Solar Energy Electrical Power Generation Equipment

How Much Water Does it Take to Turn on a Light Bulb?

Posted on April 25,2015 by AlexWilson in electricity generation

In last week's blog I took a look at some of the water conservation features in our new house, but I began the blog by addressing the relationship between water and energy. That got me curious, so I’ve been digging deeper into this water-energy nexus, examining the water-intensity of our different electricity sources.

Getting Power From Solar Equipment When the Grid is Down

Posted on April 25,2015 by AlexWilson in inverter

One of the biggest complaints I hear about most solar-electric (photovoltaic or PV) systems is that when the grid goes down you can’t use any of the power that’s produced. Consumers have spent thousands of dollars on a PV system, and during an extended power outage on a bright, sunny day when the PV modules are certainly generating electricity, they are disappointed that none of that electricity can be used.

2011 Solar Decathlon is in the Home Stretch

Posted on April 25,2015 by patrick_mccombe in design

After being in the construction business in one form or another for more than 20 years, I often feel jaded by our lack of progress in building long-lasting, energy-efficient homes despite decades of trying. Well, my trip last week to the 2011 Solar Decathlon has given me renewed hope. The young people who designed and built the 19 homes in the event had more smarts and enthusiasm than I could ever have anticipated. And they made really nice houses, too. Even the designs and features I was skeptical of proved thought-provoking and interesting.

I’m Beginning to Really Hate Eco-Bling

Posted on April 25,2015 by CarlSeville in geothermal

On hearing the news that three photovoltaic (PV) module manufacturers, at least one a recipient of federal loan money, have recently declared bankruptcy, I once again started thinking about my frustration with people’s attachment to putting cool “stuff” on their buildings before making sure that those buildings actually operate well.

Solar Decathlon 2011: Appalachian State’s Solar Homestead

Posted on April 25,2015 by Fretboard in energy efficient homes

To the extent they try to squeeze a lot of innovation into small packages, all Solar Decathlon entries reflect a pioneering spirit. But Appalachian State University’s entry, the Solar Homestead, also reflects homebuilding strategies that arose from the pioneering spirit of an entirely different era – that of Appalachia’s early settlers, whose houses and outbuildings were designed to help them cope with isolation and wilderness conditions in the mountains of North Carolina.

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