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* Posts by jimmy

28 posts • joined 20 Sep 2007

Will the looters 'loose' their benefits?

jimmy
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@ mass hysteria

The most sane post on here. There are many hysterical commentards.

Why don't people get it? We are taught to act the way we do in civilised society. We respect property and life. We are not born this way. I suspect anyone could become a looter given the wrong upbringing and experiences in life. compare citizens of Sparta to those of the mongols? were they distinct primate species that were programmed to act that way or just followers of their own particular rules?

What most adults forget is that a teenagers* mind is a whole different cup of tea to ours. They are different creatures. Very easily influenced with no experience to fall back on. They have brilliant but untrained minds. Please try and think back to when you were this age. how easy was it to not follow the latest fad? how much do you understand now that you didn't then? did you break a law? if so what made you do it?

Yes they did wrong, yes they should be punished but what should not be assumed is that they are unfixable evil individuals. something went wrong to make them this way and that should be put right otherwise it could be my or your children acting like this in 5 or 10 years time.

other than to satisfy our deep desire for revenge i really don't see how cutting benefits is going to deal with the long term problem.

*and by teenagers i mean any immature mind which is probably anyone under the age of 25.

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jimmy
Meh

keep level headed

surely it's a politicians job to prevent this happening again which involves working out what went wrong in the first place as well as calming the law abiders by talking tuff on punishments etc. i think it generally accepted that people aren't born 'scum' and can be rehabilitated away from being 'scum' once they've reached that status. But something causes people to become 'scum' and that needs to be put right. This idea of stopping benefits could make things worse and needs to be thought through. i think that's probably what Danny5 was on about.

Civilised society is much more brittle than people realise. I think the saying is something like any civilisation is 3 meals away from anarchy. Which i can believe. Imagine waking up tomorrow with no food or access to it, no money and no fuel. what will you do in 24hrs or 48hrs when you're very very hungry? before you go mental, I'm not saying these yobs are in this position, i'm just trying to demonstrate how brittle society actually is.

The Proles will always outnumber the policing authorities and that is why making the situation worse could be a whole lot scarier than it is now.

looting and destruction is terrible. the perpetrators need to be caught and dealt with in a sane way. knee jerk reactions could quite conceivably make things a lot worse. that's all.......

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Fukushima fearmongers are stealing our Jetsons future

jimmy
Boffin

@captain thyratron

"If we thought about traffic fatalities the same way we think about trifling quantities of radiation...."

we do.

statistically it is safer to drive home drunk than it is to walk home drunk. that's a fact.

the difference is that driving drunk harms someone else whereas walking home drunk does not (even if one stumbles into a cars path it's generally the car drivers fault - in the UK anyway).

much like nuclear accidents. if it harms an innocent person even if they spend their whole life smoking and sunbathing they're going to be mighty pissed off. lawyers will be rubbing their hands together with glee.

that's the only difference i can see. it's got very little to do with greenies and paranoid people. more to do with money and law suits than anything else. hence the regulation.

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jimmy
Megaphone

30 millisieverts

hey Highlander have you read this:

http://www.radiologyinfo.org/en/pdf/sfty_xray.pdf

probably as it's one of the first things that comes up in google. i have not checked the provenence.

CT scan radiation doses depend on what you're scanning, chest low dose as you're scanning mostly air. But then there's hi-res CT for chests, i digress. Anyway pelvis and abdomen = dense = high dose. 30millisieverts this article says, lifetime additional fatal cancer risk = 1:1000.

200milisieverts doesn't sound so nice now. you only need to expose 100 people to this and on average you've definately killed someone via lovely safe nuclear power. it's not just radiation levels that matter it's the number of people exposed as well.

still much safer than mining coal though.................maybe - depends how many people are mining compared to the number of deaths.

ps CT scans aren't 'simple' and aren't safe that's why you need a doctor to order them.

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jimmy
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agreed

Highlander, I actually agree with everything you say. I also think it's tragic that this issue has overshadowed the real disaster in Japan.

What i disagree with is the polar opposite opinion this article takes and to some extent your defence of that. you appear to be 'antiscaremongerers'. As bad as the press but the complete opposite.

The article states there will be NO adverse health effects from this (implied for eternity too). This is simply untrue. Granted the numbers will most likely be insignificant in relation to coal mining accidents, tsunamis, back ground radiation levels, starvation etc etc.

Physics dictates that there is a chance a particle from one of these reactors could be taken on global wind currents and be breathed in by an unsuspecting person many miles away. The chance is tiny and probably unmeasurable but certainly not zero. As there are 6 billion pairs of lungs on this planet it effectively increases that chance. And yes i know more people die from background radiation or crossing the road or whatever than this will ever cause.

i was trying to point out that radiation is not an on off thing. it doesn't suddenly start causing cancer at a certain level. a low level exposed to a huge number of people will cause more ill health than a higher level to a small number of people. that's just the way it works.

so yes i agree with what you say and the press has acted irresponsibly by scaremongering but there is no need to go and do the same but the complete opposite. Balance is what i'm after i guess.

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jimmy
Unhappy

noddy school i guess

fair point. i guess extra mining/waste storing takes a lot more energy and creates more mess than reprocessing and then dealing with the waste from reprocessing and spent 2nd cycle fuel.

i've switched sides......

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jimmy
Megaphone

you fail

may i point you in the direction of the 2nd law of thermodynamics. And mr page for that matter too.

unless you input energy then reprocessing will produce more waste than it deals with.

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jimmy
Stop

just read the first sentence

'As the situation at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear powerplant slowly winds down, the salient facts remain the same as they have been throughout: nobody has suffered or will suffer any radiological health consequences.'

There's no need to read anymore. This sentence demonstrates this article is not worth reading and contains very poor journalism. Let me explain:

'Radiation' is best described by the use of quantum mechanics. This model relies entirely on statistics. That's why we use half lives, there is no other way of modeling radioactive processes. An inhaled atom of plutonium, uranium or whatever may decay in a minute or a million years. The gamma ray/neutron/alpha or beta particle may interact and damage your DNA or it may not.

This process is entirely random. yes the more there is the more likely it is to happen but anyone that claims NOBODY WILL come to any harm when radiation has been measured is talking absolute bollocks.

So Mr Page, please stop you have made yourself look like a real fool. you are no scientist and no medic that's for sure.

just to add: i'm actually pronuclear and this idiot is ruining our case!

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jimmy
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page and highlander please read the above

at last a sane opinion. and now shut up and please stop your ridiculous arguments about how no one will die from this. no one knows and quite possibly no one will ever know. what we do know is anyone that says they do know (ie you two gibbons) are talking complete tripe!

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Fukushima scaremongers becoming increasingly desperate

jimmy
WTF?

i'm a dr

and this chap or chapess is talking out of his bottom.

it is widely accepted that dr shipman killed several hundred people. impossible to prove in the sense you guys are talking about but accepted by the greater establishment based on population studies only.

you see it's all down to stats, expose radiation to enough people no matter what the level and you will cause 'cancer'. Even chest xrays cause cancer just because we do so many of them. so yes in my opinion this incident will cause cancer and perhaps death but who exactly is affected it will be impossible to tell before or after they have been diagnosed in the majority of cases.

The numbers will be low and as the article suggests distracts from the real disaster from the tsunami itself.

I think the point with these reactors going tits up is that they are going to cost a lot to clear up and are going to be there for a very long time. i've read somewhere recently the land around chernobyl will be uninhabital for at least 600 years. so for a 1 in a 1000 year tsunami it kind of proves that building reactors near earthquake zones is not a good idea since the clearup will take as long as the time between these tsunamis

but hey for a 5 year termed government i suspect this line of reasoning is disregarded ie it most likely won't be their problem if an incident does occur.

some other quick points:

this mr lewis blokes article i feel is a bit of tosh in places, it's made me return for rereads though so el reg's advertisers must be happy but i think publishing this isn't good for el reg's journalistic reputation.

those adverse to stats (me included) have to accept its use as quantum physics (eg fissile radioactive processes) relies totally on stats hence the use of half lives to describe radioactive decay.

i'm broadly in favour of nuclear power given the current options.

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First Freeview HD TV goes on sale

jimmy

@pricey

i'd buy the TV but would rather stick forks in my eyes than pay for Mr Murdoch anymore money. AND a sky HD subscription would easily cost more in time than a one off TV.

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Freeview HD - your questions answered

jimmy

PlayTV

Yeah i know it won't work with this BUT.............when are SONY releasing the new DVB-T2 modulator box to make it work?

This is the only way i can figure this ever taking off for people who aren't going to replace their TV soon. There's no way i'm going to spend any money buying a box to watch BBCHD not because i think BBCHD is rubbish, it'll just shaft the rest of my set up. i've only just got a TV with a built in digital tuner and it's so much better than the 'set top box' solution that i've had for the best part of 10 years. that's something i don't ever want to go back to thank you very much.

if play TV is upgrading then i've got one system (the PS3) for watching/recording SD, HD, Blurays, DVDs, downloaded media, iplayer, playing games (not that i do much of that).

one thing i'm not doing is replacing my 2 year old £2k 1080p plasma!!!

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Windfarm Britain means (very) expensive electricity

jimmy

back to you matt 32

i thought you might find that hole in the argument (wind farms only generating 20% of their rated output according to some).

i hate percentages as should any mathematician.

There's a difference between generating capacity (your quoted 85gigs) and my value of peak demand (60gigs). that's quite a margin. makes our numbers and percentages uncomparable. perhaps when using average wind turbine energy production (ie 20%) you should compare that to average UK energy use (ie less than the 60gig peak demand).

You could argue that a 5MW wind turbine has a capacity of 5MW (when it's windy). i don't suppose you know exactly how much an average power plant produces compared to it's rated capacity? and i'm talking about how much energy it puts out from actual day to day use. i'm aware that if needs be they can be cranked up to produce more but due to the way we use electricity this isn't possible all the time.

According to the BWEA website there's 3.6gigs of 'capacity' at present from 2500 turbines. that's one coal power plant that hasn't been built. And one plants worth of coal we no longer have to buy and burn. i would view that positively rather than your rather negative view.

roads are ugly, planes are ugly, wind turbines are ugly but it looks like they're all necessary. i would say wind turbines are not ugly but that's my opinion.

So looks like we'll need a lot more turbines. perhaps 4 times the amount. Denmark has done it and we have better wind resources than they have. i don't see why we can't do it too.

Also, you shouldn't use the word 'efficiency' when quoting 20%. 5MW is the peak capacity 1MW is perhaps the average output. wind turbine efficiency is up to 61% (the Betz limit) comparable to fossil fuel stations. Although this is irrelevant when the energy is free and coal/nuclear etc aren't free.

As per the BWEA website up to 12gigs can be generated without needing to use storage solutions. about 4.5 times the current capacity. = 10% required electricity for the nation. using 0.5% of the land area of the UK of which 99% is unused land which can still be used for farming/nature reserves etc.

i agree with your 'moon project' statement. geothermal is effectively earths natural nuclear power and is almost completely clean. the problem is cost and no government is going to try that anytime soon even if it makes perfect sense to spend the $60 billion a year we waste on defence on this and get it done in less than a decade.

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jimmy
Grenade

Army power = cheap electricity

here's a thought. instead of spending $60 billion a year on employing 50 000 men to worry arabs and muslims why don't we send them up the Pennines, the Welsh and Scottish mountains and get them building wind turbines?

That'll reduce the cost of building them to a few % of what they cost now and they'll use less of their expensive weaponry too. Everyone's a winner. We could even get the Navy building offshore turbines too. We could build the turbines in months or just a few years with all that ready paid spare labour.

My point being; There's plenty of money for it we just choose not to. Blowing all our taxes on the military seems to be the priority right now and then the building cost gets pushed onto our bills, we complain and blame the greenies for what in effect is a government that sends tax money in the wrong direction from what we actually want.

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jimmy

@matt 32 1544

UK peak electricity generation is 60 000 MW

Biggest wind turbine is 5MW

I make that 12 000 wind turbines

However as discussed by many above you can only expect perhaps 20% generation by wind.

I make that 2400 Turbines.

So i'm afraid your statement is a little wrong.

As for 'industrialization of the landscape'. Have you not opened your eyes recently? Roads have obliterated our landscape with a huge covered area of asphalt. Has anyone complained about that?

WInd turbines cover very little land area for what they are. And the land is useable underneath too.

If you're lucky enough to have a view (i'm not), i'm afraid being able to see a huge wind turbine is not an excuse to NOT build it. We have a few turbines within a few miles and i've gotta say they look great and a hellava lot nicer than the great big condensing towers of a conventional power plant with it's own human generated cloud above.

Do you complain about all the aeroplanes overhead, have you looked? Take some time one day and count them, no one complains about them obliterating the blue sky above. Why? because they're accepted and everyone ignores them despite the fact that for instance in Manchester i can often count 5 or 10 con trails blotting out the sun (when it doesn't rain).

As for geothermal. i like the idea, Iceland does it but that's because it's close to the surface. it maybe too pricey though. You'd have to drill some pretty deep holes to get geothermal in the UK.

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jimmy
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Rob @114

i suggest you have 3 options:

1) accept wind farms

2) Have a great big coal/gas/nuclear plant put right next to your house

3) Have your electricity cut off and sort your own power out

i know which option i would take.

how ugly are wind farms compared to say telegraph poles, roads, other peoples house etc etc etc. you're just a stupid Nimby stuck in your ways.

your children and childrens children will accept them as if they were television aerials/transmitters/telegraph poles just as you accept these today.

get used to it or sort your own power out!

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Doctors: Third babies are the same as patio heaters

jimmy
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population control

People use resources, therefore people are responsible for resources running out (and possible climate change). Therefore more people = more problems with lack of resources.

Doctors deal with population control every day of the week. So WTF are you lot going on about Drs not being qualified to talk about this? F3ckin idiots!

I would say a lot better qualified than a bunch of IT bods.

If anyone has ever studied populations and modelled their behaviour you will know that they are limited by lack of resources, disease and lack of space (oh and in the human race, War too).

So go ahead if you want, multiply have as many children as you can it'll only shorten the human races life expectancy even further and who knows i may even be alive to witness the downfall and laugh and say i told you so................

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Blears pitches prize draws and online polls at young votes

jimmy
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@Liam

Well i gotta say, WELL SAID!

Agree with everything you said

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Prius hybrid to get rooftop solar panel

jimmy

another one for steve

Are you saying that solar cells should not be left in the sun because they degrade? Now that is a ridiculous thing to say! They're designed to be left in the sun!

So i'm not suggesting these should be retrofitted to existing cars, that would be pointless. New cars (whether hybrid like the Prius or pure electric like the Tesla) will need to be fitted with adequate spare charging capacity so that as much energy as possible is stored from the cells when the car is not in use.

Unfortunately the Prius does not do this, whenever the petrol engine is in use it's charging the battery to its max (a big downfall i think as this is inefficient, the energy would be better off being used to propel the car).

So my main points are these (and i don't think anyone can disagree with them):

Firstly, it must be demonstrated that car solar panel manufacture takes up less energy than they generate in their average lifespan.

Secondly, cost to the consumer is not a necessary consideration. Think catalytic converters. Mandatory, they add several hundred pounds to the cost of a new car, they REDUCE fuel efficiency (by necessitating an increase in the fuel/oxygen ratio therefore more fuel is used) and they do nothing (except cost money) for the individual driver. They only act on mass to improve air quality.

Thirdly, i therefore see no reason why this concept can not become reality at some point. It will eventually save money for the driver as compared to other mandatory car features.

I agree that putting them on houses will use the cells more optimally than cars though. But i'm afraid household electricity prices are going to have to be in the same realms of petrol prices to make them economical. Something that WILL happen in time if no one does anything about it, we are after all at peak oil production.

Either that or hybrids are going to have to become 'Plugin' so that you can use the energy from your house solar cells to charge your car. This involves adding more battery energy storage to extend their range and also increasing the top speed at which they run solely on electric. The problem with this is that cars are usually away from home when the cells are producing most energy. The energy has to then be sold to the grid for (cheekily) less than you buy it back. someone needs to do something about that.

Car manufacturers seem a little scared of producing plugin hybrids probably because the amount we rely on petrol might crash, the government would earn less tax and influencial oil giants would lose money.

As for your suggestion of having fields of panels tracking the sun to optimise efficiency. Not good for the UK where we're struggling for space. I doubt it'd get past planning either. Great for the sahara though, but then you'd lose a lot of energy transporting it thousands of miles.

how's your patent going?

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jimmy

a response for steve

1) How do we know todays cells won't last more than 20 years? The cells made in 1988 are by far inferior to todays (especially in efficiency of converting light to electricity). i was under the impression that there was no agreed lifespan due to these factors. current estimates are 30+ years.

2) RE greenhouses. i do have a grasp of this. i understand most UV doesn't make it through our atmosphere (otherwise we wouldn't be sending UV scopes into space) but some wavelengths do get through otherwise we couldn't get sunburnt.

Yes radiation is mostly IR (black body radiation at 15C) and escapes mostly when it's clear (clouds are great greenhouses). CO2, methane and others are good at reflecting IR too, that's why we're trying to reduce these being emitted. I don't see the difference between solar cells and car paint though. Yes they're slightly different colours but will it make that much difference?

3) good point about the green car. but with everyone washing their cars so often (i've always considered it a waste of time myself) surely this cures the problem (i guess i might be motivated to wash mine if it was costing me fuel!)

4) As for cost. I was proposing mandatory solar cells just as airbags, seatbelts, fog lights, headlights, car tax etc are mandatory. so earning your money back would not be an issue, but it would be a bonus to leave your car in the sun more.

5) As for earning your energy back, 1-4 years is what i've heard for modern cells (used optimally), which isn't great considering most cars only last 15yrs or so. Amorphous cells are a lot cheaper and easier to make (but are less efficient), they even come in flexible foil these days so you could just stick em onto ya car like doublesided tape.

you're right though the economics are a bit dodgy at present but it's probably a close call. which means in my head that someone needs to do some research into this. So if Toyota wanna take this up then good on em and i wish them well.

The main problem is the vested interest in making this NOT work by several MASSIVE companies/industries. Which i suspect is the main reason why a) there have been no electric cars of note and b) this idea will never become a reality. sad really. AND c) why the stupidest idea of the lot (hydrogen fuel) may well reach reality as it is an ideal fuel to tax and regulate but is awful in all other respects.

I'm getting a Tesla when they're out and sticking solar cells on me house roof.

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jimmy
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i've just bought a solar panel

by coincidence i;

a) ordered a 30 watt polycrystaline solar panel last week

b) was talking about this idea the day before the story was released (freaked me out a bit, hence my interest)

Anyway, the solar panel arrived today and as per usual it was raining in manchester. It's now charging a 12Volt deep cycle battery in my shed (i'm not going to strap it to my car!). So in the rain in summer it kicks out about 400mA facing straight up (not angled to the sun). It's about 75cmx35cm and i reckon i could fit 10 of those on my BMW compact (if they were built into the body work of the roof and bonnet).

so that's 4amps at 12 volts or 48 watts. but obviously you'd get more in the sun and less in winter. 10 of those panels would cost £500 at todays prices.

You'd lose a 3rd charging the battery so that's 32 watts. assume 8 hours daylight per day. you'd earn: 32x60x60x8x365 joules per year of useful energy = 336.4 MJoules. 10% would be lost converting this back into kinetic energy via electric motors. so that takes you to about 300MJoules per year.

As per my comment above petrol gives 7.5Mjoules per litre of USEFUL kinetic energy to the car. so 300/7.5 is 40 litres of saved petrol per year in manchester for an average sized car. or about £50 per year. So it'd take at least 10 years to earn your money back.

That's the bad news i suppose. but AT LEAST YOU EARN SOMETHING BACK which i'm afraid to say you will NEVER do for anything else you buy for your car. It'll keep earning money back for you as long as your car is working. i may be a bit weird but i'd rather spend money on this than a personalised number plate or metallic paintwork.

but back to my point 24 million cars x40 litres is about 1 billion litres of saved petrol/diesel per YEAR. You can't argue with those kind of figures. The only other thing that's saved that much petrol is doubling of the price of fuel and we all know how much extra money that is costing us (i dare say more than £500 per cars lifetime that solar panels would cost).

i wonder what our world would be like if all cars had to be sold with solar cells incorporated into their bonnets and roofs (and somehow hybridised or pure electric engines)? Would it be so bad? After all we have worse things imposed on us. eg. 'green' taxes that seem to do nothing but hamper our lives.

@steve:

are you seriously suggesting that solar energy once it's passed through the atmosphere will not escape again if we coat cars in solar cells but if they have normal paintwork the solar energy will magically be allowed out of the atmosphere again? dark materials are excellent radiators of energy and it's the greenhouse effect of upper atmosphere chemicals which i understand to be the problem.

looking at my aging BMW outside it does look a little dirty (it's dark green) but since i haven't washed it for about 3 years it seems to do ok considering. All that manchester rain i suppose.......................

didn't mean to accuse you of the 10% thing, sorry!

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jimmy
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@steve

yes solar panels are effectively greenhouses but then so are dark painted cars and that doesn't stop people buying them.

please do divide my result by 4, i did mention you could divide by 100 if you wish to allow for errors and as you can see just by sheer weight of numbers the actual surface area of 24 million cars is enough to collect a silly amount of energy.

And as for cost (if you're worried) no one seems to mind the extras that are added on for such luxuries as metallic paint work, go faster stripes, airbags, airconditioning (which is i admit mandatory in some parts of the world but not here in the uk, well it didn't seem to until about 10 years ago) all of which would cost a similar amount.

As for getting dirty and too much rain. surely the english rain would be useful for cleaning the tops of cars and hence keeping the panels efficient.

This may well be a PR stunt but someones got to start these things off. It won't make a huge difference to the individual (especially if you drive huge distances per year) but it will save fuel for the country as a whole and limit CO2 emissions. just as seat belts don't effect the individual (unless you crash) but if eveyone uses them then lives are saved.

and just as a side, where's this 10% nonsense come from for airconditioning? cars use a variable amount of fuel depending on what you're doing with them. A/C uses a fixed amount when on and nothing when off. so by stating 10% someone needs to qualify what the engine is doing (idling, racing, urban driving) and in doing so your % figure is rather pointless. using watts is a much more scientific unit.

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jimmy
Stop

why has no one done the maths yet?

ok so one guy reckons you can get about 50 to 80 watts of energy with amorphous panels at 10% efficiency. so lets use the better monocrystaline 20% efficient panels and build them into the roof and bonnet to prevent any extra drag. so that'll be 100-160 watts.

lets call that 100 watts for arguments sake. that's 100 joules per second that you'll be able to pump into your battery. Now the efficiency varies depending on the battery technology but i've read that NiMH batteries are about 2/3 efficient so that cuts your energy to 67 joules per second of usable energy. now lets assume that electric motors are about 90% efficient at turning electrical energy into movement so that cuts it down to about 60 joules per second.

So maybe the sunshines and maybe it doesn't. but lets say you get 8hrs of daylight strength at 100 watts. so thats 8x60x60x67 joules per day = about 2 million joules per day to use.

now burning petrol will give you about 35 mega joules per litre. BUT internal combustion engines are notoriously inefficient. an accepted figure is about 20% but this depends on how you drive etc. so that's about 7.5 mega joules per litre of petrol of useful energy.

So, leave your car in the sun for 365 days and earn 2x365 = 730 mega joules. if you use all of this for driving then you'll lose about 10% of this as electric motors are not 100% efficient. so that gives 660 mega joules. divide by 7.5 and it gives you your petrol saved which is 88 litres per year. and at todays prices i guess that's about £100 worth of petrol saving per year.

Please note this is for ANY driver, whether you drive 50 or 50 000 miles per year and that's the beauty about this idea. For most of the time, most of the cars are not being used and mostly cars are left outside in the sun.

There are 24 million cars on the road in the uk. if everyone had these panels fitted that'll be 88x24 = 2.1 BILLION litres of petrol saved PER YEAR. Or considering a tanker takes 50 000 litres then that's 42 240 tankers full. I've read that we buy 47 billion litres of petrol/diesel per year so that's about 5% saving and god knows how many tonnes of CO2.

So there you go, simple maths. It may be wrong in places but i doubt it's out by more than 2 powers either way. so even if that were the case it's still a massive saving.

so all you nay sayers and prius kickers please shut the f£££ up and think of something better before bad mouthing what might be a good idea!

ps. you're welcome to pick any holes you like in the argument, debate is always good and i'm willing to admit i'm wrong (if indeed i am).

pps.The only problem i can see with this is the energy used in producing solar cells which is relatively high. taking somewhere between 1 to 4 years to pay back the energy of making them. Since cars only tend to last about 15 years that's quite a high proportion of their usable life. Solar cells as far as i'm aware do not wear out. lifetimes are quoted at 30 years but i suspect that's just a guess. there is obviously opportunity for recycling them too.

ppps. i suppose an easier way of expressing the amount of energy that could be generated with car solar panels would be 24 million cars x 100 watts = 2 giga watts. or 2 nuclear power stations.

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Dawn on its way to the asteroid belt

jimmy

@francis

resources = matter = energy.

good point though but i'd say more accurately all we are doing is following the second law of thermodynamics.

ie the earth is quite well sorted at the moment with carbon in the ground as coal and oil in specific places and marble in one place and slate in another etc etc. and all we're doing is messing it all up into one big errr mess i suppose.

at which point we'll all be at equilibrium and in a low energy state.

at this point we'll be wishing we made more solar panels and other such things to catch external sources of energy.

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Consumers confused by HD

jimmy

@CRT

Well that really depends on what you watch. but generally your are correct. CRTs (esp. the 100Hz models) have a much quicker response time than LCD or plasma. My 3 year old plasma was great for still pictures but when it came to movement it was terrible. credits at the end of programs were unreadable for example. football is another example where it fell down. My new 1080p plasma is much better but still not as good as a CRT. my supposedly '100 Hz' LCD by sony is no better either. plasma is better than LCD in that respect.

however if you're running a DVD player via anything other than component or hdmi then you will notice a significant difference in picture quality just by using these. virtually all TVs now come with HDMI and component inputs. older TVs do not.

And another marketing trick the idiotic manufacturers have started doing:

my sony 1368x720 pixel LCD is apparently a '3 mega pixel' display according to the sony crap that came with it. well using my maths i get just over one million pixels. obviously they've taken one pixel to be 3 (as in red, green and blue). it'd be a very clever screen indeed if it could use all those independently.

they really are very good at confusing people

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jimmy

HD observations

i've never had problems with screen burn. but then i turn the contrast right down and turn it up for films and games only. Girlfriends don't notice. They only notice volume for some reason.

As for upscalers as long as you're using HDMI or component for your DVD player hookup then 576p looks no different to 720p or 1080p (you will lose info and it will look worse at 1080i) on most TVs. most TVs internal upscalers are just as good as DVD player upscalers.

some upscalers are slightly better than others but since it seems (from reading these comments) most people can't tell the difference between DVD and bluray/HDDVD anyway the difference is so slight that there's no point. but it really depends on what equipment you own.

Yes SD broadcasts look crap these days. my theory on this is;

1) the bit rate is mostly pretty poor. infact, compare freview to analogue and you see that analogue is a better signal by far. digital TV is a step backwards in terms of image quality.

and

2) TVs are so bloody big these days that ballooning up the image so much is bound to cause these problems. step back a few metres and the image looks as good as it used to (and takes up the same area on your retina as it used to) ie big tvs are just showing you what an inferior pile of crap we've been watching for the past 30 years.

3) mpeg noise reduction can help with this but it's really just polishing a turd as they say.

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jimmy

@sarah Baucom

sorry yes it is 1920x1080. i was wrong.

my point was that an 'HD ready' TV can accept an HD signal but then there are no specifications to say what it does with that signal. it may only have 2x2 pixels on the front screen but it can still accept an HD signal and is therefore 'HD ready'.

as for upscaling before it gets to your TV. what's the point in that? exactly what do people think a TV does with a 720x576 DVD signal when it displays it in full screen at 1080i or whatever. it has to, by definition, upscale it itself otherwise it wouldn't be full screen (it'd be a small box at the centre of the screen). upscaling DVD players are a gimic. i know cause i had one and it made no difference at all. even TV manufacturers admit this.

My TV is 'full HD' it's a panasonic pz700 42inch. the old one was a pioneer pdp434. go look em up if you wish. the old pioneer was twice the price of the panasonic (prices in plasmas have dropped dramatically in 3 years).

as for tuners. most TVs have freeview tuners which are definately not HD. HD cable and sky is brodcast at 1080i (1920x1080 interlaced). playstation 3 games are 720p (1368x720). bluray players are 1080p (1920x1080) and HDVDs are 1080i i think but i have no experience of those. xbox 360 is 1080i.

so the only items i know that use 'full hd' are PS3s and Bluray players and possible the odd HDDVD player. but remember to run anything at proper 1080i you still need the 1920x1080 pixels. if your TV doesn't have that many pixels then there's absolutely no point in using that mode.

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jimmy

@the aitch man

ok, people who say 'haitch' are very irritating and need to go back to school. it's 'aitch' and always has been.

as for HD. i had a plasma for 3 years and couldn't see the benefit..........until i got my eyes tested and got glasses. They're now my HD-glasses.

There's no point getting an HD telly unless it's 'full HD 1080p' which means it can actually display 1950x1080 pixels. 'HD ready' means nothing other than it's got an HD socket on the back. It's the pixels on the front that matter. Can't stress this enough.

i did have a plasma that had 1024x768 pixels but luckily that got nicked by robbin' scallys and the insurance got me a 1950x1080 one in return. So i've had experience of an 'HD ready' TV and a 'full HD' TV. get the latter not the fomer.

As for HD inputs. i went for a PS3/Bluray combo and sorry but i'm not paying £25-30 for a film i'll watch once so i'll be renting my blurays and installing linux soon and watching HD DIVX's.

So in summary if you think a DVD at 720x576 is as good as a bluray at 1950x1080 then you've either got a crap TV or need your eyes testing.

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