victorian/edwardian houses or new houses?

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Franz Heymann wrote:

That is typical of an old station running coal or gas, built to 60's standards. Noit a modern set.

Depends on what you mean by conventional.
The key to efficiency is getting your working fluids temperature and pressure way up, and the final exhaust way down.
Steam turbines with ultra superheated steam going through multistage turbines with condensors on the back end to get the back end temp way down will do better than 50%. Gas turbines with extremely high combustion temperatures, whose exhaust then heats water to drive a steam turbine, do even better. If the coolant water at around 40-60C is then fed to housing next door for heating purposes...you are getting up towards 75-80% usage of thermal energy released.
And the last little bit goes to help you farm fish in the cooling tanks :-)
So, two points
- in an overall energy and fuel conservation analysis, efficiency is not the primary problem. If you can use waste heat to save heating oil being burnt - example, build a bakery next door and use the heat to run the proving process, and bake bread at the edge of the furnace, or use waste heat to heat greenhouses to grow vegetables, or to farm fish or whatever - then you have an *ovearall* more efficient system anyway.
- in an overall carbon neutral scenario, you want to reduce the conversion BY ANY MEANS of fossil fuel to carbon dioxide. I am not sure what fuel cells produce, but the carbon has to end up somewhere. If they are running on fossil fuels they don't really solve the problem. Whereas burning waste paper in a combined heat/power set can be extremely inefficient, as long as the heat ends up reducing fossil fuel usage and generateing SOME power. Because paper comes from carbon that has been taken OUT of the air by trees.
The trouble is that neither the governments nor the power industry has any real incentive to either do the OVERALL analsysis, nor to embark on co-operative projects to utilise e.g. waste heat.
If someone could only come up with a plant that I simply stuffed full of junk-mail and which heated my house, generated most of my electricity, and allowed me to run a few pipes rund the garden to grow vegetables in winter from....at similar cost to an oil boiler...

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writes

And then you die of dioxin/pcb poisoning :-)

--
Andrew

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:-)
Actually, I did not write any of the words above. Somebody has screwed up the attribution marks and the headers yet again.
Franz
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Holland,
above
The report was quite recent, like a couple of years old.

about
But if it is true that a conventional power station can in fact run at over 60%, why were folk so pleased with that fuel cell power source of which I spoke, when it ran at only somewhat above 46%?

:-)
In viiew of the latest newspaper reports, that is not to be counted as being on the side of the angels.

It would be most surprising if that could be done at more than a minority of the power stations of the world.

I am truly surprised that some such object has not yet been developed. I wonder if anybody has reckoned the energy economics in my case, where I have to take my newspapers and junk mail by car to the nearest collection point.
Franz
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Franz Heymann wrote:

*shrug* maybe people aren't too bothered about efficiency and still build cheap gas powered sets.
In these things enegy efficiency is not the onbly cost benefit tro analyse.

Because fuel cells have not been able to match even a victorian steam engine until recently?
Beacause they need more funding and that was the best thing they could find to say?
I don't know: In all these thngs bullshit abounds.
Only when you actually try and buy something and get
quoted a price, and test it and get some figures, do you
know wherher its all BS or whether the thing actually works.

Guess who is pissed off cos they have mad cow diseae, and whose trying to export wild salmon...C'mon now. The French did it to use with mad cow, we did it to them with listeria hysteria cheese, weve done it to teh tyabkls with mad cow and GM crops.
They are just getting their own back. FUD.

Not really. Most are in or near urban areas and have excellent transport links. Most are on large sites with spare land, or could be bult on farmland. Most need colling water so riverside or lakeside locatns arepreferred.

Yes, they have, but everyone shouted them dnw. The greens felt threatened having been in to 'recycling' for years. The power boys want to sell you power, and the heating boys want to sell you oil...
In short no one saw any personal advantage to it at all.
I ou want to get a handle on some eco bullshit there is a book - scpetical ecologist - or somesuch.
Big industry and teh greens are both lying hypocrites apparently.

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Friends of The Earth have been accused of being a front for large landowners in an attempt to keep people out of the countryside, keeping their lucrative acres (by taking in rent).
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IMM wrote:

I don't think that one stacks up really.
However there is no doubt that planting more trees is a good way of fixing atmospheric carbon.
Suburban sprawl adds energy to the atmosphere, stops rain getting into the ground water,
and leads to loss of green ares.

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Kevin Cahill in his book Who Owns Britain, made a full frontal attack on Jonathan Porrit of Friends of The Earth.

Or making houses with timber frames, or SIP panels, using planned forests.

Not if it is resigned right. Gardens account for about half of a suburban area anyhow. Gutters can empty into soakaways, as they do in some areas. Also in newer developments, the gutters empty into a separate drain which the water compy use to re-cycle the water. Nothing is lost.

Green area can be incorporated within the housing, especially trees. Green areas for the sake of it, with no public access, are pretty useless and serve no purpose. Land should be used to the benefit of the people.
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also
well
*more shrug* Maybe 60% is reached in the occasional "flagship" power station. I think it is exceptional.
[snip]
Franz
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was
generates
The point is that it is achievable.
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Franz Heymann wrote:

Yes, but in the conxtext of hugely expensive and very new technology fuel cells, one should compare like with like.
ould it coset less to build a 60% efficint CCP or a 40% efficient fuel cell station?
Remember that the fuel cell produces DC, which needs to be chopped and flitered to feed the grid. Or a rotary conertor. All this adds to teh cost as well.
I hope we do see cheap efficient fuel cells, but they have been around snce the 60's AFAICR, and never caught on. Lithium cells have obnly really been devleoped in teh tast ten years or so, and have swept the marjket where their cots/weiht/energy profiles havce made them 'the best in class'

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It's called a wood stove, and some of these are very efficient.
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IMM wrote:

No, its not. you need more than a wood stove to burn wood and paper cleanly.
You need forced draught and VERY high temperaures to break down the pollutants properly, and some way to remove solid particles and various noxious things out of the flue gases.
Such things do exist, but they are rare.

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Why isn't every new and rennovated houses built to superinsulation and passive solar standards, virtually eliminating a heating system? Not rocket science and many examples are all over the world right now, so not airy fairy ideas at all. It would cost the taxpayer nothing to implement.

above
about
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IMM wrote:

Because super insulation is useless without other means to reduce ventilation losses.
You need things like heat exchanges on ventilation - this gets very expensive.
It is arguable that the energy used to build all this stuff doesn't
get paid back in a sensible timescale.
Curemnt insulation levels are at around ten times what they were in say the 1950's, with windows being perhpas 3 times better.
We are reaching teh law of diminishing returns on insulation.
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daily
rocket
It is not useless. As you know, superinsulated and air-tight homes have heat recovery and vent in them, rendering your criticism rather silly.

As there will be no full heating system this serves as the heating system too, to top up the heating when it is rarely required. Not expensive at all, when looking at the total cost of a house.

It is arguable, but an argument lost. And as the topic is emissions etc, from a global view, this is a way of drastically reducing emissions, reducing fossil fuel usage and eliminating fuel poverty, besides the comfortable environment it creates.

Insulation was only mandatory in the UK from 1974. The insulation levels currently are dire, but are being ramped to something acceptable soon. We need a quantum leap, not staged pussy footing. Superinsulation and passive solar can be implemented right now

We are reducing the emissions drastically, eliminating fuel poverty, and reducing millions of damp and cold related diseases, which is what counts.
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This may have been true when they were first introduced, but modern types work much more quickly. FWIW, a cat doesn't rely on the engine temperature, but that of the exhaust gasses which are largely independent of this.
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Dave Plowman wrote:

Cat still takes a mile or two to get hot tho. Engine may take longer.
During that time the engine will be running very rich, and the cat will allow huge amounts of unburnt fuel to spew out.
When I reverse the car out first thing, the exhaust STINKS of benzene and other aromatics.
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wrote:

types
independent
Using fully synthetic oils also reduces emissions and prolongs a CATs life.
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<snip>
I thought the EU forced the UK to ditch lean-burn technology and adopt their ideas involving expensive catalysts.

Air transport is a far worse offender than modern road vehicles, and all totally tax free. Bare that in mind the next time you pop into the supermarket and buy those exotic fruits and baby vegetables.
However for real pollution, try travelling on the Victoria line of the London underground if you really want your eyes to smart with particulate crap
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