Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Photovoltaic, PV, Solar, its all great!

Welcome to Ask Doug The Electrician!

I was reading about photovoltaic systems today and found some interesting facts and information that you should be aware of.

Some Advantages of a Photovoltaic/Solar system:

No moving parts, minimal maintenance
Safe and simple operation
High dependability, durable and long life (30+ years)
Scalable in output, from micro-watts to millions of watts (megawatts)
Silent operation
Maximum output coincident with peak utility power loads (summer time)
No emissions, no pollution
Portable, easy and fast to install anywhere
Available everywhere there is sunlight.
Ability to integrate attractively into existing and new buildings

The U.S. electricity demand was almost 4 trillion at watts (4 Terawatts or TW) and is growing at approximately 1.7% per year. Current projections place demand somewhere between 11 TW and 18 TW by 2050.
Thanks again for checking out Ask Doug The Electrician!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Surge Protectors

Hello again from Ask Doug The Electrician! I just worked on a project where we needed to install a dedicated circuit with an isolated ground for a home office. I though this info may help clear up a couple of grounding questions... Or, it could stir up a few more! No worries, let me know and I'll answer you with more info than you need!

A "proper" ground must measure 120 volts from power (hot) to ground, no less. Or, a ground impedance of less than one Ohm. 25 ohms or less is mandatory, otherwise a second ground rod should be installed at least 6' away. A "proper" ground must measure 120 volts from power (hot) to ground, no less. Or, a ground impedance of less than one Ohm. 25 ohms or less is mandatory, otherwise a second ground rod should be installed at least 6' away.
I hope this helps a bit.
Thanks again,
Ask Doug The Electrician

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

New Energy Solutions From Bloom Energy

Welcome to Ask Doug The Electrician!
Check out Bloom Energy! This is another possible way to produce energy cleanly.
Bloom Energy...A new fuel cell will promise. The system converts methane (or other hydrocarbons) into electricity by mixing it with oxygen and then passing the gas mixture through ceramic plates coated with proprietary inks at high temperatures. A U.S. patent filed in 2006 and granted to Bloom in 2009 seems to indicate "yttria stabilized zirconia". I'm not sure what this is but they are making clean energy with it.

Ask Doug The Electrician

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The Sun and its energy on our planet

Welcome to Ask Doug The Electrician! So here are a couple of cool facts to ponder on about energy consumption. Every six hours the sun bathes the lands of the earth in as much energy as the world consumes in a year. If we could just find a way to collect and distribute that energy our energy problems would be solved. Unfortunately, most of our energy consumption is in the places with the least sunshine.
Solar is the lowest risk technology, with the lowest probability of doing more harm than good. Another way of capturing energy from the sun is called biomass. Biomass captures and stores the suns energy for later use, like bamboo. Biomass can be converted to denser forms like coal, or wood chips and shipped to where it is needed surprisingly economically. Bamboo has been known to grow as much as 48 inches in a 24-hour period and has been observed growing 39 inches per hour for brief periods! The plants can grow to full height in 3-4 months but die naturally on a six-year cycle.
Some of the fuels possible from biomass are: Crude oil/biodiesel, LNG (biomethane), torrified wood pellets, ethanol, methanol, ammonia, wood pellets/chips, liquid hydrogen, and lithium ion batteries. There are more and more possibilities and the future will certainly be an awesome place if we continue on this great path.

Enjoy the day!
Ask Doug The Electrician!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Save Electricity

Welcome 2010! Welcome back to Ask Doug The Electrician!
Here's a way to start saving some precious money of yours. Its really easy, just take a look through your house and see what things you can unplug while it is not in use.
Unplug any transformers that you are not using currently, and save electricity! While you are off at work making a couple of bucks, your electricity bill continues to stack up if you leave certain things plugged in. Telephones, shavers, and other types of chargers have a transformer (the black brick), that continues to consume energy while plugged in.
Thanks again,
Ask Doug The Electrician