Cool new solar system

[via Treehugger, a really great green lifestyle blog].

One of the things that's not cheaper here in Mexico than in America or Canada is electricity, at least if you use a lot of it (the more you use, the more you pay per kW — sort of like bulk buying with reverse pricing). However, we do have tons of sunlight. Anyway, I was reading an article press release from Pyron Solar about their new solar generator. It's a nice self-contained unit that spits out a sustained 6.5 kW and they're planning to bring it to market for as little as $13,000.

To put that into context, according to the article a 6.5 kW generator is enough to power five or six homes*… So, the cost of “free” electricity for the lifetime of this unit is $2,600 per home. Over the first five years of use you'll have spent the equivalent of $43 a month. Over ten years, you're spending $20 a month on your electricity use (and saving everyone money because of reduced infrastructure and pollution). All of those numbers are a fraction of what we're spending right now…

Sometimes I think that this hellish mess that the Bush-Cheney cabal has pushed us to is going to be a good thing, because as it collapses, it makes everyone painfully aware of the looming environmental issues, political and corporate corruption, and needless profit-driven wars… All it takes is ten percent of us pulling our heads out of our asses and doing the right thing and everything might just turn out fine.

* I'm not sure that I agree with their “six houses” number. A 6.5 kW solar array should generate something like 30 – 35 kWh daily. Given that the average house in the US consumes that much power, I'd say that a single array will power a single house. That said, current houses pretty much throw away electricity and can be made many times more efficient. So maybe “six houses” is true, but it's definitely misleading. Also, don't underestimate how much power the average appliance uses, even if you're not using it. For example, a VCR that's plugged in but not turned on consumes about six watts. That's not a lot, but if you multiply it out over a year, that's over 50 kWh, or what this solar array would need almost two days to generate!

Wow Shannon, that's really annoying! What is it, 1997 on Geocities? Retroweb is NOT cool!

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