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2012 Mar 26. A Smaller Route to Solar Success

posted Apr 4, 2012, 9:24 AM by Fiona Potter
| By Matthew L. Wald, New York Times Green Blog.  An article pertinent to GSS Energy Use chapter 10.  Excerpt: There are at least a dozen major ways to turn sunlight into electricity, but one of the more interesting is using a field of mirrors to focus the sun’s energy on a “power tower” where the heat is captured and used later to spin a turbine and turn a generator… But now comes a new player with a different concept: build the tower, but on a smaller, simpler scale, and skip the storage in favor of using using biogas or natural gas to power the system after dark….
…For solar, the big issue is the early evening: “Solar bows out at 5 p.m., Mr. Rosenzweig noted. But that’s when peak demand begins — people come home, turn on the air conditioner full blast, put dinner in the oven or microwave and turn on television sets in the ensuing hours, he said. Rather than building a system with storage, which requires an oversize gathering system to take in more sun than is required for instant generation, Aora decided that it was easier to equip its system to burn natural gas, using most of the original hardware….  Read the rule article at : http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/03/26/a-smaller-route-to-solar-success/?ref=science