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Guardian: Currys To Stock Solar Panels.

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'Currys to stock solar panels':

http://business.guardian.co.uk/story/0,,1834227,00.html

Electrical retailer Currys is about to add a new item to its usual array of washing machines and other white goods -- solar panels.

Customers who want to keep up with Tory leader David Cameron, who plans to install a wind turbine on his roof, can pick up solar panels at three London branches of the high street store, in Fulham, Croydon and West Thurrock.

Currys is taking a risk as the solar panels will cost far more than anything else the store sells. They say it will cost the average three bedroom household about £9,000 to buy and install solar panels -- compared to £16,000 in specialist stores. There are also grants available through the Low Carbon Buildings Programme.

Customers opting for solar power can expect to reduce their energy bill by up to 50% and could reduce carbon dioxide emissions by up to two tons per year. In addition, up to half of the cost of the panels can be offset by an increase in property value, Currys said.

But it will take a long time to recoup the initial outlay, as customers will have to wait between seven and 18 years to see their investment pay off.

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wow - they're really expecting these fuel bill rises to bite.

"British Gas and EDF last week announced yet more price rises, pushing average household fuel bills in the UK to around £1,000 a year, according to consumer group Energywatch."

So you can save about half of that - I assume this is solar electric rather than the cheaper solar water.

Manchester Is my planet website is planning to offer subscribers a discount solar offer soon!

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i think it is a great idea

if panels are more widely available, this will drive prices down

when DVD recorders came out they cost £1000, now they are £100

Solar technology isnt rocket science, i m sure prices will come down as demand increases

the cost recooperation calculation doesn t allow for, i believe, annual energy price increases

all properties have roofs - they are just wasted space at the moment.

There are solar panels, which also are used to heat water in central heating systems, thus reducing gas bills by 20-30%

Edited by notanewmember

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If every house had solar panels and wind turbines there would be virtually no domestic consumption of electricity.

This is true. Part of my self-build dream is to have a roof made entirely of solar panels. When estimating costs and performance I discovered that I could generate more than enough power from a solar roof. Maybe an electric car charged from the panels would be the next step.

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There's enough hot air generated on hpc.co.uk to keep a few wind turbines going... :ph34r:

I believe hot air rises whereas wind turbines use fast rushing air to propel them.

Edited by DoubleBubbleTrouble

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Guest Bart of Darkness

Are these solar panals easy to remove (could they become the target of enterprising tea leaves in other words?).

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From the FT write up: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/1f01fc72-2005-11db...00779e2340.html

The prices may be more than most consumers expect to spend in a Currys store but reflect a sharp fall in the cost of solar systems in recent years. Panels have come down in price by more than half in the past five years amid intense competition among global manufacturers.

UK industry estimates for further price falls are 5 per cent a year, but global prices could drop more quickly, in line with a wider slide in the cost of electrical goods such as flat-panel televisions.

Don't believe everything you read in the paper and don't believe anything economists with experience in consumer electronics say about the energy industry!

moduleprices6-07.gif

The inflection point was when the PV industry overtook the IC industry as the world largest consumer of Si.

From the guardian article

The price of solar panels is also expected to fall, in line with the reduction in price of other electrical goods such as flat-panel televisions. The panels are manufactured by Sharp UK, which has a factory in Wrexham, north Wales. Sharp has a 26% share of the solar panels market.

I think this is also wrong, they are assembled in Wrexham not manufactured, the cells are manufactured in the Far East I believe.

More comment here: Currys to stock photovoltaics

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From the FT write up: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/1f01fc72-2005-11db...00779e2340.html

I think this is also wrong, they are assembled in Wrexham not manufactured, the cells are manufactured in the Far East I believe.

More comment here: Currys to stock photovoltaics

Does it matter where they're manufactured? Quite reasonably Sharp and other Japanaese companies manufacture much of their core tech in Japan and assemble elsewhere. This is one way to stop rivals copying propreitary technology. It's also a reason why Japan, despite being a high wage economy, still has a strong manufacturing sector.

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Does it matter where they're manufactured? Quite reasonably Sharp and other Japanaese companies manufacture much of their core tech in Japan and assemble elsewhere. This is one way to stop rivals copying propreitary technology. It's also a reason why Japan, despite being a high wage economy, still has a strong manufacturing sector.

I'm not saying there's anything wrong with it, just that the Guardian is misleading us suggesting this is a home grown industry when it isn't.

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Guest Alright Jack

Most so called alternatives are a load of b0ll0x.

Nine grand to provide a fraction of a homes domestic energy (and for how long without maintenance or replacement?) smacks more of desperation than stupidity. Unfortunately, we're probably going to waste an awful lot of capital on non-starters like this. Solar arrays are a really sh!t idea.

We have the ability to use a lot more nuclear and some more coal. Wind is the only viable renewable alternative out there. The rest are red herrings.

Now, to highlight the real energy crisis:-

Cars and freight don't run on wind, water, nuclear fission or coal! Or solar arrays.

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Ah the promiss of a free lunch.... if only.

The manufacturing processes have improved in recent years but solar panels still consume huge amounts of energy to make when you include the extraction cost of the materials used and people often forget the environmental cost of some of the rather nasty chemicals involved but hey those nasty chemicals are in China and you get to feel smug and green in the UK :D

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I believe hot air rises whereas wind turbines use fast rushing air to propel them.

Ahhh, but you can use rising warm air to propel turbines as the Aussies are planning.

Anyway, could the rising energy costs spark the industry off? Can we remember the joke that Japanese cars were until the fuel crisis in the 70's? If I understand right, it was this that drove them to develop fuel efficient cars (my Honda does about 50 mpg, even the Type R are good if you drive them careful).

Maybe worth checking out GEI for opinions.

:)

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Photovoltaics have already fallen in price and risen in efficiency and that's without them becoming mass market. In a very energy efficient house that's grid-linked you can see your meter go into reverse at times.

Photovoltaic's are the higher tech way to do solar, suitable for taking care of your home's wider energy. You can use the sun's engergy usfully for much lower cost and still save a significant amount.

Flat Plate Collectors: Solar water heating panels in their simplest form are made from a sheet of metal painted black which absorbs the suns energy. Water is fed through the panel in pipes attached to the metal sheet and picks up the heat in the metal. For the UK climate the pipe work contains non-toxic anti-freeze. The pipes are often made of copper for better conduction. The metal sheet is embedded in an insulated box and covered with glass or clear plastic on the front. The system is usually installed on the roof.

Evacuated Tubes: The evacuated tube system is a series of glass heat tubes grouped together. The tubes are highly insulated, due to a vacuum inside the glass.

he cost of installing a solar hot water system ranges from approximately £500-£1500 for a DIY system, to £2000-£5000 for a commercially installed system. These prices however, are dependent on the size of the system. A typical installation in the UK has a panel of 3m2 to 4m2 with a storage tank of 150- 200L (2m2 for evacuated tubes). However, the optimum size will depend on actual hot water use. This can be calculated using software to simulate system performance throughout the year.

These types of panels should be in all new builds. Factored into the construction costs, it's a drop in the ocean expense.

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Photovoltaics have already fallen in price...

That's just not true ever since the PV industry overtook the IC industry as the world’s largest consumer of Si. Prices have been rising for several years now.

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Guest Alright Jack

"Maybe worth checking out GEI for opinions."

RIGHT.

If you go to GEI, you will find:

+ A view that Curry's announcement may just be a cynical move to cash in on rising gas prices

.. (Is there really any economic benefit? Solar cell prices are MUCH higher due to the shortage of silicon)

+ A nice thread on electric cars

I'm surprised WEBMASTER has not slapped your wrists yet for poaching!

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Most so called alternatives are a load of b0ll0x.

Nine grand to provide a fraction of a homes domestic energy (and for how long without maintenance or replacement?) smacks more of desperation than stupidity. Unfortunately, we're probably going to waste an awful lot of capital on non-starters like this. Solar arrays are a really sh!t idea.

We have the ability to use a lot more nuclear and some more coal. Wind is the only viable renewable alternative out there. The rest are red herrings.

Now, to highlight the real energy crisis:-

Cars and freight don't run on wind, water, nuclear fission or coal! Or solar arrays.

Basically agreed, however:

1. Solar HEATING systems, particularly for water, do stack up reasonably well when compared to most of the alternatives. They certainly do in many countries (not sure about the UK climate though, since I'm in Oz).

2. I would add hydro (already generates one sixth of world electricity) to the list of serious alternatives in countries where there are undeveloped resources (eg South America). It would make a lot of sense to develop those sources and produce energy-intensive products (eg aluminium) there for world markets.

3. Whilst unproven on a large commercial scale, both solar thermal "wind" towers and hot dry rocks (geothermal) look promising in some locations. It's foreseeable that, for example, Australia could be using 100% geothermal / solar thermal / hydro / wind electricity at some point. Likewise other countries with suitable resources. This frees up more coal and nuclear for those countries without such resources (eg UK).

4. Absolutely agreed about cars etc. Transport is the big problem with aviation being the biggest of the big. Electric cars work if you accept some limitations. Bulk freight can be moved by electric train and the final delivery could be done with electric trucks. All of these things are somewhat tolerant of intermittent power generation such as wind. As long as we don't use too much of it, hydrogen has potential niche applications where batteries are impractical (eg tractors). But as for aeroplanes, even the strongest supporters of electric and hydrogen vehicles admit that they're both non-starters for aviation.

Time to save the remaining oil and gas for the most important uses IMO. Generating electricity being the LEAST necessary use of oil or gas.

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Everything could run on Nuclear if we wanted it to Alright Jack.

Technology already available for vehicles such as Tridents....getting the nuclear fuel and disposing of it is the only issue...maybe we will work that out in years to come....

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I'm not saying there's anything wrong with it, just that the Guardian is misleading us suggesting this is a home grown industry when it isn't.

Fair enough. Got the wrong end of the stick.

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  • 336 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

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      • down 5% +
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      • Even
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      • up 5%



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