Re: Solar cell

On 4/26/2010 10:03 AM, Dirk Bruere at NeoPax wrote:
On 26/04/2010 05:16, Paul Keinanen wrote:
On Mon, 26 Apr 2010 02:04:55 +0100, Dirk Bruere at NeoPax
<dirk.bruere@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

On 24/04/2010 00:57, Joel Koltner wrote:

Well clearly photovoltaics is incredibly useful as well, with plenty of
immediate application. If someone figured out how to decimate the
cost of PV panels, their growth rate would immediately jump up into the
triple digits, I expect.

Current prices are around $4/W
Nanosolar, for example, claims they can manufacture for $0.70/W
But since they are selling everything they can produce for a lot more
than that, why would they drop the price?

Those prices are based on peak output.

A fixed mounted panel average daily output is one quarter of the peak
output during the best season. When calculated with the average power,
those price should be multiplied by four, thus $16/W. During other
seasons, the solar angle is less favorable, so calculated with the
annual average output power, the price is even higher.

Using a dual axis tracker the average annual output can be increased,
but this also increases the costs.

Compare this with the construction cost of $2-$3/W for nuclear and
$1-$2/W for conventional power (especially gas turbines, but of
course, the fuel cost is significant).

The peak power price should drop with one order of magnitude, before
the PV cells are competitive.

The "magic" number that has always been quoted for cost competitive
solar electricity is $1 per Watt peak. Obviously for domestic users
competing with grid cost it's probably a lot more favourable eg around
$2 per peak Watt (and right now it is possible to buy such raw units at
that retail price).

The dollar per peak watt total true installed cost is the price at which the panels cease being a gasoline destroying net energy sink and become a totally pointless "paint it green" musical chairs scam. Such total installed cost would demand a panel cost in the fifty cents per peak watt region.

For a useful net energy solution, panel costs would have to be at or below the quarter per peak watt class.

A 1000 watt peak panel properly sited and oriented can typically produce 5 kilowatt hours per day of energy. Of that, only a fraction would be net renewable energy, perhaps 1 kilowatt hour. The remaining 4 would be conventional gasoline destroying energy in its amortization disguise.

Domestic users competing with the grid would, of course, demand much LOWER panel pricing because no means of pv storage is known that is remotely as cheap or safe or simple or effective or reliable as synchronous inversion to the power grid. Such an offgrid market is highly unlikely to EVER become significant. People simply are not that dumb.


Many thanks,

Don Lancaster voice phone: (928)428-4073
Synergetics 3860 West First Street Box 809 Thatcher, AZ 85552
rss: email: don@xxxxxxxxxx

Please visit my GURU's LAIR web site at

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