Donate Bitcoin

Donate Paypal


PeakOil is You

PeakOil is You

How does our electrical grid work?

Discussions of conventional and alternative energy production technologies.

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby Subjectivist » Sun 08 Jan 2017, 13:27:58

sparky wrote:.
A simple analog for the grid reticulation is to think of a network of water pipes

the voltage is pressure , the current is volume

the problem with renewable is that they are like a mesa river , dry beds and sudden massive flooding
to use them you need to size for the largest flow , which is costly and often unused

for the conducting material , if you want a trickle , pretty much any conducting material will do
the consideration are cost , durability and ease of use
the problem with Aluminium is that the joints must be done very carefully , it crack if stressed too much and Aluminium has a love affair with oxygen , corrosion is a constant issue

I've worked in the old Soviet Union , they had plenty of hydro-power and very little copper ore deposits
most of the wiring was aluminum ( they kept copper for making bullets )

They also had fridges without motors ,using thermo-electric conversion ,not so efficient but silent .
but since electricity was virtually free , it didn't matter .


Two questions. First those thermoelectric fridges. Do they work on the ammonia water cookant loop like the natural gas fridges that used to be fairly common in southern ohio? http://home.howstuffworks.com/refrigerator5.htm Seems like an electric heatng element would work as well as a small flame to operave the separator, and probable last longer without the flame gasses.

Secondly does anyone make coated steel wiring? I have seen copper and aluminum, but never coted steel, just bare steel for electric fencing.
II Chronicles 7:14 if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
User avatar
Subjectivist
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 3905
Joined: Sat 28 Aug 2010, 06:38:26
Location: Northwest Ohio

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby baha » Sun 08 Jan 2017, 13:38:15

Those are the same fridges in RVs. I used to have one. Those also have an electric element to drive the ammonia cycle. I know from experience they use 3-5 times the power of a freon based heat pump. The only advantage is when you need to turn combustion (heat) into cold. Not a simple thing to do.
A Solar fuel spill is otherwise known as a sunny day!
The energy density of a tank of FF's doesn't matter if it's empty.
User avatar
baha
Heavy Crude
Heavy Crude
 
Posts: 452
Joined: Thu 12 Jul 2007, 02:00:00
Location: North Carolina, USA

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Sun 08 Jan 2017, 14:26:49

baha - Lack of competition sucks. Here's a link for Texas...6.8¢ to 8¢. But it takes some calculating which way to go: some offer 100% free during the weekend with higher weekday rates. Depnds on your lifestyle.

https://www.texaselectricityratings.com ... city-rates

But those low rates came with a price tag: $7 billion in tax $'s to upgrade the grid + some other tax breaks. And Texas is a different bird when it comes to state income taxes: we dfdfon't have any. But vertverty bhig local property taxes that fund schools et al. Which actually makes Tsdxas one of the bigger taxing states. Of course the big + is the revenue from oil/NG/coal production taxes: tens of $billions over the years. And where our $9+ billion "sovereign fund" came from.
User avatar
ROCKMAN
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 9951
Joined: Tue 27 May 2008, 02:00:00
Location: TEXAS

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby sparky » Sun 08 Jan 2017, 16:22:19

.
On the fridges , they do not use any liquid , just thermo-electric of the Peltier/Seebeck effect h
http://www.thermoelectrics.caltech.edu/ ... story.html

it's based on the thermal effect of the junction of two metals or semi conductors
the junction create an electrical voltage when there is a temperature difference
( that's the principle of the thermo-couples for measurement )
it is also used to generate power .


if a voltage is applied the reverse happen , you create a temperature difference
either warming or cooling , depending on the polarity .

Thermo-electricity is widely used from satellites , autonomous buoys and weather stations ,laboratory , industry and recreational use

those fridges have no moving parts , no liquid and last forever ,
however they are not as efficient as the liquid phase compressors and are now obsolete
User avatar
sparky
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 3221
Joined: Mon 09 Apr 2007, 02:00:00
Location: Sydney , OZ

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby sparky » Sun 08 Jan 2017, 16:37:52

.
This is for isotopes generators ,
the most surprizing use was atomic power generators for pacemakers ,
it avoided the constant surgery to recharge the battery ,Plutonium was used as it is quite benign radiation wise
http://www.implantable-device.com/2011/ ... aker-1970/


there were hundreds of unmanned weather and radio beacons set up in the arctic
some got lost ,washed away or got played with by bears ,the crappy piece of junk on the photo is the casing only
the radioactive active element has been removed

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radioisot ... _generator
User avatar
sparky
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 3221
Joined: Mon 09 Apr 2007, 02:00:00
Location: Sydney , OZ

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby kublikhan » Sun 08 Jan 2017, 16:51:57

I first heard of Peltier coolers when looking at CPU coolers like this one: Peltier CPU cooler

They have no moving parts or liquids. They are used by some in the hardcore overclocking community. You apply electricity and one side gets cold and the other side gets hot. But they are a VERY inefficient way to cool. A typical CPU fan might normally draw 5 watts of power(what most people use). A water cooling system, maybe 18 watts(for more hardcore cooling). The Peltier in the link above draws 154 watts, about 8 times as much as the water cooler or 30x as much as a fan. I can see how they might be useful for some edge cases. But it seems pretty stupid to me to build a refrigerator for residential use based on Peltier coolers. But I guess when you don't have a market system you end up with these kind of gross inefficiencies.
The oil barrel is half-full.
User avatar
kublikhan
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 3746
Joined: Tue 06 Nov 2007, 03:00:00
Location: Illinois

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby sparky » Mon 09 Jan 2017, 07:16:55

.
If you go where no one has been before and the great darkness of nothing much is your reality
there is a faint light to guide you
......SNAP-19

a Plutonium power unit , giving pioneer 10 , pioneer 11 , and the Mars explorer Viking some juice
https://solarsystem.nasa.gov/rps/rtg.cfm
User avatar
sparky
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 3221
Joined: Mon 09 Apr 2007, 02:00:00
Location: Sydney , OZ

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby Tanada » Mon 09 Jan 2017, 11:19:15

kublikhan wrote:I first heard of Peltier coolers when looking at CPU coolers like this one: Peltier CPU cooler

They have no moving parts or liquids. They are used by some in the hardcore overclocking community. You apply electricity and one side gets cold and the other side gets hot. But they are a VERY inefficient way to cool. A typical CPU fan might normally draw 5 watts of power(what most people use). A water cooling system, maybe 18 watts(for more hardcore cooling). The Peltier in the link above draws 154 watts, about 8 times as much as the water cooler or 30x as much as a fan. I can see how they might be useful for some edge cases. But it seems pretty stupid to me to build a refrigerator for residential use based on Peltier coolers. But I guess when you don't have a market system you end up with these kind of gross inefficiencies.



Hmm, you just made me picture a combo fridge/oven unit. The wall between is a Peltier system and both boxes are super insulated so you can get the cooling effect and baking effect at the same time, doubling your efficiency if you are say a restaurant that is constantly cooking and storing foods in a chiller at the same time.
I should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, design a building, write, balance accounts, build a wall, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, pitch manure, program a computer, cook, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
User avatar
Tanada
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 13656
Joined: Thu 28 Apr 2005, 02:00:00
Location: South West shore Lake Erie, OH, USA

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Mon 09 Jan 2017, 15:32:00

I have owned a couple of Peltier-effect chillers and frankly, they suck from every perspective. Firstly, they need about 3" of quality foam insulation, plus an effective door seal, to avoid the scenario where you have a frost-covered metal heatsink in the center surrounded by warm food. Secondly, convection is real ineffective for heat transfer to air on both sides of the Peltier junction, you really need two fans, one inside the chiller box circulating chilled air around food and a larger one outside cooling the second heatsink on the outside in ambient air - so forget the "no moving parts" advantage entirely. Thirdly is the huge power draw - enough to run a standard vehicle battery flat in six hours, for a less than one cubic foot chiller, all the while accompanied by a noisy fan. Fourth is the fact that the Peltier effect even with fan assistance can at best achieve 40 degrees F cooling or heating - if your car falls to 60 degrees F at night, the food freezes, and if the car gets to 120 degrees in the desert sun, the cooler is "chilling" to 80 degrees F. The only advantage to a Peltier chiller is low cost - which is not so low if you buy a good one with thick insulation, a good door seal, and two fans.

I ended up with two premium AGM (absorbed glass mat) batteries and battery management switches, to run a combination refrigerator-freezer: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B008VX01P2/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pd_nS_ttl?_encoding=UTF8&colid=1FW049ZPNDLHW&coliid=I3HC4XAFWSVWNT
....which has a miniature conventional compressor, two independently adjustable zones, and much better efficiency than the Peltier chillers.

This was a $1400 total cost solution, using two pricey $300 AGM batteries that would not be required for ordinary on-road travel camping. However I can run one battery partially flat overnight, and then start the Jeep with the other in the morning. 30 minutes after starting the engine, the partially depleted battery is recharged. The only time I have ever been without cold beer or ice for mixed drinks is when through poor planning or overconsumption, we ran out of consumable alcohol.
KaiserJeep 2.0, Neural Subnode 0010 0000 0001 0110 - 1001 0011 0011, Tertiary Adjunct to Unimatrix 0000 0000 0001

Resistance is Futile, YOU will be Assimilated.

Warning: Messages timestamped before April 1, 2016, 06:00 PST were posted by the unmodified human KaiserJeep 1.0
KaiserJeep
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 3701
Joined: Tue 06 Aug 2013, 16:16:32
Location: California's Silly Valley

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Mon 09 Jan 2017, 18:01:28

Revi - Digging more into your local grid which appears to have developed major input from a foreign company...TransCanada. The irony: TransCanada wants to sell its major alt generating system to finance its aquisiton of a fossil fuel pipeline company. From

http://www.pressherald.com/2016/03/28/t ... wind-farm/

"TransCanada is looking to sell its New England power generation business, including its wind farm in western Maine and hydroelectric dams on the Connecticut River, as part of its effort to finance its $10 billion acquisition of Houston-based Columbia Pipeline Group."

As part of its renewable or emissions-free energy portfolio, TransCanada also owns, operates or has an interest in: New England’s largest wind farm – the Kibby Wind Project. Thirteen hydro-electric facilities in New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Vermont (nine have already received Low Impact Hydropower Institute certification). Bruce Power - one of the world’s largest nuclear sites and is the source of roughly 25 per cent of Ontario’s electricity. Solar - TransCanada will acquire nine solar projects in Ontario which are expected to come into service through 2014. Today, more than one-third of TransCanada's power portfolio comes from renewable or emissions-free energy sources. In total, TransCanada generates about 10,900 MW of electricity for hundreds of thousands of businesses, institutions and households throughout North America."

And it has been distributing that power to a number of New England states as well as Canadian provinces. An interest possible angle: what if a New York utility buys some or all of that alt electricity and restricts 100% sales to NY utilities. Then NY state might be able to claim the title as "greenest state" while reducing alt electricity to your state.

How the electricity is distributed. From

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quebec_Interconnection

See map

"Quebec Interconnection is a wide area synchronous grid and one of the three minor alternating-current (AC) electrical grids in the continental U.S. power transmission grid. The other two minor interconnections are the Texas and Alaska interconnections. The Quebec Interconnection is tied to the Eastern Interconnection with four high-voltage direct current power transmission lines (DC ties)."
User avatar
ROCKMAN
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 9951
Joined: Tue 27 May 2008, 02:00:00
Location: TEXAS

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby Newfie » Mon 09 Jan 2017, 18:44:21

Coated steel wiring? You mean like copper clad?

http://copperweld.com/products
User avatar
Newfie
Forum Moderator
Forum Moderator
 
Posts: 8496
Joined: Thu 15 Nov 2007, 03:00:00
Location: US East Coast

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby Tanada » Tue 10 Jan 2017, 07:34:47

Newfie wrote:Coated steel wiring? You mean like copper clad?

http://copperweld.com/products


Interesting, that is the kind of wire they used for Telegraph and in some places Telephone wiring for many years. The steel provides cheap high tensile strength capacity and the copper cladding carries the electrical signal via the 'skin effect'.
I should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, design a building, write, balance accounts, build a wall, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, pitch manure, program a computer, cook, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
User avatar
Tanada
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 13656
Joined: Thu 28 Apr 2005, 02:00:00
Location: South West shore Lake Erie, OH, USA

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby Subjectivist » Tue 10 Jan 2017, 11:40:00

Newfie wrote:Coated steel wiring? You mean like copper clad?

http://copperweld.com/products


No actually I mean insulated steel wire for electrical use.
II Chronicles 7:14 if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
User avatar
Subjectivist
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 3905
Joined: Sat 28 Aug 2010, 06:38:26
Location: Northwest Ohio

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby sparky » Tue 10 Jan 2017, 16:09:24

.
On steel conductors , the conducting and thermal losses would overwhelm any cost and mechanical robustness advantage
beside the danger of overheating

If you want to carry any amount of juice for any distance ,
there is silver ,copper ,gold and Aluminium ...that's it .
Silver is used extensively for coating the contact surfaces in power application
Gold is used in micro-electronic because it is a very ductile metal and it's possible to make very fine wire without them breaking .
engineers would love to be able to use steel but it is simply not practical
there are cable with a steel core but it is not to carry current , simply to strengthen the cable for long overhead lines
User avatar
sparky
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 3221
Joined: Mon 09 Apr 2007, 02:00:00
Location: Sydney , OZ

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Tue 10 Jan 2017, 17:58:21

Copperweld cables are used in high tension, very high voltage AC transmission lines, which transmit power with reduced resistance losses because of the higher voltages in use.

In a cable with a steel core but surrounded with copper-clad conductors, the majority of what little current there is flows through the lower resistance copper cladding, relatively little through the higher resistance steel core, and little power is lost to heating such a cable.

If that's not clear, refresh your memory of "Watt's Law" and the formulas for electric current division in parallel resistors - a copper clad conductor is a low resistance copper sheathing around a high resistance steel core, both in parallel.

The steel part of the cable is absolutely required because of the "high tension" application. You don't want transmission lines moving in the wind and chaffing on the insulators.
KaiserJeep 2.0, Neural Subnode 0010 0000 0001 0110 - 1001 0011 0011, Tertiary Adjunct to Unimatrix 0000 0000 0001

Resistance is Futile, YOU will be Assimilated.

Warning: Messages timestamped before April 1, 2016, 06:00 PST were posted by the unmodified human KaiserJeep 1.0
KaiserJeep
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 3701
Joined: Tue 06 Aug 2013, 16:16:32
Location: California's Silly Valley

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby sparky » Wed 11 Jan 2017, 08:57:49

.
the "high tension" is only a reference to the voltage dielectric tension , not the mechanical stress
a copper conductor has very weak mechanical properties , to string it from poll to poll some support is needed
the conductors moving in the wind are a big issue ,
High voltage lines are usually pretty bare and will touch each other if tossed about on a big wind .
It is quite spectacular in a disaster sort of way , the isolators are fixed on the pylons and will not move much at all , their biggest problem is being coated with dust , then it get wet , the isolation is going way down and there is arcing ..yukk

check this out !
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oBJyyEAw-6g

the good practice for an overhead conductor is one tie for 1.5 M , it is simpler to have a steel core or a steel sheath
to provide mechanical strength , it also is used as a heath fault detector ,
if you have too much voltage on the steel , there IS something very very wrong with your isolation
it doesn't have anything to do with current carrying capacity and is not even considered in the voltage losses calculations
I know , I did
User avatar
sparky
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 3221
Joined: Mon 09 Apr 2007, 02:00:00
Location: Sydney , OZ

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Wed 11 Jan 2017, 10:05:36

As an EE undergraduate I studied such topics in the late 1970s. You are repeating what I said with the exception of the mechanical high tension comment, which is true no matter what the internet says.

The high tension field caused by the very high voltages is there to transmit the same amount of power with fewer heat losses, because the current goes down as the voltage goes up.

We are quibbling over syntax when most of the audience actually believes the water pipe analogy. I swear, many modern humans think that electrons are the size and shape of a small pea, and romp though the wires at speeds you can see.
KaiserJeep 2.0, Neural Subnode 0010 0000 0001 0110 - 1001 0011 0011, Tertiary Adjunct to Unimatrix 0000 0000 0001

Resistance is Futile, YOU will be Assimilated.

Warning: Messages timestamped before April 1, 2016, 06:00 PST were posted by the unmodified human KaiserJeep 1.0
KaiserJeep
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 3701
Joined: Tue 06 Aug 2013, 16:16:32
Location: California's Silly Valley

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby baha » Wed 11 Jan 2017, 10:55:21

Absolutely right KJ,
Most of the current in a wire flows thru the 'skin effect' anyway. No matter what it's made of. Electric current is an EM field effect and the field is stongest at the outermost edge. High tension wire lines usually have three conductors for each phase. This puts the center of the field in free air and the conductors are in the stronger part of the field.

Electricity is only a little like water or oil. All I have to do to steal electricity is run a conductor next to the pipeline for a little ways. No actual connection is necessary. It's a field effect...
A Solar fuel spill is otherwise known as a sunny day!
The energy density of a tank of FF's doesn't matter if it's empty.
User avatar
baha
Heavy Crude
Heavy Crude
 
Posts: 452
Joined: Thu 12 Jul 2007, 02:00:00
Location: North Carolina, USA

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby baha » Wed 11 Jan 2017, 11:07:50

And I should add...Even though the current flows very near the speed of light, the actual electrons are mosying along at about 1/6th that speed.
A Solar fuel spill is otherwise known as a sunny day!
The energy density of a tank of FF's doesn't matter if it's empty.
User avatar
baha
Heavy Crude
Heavy Crude
 
Posts: 452
Joined: Thu 12 Jul 2007, 02:00:00
Location: North Carolina, USA

Re: How does our electrical grid work?

Unread postby baha » Wed 11 Jan 2017, 11:35:18

In case your wondering, I've been snowed in for 5 days and I'm bored:)
A Solar fuel spill is otherwise known as a sunny day!
The energy density of a tank of FF's doesn't matter if it's empty.
User avatar
baha
Heavy Crude
Heavy Crude
 
Posts: 452
Joined: Thu 12 Jul 2007, 02:00:00
Location: North Carolina, USA

PreviousNext

Return to Energy Technology

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests