Entropy

Relax in southern comfort on the east bank of the Mississippi. You're just around the corner from Beale Street and Sun Records. Watch the ducks, throw back a few and tell us what's on your mind.
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mediatechnology
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Re: Entropy

Post by mediatechnology » Fri May 31, 2019 5:48 am

Spending $1000/month on power to keep the house at 77° seems like a very large house.
I'm in the "less is more" school of thought. Couldn't imagine burning through money like that.

Collin and Denton Counties, just north of Dallas, are known for their "all hat no cattle" residents who have a lot of stuff but no net worth.
There are multi-million dollar homes up there with bed sheets for drapes.
The divorce rate is quite high.

@JR - I have a neighbor with a 10,000 gallon rain water capture system coupled to drip irrigation.
In the summer months water is our biggest bill.
I can see how after doing all the work to get rid of your water why you'd be reluctant to store it.

It costs us about $15-30 to water the lawn: I should be pumping water uphill from the creek or drill an irrigation well.
Watering is cheaper than replacing 40 cent/square foot grass.
I think I can hit water easily at 40-60 feet.
We have a neighbor, about a half mile away, who has found water caves on his property.

The question I have is this:
"Is the power bill to pump water uphill 60 feet less expensive than just buying the water from Dallas?"
I may never know until I try.
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billshurv
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Re: Entropy

Post by billshurv » Fri May 31, 2019 6:20 am

It's a sizable Ranch they have. They are not the 'usual' Denton residents (bar the divorce). They moved from Plano as the wife wanted to have horses on property. With 11 acres she got a lot more horses! I think at the point of the move the marriage was already on the rocks, but in usual style he just took a posting to California and earned the money to support her horse habit (and his car and bicycle and gun and hifi habits).

He seemed suprised when he told me about the divorce as I'd realised what was happening when he stopped talking to me for a couple of years! But that's what friends are for. Pick you up, dust you down, call you a dozy git and point you in the right direction.

billshurv
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Re: Entropy

Post by billshurv » Fri May 31, 2019 6:23 am

mediatechnology wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 5:48 am


The question I have is this:
"Is the power bill to pump water uphill 60 feet less expensive than just buying the water from Dallas?"
I may never know until I try.
As a kid windpumps were a common site in the fields like the one attached, although less seen now. Surely that would be a good answer to your problems? that or a wind generator/solar panel driving the pump?
Attachments
windmill-water-pump.jpg

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JR.
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Re: Entropy

Post by JR. » Fri May 31, 2019 9:38 am

DSCF0162 2.JPG
Not a great picture but I didn't want to trespass in someone's yard to get a better shot. In the winter months I can see this from my yard, but not with the trees all full of leaves like now.

[edit] one of my squirrel cams is pointed in this general direction, but this time of the year it only sees trees.[/edit]

This windmill is behind the second house up the hill from me, so my next-next door neighbor. I don't think I've seen the wheel turning this century. Almost blocked by trees now.

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Last edited by JR. on Sat Jun 01, 2019 9:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Gold
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Re: Entropy

Post by Gold » Fri May 31, 2019 10:41 am

When I was looking into alternative energy sources I checked out small wind turbines. I came to the conclusion that wind wasn’t practical on a small scale. The turbines need to be closely monitored. If there are heavy winds they need to be disconnected or they will burn out. They also seemed like they needed a lot of routine maintenance unlike solar.

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mediatechnology
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Re: Entropy

Post by mediatechnology » Sat Jun 01, 2019 4:16 am

I need to not only raise the creek water 60 feet but have pressure to run sprinklers.
My uncle about a mile west had a windmill on his property.

This weekend I'm babysitting the neighbors chickens.
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Re: Entropy

Post by JR. » Sat Jun 01, 2019 9:28 am

Gold wrote:
Fri May 31, 2019 10:41 am
When I was looking into alternative energy sources I checked out small wind turbines. I came to the conclusion that wind wasn’t practical on a small scale. The turbines need to be closely monitored. If there are heavy winds they need to be disconnected or they will burn out. They also seemed like they needed a lot of routine maintenance unlike solar.
Everything requires maintenance (that is the theme of this thread).

Passive solar and extra insulation is the lowest maintenance strategy.

I would expect modern control circuitry for wind turbines be able to disconnect or dynamically brake during high wind conditions. I recall a discussion with a wind turbine user on another forum years ago and he experienced the high wind problems. As I recall his was an older low tech system.

JR
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Re: Entropy

Post by Gold » Sat Jun 01, 2019 11:08 am

Every time I see a small wind turbine it is not turning... I’ve seen a bunch on farmland.

A wind turbine is passive. To have control circuitry there would need to be a battery involved. When I was looking around I didn’t run across any integrated solutions like that. My guess is that control circuitry like that has to serve a whole energy system and not just an individual component of the system.

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Re: Entropy

Post by JR. » Sat Jun 01, 2019 12:24 pm

Gold wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 11:08 am
Every time I see a small wind turbine it is not turning... I’ve seen a bunch on farmland.

A wind turbine is passive. To have control circuitry there would need to be a battery involved. When I was looking around I didn’t run across any integrated solutions like that. My guess is that control circuitry like that has to serve a whole energy system and not just an individual component of the system.
Not to debate semantics but my idea of passive is related to energy efficient homes built into earth berms with southern solar exposure, and passive internal massive energy storage systems (like stone walls or I've even seen designs using indoor water barrels to hold daytime heat to give back overnight).

Wind power is a very mature technology (think windmills in Holland) with sundry mechanical (passive) speed regulation systems. Having moving parts means wear and tear and maintenance.

When the government puts their economic thumb on the scale we get less economic decision making.

Another lagging technology I am still waiting for is room temperature super conductors, for more efficient energy transmission from windy locales to densely populated areas.

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Re: Entropy

Post by Gold » Sat Jun 01, 2019 3:48 pm

JR. wrote:
Sat Jun 01, 2019 12:24 pm

Wind power is a very mature technology (think windmills in Holland) with sundry mechanical (passive) speed regulation systems. Having moving parts means wear and tear and maintenance.
Can you point me to a commercially available small wind turbine that incorporates these features? I didn’t run across any when I was looking. Wind seems well suited for industrial scale energy production.

Small water turbines don’t require nearly as much mantainace as a wind turbines from what I’ve read. It makes sense to me they take less maintenance because there is less variation in water velocity. Especially in fresh water. Not all mechanical systems are equal in mantainance.

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