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Eletricity versus oil energy

by gloo
Tags: eletricity, energy, versus
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russ_watters
#19
Aug10-09, 05:12 PM
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Quote Quote by Integral View Post
If we do not find a replacement for fossil fuels in the next decade you youngsters may live to witness the end of civilization as we know know it.
We likely have enough fossil fuels to last us a couple of centuries, it's just that using them will be expensive. It will certainly change the economy, but it won't be drastically different than what we have now.

If oil prices end up double or triple (or more) what they are now in a few decades due to lower supply, that'll open up vast new sources of oil for economic viability. Decades after that, if oil prices double or triple (or more) again, then we'll be converting our vast supply of coal to liquid fuel burnable in vehicles. This in turn will make coal use in power plants too expensive and make nuclear power the only viable large scale power source.

Will cars be powered by liquid hydrogen, lithium (or other) batteries or a synthetic liquid fossil fuel in 100 years? I'm not all that worried about these possibilities because I don't see the technical hurdles as being all that daunting. These are largely economic issues.
Integral
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Aug10-09, 06:30 PM
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Quote Quote by russ_watters View Post
We likely have enough fossil fuels to last us a couple of centuries, it's just that using them will be expensive. It will certainly change the economy, but it won't be drastically different than what we have now.

If oil prices end up double or triple (or more) what they are now in a few decades due to lower supply, that'll open up vast new sources of oil for economic viability. Decades after that, if oil prices double or triple (or more) again, then we'll be converting our vast supply of coal to liquid fuel burnable in vehicles. This in turn will make coal use in power plants too expensive and make nuclear power the only viable large scale power source.

Will cars be powered by liquid hydrogen, lithium (or other) batteries or a synthetic liquid fossil fuel in 100 years? I'm not all that worried about these possibilities because I don't see the technical hurdles as being all that daunting. These are largely economic issues.
Russ,
Those are your conservative beliefs. Others believe differently. I do not like putting the our children's futures at risk simply because it is easy for us. We need to wean ourselves from fossil fuels, the sooner the better. To deny this is simply foolishness. Putting your faith in the undiscovered resources is simply silly. A much healthier belief system would be one which puts the development of alternative fuels on the front burner, NOW.
russ_watters
#21
Aug10-09, 06:52 PM
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Quote Quote by Integral View Post
Those are your conservative beliefs. Others believe differently.
Agreed, but since you did not feel the need to put a "these are my liberal beliefs, others believe differently" disclaimer on your post, I didn't see a reason to put a similar one on mine!
I do not like putting the our children's futures at risk simply because it is easy for us.
Agreed!
We need to wean ourselves from fossil fuels, the sooner the better.
Agreed!
To deny this is simply foolishness.
Agreed!
Putting your faith in the undiscovered resources is simply silly.
Agreed!
A much healthier belief system would be one which puts the development of alternative fuels on the front burner, NOW.
Why not skip the development and go straight to the implimentation, since we have plenty of alternatives right now that can have a huge impact on the problem?

...btw, how does your position that we should work on development jive with your opinion that we shouldn't put faith in undiscovered resources? Instead of unidscovered resources, you're putting your faith in undiscovered technologies! Why I think my ideas are superior to most peoples' is that my ideas do not require undiscovered resources or technology for quite a while whereas most peoples ideas require undiscovered resources or technology right now. Every second (and dollar) we spend pursuing ideas like solar power instead of building a new nuclear plant (for example) is a second (and dollar) wasted.
mheslep
#22
Aug10-09, 07:15 PM
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Quote Quote by russ_watters View Post
... Every second (and dollar) we spend pursuing ideas like solar power instead of building a new nuclear plant (for example) is a second (and dollar) wasted.
Jumping in here - allright, but your prior post was a plan that only sanctioned fossil fuels. Perhaps you were referring only to transportation needs, but it seems your proposal for transportation energy would still have us indefinitely importing oil from maniacs, and would dismiss harm from emissions? I don't buy into the latter entirely, but neither do I recommend indefinitely dumping the yearly emissions from a cubic mile of petroleum into the atmosphere.
xxChrisxx
#23
Aug10-09, 07:30 PM
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For transportation 2nd generation biofuels are the best stopgap until a cheap and clean source of electricity can be found to supply H2. They are made from parts of the crop that aren't eaten and are almost carbon neutral. Problem is, they are expensive to produce making them uncompetetive with crude based fuel.

You still need crude for lubrication and plastics though (as far as I can remember anyway).
mheslep
#24
Aug10-09, 07:45 PM
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Quote Quote by xxChrisxx View Post
For transportation 2nd generation biofuels are the best stopgap until a cheap and clean source of electricity can be found to supply H2. They are made from parts of the crop that aren't eaten and are almost carbon neutral. Problem is, they are expensive to produce making them uncompetetive with crude based fuel....
1) Biofuels. The Biofuels vs EV's future has yet to be decided. Good debate between biofuel and electric vehicle commercial advocates in the Economist:
Proposed:
This house believe that biofuels, not electricity, will power the car of the future.
http://www.economist.com/debate/overview/145
Audience voted it down 68:31.

2) Hydrogen. The big R&D is dead for now. Interview with DoE Secretary Chu:
http://www.technologyreview.com/business/22651/page2/
TR: The hydrogen fuel-cell program has been scaled back in the proposed budget, and the emphasis has been changed from transportation to buildings.

SC: That's right.

TR: It used to be thought, five to eight years ago, that hydrogen was the great answer for the future of transportation. The mood has shifted. What have we learned from this?

SC: I think, well, among some people it hasn't really shifted [laughs]. I think there was great enthusiasm in some quarters, but I always was somewhat skeptical of it because, right now, the way we get hydrogen primarily is from reforming [natural] gas. That's not an ideal source of hydrogen. You're giving away some of the energy content of natural gas, which is a very valuable fuel. So that's one problem. The other problem is, if it's for transportation, we don't have a good storage mechanism yet. Compressed hydrogen is the best mechanism [but it requires] a large volume. We haven't figured out how to store it with high density. What else? The fuel cells aren't there yet, and the distribution infrastructure isn't there yet. So you have four things that have to happen all at once. And so it always looked like it was going to be [a technology for] the distant future. In order to get significant deployment, you need four significant technological breakthroughs. That makes it unlikely.
Edit: also from Chu:
H Car R.I.P
“We asked ourselves, ‘Is it likely in the next 10 or 15, 20 years that we will covert to a hydrogen car economy?’ The answer, we felt, was ‘no,’” Chu said in a briefing today. He cited several barriers, including infrastructure, development of long-lasting portable fuel cells and other problems.
Integral
#25
Aug10-09, 08:02 PM
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Quote Quote by russ_watters View Post
Agreed, but since you did not feel the need to put a "these are my liberal beliefs, others believe differently" disclaimer on your post, I didn't see a reason to put a similar one on mine! Agreed! Agreed! Agreed! Agreed! Why not skip the development and go straight to the implimentation, since we have plenty of alternatives right now that can have a huge impact on the problem?

...btw, how does your position that we should work on development jive with your opinion that we shouldn't put faith in undiscovered resources? Instead of unidscovered resources, you're putting your faith in undiscovered technologies! Why I think my ideas are superior to most peoples' is that my ideas do not require undiscovered resources or technology for quite a while whereas most peoples ideas require undiscovered resources or technology right now. Every second (and dollar) we spend pursuing ideas like solar power instead of building a new nuclear plant (for example) is a second (and dollar) wasted.
The difference is similar to laying under the apple tree waiting for the fruit to fall into your mouth rather then getting up and taking action.

I am amazed that you cannot see the difference.

BTW we are off topic with this conversation.
xxChrisxx
#26
Aug10-09, 08:06 PM
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Well whoever the fella is, I dont share his views. I am of course noone of authority but my views are scientific FACT!! :P

Hydrogen is the only really obvious choice for long term fuel, once you've got the infrastructure nailed and have carbon free electricity then its the obvious choice. The technology is there, just that noone wants to stump up the cash.

All of the above arguments hinge on the fact that you are burning fossil fuels for H2, which for the moment is true, but a progressive switch to nuclear and (shudder) wind/solar etc will solve that in a jiffy. That and atm its expensive to implement, but then again so are biofuels. Biofuels have less inital expendature but refinement of the technology isnt likely to reduce the cost by a great amount.

The more availalbe cheap electricity is, the cheaper H2 is.
mheslep
#27
Aug10-09, 08:15 PM
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Quote Quote by xxChrisxx View Post
Well whoever the fella is, I dont share his views. I am of course noone of authority but my views are scientific FACT!! :P...
He's a nobel laureate in physics and the US Secretary of Energy. Also, save your self some trouble and re-read the guidelines.
xxChrisxx
#28
Aug10-09, 08:25 PM
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Quote Quote by mheslep View Post
He's a nobel laureate in physics and the US Secretary of Energy. Also, save your self some trouble and re-read the guidelines.
Specifically regarding?
mheslep
#29
Aug10-09, 08:34 PM
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Quote Quote by xxchrisxx View Post
specifically regarding?
pwa:
2) citations of sources for any factual claims (primary sources should be used whenever possible).
xxChrisxx
#30
Aug10-09, 08:37 PM
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Quote Quote by mheslep View Post
pwa:
Did you not see the little ':P'. You must have done as you quoted it.

That is a cheeky emoticon, and is put after the claim that it is a 'fact' to indicate that I was in fact (many uses of the word fact) saying it in jest. The fact that I both capitalised FACT!! and immediately before said I was no authority on the subject showed that it was my opinion. I hav ealso stated that it was my opinion earlier in this thread.

If I had claimed that it was serious fact that I had invented a car that runs on sneezes, then you may possibly hae had a case.

IBTL.

DISCLAIMER: This post, although sarcastic, is in no way meant to be hostile.
Topher925
#31
Aug10-09, 09:43 PM
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Quote Quote by mheslep View Post
2) Hydrogen. The big R&D is dead for now.
Nothing could be further from the truth and your source doesn't even state that. Big R&D is as big as it has ever been. The government reduced spending in hydrogen R&D for infrastructure and vehicle development, but budgets for core development of hydrogen technologies has NOT been scaled back. Government sponsored research is still very active in the area of non-precious catalysts for fuel cells and fuel cell durability. I believe hydride research along with thermochemical and photochemical research is still being well funded as well although that is not my area.

You probably won't see any of the major break throughs coming from government sponsored research anyway. The greatest amounts of development have come from industry which spends many times more on R&D than the government does. For the government to nurture hydrogen technology, it is better that they support it with their POLICY and not with their BUDGET.

but a progressive switch to nuclear and (shudder) wind/solar etc will solve that in a jiffy
Why the hell is everyone always against wind and solar? Wind I can understand as it can be expensive but solar holds some serious promise. There have been some major advancements in solar technology in the past three years and I see no reason why it can not be our major source of energy.
xxChrisxx
#32
Aug10-09, 09:51 PM
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Quote Quote by Topher925 View Post
Why the hell is everyone always against wind and solar? Wind I can understand as it can be expensive but solar holds some serious promise. There have been some major advancements in solar technology in the past three years and I see no reason why it can not be our major source of energy.
I don't actually have anything against renewable sources of energy I was just being facetious, its just the tree hugging brigade constantly make them out to be more than they can (especially wind). I'll admit solar is looking promising (i've not really read up on green power since I finished University) but i'm from Manchester England, solar is bugger all use to us with our permanently inclement weather.
mheslep
#33
Aug10-09, 10:05 PM
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Quote Quote by Topher925 View Post
Nothing could be further from the truth and your source doesn't even state that. Big R&D is as big as it has ever been. The government reduced spending in hydrogen R&D for infrastructure and vehicle development, but budgets for core development of hydrogen technologies has NOT been scaled back. Government sponsored research is still very active in the area of non-precious catalysts for fuel cells and fuel cell durability. I believe hydride research along with thermochemical and photochemical research is still being well funded as well although that is not my area. ...
I should have qualified I was talking about transportation, and its clear the Secretary thinks H2 power transportation is not feasible in the next couple decades.
mheslep
#34
Aug10-09, 10:13 PM
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Quote Quote by Topher925 View Post
Why the hell is everyone always against wind and solar? Wind I can understand as it can be expensive but solar holds some serious promise. There have been some major advancements in solar technology in the past three years and I see no reason why it can not be our major source of energy.
By major advancements I assume you mean PVs? If so that's still ~79 cents/kWh in cloudy climates, much more than wind. And as far as 'major source' of energy goes, i.e. more than ~half, how do you propose we get base load power from wind or solar?
Topher925
#35
Aug11-09, 12:40 AM
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Quote Quote by mheslep View Post
I should have qualified I was talking about transportation, and its clear the Secretary thinks H2 power transportation is not feasible in the next couple decades.
Fuel cells being developed for transportation are still under heavy research. The design of hydrogen vehicles with regards to system design, crash testing, etc, not so much.

By major advancements I assume you mean PVs?
I do not. I mean thermochemical and photochemical hydrogen production. The produced hydrogen of which can be used for either transportation (PEMFC) or stationary (SOFC, AFC) power generation.

http://www.treehugger.com/files/2008...giant-leap.php
xxChrisxx
#36
Aug11-09, 07:38 AM
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Quote Quote by mheslep View Post
I should have qualified I was talking about transportation, and its clear the Secretary thinks H2 power transportation is not feasible in the next couple decades.
I didnt know that a whole field of research and technology is dead because some bloke believes its not worth the government investing. Both articles (i've read them now) are also clearly saying that its budget rather then it being duff technology, all he thinks is that it's more cost efficient for them to invest in lower carbon emission projects (biofuels basically).

The technology is obviously feasable as we have Hydrogen cars driving around now. Widespread infrastructure and carbon free electricity is the key, I suspect that is what will sting the wallet.


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