Month of December 2021 (Nat'l Avg $3.385)

Discussion in 'The Daily Grind' started by EdwinTheMagnificent, Dec 1, 2021.

  1. EdwinTheMagnificent

    EdwinTheMagnificent Legend In His Mind

    And that's why you grow your own.
    I'm curious: is there an advantage to having ground mounted solar panels vs roof-mounted panels ?
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  2. BillLin

    BillLin PV solar, geothermal HVAC, hybrids and electrics

    The main advantage of ground mounts is the ability to point the array in the direction you desire, as opposed to possibly non-ideal directions allowed by existing roof lines.

    Additionally for me, easier access for repairs and for cleaning. After a snowfall, there's zero production until the snow slides off or someone like me clears it with a plastic roof rake. I have the only ground mounted system on my street, so this is the only system producing any power right now, little as it is with cloud cover.

    There are disadvantages, too. One is the yard space required. And if you have vandals, they have easy access to the panels.

    Edit: Additional disadvantage - ground mount hardware generally costs more than that required for roof mounts.
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2021
  3. litesong

    litesong litesong

    One fellow in Western Washington has solar panels on his house roof & he is within 6(?) miles of ridges that get 90inches of rain per year.
    With all our clouds, I think a joint neighborhood solar array for the local DC electrical vehicles, that tracks the sun is the only feasible thing here in western Washington state. I always thought to save costs by a manually operated tracker. If you could get neighbor EV drivers to take their turn to adjust the tracking every 1 or 1.5 hours, lots of extra kWs of power could be squeezed out of the blue skies, between our cloud sets. Every week or 2, another manual adjustment to track the elevation of the sun in the sky would be needed. Plus, at the end of the day, manual cranking would be needed to set the panels for the morning.
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2021
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  4. litesong

    litesong litesong

    Oh, there goes my idea (above). We have a fairly nice neighborhood. But community project solar panels are just asking to be vandalized. I wonder if the abandoned solar projects I have seen in our western Washington may have had continuing vandalism?
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  5. BillLin

    BillLin PV solar, geothermal HVAC, hybrids and electrics

    I like the idea of community solar, especially with storage and creation of mini-grids. The opportunities in my area have not jumped out at me so I don't know if such shared usage is easily accessible. There are some towns that run their own co-op power companies and the community solar idea may be more easily done that way. One problem is going to be with grid-connected solar, there will always be the incumbent power company charging for the use of the power lines and the need to help pay for the power generation when the PV systems are not producing any power.

    Solar trackers are a good idea, too, but I don't think they're economically feasible for typical homeowners. I've tried the manual adjustments you mentioned and it does amazingly well especially when you consider that the sky may be clouded at the times that happen to be optimal for a fixed array, but outside of that time, the sun could be shining through and being missed out on. But that would get old very quickly and also may be physically demanding for the larger array sizes needed to support EVs. Mechanical aides may help, but then they are added to the points of failure and maintenance requirements for the setup. With the lower cost of PV panels today, the solution that is widely being implemented is to just throw extra panels at the problem. They are only a small portion of the whole system cost.
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  6. litesong

    litesong litesong

    As EVs grow in quantities, I would think manually operated community solar arrays would be feasible, with enough healthy & less aged solar enthusiasts to make it work. There does appear to be an ever increasing number of people working from home, who would be good candidates for solar array help. The main problem is coordination of people to do what they promise. Indeed, backup people to support primary people would be necessary. Even if an appointment to tend the manual adjustments is missed, it isn’t a fatal flaw, at all. The next manual adjuster tho, would have to do double duty,….a bother! A second problem is to NOT let the manual mechanicals ever get aged, but maintained well. An easily operated manual system that gets progressively harder to operate is no good. I certainly think that treating the mechanicals as an opportunity to exercise (not go to the gym) is a valid argument. Cold &/or thinly clouded & misty days would be problematical, tho. An extra covering for the manual operations may be a help. As for electrical storage, let the EV battery packs themselves be the storage batteries.
    Unlike your region tho, the Pacific Northwest already has a lot of renewable water & wind resources. Extra-community solar generation tho, would help delay future needed expensive electrical generation developments.
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2021
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  7. litesong

    litesong litesong

    From 12-23-21:
    Well……on Christmas Eve at least one vehicle had to be pulled out of a ditch in our region because of snow. & this day after Christmas, we have 4+ inches of snow on the ground. Looks like we have potential for more for the next week? Maybe, I’ll go get the snow off the Hyundai Accent & maybe drive careful around the more or less flat neighborhood to exercise the car. We’ll see.
    PS…..Yes, did sweep off the Accent & drove around the flat neighborhood. The good news: I was able to sweep off the 4-5 inches of snow from the sidewalks, street drains, driveway & my back didn’t go out. The bad news: my body told me not to do any more, or the back & other body parts won’t cooperate. AND there will be more to do, because its snowing again. Yeah. My body won’t be able to keep up.
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2021
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  8. BillLin

    BillLin PV solar, geothermal HVAC, hybrids and electrics

    Good to practice your snow & ice driving skills. We had more freezing rain yesterday. The temperature stayed below freezing till evening. We stayed put.
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  9. litesong

    litesong litesong

    As far as my snow & ice REMOVAL SKILLS GO, my body in limited ONLY to practicing.
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  10. litesong

    litesong litesong

    For those who haven’t figured it out yet, I’m putting commentary about the James Webb Space Telescope in the old Neowise Comet thread, which had a lot of my past astro adventures with the light-weight Cassegrain spotting scope & the Pentax 5 inch refractor camera lens.
  11. litesong

    litesong litesong

    Another 5+ inches of snow fell. My wife said we’ve had a foot of snow. With the temp at 24degF, I swept off the Accent again & put the windshield wipers in the car. Temp may get down to 13degF by early tomorrow morning, hopefully with much less snow. Should snow shovel some more now, except the body told me I better not. Could be bad frozen snow in the morning.
    PS….Did shovel a little more….& I’m still vertical. Plus, the neighbor shared some rock-salt for the sidewalk & driveway. Alll righttt! Thank you!
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2021
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  12. litesong

    litesong litesong

    This morning temperature is 12degF (headed for 11degF) & it only snowed a trace last evening.
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  13. BillLin

    BillLin PV solar, geothermal HVAC, hybrids and electrics

    What's going on in (I thought!) temperate Washington state near the Pacific Ocean? I see Seattle's historic average is about 42 degF for this date (range of 37 to 46 average for this date). Let's hope this isn't the new norm or your EV dream future could be quite different.
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  14. litesong

    litesong litesong

    When cold Arctic fronts move south off the North Pole into Canada, the many Canadian mountains(& westerlies) tend to shift the cold into central & eastern US states. Sometimes the cold fronts can be strong & cold travels through the Fraser River Canyon & spills into the Vancouver, BC area. It then can spread over the Salish Sea (Puget Sound) area providing lots of cold. In the 1950’s we sometimes had temperatures to 0degF & even a trace lower. My Grandparents remembered temperatures even lower in the early 1900’s. Presently there is a circulation pattern rotating cold air to the west out over the Canadian Pacific Ocean. We’re getting some of the Arctic Canadian cold from the North direction. However, the circulation pattern is rotating on the Pacific Ocean & the cold air is hitting Oregon. The circulation pattern continues rotating, pumping that cold air to us, now from the South.
    What is even more evidence of Global Warming, a warm front from Siberia(?) & further south, has moved onto the North Pole a day ago, raising temperatures there about 10degC above average. The warm front has enough energy to move the Arctic cold front hard to the south, & now we are cold.
    Global Warming to ya, giving many surprising changes.
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2022
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  15. EdwinTheMagnificent

    EdwinTheMagnificent Legend In His Mind

    I have been off work since the 23rd , and I don't go back until the 3rd.
    We went to Aurora's Paramount Theater Wednesday to see a musical.
    Driving the 2020 Honda Fit CVT. I filled up (gasoline and air) in Naperville
    before the show. From Naperville to show to Northbrook (about 68 miles) we got 48.3 MPG.
    I really like the Fit. If I get too worried about very expensive repairs in the Prius , I may look
    for a barely-used Fit. Not sure what the Prius is worth at this moment , when 87 E10 sells for $3.189.
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  16. litesong

    litesong litesong

    We did some shopping yesterday, with the weather reports saying more snow today. AND we did get another half foot of snow this morning. Gosh, its great to be retired. Remember to retire sooner than later.
    Meanwhile, my wife continues to feed the squirrels, birds & hummers. With snow on the ground, the birds & squirrels really flock to our backyard for seeds & peanuts under cover. Tho they do fluff up for the cold, my wife feeds them so well, that during the Winter, they are healthily fat.
    My wife has many hummingbird feeders, that she meticulously cleans, keeps filled, & free of freezing(one is even heated), such that the hummers don’t have to fight over feeding places. But one hummer is dramatically protecting them from other hummers, more than any other hummer ever has. My wife discovered another hummingbird on our front doorstep, in the cold. She brought it inside to warm it & let it recover. Some hours later, the hummingbird was feeling much better & my wife took it to the back door & outdoors. The hummingbird flew into the sky & the aggressive hummer, saw & attacked it, knocking the poor hummingbird into the snow. My wife recovered the hummingbird & brought it into the house, again. But, it failed to recover & died.
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2021
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  17. litesong

    litesong litesong

    Our cheapest E10 is $3.29 AND that is 90miles AWAY. Locally, some gas is $3.50 & way up over that!
    Yea…..if I can buy a good fire-proof battery 2022 Chevy Bolt for near $20,000, it won’t be any too soon!
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  18. litesong

    litesong litesong

    Another massive Arctic front has moved east of Alaska & extending over all of BC, Canada. It’s trying to move south, but Canadian mountains are pushing the rotation to North Central US states. Potentially, it could cause great cooling all the way to Texas. Helping the mountains, is an opposing weather system trying to keep it out of Washington state. But, if it weakens, Washington state may get more cooling & snow. We’ll see.
    BillLin likes this.
  19. litesong

    litesong litesong

    Some power lines blew down in Superior, Colorado & started wild fires. One fire was suppressed quickly, but constant high winds (gusts to 100MPH) caused another wild fire to quickly spread & hundreds of buildings (12-31-21, 1:15AM PST….600 buildings now) are fire-involved. Evacuation orders for all Superior & another town’s residents were given. So far, there are no deaths(at least, no one found) & only one injury.
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2021
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  20. Gord

    Gord Super Moderator Staff Member

    Back home from work, non-motorway route with a detour, 42°F:
    20.0 miles - 203 Wh/mi or 4.9 Mi/kWh

    Small home charge, 24.3 miles added at home in 46"

    To a garden center, 40°F:
    14.1 miles - 205 Wh/mi or 4.9 Mi/kWh
    Garden center to mother's house:
    13.3 miles - 182 Wh/mi or 5.5 Mi/kWh
    Back home:
    4.4 miles - 286 Wh/mi or 3.5 Mi/kWh

    Home charge:
    41.9 miles added in 1'15"

    A full charge to finish at 100% just before setting off, 197.9 miles added in 6' 15"

    To holiday home with one stop (puppy needed a pee!), 40°F:
    62.1 miles - 197 Wh/mi or 5.1 Mi/kWh
    44.3 miles - 222 Wh/mi or 4.5 Mi/kWh

    Back home, 36°F, my passengers needed heat!:
    104.4 miles - 240 Wh/mi or 4.2 Mi/kWh

    Went to see my mother later on, 36°F:
    4.4 miles - 176 Wh/mi or 5.7 Mi/kWh
    4.4 miles - 307 Wh/mi or 3.3 Mi/kWh

    Home charge:
    82.3 miles added in 2'30"

    Take mother back home )she got dropped off by my sister), 37°F:
    4.4 miles - 220 Wh/mi or 4.5 Mi/kWh
    4.4 miles - 330 Wh/mi or 3.0 Mi/kWh

    To mother's, 48°F:
    4.4 miles - 176 Wh/mi or 5.7 Mi/kWh
    4.4 miles - 308 Wh/mi or 3.2 Mi/kWh

    To the pub for lunch, then supermarket, then home, 53°F:
    1.3 miles - 219 Wh/mi or 4.6 Mi/kWh
    1.2 miles - 248 Wh/mi or 4.0 Mi/kWh
    1.2 miles - 156 Wh/mi or 6.4 Mi/kWh

    To check out a potential care home for my mother, 55°F:
    7.5 miles - 180 Wh/mi or 5.6 Mi/kWh
    7.5 miles - 308 Wh/mi or 3.2 Mi/kWh

    Went for a walk at our local country park, 56°F:
    6.6 miles - 191 Wh/mi or 5.2 Mi/kWh
    7.2 miles - 226 Wh/mi or 4.4 Mi/kWh

    To mother's, 57°F:
    4.4 miles - 132 Wh/mi or 7.6 Mi/kWh
    4.4 miles - 287 Wh/mi or 4.4 Mi/kWh

    Ended the year with 26% charge - Range 87.3 miles

    I've driven 5304.2 miles in 2021 since I bought the car on 08/20.
    I've added 1224kWh of charge and spent a total of $128.57 (£94.88) or 2.42¢/mile
    Of this total, I've managed to get 2844.6 miles of free charging which is over 50%.

    My home charging cost will be going up soon as electricity costs in the UK (and Europe) have sky-rocketed.
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