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Batteries Are Expensive, Who is using both Solar and hydro/ wind turbines at same time? Answered

Hello,

Let us use "Solar, Wind, and Hydro" all at same time.

I am working on development projects in Togo, West Africa, I have a room there by the year in two locations. The solar panels are cheap enough, but for the cost of one good size battery I could build a wind or hydro generator.

I do not see many setups where solar during the day, coupled with water and / or wind at night. Obviously harnessing the water from a river is the most stable.

If seems sort of short sighted to only use solar, why not do all three, Solar, Wind, and Hydro at the same time, and slow the need to store electricity, because in my opinion, the batteries are the problem, the big problem.

Thank you, Andy Lee Graham

hhttp://www.hobotraveler.com/blogger.html

https://www.gofundme.com/andy-hobotraveler

Discussions

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gmoon

2 years ago

Absolutely, diverse "alternative" sources are a great idea. Let's make them not alternative in the future...

However, for a small-scale system, batteries are usually the "glue" that insures clean, uninterrupted power. They act as a reservoir of current when the green power sources, wind, solar and water, fluctuate. Having a buffer (and charging regulators for each) holds it all together. Yeah, batteries are expensive, and yeah, they don't last forever.

Trad fossil-fuel generators need to maintain fairly strict RPM requirements, not only for voltage but also for frequency -- which is often more of an issue than voltage stability for electronics. Using inverters and batteries eliminates those issues.

Of course every DIY system is unique, and some sites may have unique needs and solutions. If the voltage and frequency requirements are "loose," other choices may hold sway...

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Toga_Dan

2 years ago

at one time, most wells on the N American plains were driven by a windmill smack on top of it. Much less to go wrong with a steel rod that just moves up n down than to go wrong with electrical stuff. Yeah, u still need electric for your phone and computer, but for mechanical stuff... not so much.

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Toga_Dan

2 years ago

American GIs WWII linked windmill directly to washing machine. Tech used to be low rpm, high torque. Triphammers, grain mills etc were all run directly from water. Lotsa power as long as u r doing the work close to the water. Low rpm doesn't need tight tolerances that hi rpm needs. Bearings too worn for hi rpm motors can b repurposed for lo rpm stuff.

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hobotraveler

2 years ago

Great, now trying to get a complete outline on how the Amish work their windmills, connected to deep wells. Thanks

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Toga_Dan

2 years ago

another question is whether you can cut electricity out of the picture for some needs. Every time you convert the form of energy, you lose efficiency. If you need mechanical power to pump a well, can it be directly linked to a waterwheel? Amish have done this for decades.

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Kiteman

2 years ago

This is the sort of message that national-scale generators need to hear.

Too many of them focus on one resource (usually wind, solar or nuclear) as "the" way to replace fossil fuels.

If you think about it, replacing fossil fuels will need a combined approach - I'm in the UK, we are an island nation, but there is no national strategy for wave power, which is far more reliable in this country than wind or solar.

A combined approach like yours is not just good for people off-grid, it's good for the grid.

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Toga_Dan

2 years ago

if one has access to running water, maybe they put all their eggs in that basket.

I've also heard of alternate storage systems: pumping h2o uphill to use that power later, or flywheels, or compressing air. I don't know how successful these are. I imagine that batteries are just more energy dense.

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hobotravelerToga_Dan

Reply 2 years ago

Pumping the water uphill is a great idea, not terrible efficient, but a lot cheaper storage than batteries. Contrary to the on-grid world of the USA. Most of the world has housing gathered around rivers, without water, places are not habitable. And, deep water wells are very expensive, compare to shallow wells close the river, or water table. Where I am at in Kpalime,Togo, it would be super easy to store rain water, more difficult for river water. I have been actually trying to figure out a way to drip sprinkle my steel roof to keep it cool during the day, and create hot water for showers at the same time. Ultraviolet rays purify water, which is a huge expense here in Togo.