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$3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Discussions of conventional and alternative energy production technologies.

Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby diemos » Wed 01 Aug 2018, 15:49:09

A cheaper option is to build out solar for daytime use and use the dam for dispatchable hydropower outside that time window.

Hoover doesn't have anywhere to store large amounts of water after the dam without a lot of expense.
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby Pops » Wed 01 Aug 2018, 16:45:38

That's a good idea initially.

Right now outflow is 800K /day, lake Mojave has 1,700k capacity or 4 nights worth of generation "fuel" although using that defeats the purpose of the system initially which was irrigation.

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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby baha » Thu 02 Aug 2018, 06:29:07

Ok, I give. Build the dam thing if you want. Just don't expect me to help pay for it. :P

I told you before. Our biggest problem is not energy, it's the environment. You are treating the symptoms, not the cause. It makes me think of a bunch of ants swarming around after Mother Nature kicked a hole in your anthill. You can build it back but she will just kick it again, harder.

Show me a plan where the usage in CA is lowered at the same time as the superconducting DC grid connection to NV is built. While you are refilling Lake Mead thru conservation upstream (shutting down irrigated farms) and building your pumping stations and desalination plants.

There is no plan. You are putting bandaids on the problem. You need surgery :)
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby Pops » Thu 02 Aug 2018, 08:05:34

baha wrote:Show me a plan where the usage in CA is lowered

This one?

Image

That's Title 24, 1978.

Then there is this:
California Will Require Solar Power for New Homes

sorry, LOL, you asked
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby Cog » Thu 02 Aug 2018, 13:15:14

LOL
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby Newfie » Thu 02 Aug 2018, 16:36:24

LOWERED not STABILIZED. Yes CA is doing some good, bully for them. But that doesn’t mean they had they fix. And clearly the rest of the country is doing pretty poorly. Baja is right.

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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby kublikhan » Thu 02 Aug 2018, 17:32:17

baha wrote:I told you before. Our biggest problem is not energy, it's the environment. You are treating the symptoms, not the cause.
Energy production is one of the biggest threats to the environment. If you make your energy greener and leaner, you lessen the burden on the environment. And that's exacly what California has done. Treating the cause, not the symptoms.

California’s long, bipartisan history of promoting energy efficiency—America‘s cheapest and cleanest energy resource—has saved Golden State residents more than $65 billion, helped lower their residential electricity bills to 25 percent below the national average, and contributed to the state’s continuing leadership in creating green jobs. These achievements have helped California avoid at least 30 power plants and as much climate-warming carbon pollution as is spewed from 5 million cars annually. This sustained commitment has made California a nationally recognized leader in reducing energy consumption and improving its residents’ quality of life. California’s success story demonstrates that efficiency policies work and could be duplicated elsewhere, saving billions of dollars and curbing tons of pollution.
California’s Energy Efficiency Success Story: Saving Billions of Dollars and Curbing Tons of Pollution

California’s GHG emissions continue to decrease, a trend observed since 2007. The largest reductions came from the electricity sector which continues to see decreases as a result of the state’s climate policies, which led to growth in wind generation and solar power, including growth in both rooftop and large solar array generation. During the 2000 to 2016 period, per capita GHG emissions in California have continued to drop from a peak in 2001 of 14.0 tonnes per person to 10.8 tonnes per person in 2016, a 23% decrease. Overall trends in the inventory also demonstrate that the carbon intensity of California’s economy (the amount of carbon pollution per million dollars of gross domestic product (GDP)) is declining, representing a 38% decline since the 2001 peak, while the state’s GDP has grown 41% during this period.
California Greenhouse Gas Emissions for 2000 to 2016
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Thu 02 Aug 2018, 18:37:45

baha wrote:Ok, I give. Build the dam thing if you want. Just don't expect me to help pay for it. :P

I told you before. Our biggest problem is not energy, it's the environment. You are treating the symptoms, not the cause. It makes me think of a bunch of ants swarming around after Mother Nature kicked a hole in your anthill. You can build it back but she will just kick it again, harder.

Show me a plan where the usage in CA is lowered at the same time as the superconducting DC grid connection to NV is built. While you are refilling Lake Mead thru conservation upstream (shutting down irrigated farms) and building your pumping stations and desalination plants.

There is no plan. You are putting bandaids on the problem. You need surgery :)


A few problems with what you said:

1) The only problem we have is human overpopulation. Everything else, including climate change, FF exhaustion, resource depletion of all sorts, etc. are symptoms of overpopulation. Anything done to ease the impact of that overpopulation simply exacerbates the problem by enabling more people to exist. (See the "Meat Eaters are Killing the Planet" thread for more.)

2) California has lowered enegy consumption all across the board already. CA has vehicle emissions limits and MPG standards that exceed Federal. It is illegal to install incandescent lightbulbs in new homes. Solar rooftops are being mandated by a new law. All of these efforts have been overwhelmed by population increases, and with them, demands for more power.

3) Superconducting transmission lines do not exist. YES they built a 1km long demonstration line in Europe, which has since been abandonned. It was abandonned because the energy losses were considerably higher than conventional transmission lines. NO, I'm not talking about IR losses in the line itself, I'm talking about the huge energy expendature required for the cryo plant to chill the line into the superconducting zone. Oopsy.

4) You seem to have a fixation on Lithium batteries. I understand that it is your business and hobby. But Lithium batteries may or may not make sense at the individual offgrid residence, but I'm 100% certain they make NO SENSE WHATSOEVER for utility-scale storage or grid-connected residences. They are too expensive and in frequent deep discharge usage, will have too short a life. Pumped hydro is the only solution there, but if you don't have the necessary elevation change, forget it.

In case you are wondering, Elon Musk is promoting Lithium storage for residences and utilities and even heavy trucks for one reason. That would be that unless he can get the unit cost to about 1/3 of the present price, he cannot build $30K battery electric cars and make a profit. That was his boast for 2018, and he's going to fail.
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby Pops » Thu 02 Aug 2018, 21:17:22

KaiserJeep wrote:2) California has lowered enegy consumption all across the board already. CA has vehicle emissions limits and MPG standards that exceed Federal.

Not any more
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby Plantagenet » Thu 02 Aug 2018, 23:47:23

Pops wrote:
baha wrote:Show me ... where the usage in CA is lowered

This one?

Image


Look more closely at the graph. It doesn't show total electrical consumption in California---its shows per capita usage of electricity in California, i.e. average electricity use per person. Yes, per capita usage hasn't changed much since 1970...

But the population of California has about doubled since 1970. That means total electricity use in California hasn't gone down at all.

It means the electricity consumption of California has roughly DOUBLED since 1970---hence the need for ideas for new new power sources like turning Hoover Dam into a massive Grid Battery.

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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby Pops » Fri 03 Aug 2018, 09:07:11

That was the point plant, CA increased per person efficiency 30 years ahead of the rest of the country. Hard to illustrate that with a total consumption plot doncha think?
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Fri 03 Aug 2018, 13:04:33

Pops, I admit - coming from a background of MidWestern conservatism and growing up mostly on military bases - I found California to be annoying, due to the constant political rantings of the Left Wingnuts. In fact, they still annoy me more than ever, I look forward to moving East.

But one thing Californians have always gotten correct and continue to do right is the reductions in both energy consumption and pollution, and the application of technology to achieve these goals. In that respect, the other 49 states are sticks in the mud.

I'm carefully hiding my eagerness to move from the wife, who is wanting to work some more. However, her bosses are mistreating their few employees in a variety of ways, she may come home one day and tell me she gave the bosses a piece of her mind and we are moving soon.
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby Pops » Fri 03 Aug 2018, 14:03:53

KJ, I admit to being conflicted re; CA regulation. I'm no one's professional anything, kind of a DIY, jack of trades, glue it/ screw it/ ship it sort. Lots of regulations/codes/inspections are against my wing it nature, lol. Not that I'm arguing with the necessity, codes are welcome and needed by folks who specialize in in whatever to the exclusion of everything else in order to make lots of money (to pay professionals to do the everything else).

When I built my first house in the '80 I did the title 24 energy calcs myself – Gah! that's 20BG (Before Google) and I spent lots of time in the library, the analog one. It was basically a very straight forward logical scoring system, trade off fewer north windows for more to the south, 5/8" drywall instead of 1/2" for required thermal mass, blah, blah. Just took some research to find appropriate values and good tradeoffs.

Living in the Ozarks without a code official for 100 miles (sorta) and no state contractor licensing or bond requirements was fine with me, not so much other folks who, as above, are specialists and wouldn't know their well from a hole in the ground. Way too many newish homes seemed to me to catch fire and burn to the ground.

Thing is you gotta be a professional something or other to get by in CA nowadays, median household income is $75k +/-.... almost 50% higher than national avg.
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby pstarr » Fri 03 Aug 2018, 17:38:12

KaiserJeep wrote:Pops, I admit - coming from a background of MidWestern conservatism and growing up mostly on military bases - I found California to be annoying, due to the constant political rantings of the Left Wingnuts. In fact, they still annoy me more than ever, I look forward to moving East.

You might be in for quite a shock. That mythical crusty conservative New Englander could be a dying breed. Hillary was a Wellesley College girl. The Clintons summared on the Islands
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Fri 03 Aug 2018, 18:05:48

It's not like I'm unfamiliar with the island, we visited over the years. Let's just say, you need to differentiate between residents and Summer people.

BTW, Hillary was a conservative MidWesterner who married a conservative Southerner. I've lived both in Arkansas and Chicago. Their effectations of Liberalism are almost exclusively on social issues, pandering to the Democratic base. Both HRC and Bubba are fiscal conservatives, for example.

But then, all candidates defy simplistic labels.
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby GHung » Sat 04 Aug 2018, 09:28:01

Seems most folks have become convinced that fiscal conservatism and liberal social policies can't coexist. Small minds can't grok two apparently opposing ideas at the same time, so cognitive dissonance has become an epidemic.
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby Pops » Mon 06 Aug 2018, 11:15:28

This is interesting, in Ca power is auctioned 24 hours in advance. When surplus renewables are going to have a good day the price for power in some hours is not only too cheap to meter, it actually goes negative. Seems like coal/nukes that aren't made to start/stop at the flip of a switch would actually be interested in backing grid storage just to keep their investment viable.
Power Worth Less Than Zero
The result: power prices are slipping to zero or even below more often in more jurisdictions. That’s adding to headaches for generators from NRG Energy Inc. in California to RWE AG in Germany and Origin Energy Ltd. in Australia. Once confined to a curiosity for a few hours over windy Christmas holidays, sub-zero cost of electricity is becoming a reality for hundreds of hours in many markets, upending the economics of the business in the process.
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Mon 06 Aug 2018, 11:52:28

Then again, it's also possible to do everything right. FF peaking plants that are based on natural gas turbines can be brought online in a matter of minutes, and throttled to match the grid load exactly. In fact you can SEE and HEAR this at the nearby Metcalf Energy Center about two miles from me. As a cloud passes over the S end of the Silly Valley and the rooftop PV fades, the turbines scream and the stack vapors soar into the air.

Hydro is an example of classic green baseline power that can be easily throttled. Nuclear & FF steam turbines, diesel generation, and cogeneration plants are examples of power plants that need to be at 100% output all the time, and cannot be throttled easily.

This is PEREGRINE, the HP water-cooled electrical grid simulator hardware installed at the NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory). The purpose is to advise utilities on the types of power generation to build based on the amounts of distributed green power coming online.
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby GHung » Tue 07 Aug 2018, 00:01:04

I spent the day fishing a 'Massive Grid Battery'. TVA Lake Hiwassee in far western NC feeds Lake Appalachia, below. Appalachia is being managed for trophy trout and Hiwassee is managed for other game fish including striped bass and walleye.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hiwassee_Dam
During the 1950s, TVA experimented with the idea of "pumped storage" at Hiwassee Dam. There it employed an energy-generating turbine that was run in reverse during low-demand hours to pump water below the dam into the upper reservoir. This integration of pump and turbine was the first of its kind in the United States; further, at the time it was the largest and most powerful in the world. The unit was built by Allis-Chalmers Company. The "pump-turbine" at Hiwassee is designated a "National Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark" by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME).


Hiwassee Dam’s Unit 2 Pumps It Up

After five years of inactivity, Hiwassee Dam’s groundbreaking Unit 2 reversible generator/turbine unit is fully back in action, allowing TVA even greater flexibility to generate electricity—or remove it from the grid when needed to help balance base load.

JULY 7, 2016—In 1952, TVA conducted an experiment at Hiwassee Dam, designing a reverse-drive generator/turbine there—Unit 2—that could pump water from below the dam up into the reservoir above it. The dual function could generate 85 megawatts of electricity when acting as a turbine, or in pump mode could take electricity off the grid when demand for power dropped quickly.

It was the first of its kind in the United States, and at the time the largest and most powerful in the world. So important was Hiwassee Unit 2 that it was designated a National Historical Mechanical Engineering Landmark by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers in 1981.

But you haven’t heard much about it—especially lately. That’s because Unit 2 has been in hibernation. When the unit’s breakers experienced a failure on July 5, 2011, TVA chose not to restore its pumping abilities. The unit could still generate power through traditional hydro generation means—but the reversibility was no longer possible.

“The decision came this year to restore its pump capability because hydro provides flexibility in meeting demands,” explains Michael Richards, plant group manager. “With Watts Bar Unit 2 coming on with its large base load, it was a good time to return this unit to service.”

Kenny Mullinax, vice president, Western Coal and Hydro Generation, affirms Hiwassee Unit 2’s renewed importance. “With system turndown becoming more important with the addition of a large base load unit to the portfolio, having additional pumping capabilities is extremely important,” he says. “It is of significant help to the balancing authority to regulate the grid.”


The project was coordinated across TVA teams, and came in ahead of schedule and under budget, according to construction manager Brenda Byers. Repairs began April 17 and ended June 15, at a cost of $1.3 million.

The restoration project included not only repair of the breakers but included replacing a transformer, exciter, exciter transformer and repairing the wicket gate brakes.

Hiwassee Dam in North Carolina was a TVA construction project that began in 1936, one of 16 dams it built in that period. Unit 1 went online in 1940 and is strictly a generator, without pumping capability. Raccoon Mountain is also a pumped storage site, with four units with a capability of pumping 1,500 MW. It came online in 1978.
https://www.tva.gov/Newsroom/Hiwassee-D ... umps-It-Up

https://www.tva.gov/Energy/Our-Power-Sy ... -Reservoir
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Re: $3B to turn Hoover Dam into a Massive Grid Battery?

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Tue 07 Aug 2018, 07:58:40

Yes, I agree that reversible hydro storage is an important grid energy time shifter. The major problem with pumped hydro is the same as with simple hydropower dams - the necessary elevation change is relatively rare, and most of the good sites have already been constructed. We should build out the remaining hydro facilities for pumped storage as long as we don't compromise the other purposes that dams are constructed for, which are flood controls and crop irrigation.
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