Wednesday, April 22, 2009

29> Thinking Outside the Box on Earth Day

Happy Earth Day, readers. Actually it is more like “Earth Evening”, right now.
I would like to punctuate my PRT posts with a personal note. As of the May 1st I will be leaving Texas and blogging from my land in New Hampshire, where, bit by bit, I am taming the land. There I live the greenest of lives. It brings out the Thoreau in me. (If “Walden”was required reading in every high school, we wouldn’t be in this environmental mess) Anyway, bear with me if I’m slow to post or respond, as there is no internet, phone, not even cell phone, on the land.. I must go to the town library for internet. I will spend about half of my time there until mid fall.

Pictured is my sole source of electricity, other than my car. These (3) 15W solar cells can be pivoted from the ground to aim directly into the sun. I started with a deformed tetrahedron made from six lengths of conduit strung together like beads with galvanized wire. Pipe brackets, some 1x4s, some steel cable, and an afternoon, and Voila! Total cost to put these collectors 30 ft. in the air? Less than $75. Now That’s Green. What's this got to do with PRT? Not much, but, hey, this is a mid-week post...about green..ah heck, I was looking for an Earth Day photo and just felt like sharing thus one.

So, my friends, on this Earth Day, let’s resolve to think “outside the box” to imagine a cheaper, faster, more reliable, more comfortable, more acceptable PRT design. (cheezy tie-in)

And one more thing, do not assume I know the latest PRT news. I was so busy with my land last summer I missed the Ithaca conference because I didn’t even know about it. I was only an afternoon’s drive away. So post those links folks! And don’t be afraid to comment on something that is a bit off-topic if you believe it would be of interest to the readers of this blog. Give me your suggestions! Mother Earth and I thank you.


Bryan Williams said...

I've been following your PRT blog for quite a while. This solar setup looks great. How much electricity does it produce? What do you run off it?

Dan said...

Dan The Blogger Responds -
Hello, Bryan, glad you like my blog.
It's only 45 watts (from Harbor Freight Tools) the system includes 12v battery charger. I have an extra battery in my car and an 800 watt inverter. (converts 12v to house current)I run nighttime lights, pump water to the cabin, listen to tunes and and run my laptop. If I use too much power I have to run the car to charge the betteries. I really need many more panels to not need to run the car, but it's a long drive for groceries anyway.

an-148 said...

the matter with the solar panels is not so far from the PRT subjet as it seems: everywhere, outside visual sensitive areas (old town, etc...), the guideway and/or the stations can be covered with a roof made from solar panels to make the bill for electricity less expensive; Additionnally, in aeras where there is no visual impact, the poles can be overlayed with small vertical windmills to produce additional electricity.