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  • FIRST POST
    • zeupater
    • By zeupater 7th Jan 13, 4:36 PM
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    zeupater
    Solar ... In the news
    • #1
    • 7th Jan 13, 4:36 PM
    Solar ... In the news 7th Jan 13 at 4:36 PM
    Hi All

    Thought it was about time we had a thread specifically to discuss relevant press articles relating to solar pv & thermal ..... so here goes ...

    Z
    Last edited by zeupater; 07-01-2013 at 4:48 PM.
    "We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit. " ...... Aristotle
Page 127
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 14th Jun 19, 1:25 PM
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    Martyn1981
    How about installing more windmills & solar farms & using the surplus energy to produce hydrogen?
    Originally posted by 1961Nick
    Also, having taken the COP into account, heat pump leccy running costs could well be less than GCH gas costs.
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
    • GreatApe
    • By GreatApe 14th Jun 19, 2:06 PM
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    GreatApe
    How about installing more windmills & solar farms & using the surplus energy to produce hydrogen?
    Originally posted by 1961Nick
    The only place it 'might' make sense to use hydrogen is for aviation fuel

    Assuming liquid hydrogen can be used safely in aviation and that the lower density can be built into the frame without hurting space standards etc

    It has about 1/3rd the mass of Jet fuel for a given unit of energy but is less dense even when a liquid. So it will take up more space but have 1/3rd the mass

    While the fuel will likely be more costly than jet fuel is today, the lower mass should make the plane more efficient so needing less hydrogen energy to fly a given distance or able to carry more cargo tons for more income. A large plane could carry ~3 x the payload

    Also perhaps in the steel industry where they need to produce oxygen anyway so could potentially use both the oxygen and the hydrogen
    • zeupater
    • By zeupater 14th Jun 19, 2:06 PM
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    zeupater
    Also, having taken the COP into account, heat pump leccy running costs could well be less than GCH gas costs.
    Originally posted by Martyn1981
    Hi

    ... tell me about it! - our HP has been soaking up our microgeneration quite a lot over the past couple of weeks ... and this is supposed to be flaming June? ...

    HTH
    Z
    "We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit. " ...... Aristotle
    • 1961Nick
    • By 1961Nick 14th Jun 19, 2:08 PM
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    1961Nick
    It makes no economic sense whatsoever and while costs can improve we cant beat the laws of thermodynamics. You dont turn high grade fuel (electricity) to low grade fuel (chemical).
    Originally posted by GreatApe
    It makes a lot of economic sense if you don't have to replace several million gas boilers.....no doubt requiring government subsidies.

    You also overlook the benefit of being able use hydrogen to store surplus daytime solar energy.
    4kWp (black/black) - Sofar Inverter - SSE(141°) - 30° pitch - North Lincs
    Installed June 2013 - PVGIS = 3400

    Sofar ME3000SP Inverter & 5 x Pylontech US2000B Plus Batteries - 12kWh
    • zeupater
    • By zeupater 14th Jun 19, 2:36 PM
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    zeupater
    It makes a lot of economic sense if you don't have to replace several million gas boilers.....no doubt requiring government subsidies.

    You also overlook the benefit of being able use hydrogen to store surplus daytime solar energy.
    Originally posted by 1961Nick
    Hi

    ... and supply/demand curtailment of windpower! ... why pay for turbines to remain static when the energy generated is essentially free & would therefore make complete economic sense to divert to a form of storage, whether it's chemical or potential energy and whatever efficiencies are involved, the economics of doing something trump those of doing nothing!

    Anyway, take care when a serial-troll is looking to draw relatively new (to these particular threads) members into a feeding session, you'll soon be discussing nuclear fusion, house building in developing countries, the economy of Sweden, interconnectors, the health benefits of coal generation if built outside London, solar generation being uneconomical in cold(er) climates, PM2.5, the economics of EVs and why or why not nuclear is good or bad depending on which side of the bed trolls tend to get out of on any particular morning ... unless there's serious disinformation to challenge that others would need to be aware of, it may be far better to not quote troll-text - that way many of us wont have to be aware of the latest anti-anything that involves change drivel that we've endured for years from one person under various profiles ...

    HTH
    Z
    Last edited by zeupater; 14-06-2019 at 2:50 PM.
    "We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit. " ...... Aristotle
    • GreatApe
    • By GreatApe 14th Jun 19, 4:59 PM
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    GreatApe
    It makes a lot of economic sense if you don't have to replace several million gas boilers.....no doubt requiring government subsidies.
    Originally posted by 1961Nick

    Electrical heating is very capital cheap you can buy an electric heater for £15 and plug it into the wall (those were the most common type in Norway, which is 100% electrically heated, which by the way is proof electrical heating does work. Sweden is another electrically heated country, by comparison there is no hydrogen heated country you can point to)

    When your boiler breaks down instead of paying £1,500 for a new one you can buy a cheaper 'electric boiler' if you want to keep the wet works, or replace it with an electric tank for the hot water and electric heaters for heating. Maintenance is also cheaper for an electric system

    The efficiency is also 100% compared to more typically 80% for a modern boiler.

    There is also efficiency gains in not having to keep alive the very intensive pipe system to keep NG or H2 being pumped into millions of homes plus electricity has little to no 'leaks' while NG does and H2 will be more difficult as its a more difficult substance to contain

    The cost of converting over to electrical heating is negative capital cost and negative maintenance costs, it is a saving, so long as you convert as existing boilers break which is what would be done (we couldn't convert 30 million boilers overnight even if we wanted to do that but over 15-20 years as they naturally die is fine)

    By comparison the cost of building chemical plants adds huge costs because

    1: they are not cheap to build
    2: they require workers expensive workers to run and maintain the chemical plants and a hell of a lot of them. This is one of the reason nuclear is expensive and it is one of the reasons chemical plants will be expensive.
    3 the thermodynamic losses will be very significant you have AC to DC conversion. You have electrolysis losses. You have all the energy used for the building and pumping storing compressing. You have combustion inefficacy in your hydrogen boiler
    4 no chemical plant is totally clean what will the waste streams be?


    By comparison electrical heating is

    1: negative cost
    2: no additional workers
    3: Very high efficiency total wind farm to electrical heater is circa 93% efficient or if using a heat pump then 2-3 x as efficient again but then there is the capital and maintenance costs of a HP
    4: there is no byproducts or waste in transmitting and using the electricity this way compared to chemical plants which have lots

    The electrical system is also much lower embodied waste and energy.
    Half a dozen electrical heaters might weigh 6kg while the typical wet system is more than 20 x that. So less materials and less transport cost for the electric home
    Plus no need to build monster sized chemical plants which will take many years and cost a lot in land and materials
    Plus overall lower energy needs due to efficiency so fewer wind mills needed in total
    • GreatApe
    • By GreatApe 14th Jun 19, 5:08 PM
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    GreatApe
    It makes a lot of economic sense if you don't have to replace several million gas boilers.....no doubt requiring government subsidies.
    Originally posted by 1961Nick
    Also you would have to change the boilers you cant just switch from NG to H2 at least the boiler heads need to be changed as a bare minimum. Plus H2 is a lower energy density carrier per cm3 which will likely mean many homes pipes will need to be upgraded to be about 3 x as thick (in cross area) so how do you fancy your floors and walls being ripped apart to change gas lines? and possibly the thicker pipes that transmit the NG nationally and locally may need to be upgraded so a lot of digging up roads and laying new pipes

    You also overlook the benefit of being able use hydrogen to store surplus daytime solar energy.
    We dont have surplus daytime solar energy
    And we wont built 'surplus daytime solar energy energy' because no one is going to build PV farms to sell the output for zero

    Plus solar actually works with batteries its surplus is a lot easier to store because it can be discharged every night. While wind surplus is much more difficult to store as it can be in surplus for a week and in deficit for a week or even multiple weeks
    • 1961Nick
    • By 1961Nick 14th Jun 19, 6:45 PM
    • 990 Posts
    • 3,477 Thanks
    1961Nick
    Electrical heating is very capital cheap you can buy an electric heater for £15 and plug it into the wall (those were the most common type in Norway, which is 100% electrically heated, which by the way is proof electrical heating does work. Sweden is another electrically heated country, by comparison there is no hydrogen heated country you can point to)

    When your boiler breaks down instead of paying £1,500 for a new one you can buy a cheaper 'electric boiler' if you want to keep the wet works, or replace it with an electric tank for the hot water and electric heaters for heating. Maintenance is also cheaper for an electric system

    The efficiency is also 100% compared to more typically 80% for a modern boiler.

    There is also efficiency gains in not having to keep alive the very intensive pipe system to keep NG or H2 being pumped into millions of homes plus electricity has little to no 'leaks' while NG does and H2 will be more difficult as its a more difficult substance to contain

    The cost of converting over to electrical heating is negative capital cost and negative maintenance costs, it is a saving, so long as you convert as existing boilers break which is what would be done (we couldn't convert 30 million boilers overnight even if we wanted to do that but over 15-20 years as they naturally die is fine)

    By comparison the cost of building chemical plants adds huge costs because

    1: they are not cheap to build
    2: they require workers expensive workers to run and maintain the chemical plants and a hell of a lot of them. This is one of the reason nuclear is expensive and it is one of the reasons chemical plants will be expensive.
    3 the thermodynamic losses will be very significant you have AC to DC conversion. You have electrolysis losses. You have all the energy used for the building and pumping storing compressing. You have combustion inefficacy in your hydrogen boiler
    4 no chemical plant is totally clean what will the waste streams be?


    By comparison electrical heating is

    1: negative cost
    2: no additional workers
    3: Very high efficiency total wind farm to electrical heater is circa 93% efficient or if using a heat pump then 2-3 x as efficient again but then there is the capital and maintenance costs of a HP
    4: there is no byproducts or waste in transmitting and using the electricity this way compared to chemical plants which have lots

    The electrical system is also much lower embodied waste and energy.
    Half a dozen electrical heaters might weigh 6kg while the typical wet system is more than 20 x that. So less materials and less transport cost for the electric home
    Plus no need to build monster sized chemical plants which will take many years and cost a lot in land and materials
    Plus overall lower energy needs due to efficiency so fewer wind mills needed in total
    Originally posted by GreatApe
    OK....what about increasing wind & solar production & then using the surplus energy to make hydrogen. This can then be used to generate electricity & power your electric boilers.

    In addition, a small amount of hydrogen could be added to the ng supply without the need to modify any boilers?

    A hydrogen distribution network would speed up the adoption of fuel cell vehicles as well.

    Batteries are great for smoothing the peaks & troughs of renewable energy generation, but they don’t have the capacity for sustained discharge at grid level demand. Hydrogen could do that.
    4kWp (black/black) - Sofar Inverter - SSE(141°) - 30° pitch - North Lincs
    Installed June 2013 - PVGIS = 3400

    Sofar ME3000SP Inverter & 5 x Pylontech US2000B Plus Batteries - 12kWh
    • ASavvyBuyer
    • By ASavvyBuyer 14th Jun 19, 7:05 PM
    • 1,047 Posts
    • 3,087 Thanks
    ASavvyBuyer
    it may be far better to not quote troll-text - that way many of us wont have to be aware of the latest anti-anything that involves change drivel that we've endured for years from one person under various profiles ...

    HTH
    Z
    Originally posted by zeupater

    Unfortunately, because of continuous requoting of such text, I have ended up with another person on my ignore list!
    Rhondda Cynon Taf, 4kWp, W roof, 30° pitch, 16 x 8.33 Eternity 250w E+10 panels, Solar Edge SE4000-16A Inverter + P300 Optimisers. Inst Aug 2015.
    REUK Diverter, Toshiba RAS-10G2KVP-E Ultra High Efficiency Air Conditioner/Heat Pump, Kia Soul EV & 100% Green Electric Tariff.
    • JKenH
    • By JKenH 14th Jun 19, 7:21 PM
    • 954 Posts
    • 3,072 Thanks
    JKenH
    ❄️❄️❄️


    I apologise in advance for any offence caused.
    Northern Lincolnshire. 7.8 kWp system, (4.2 kw west facing panels , 3.6 kw east facing), Solis inverters, Solar IBoost water heater, Mitsubishi SRK35ZS-S and SRK20ZS-S Wall Mounted Inverter Heat Pumps
    • GreatApe
    • By GreatApe 14th Jun 19, 8:17 PM
    • 3,898 Posts
    • 2,924 Thanks
    GreatApe
    Hi

    ... and supply/demand curtailment of windpower! ... why pay for turbines to remain static when the energy generated is essentially free & would therefore make complete economic sense to divert to a form of storage, whether it's chemical or potential energy and whatever efficiencies are involved, the economics of doing something trump those of doing nothing!
    Originally posted by zeupater

    Why would you send 1 unit of 'free' wind power to a hydrogen plant when you can send 1 unit of 'free' wind power to a resistant heater in a home or office.

    Why go to the trouble and cost of converting the electricity to hydrogen when you can use the energy directly?

    Electrical heating works, Norway and Sweden are proof of this. More or less 100% electrically heated

    A country like the UK can go to ~70% electrical heating with offshore wind power, the remaining 30% will be a big problem

    The good news is, we are at least 2 decades away from electrifying heating to more than 70% so its not a problem that needs addressing anytime soon
    • GreatApe
    • By GreatApe 14th Jun 19, 8:28 PM
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    GreatApe
    OK....what about increasing wind & solar production & then using the surplus energy to make hydrogen. This can then be used to generate electricity & power your electric boilers.

    In addition, a small amount of hydrogen could be added to the ng supply without the need to modify any boilers?

    A hydrogen distribution network would speed up the adoption of fuel cell vehicles as well.

    Batteries are great for smoothing the peaks & troughs of renewable energy generation, but they don’t have the capacity for sustained discharge at grid level demand. Hydrogen could do that.
    Originally posted by 1961Nick

    It depends if costs matter to you or not

    A rich individual could do it, for instance they could fit significant amounts of solar on their property and convert it to hydrogen and then store that in tanks to then burn that in the winter

    The costs would be massive.
    You can buy natural gas for 4p a unit, an industrial user can buy it for 2p a unit
    To generate your own hydrogen for storage is likely going to cost a magnitude/s more

    Also to store the stuff is not easy.
    For a start it has 1/3rd the energy volumetric density of natural gas so your storage tanks or cavity only hold 1/3rd as much energy. Plus hydrogen is just more difficult to handle


    It is like the argument of going off grid for electricity
    It can be done. You can do that today
    You just over install solar so that a winter day solar production is still the same as a winter day electricity needs for your home. And have perhaps a 100KWh battery.
    So can a house go off grid today? Sure but it will cost significantly more than paying £400-500 to get their electric from the grid. Probably looking at £100k plus to make a off grid house with solar and batteries only.
    • GreatApe
    • By GreatApe 14th Jun 19, 8:43 PM
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    GreatApe
    OK....what about increasing wind & solar production & then using the surplus energy to make hydrogen.
    Originally posted by 1961Nick
    Well by definition it is then not 'surplus energy' but energy created to run those things.

    The problem is also with solar you need to produce the stuff all in the summer and discharge the hydrogen in the winter. This is bad news its 6 months of storage. Plus your chemical plant is only running at the solar CF of about 11% in the UK so you build huge infrastructure and hire lots of chemical engineers to have them only work 11% of hours in the year

    If this was to be done, it would be done with wind power likely higher CF wind power.
    So an offshore wind powered hydrogen plant could run closer to 40% CF or maybe even 50%+ CF if fed by distributed wind over a larger area. Plus the storage would have to be less as its not all summer to winter storage

    This can then be used to generate electricity & power your electric boilers.

    In addition, a small amount of hydrogen could be added to the ng supply without the need to modify any boilers?

    A hydrogen distribution network would speed up the adoption of fuel cell vehicles as well.
    ermmmm no

    Batteries are great for smoothing the peaks & troughs of renewable energy generation, but they don’t have the capacity for sustained discharge at grid level demand. Hydrogen could do that.
    Just because it could, does not mean it is like.

    We could use bio liquids like veg oil as a storage medium, But probably wont
    We could use nuclear, but probably wont
    We could use biomass burnt to generate electricity for the winter (unlikely but possible if the world goes crazy and wants negative CO2)
    We could use mountain sized batteries for seasonal storage, but we probably wont
    We could build pumped storage out in the sea, but probably wont
    We could use fossil fuels with CCS (This might happen)
    • michaels
    • By michaels 14th Jun 19, 9:57 PM
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    michaels
    WE might build interconnectors to Norway and use their hydropower as pumped storage....
    Cool heads and compromise
    • GreatApe
    • By GreatApe 14th Jun 19, 11:19 PM
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    GreatApe
    WE might build interconnectors to Norway and use their hydropower as pumped storage....
    Originally posted by michaels

    One is currently being built 1.4 GW capacity and probably at least one more should/will be built

    More important to the current energy story though is the 5.4 GW of links to France that will come online in the next 5 years (3.4GW currently under construction and due in the next 1-3 years)

    https://energifaktanorge.no/en/norsk-energiforsyning/forsyningssikkerhet/

    Nationwide installed capacity of hydropower amounted to 33.8 GW in 2015. The maximum working volume of hydrologic storage power plants is 85 TWh, whereas the average seasonal cycle is 42 terawatt-hours (TWh). In 2015, hydroelectricity generated 144 TWh and accounted for 95.8% of the national electricity demand.

    Currently they have maybe as much as 10GW they could send out and about 10GW they could absorb in the winter months (less in the summer) Using them as pumped storage is not necessity easy or even possible in some cases.

    Most dams in the world have downward limits on how much water they can discharge. For instance china could not double the three gorges dam capacity and use it as pumped storage because discharging twice as much water would flood the capacity of the downstream river

    But anyway lets assume that in Norway they could convert their dams to increase their capacity by 60GW so their dams could be used as 60GW of storage up or down (this means each dam is 3 x the capacity as now and the max flow rate of water 3 x higher and there is no guarantee this is possible but whatever lets assume it is)

    That is very significant a huge amount but the peak winter demand of just the EU nations when transport and heating is electrified is going to be about 10 x that figure if not more

    So while helpful (if it can be done to such a scale) it only limits thermal backup by 10%

    So you will still need 500+ GW of thermal capacity in the EU
    If the EU closes its nukes which will probably happen as old ones retire and new ones are not built, that means 500+ GW of biomass or FF stations to guarantee supply


    as always, to the nit pickers, the exact numbers dont matter it is the scale and scope that is being pointed out
    Last edited by GreatApe; 14-06-2019 at 11:43 PM.
    • silverwhistle
    • By silverwhistle 14th Jun 19, 11:31 PM
    • 2,704 Posts
    • 4,036 Thanks
    silverwhistle
    Hi

    ... tell me about it! - our HP has been soaking up our microgeneration quite a lot over the past couple of weeks ... and this is supposed to be flaming June? ...
    Originally posted by zeupater

    I'm deeply embarrassed to say that my pristine, clean wood burner, waiting for the sweep (who normally has a look and says "no need") was lit last night and I also shoved a bit of surplus PV into an oil-filled rad today!


    Anyway, it should be pointed out that with the current life of gas boilers they're a bit like cars and will tend to need replacing after a period, so it's not like there's going to be a need to rip out functioning equipment.


    As some on these boards have noted there can be some very cheap rates if you can be flexible (Agile/Octopus I believe) and the increase in RE, particularly in wind power could well be mopped up by people using this option before any need to convert the surplus to hydrogen etc.



    More wind and PV, bigger immersion tanks, ASHP, batteries (including grid scale), pumped storage, process heat, are all going to mop up the next stage of increased RE. Once that has settled a bit lessons learnt and we can proceed to the next stage, by which time technology will have moved on even more.
    • GreatApe
    • By GreatApe 14th Jun 19, 11:57 PM
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    GreatApe
    The only thing the nuclear cheerleaders have is the fact that it would work there is no question about it, no need for mass interconnectors, no need for mass hydrogen plants, no need for mass storage, no need to rely on norway, no need for CCGT or biomass backup and usage

    Something like 120 GW capacity of nuclear would cover electrifying transport heating and electricity needs or about 90 GW if you use heat pumps rather than electrical heating

    Would definitely work there is no question if we had 90-120GW of nuclear it would be sufficient for our needs to electrify everything

    Having said that, its too late we are down the windy road which is not yet clear it can get to as deep a decarb as the above alternative reality but it can still go far. We could go as far as 70%/30% wind/NG which is probably good enough maybe even a little higher. But there is no clear path to 100% wind/pv & close to zero fossil fuel usage which is why people desperately dream up replacing the oil and gas industry with a different chemicals industry
    • Martyn1981
    • By Martyn1981 15th Jun 19, 5:56 AM
    • 9,482 Posts
    • 14,382 Thanks
    Martyn1981
    Hi

    ... and supply/demand curtailment of windpower! ... why pay for turbines to remain static when the energy generated is essentially free & would therefore make complete economic sense to divert to a form of storage, whether it's chemical or potential energy and whatever efficiencies are involved, the economics of doing something trump those of doing nothing!

    HTH
    Z
    Originally posted by zeupater
    Plus, if I'm understanding the usual nonsense correctly, the gas v's leccy argument yet again ignores the COP, which most likely makes the leccy option cheaper than the gas one, and far cheaper if low rate E7 and a small PV top up are also taken into account.
    Mart. Cardiff. 5.58 kWp PV systems (3.58 ESE & 2.0 WNW)

    For general PV advice please see the PV FAQ thread on the Green & Ethical Board.
    • GreatApe
    • By GreatApe 15th Jun 19, 12:52 PM
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    • 2,924 Thanks
    GreatApe
    Plus, if I'm understanding the usual nonsense correctly, the gas v's leccy argument yet again ignores the COP, which most likely makes the leccy option cheaper than the gas one, and far cheaper if low rate E7 and a small PV top up are also taken into account.
    Originally posted by Martyn1981

    Why dont they use heat pumps extensively in Norway/Sweden? They are mostly electrical resistant heated. The sane assumption is that they realize the power saving is more than outweighed by the cost of buying and maintaining a heat pump system
    • silverwhistle
    • By silverwhistle 16th Jun 19, 2:51 PM
    • 2,704 Posts
    • 4,036 Thanks
    silverwhistle
    Plus, if I'm understanding the usual nonsense correctly, the gas v's leccy argument yet again ignores the COP, which most likely makes the leccy option cheaper than the gas one, and far cheaper if low rate E7 and a small PV top up are also taken into account.
    Originally posted by Martyn1981



    It's all a bit complicated when you start to look at personal circumstances (I have PV and a wood-burning stove). Consider my gas usage of 1000kWh a year (it's a less arithmetically convenient 1100 actually..). On a nominal standing charge of £60 that's an extra 6p per unit, with Bulb it would be nearly 7.5p and with SSE 11.3p a unit ON TOP of the unit rates! So my point in another thread that standing charges are regressive..


    Now I have obviously used my gas boiler a bit over the year, but if it went U/S would it be the only course of action to repair or replace when I'm only using 1000kWh p.a?



    At current prices an ASHP as a retrofit to my terrace doesn't seem worthwhile either. It then perhaps makes more sense to go for one of the variable electricity tariffs, which would certainly cover any short fall in spare PV for water heating during the 4 months of the year when I need to top up. At 3/4/5p a unit it would also make sense to use direct electric heating, to at least keep the fabric of the building warm even if it weren't available at peak times.



    When my car goes bang (or rusts to bits) there's yet another calculation to be made as I'd like an EV. If battery technology costs drop rapidly yet another decision. Shall I get some W facing PV when I replace my shed roof?


    Longer term who knows? At least I've got three seasons of wood stored at the bottom of the garden!
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