LENR vs Solar/Wind, and emerging Green Technologies.

  • the free Mason's. These Guys historically are famous to burn churches (like Notre Dame) to get new labor.

    Brand in historischem Gebäude – Fassade der abgebrannten Börse in Kopenhagen eingestürzt
    Die Einsatzkräfte hatten noch versucht, die Mauern des bei einem Brand zerstörten historischen Gebäudes zu retten. Verletzt wurde niemand.

    Usually they are burning during renovations. DK 400 year old stock exchange. Whenever a church did burn down in Switzerland it was during renovation...

  • former nuclear scientists do try to be influential

    'edging' is an optimistic take

    "As political interest in the technology grows and private investments ramp up, fusion energy is seeing “remarkable progress”, said Elena Righi Steele, head of unit at the European Commission’s research and development department. Righi Steele, a former fusion scientist, told a Euractiv event on 18 March, that fusion is “edging towards [its] realisation.”"

  • Maybe nuclear is not the lost cause she thinks?

    I think it is a lost cause. It is obsolete, and too expensive. It is also dangerous, whereas there is no danger from wind and solar, which are presently the only kind of new generators the power companies want.

    Solar and battery storage to make up 81% of new U.S. electric-generating capacity in 2024 - U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA)

    I am not saying nuclear power cannot be fixed no matter what. It can probably be improved. It could be made safer and cheaper. But I think it is too late for that. Once a technology falls behind the competition, it can rarely be improved enough to compete again. Because the rival technologies are also improving, and they are getting more money. You see that pattern often, especially in big ticket technology such as railroads, ships, generators and so on. When steam locomotives were losing to Diesels in the 1930s and even up to the 1950s, some people made steam turbine locomotives. It was a last ditch effort to keep external combustion locomotive technology alive. Steam turbines were well developed for ships and generators. But this effort failed.

    Pebble bed nuclear reactors and other radical new designs might be competitive. I cannot judge.

  • WaPost:

    Rooftop solar panels are flooding California’s grid. That’s a problem.

    As electricity prices go negative, the Golden State is struggling to offload a glut of solar power

    Here is a shared link:



    In sunny California, solar panels are everywhere. They sit in dry, desert landscapes in the Central Valley and are scattered over rooftops in Los Angeles’s urban center. By last count, the state had nearly 47 gigawatts of solar power installed — enough to power 13.9 million homes and provide over a quarter of the Golden State’s electricity.

    But now, the state and its grid operator are grappling with a strange reality: There is so much solar on the grid that, on sunny spring days when there’s not as much demand, electricity prices go negative. Gigawatts of solar are “curtailed” — essentially, thrown away.

    In response, California has cut back incentives for rooftop solar and slowed the pace of installing panels. But the diminishing economic returns may slow the development of solar in a state that has tried to move to renewable energy. And as other states build more and more solar plants of their own, they may soon face the same problems. . . .

    EIA graph in article:


  • no mention of battery storage

  • no mention of battery storage

    Good point. They should have mentioned it. California and other states are rapidly increasing battery storage. See:

    Solar and battery storage to make up 81% of new U.S. electric-generating capacity in 2024 - U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA)

    Battery storage. We also expect battery storage to set a record for annual capacity additions in 2024. We expect U.S. battery storage capacity to nearly double in 2024 as developers report plans to add 14.3 GW of battery storage to the existing 15.5 GW this year. In 2023, 6.4 GW of new battery storage capacity was added to the U.S. grid, a 70% annual increase.

    Texas, with an expected 6.4 GW, and California, with an expected 5.2 GW, will account for 82% of the new U.S. battery storage capacity.

  • Nuclear’s next generation: thorium reactors promise to consume waste to produce power


    Nuclear power isn’t popular. First the Chernobyl disaster then the Fukushima accident has put many people off and the dream of ‘power too cheap to meter’ has died. But what if there was a new type of reactor that was inherently safe, consumes nuclear waste and couldn’t be misused to make weapons? Too good to be true? Well, that’s the promise of thorium-powered nuclear reactors. The idea for a reactor fuelled by thorium has been around since the 1960s but events conspired against it and countries, wary of new nuclear technologies, avoided taking the idea further. But now several start-ups are pushing ahead with the idea and new reactors are in development. The question now is can the technology be made to work and will it be cheap enough for countries to put their money where their mouth is?

  • Nuclear power isn’t popular.

    Nuclear waste isn't popular... Nuclear radiation isn't popular...Unluckily a Th reactor does not change this equation. Radiation leads to steel embrittlement and now to a shut down of about 1/3 of the old Westinghouse reactors. The Swiss one only had minors scarves but some are fully gone like the Fukushima number 2 that crumbled during the quake already.

    But e.g. in UK building isolation is also not popular and thus UK houses heat the sky. Energy consumption reduces by isolation * COP heat pump or up to 25x!

    In Japan the combined power dissipation of all toilet seats heating is equivalent to 2 nukes....

  • California throws away spare solar power

    California is generating so much power from solar panels that, on sunny days when demand is low, it’s throwing some away. In 2022, 2.4 million megawatt-hours of electricity were wasted and 95% of that came from solar. In response, the state has changed how it incentivizes the technology — shifting subsidies to those who also install batteries to store power for when it’s most needed, for example — and the economic lessons are valuable to other regions that are starting to make the move to renewable energy.

    The Washington Post | 6 minute read

  • EIA: U.S. wind generation falls for first time since 1990s

    EIA: U.S. wind generation falls for first time since 1990s
    Data from EIA's Power Plant Operations Report show that U.S. wind generation in 2023 totaled 425,235 GWh, 2.1% less than the 434,297 GWh generated in 2022.

    Because of changes in the weather. Capacity is up and capacity factors are gradually rising. See also:

    What is U.S. electricity generation by energy source?

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) - U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA)

    Wind produces 63% as much as coal:

    Wind 425 billion kWh, 10.2% of total

    Coal 675 billion kWh, 16.2% of total

    In 2000, coal produced 52% of electricity:


    Wind plus solar produce 25.3% of electricity, far more than coal. Most new capacity is now solar, because it cheapest per kilowatt-hour.

  • The New York Times reports that EV batteries in China have been improved. They allow cars with a ~600 mile range. As I have said here before, 600 miles is roughly as far as most people want to drive in one day. You can recharge overnight in many locations, so you can drive the whole day without recharging. That means the slow time it takes to recharge compared to filling with gasoline no longer matters.

    As a practical matter, you do not want to drain the battery close to zero. So, to drive 600 miles, starting with a full battery, you would recharge at least once. With this new battery a 10-minute charge "would give a range of 370 miles." I assume that is starting from close to zero.


    Better batteries and falling costs underpin China’s push in electric cars. CATL, based in southeastern China and the world’s largest manufacturer of electric car batteries, announced last week at the Beijing auto show that a 10-minute charge of its newest battery would give a range of 370 miles. A 30-minute full charge would give a range of 620 miles, the company said.

    Achieving these distances involves extremely high-precision chemistry and engineering and “putting each nano-particle in the right place,” said Gao Huan, the chief technology officer of CATL’s electric car business.

    Shared article:

    China’s Electric Cars Keep Improving, a Worry for Rivals Elsewhere (Gift Article)
    More capable autonomous driving is just one way Chinese automakers are threatening to pull ahead — their E.V.s are also becoming bigger and roomier.

  • Cool paint coatings help pedestrians feel up to 1.5°C cooler in urban setting, field study finds

    by Nanyang Technological University Cool paint coatings help pedestrians feel up to 1.5 degrees Celsius cooler in urban setting, field study findsThe road pavement of the test-site in Singapore with cool paint coatings. Credit: Nanyang Technological University

    A real-world study by researchers at NTU Singapore has shown that the use of cool paint coatings in cities can help pedestrians feel up to 1.5°C cooler, making the urban area more comfortable for work and play. The study is published in Sustainable Cities and Society.

    Cool paint coatings contain additives that reflect the sun's heat to reduce surface heat absorption and emission. They have been touted as one way to cool down the urban area and mitigate the urban heat island (UHI) effect, a phenomenon in which urban areas experience warmer temperatures than their outlying surroundings.

    To date, most studies of cool paint coatings have been either simulation-based or tested in scaled-down models, and understanding of its application in real-world scenarios is limited.

    Now, NTU researchers have conducted a first of its kind real-world study in the tropics to comprehensively evaluate how well cool paint coatings work in reducing city heat.

    The team coated the roofs, walls, and road pavements of an industrial area in Singapore and found that by comparison with an adjacent uncoated area, the coated environment was up to 2°C cooler in the afternoon, with pedestrian thermal comfort level improving by up to 1.5°C, measured using the Universal Thermal Climate Index—a common international standard for human outdoor temperature sensation that takes into account temperature, relative humidity, thermal radiation, and wind speed.

    Lead author Dr. E V S Kiran Kumar Donthu, who completed the work as a Research Fellow at Energy Research Institute at NTU (ERIAN), said, "Our study provides evidence that cool paint coatings reduce heat build-up and contribute to the cooling of the urban environment.

    "This is a minimally intrusive solution for urban cooling that has an immediate effect, compared to other options that often require major urban redevelopment to deploy. Moreover, by reducing the amount of heat absorbed in urban structures, we also reduce heat load in buildings, consequently reducing indoor air-conditioning energy consumption."

    Lead investigator, Associate Professor Wan Man Pun at the NTU School of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering (MAE), said, "Findings from the study are not just relevant for cities in Singapore where it is hot all year round, but for other urban areas around the world too. With global warming, people will increasingly look for ways to stay cool. Our study validates how cool paint coatings can be a strategy to reduce the urban heat island effect in future."

    The study supports the NTU 2025 strategic plan, which seeks to address humanity's grand challenges on sustainability and accelerate the translation of research discoveries into innovations that mitigate human impact on the environment.

    Real-world experiments in 'street canyons'

    To carry out their real-world experiments, the NTU researchers selected four rectangular buildings that created two parallel "street canyons"—narrow streets flanked by buildings—in an industrial estate west of Singapore managed by JTC Corporation.

    One canyon, or "cool canyon" was coated with cool paints on the roofs, walls, and road pavement, while the other (conventional) canyon remained as it was as a "control" for the experiment.

    Using environmental sensors, the NTU team monitored the conditions in the two canyons over two months, which included air movement, surface and air temperature, humidity, and radiation, to see how well the cool paint coatings worked in reducing city heat.

    The researchers found that during a 24-hour cycle, the cool canyon saw up to a 30% reduction in heat released from the built-up surfaces, resulting in the air temperature in the cool canyon being cooler than the conventional canyon by up to 2°C during the hottest time of the day, at around 4pm. As a result, pedestrians in the cool canyon can feel up to 1.5°C cooler.

    The NTU research team also found that air temperature in the cool canyon was lowered because less heat was absorbed by and stored in the building walls, roofs, and roads, and which would subsequently have been released to either heat up the surrounding air or the building's interior.

    Compared to conventional roofs, the roofs with the cool paint coating reflected 50% more sunlight and absorbed up to 40% less heat as a result, during the hottest time of a sunny day. The coated walls also prevented most of the heat from entering the industrial buildings.

    Co-author, Assistant Professor Ng Bing Feng at the NTU School of MAE, said, "Our study showed that cool paint coating on the road significantly helped lower the hottest temperatures in the cool canyon, confirming that cool paint coating can be a promising way to make urban areas cooler and more comfortable, especially during hot weather. We hope findings from our study will encourage more urban planners to adopt cool paint coatings on more built-up surfaces, on a large scale."

    In future research, the NTU team will focus on how the cool paint coating holds up over time in the same experiment location.

  • Regarding:

    Yet more boondoggles: Extracting carbon dioxide from the air, mining asteroids

    I think the author is right about extracting carbon dioxide. It would be far cheaper and more effective to do it by growing trees and then sequestering the wood when they die. However, the author is wrong about mining asteroids. This has tremendous potential. It is easier than it looks. Issues like this are not a problem at all:

    1. Scientists estimate that the value of the metal in Psyche is around $10 quintillion and the metal in the much closer asteroid referred to above is $11.65 trillion. If asteroid miners were able to unlock vast amounts of ore from either of these and get it to Earth, prices of those minerals would likely plummet as huge supplies hit the market. Of course, asteroid miners could transport much smaller quantities, but that would greatly increase the cost per ton. Alternatively, the miners could hold back ore already delivered to Earth and sell only in relatively small quantities so as not to overwhelm the market. But that would add costs for storage and seriously delay any payback to investors who presumably would have already waited decades for a payout.

    That is like saying you should not build the transcontinental railroad because it will eventually lower the cost of transportation so much, railroads will become unprofitable. That is what happened. But it took decades and in the meanwhile the founders and stockholders became the richest people on earth.

    You can say the same for progress in computers RAM, disks, and AI GPU processors. Eventually they will be so cheap and abundant, demand will be saturated and profits will fall close to zero. In the meanwhile they are worth a fortune. Things like Amazon.com will eventually face competition and become much less profitable but in the meanwhile Bezos is one of the richest people on earth.

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