Something Feral

Digging up the flower-beds.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Bright ideas

Make it as simple as possible, but not simpler, to borrow a phrase:

Most U.S. homes with solar panels feed electricity into the power grid during the day, but have to draw back from the grid at night. Nocera said his development would allow homeowners to bank solar energy as hydrogen and oxygen, which a fuel cell could use to produce electricity when the sun was not shining.

"I can turn sunlight into a chemical fuel, now I can use photovoltaics at night," said Nocera, who explained the discovery in a paper written with Matthew Kanan published on Thursday in the journal Science.

Now, I love clean air and water, and the great outdoors. I also believe that Man was given a delegated responsibility for the Earth, and we should behave and ultimately live in such a way that facilitates that charge (I'm such an inveterate optimist, I know).

However, I'm most enthused to have seen this been developed for those that desire or are required to be self-sufficient in small groups. Power generation for those "off-the-grid" is spotty (at best), and can be prohibitively expensive due to the fuel-cells that are needed for the off-hours. This seems like it could serve as a long-term power-storage solution for those homesteads or communities, and I am glad to see it.

My hat is off to you, MIT.


Triton said...

For those with creeks on their property, I believe a small hydroelectric plant is another possibility for self-sufficiency. I recall seeing a web site a while back for a company that built the things.

Something Feral said...

I'll be holding out for a creek or otherwise independent water source on my property in the future, along with some secured storage and purification.

If you find that website, I'd be interested to see what kinds of tech they're offering. I won't be buying today or tomorrow, but someday (hopefully soon).

Triton said...

I don't remember the web site I saw, but I found this one with a little Googling.