
    FAMILY ROOM
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  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by mhardy6647 View Post
    Forgot to mention that we did not invest in batteries. In the long(er) term, I think we may use a plug-in hybrid to store any excess juice produced by the PVs - seems like a good, cost-effective idea (and, no, I didn't think of it!).
    Yes, storage is the future for regions were energy cost are high. The European based company I work for is working on some product for the future, hydrogen based Energy Cell, Hybrid Inverter, etc. However, cost are high and don't make sense right now for regions like most of the US where energy is cheap in comparison.

    Fronius Vision for the future, 24 Hours Sun: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xKpNgRb-YJ4 http://www.fronius.com/cps/rde/xchg/...6_ENG_HTML.htm

    Fronius Energy Cell: http://www.fronius.com/cps/rde/xchg/...9_ENG_HTML.htm



    Quote Originally Posted by mhardy6647 View Post
    I suspect that's the point - I was actually thinking about this driving home from MA to NH tonight (I am doing the 5 day/2 day commute)... the 'greenest' thing to do, as humans, is probably to build ever-denser, yet ever-"greener" city dwellings. Literally "green" buildings are getting to be more and more common (particularly in Europe); buildings with stuff growing on them :-) and buildings that, in essence, heat themselves. This has lots of positive implications (except for those of us who aspire to our own, "private" personal space!). All human progress is sort of a zero-sum game; Earth's resources are finite, and we seem, at times, hell-bent on proving that.
    Yes, Europe is waay ahead...for good reason. Many companies over there have a green initiative....and green walls!

    http://www.fronius.com/cps/rde/xchg/...?inc=93989.htm

    Living Wall Inside and out:
    http://ad009cdnb.archdaily.net/wp-co...0-1000x666.jpg
    http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-qwUYTEEsxm...l-garden-2.jpg
    FAMILY ROOM
    TV - Mitsubishi WD-73734 73" DLP 1080P | AVR - Onkyo TX-NR3008 | Source - Sony PS3 Slim 320GB | Front - PolkAudio RT3000p | Center -PolkAudio CS400i | Surround - PolkAudio F/X1000 | Sub - DIY Stereo Integrity HT 15 | Sub Amp - Behringer EUROPOWER EP2500

    2 Ch Dreaming...hoping to purchase, build someday???
    OPPO 105 | Cary or Rogue Audio tube Preamp | Parasound HALO A21 amp | DIY Mini Statements towers

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by mhardy6647 View Post
    All human progress is sort of a zero-sum game; Earth's resources are finite, and we seem, at times, hell-bent on proving that.

    I dunno man, as far as I can tell I don't see us running out of resources anytime soon. Matter of fact, I can't even name one resource we depleted yet. Coal....nope, natural gas....nope, oil....nope. Those are the 3 biggies, but shortages from over use....don't see it happening.

    Want to know why Europe is ahead of us in the green department ? Because they can't afford the other alternatives. Do you honestly think they are green to save the planet ? No, they are green to save their wallets because politicians with agenda's artificially raise prices to force a green alternative. Same thing happening here.

    Don't mean to sound anti green, because really I'm not. I love choices and having as many as possible only benefits the consumer more. If green works for you, run with it and be happy, but it shouldn't come at the expense of making others miserable by artificial price increases or subsidies.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LeftCoast View Post
    Hey All,

    I will be buying property soon and I'm wondering about solar energy. Does anyone in the forum have any personal experience with having solar panels on their homes? Likes, dislikes?

    Thanks!
    This is indeed a subject that intrigues me as well

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