THE PLANET ENERGY RESOURCES

I have to make a note before I begin.
I use the measuring system "Systeme Internationale",
often called the SI-system Hence I use the decimal system in my calculations excpt for time, witch is still using the base of 60. Now my unit for energy is derived from Joule, named "kiloWatthour". To me itīs more familiar to write the abbreviation "kWh which is: 1 kWh = 3,600,000 Joule, Here in Sweden it cost about 10c.

The sun converts 654 million tonnes of hydrogen into 650 mill ton helium every second. Itīs 4 mill ton missing, and this is the energy radiating from the sun. It doesīnt seem much, but every gramme has the same amount of energy as 20 ton coal (equal 180,000 kWh). From the sun, the radiation is spread in all directions, and the earth is 150 mill km ( 90,000,000 miles) away from the sun, and yet the power that hit the earth is enormous. It is roughly 1000 W per square meter, and gives a sum of ( sit down comfortably now) :
100,000,000,000,000,000 W.
Desptie the earth beeing such a small dot far away from the sun, it is flooded by this energy. As you can imagine, most of it lands on the tropic areas, but here in Sweden, a small cottage is receiving sunenergy equal to 10 times the annually need. But most of it hit the ground in the summer.

We should make one thing clear for our selves, when we lit a fire in the stove, we actually consumes a bit of stored sunenergy. When we run a water power plant, we still use stored sunenergy and so on. It is only the nuclear energy that I canīt say is origin from sunenergy. But how knows. Earth itself is derived from sun materia.

Our options is to find places suitable to pic up energy (exergy) either directly or after processing and use.

STORED (NONRENEWABLE) ENERGY
Hydrocarbon stored in the ground (coal, oil, gas) is called fossil fuel. Peat ought to be included as not beeing renewable in our lifetime. Instable nuclear elements (uranium, plutonium a.s.o) is used in nuclear plants. Deep in the ground there is plenty of heat, but almost unreacheable, exept on a few places near volcanic activity. The former Soviet Union ones tried to drill down thru the shell, but had to give it up when they reached the depth of 11,000 meter. The temerature is rising proportionally about 3 C degrees per 100 meter depth and hence the drilling resistance is rising towards the center of the earth.

STORED (RENEWABLE) ENERGY
These are all the forms of energy, that is combustionable and will renew during a human lifetime, (i.e. vegetable oil, straw, alcohol, wood) also wind, water, and sunheated groundenergy. Up to now, we have used wood, wind and water (together with oil and atomic deterioration) to power our electric generators and to get our building heat.

Solarheating (hydraulic systems)
There are three branches being developed.

1. low temperature plane thermic solarcell. The task is to capture a wide square of sunradiation, lock it and transfer to water flowing thru. They are difficult to insulate to a resonable price, but they are solid and firm mounted, so they are well suited to whithstand the element of nature. Reaching 100 C (212 F) degrees.

2. High temperature concentrating solarcell. Works as a refractor or a reflector an must trace the sun to work. They can reach up to 300 C degrees. There is a variant model named "cylindric parabolic reflector" used by LUZ intl ltd. It works as a semi concentrating solarcell.
I think this is the winning architecture in the future.

3. Vaccumsolarcell. Works as a transparent thermos bottle, is firm mounted and reach 300 C degrees. They are fragile and need a solid frame to be mounted at. Named high temperature.

Electric energy (steam engines, turbines) There is a company in California "LUZ International ltd" who has constructed a plant for electric energy with a combination of 2. and 3. This way they have reached 450 C degrees and are able to power turbines for electric generation.

Solar towers is another method to reach high temperature, thow they are heavy to service due to a endless number of mirrors, which all has to be tracing the sun.

There is a variety of combinations and variations on the market, but these are the three branches to separate. Suitable material is most rare, but good architecture is also invisible. This makes the cost too high up to now. But beware, the development are at the beginning, and are constantly growing.

Electric solarcell. They are even more expensive, and isīnt for heating purposes but more likely to power small electric household equippment.

This is a brief summary of our energy sources.

 Next Back Swedish Toppage