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View Diary: Utilities on Solar & Distributed Power "€œIt's a potential threat to us over the long term" (307 comments)

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  •  Well those are not insignificant (0+ / 0-)

    Economies of scale are pretty freaking important.  And it is a lot easier to install capacity in a farm than on a zillion independent separate installations

    So, yes utility scale will continue to outpace DG.  Maybe you crystal ball is right, but I am not going to bet the future of life on earth on it.  Show me what works and how.  Vague starts about relying on unproven future technologies and cherry picked trends does pass the serious analysis test. (75% growth for twelve years?  Has any industry every matched that?).

    Both your statements on Chernobyl and Japan are pretty ignorant of wider trends. For example, the Soviet Union had a lot of other problems, and the impact of the tsunami itself was incomparably larger.  

    Hay hombres que luchan un dia, y son buenos Hay otros que luchan un año, y son mejores Hay quienes luchan muchos años, y son muy buenos. Pero hay los que luchan toda la vida. Esos son los imprescindibles.

    by Mindful Nature on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 10:32:34 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Micro-electronics has risen (0+ / 0-)

      some 50%CAGR  for 50 years?

      and PV is riding the Silicon curve.

      Inverters? Mostly electronics.

      Panels?  Mostly SIlicon.

      if they start mandating all houses and buildings have PV Roof mounts at construction, that will make later PV installs super cheap.

      •  LOL! (0+ / 0-)

        oh, yeah, consumer electronics sales have been growing at 50% a year for 50 years.  Let's see, so if there were 1,000 transitor radios sold in 1963, that would mean that at that rate, the US would purchase the equivalent some 637 BILLION radios!  I suppose that means that every man woman and child would have to spend the equivalent of 2,100 radios this year.  

        Great news if you are Bestbuy!

        Hay hombres que luchan un dia, y son buenos Hay otros que luchan un año, y son mejores Hay quienes luchan muchos años, y son muy buenos. Pero hay los que luchan toda la vida. Esos son los imprescindibles.

        by Mindful Nature on Tue Apr 02, 2013 at 09:12:11 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  either you are poor at math or you (0+ / 0-)

          have trouble reading

          micro-electronics has been rising at aboout 50%/year CAGR, it's why the Doubling period is about 18 months (See Moore's law).

          This hasn't resulted in more devices but it sure has resulted in a lot more transistors in a device.  

          In 1954 the TR-1 Transistor radio had 4 transistors  in it.
          The XM Satellite radio in my car, has probably a dozen chips in it with i'd ballpark maybe 40 million transistors in them each

          That 64 GB Music stick i use to store my driving tunes and lectures?  What 2 Gates per bit, 8 transistors per NAND gate. 8 bits per byte plus ECC circuits?
           Probably 2 trillion transistors in there.

          really, you should practice your analysis skills.

          •  You were suggesting (0+ / 0-)

            That there would be a 70% year on year growth in installations over the next twelve years.  That isn't about improvements per panel (which have not improved in keeping with Moore's law, by the way) so yes this is the comparable analysis. The rate of miniaturization in an unrelated technology is not particularly relevant.

            Since you missed this point, and basically are clueless about the solar industry, you ought not be lecturing anyone about analytical skills. But I guess you can't help but insult people.  It seems to be all you know

            Hay hombres que luchan un dia, y son buenos Hay otros que luchan un año, y son mejores Hay quienes luchan muchos años, y son muy buenos. Pero hay los que luchan toda la vida. Esos son los imprescindibles.

            by Mindful Nature on Tue Apr 02, 2013 at 02:34:46 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  $/watt vs $/transistor (0+ / 0-)

              moores law reflected a massive decline in cost per transistor which enabled new apps and new markets

              the steady relentless decrease in $/watt in PV is driving massive install rates.

              Deutsche thinks we are at the knee of the curve for cost parity in PV.  

              •  First (0+ / 0-)

                1) Moore's law doesn't apply to PV, which has decreased in price much more slowly.  (Otherwise my PV startup that I tried launching in 2005 would still be around).  PV is not a mass of transistors
                2) the drop in price is driving installation, but that's been driven by excess capacity in CHina.  THere's a consolidation going on now, so that will be going away.  
                3) The utility scale installations (which make up the bulk of PV) is being driven by tax code changes that are coming up.  I talk with utility developers regularly on this point.

                Yes, it will continue to increase, but at nothing like 70% a year.  Those are just the facts.

                Hay hombres que luchan un dia, y son buenos Hay otros que luchan un año, y son mejores Hay quienes luchan muchos años, y son muy buenos. Pero hay los que luchan toda la vida. Esos son los imprescindibles.

                by Mindful Nature on Wed Apr 03, 2013 at 07:42:52 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  lets see what happens. (0+ / 0-)

                  give it 2 years.

                  •  sure (0+ / 0-)

                    sounds good.

                    I just got off the phone with a solar generation investor.  His quote made me think of you:  "PV prices have bottomed out."  I was a little shocked at that assessment.

                    Hay hombres que luchan un dia, y son buenos Hay otros que luchan un año, y son mejores Hay quienes luchan muchos años, y son muy buenos. Pero hay los que luchan toda la vida. Esos son los imprescindibles.

                    by Mindful Nature on Wed Apr 03, 2013 at 03:20:36 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Even if cells bottom out at 50c/watt, (0+ / 0-)

                      what will modules bottom out at?

                      What will Inverters bottom out at?

                      What will install costs bottom out at?

                    •  was he talking Poly crystal silicon (0+ / 0-)

                      monocrystal?  Thin Film?
                      CdTe? CIGS?  Organics?
                      Flex film?

                      I remember intensely how people would explain to me
                      that "X" tech was bottomed out in Silicon Memory,
                      and a year later, line sizes would be down.

                      SemaTech and DoD spent a fortune trying to make XRay
                      lasers for etching and we never needed to get there.

                      UV drove feature sizes down below anything every dreamed
                      of in simple physics.

                      •  actually (0+ / 0-)

                        it was a comment in passing in the context of issues he's looking at in his decision to work on residential and commercial projects rather than utility scale.    I would guess thin film, though.

                        Hay hombres que luchan un dia, y son buenos Hay otros que luchan un año, y son mejores Hay quienes luchan muchos años, y son muy buenos. Pero hay los que luchan toda la vida. Esos son los imprescindibles.

                        by Mindful Nature on Wed Apr 03, 2013 at 04:57:53 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  not a lot of Thin Film (0+ / 0-)

                          manufacturing most of the Chinese production
                          is Poly Crystal PV

                          Most analysts have been hoping that Thin Film takes off, or
                          printed materials, but so far Poly Crystal has been  dominating the market.

                          I think Nano dots and nano wire and improved use of silcon leaves another 2X on the table for that, long before they jump to CIGS or CdTe.  

                          CMOS and NiCMOS stayed with aluminum lithography decades longer then i ever thought, it's only recently silicon CPUs went to copper and they've never gone to SIlver or Gold, despite the better conductivity.  

                          I think given the size of the market, anyone who can figure out  ways to edge it on either Watts/Panel, $/Watt or $/KWH will change the game.

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