The Future of Renewable Energy: Tier List

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Unfortunately, you hit a surface area/volume ratio issue.
A building's ability to generate solar energy scales with its surface area.
A building's consumption of energy scales like it volume.
So, the bigger the building, the less it is able to provide energy for itself.
This is largely irrelevant when discussion city-wide power grid infrastructure, rather than the powering of a single (not super common) building.

A given building’s power generation is just part of the city’s power supply. Mitigating how much a very large building sucks out of the grid is worthwhile up to very large buildings, and there are other solutions being used and developed for the largest structures which can take over in those rather uncommon cases.

The vast majority of urban centers don’t have many (if any) skyscrapers or massive super warehouses. They do have vast swathes of exposed roadway and parking lots.

And the advantage goes to city solar in terms of ecological impact, as well, as exposed asphalt and concrete causes cities to be dramatically hotter than surrounding countryside, while covering a desert in panels would inevitably cause massive damage to the desert ecology.

One aspect I’m not versed in at all is moving power over a distance. Idk how much inefficiency is caused by having the power generator miles away from the power usage.
 

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Dausuul

Legend
Is the assumption here that "our" is a number that will continue to grow?

That makes humans a renewable resource.

So, treadmills? Wait...treadmills with VR headsets streaming the Metaverse. And free Netflix for good measure.
Yeah, but then some dude in sunglasses and a leather coat shows up and starts offering people red and blue pills, and it all goes downhill from there.
 

aco175

Legend
I can see in the short-term of 20-50 years still being on oil and natural gas. I would love to see one of the promises come true, but my father still tells me about the time he was growing up and that by the year 2000 everyone would have plastic houses and jetpacks.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
I wrote my college thesis on the Atomic Audit years ago, I am a bookworm, and it was the biggest book in the college library.

The essay consisted of a breakdown on the waste management side of the industry, and it was pretty bad. The costs of containing radioactive waste is expensive, and they don't use proper equipment to store the waste (to save costs), so there are a myriad of problems with containing and managing the waste (it gradually decays for thousands of years, and we will all be long gone while it is still decaying into its half life).

The solution I presented (years ago) was to recycle the old waste into modified reactors. Reusing the fuel could be more cost effective, and it would be reusing materials that are hazardous while in storage.

I honestly imagined it as science fiction at the time. But recently i have seen new scientific studies on recycling radiactive waste in new reactors designed to recycle instead of create more waste for the environment.

Its quite significant because the waste side is rarely ever addressed.
A coworker told me about a previous job he had that was an proof of concept facility for recycling spent fuel rods. Seems that they are considered spent when their purity goes down to like 90%, but it's not too difficult to separate out and remake new ones from the material. Better than storing it for hundreds of years. Was shut down though.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Nuclear is S Tier.
The OP broke down various options on Nuclear above, with reasoning. Just disagreeing with him without anything supporting isn't all that useful in moving the conversation forward. Can you give us the reasons why it's Tier S instead of his breakdown?
 



Stalker0

Legend
So putting solar panels on roads isn’t the great idea…what we have learned from the solar roadways project and some other tests, it can make the roads slick and negate traction, it beats up the panels, and when cars are driving on them..you don’t get power.

If your going urban, far better to put them on top of buildings and parking garages.
 

Art Waring

halozix.com
A coworker told me about a previous job he had that was an proof of concept facility for recycling spent fuel rods. Seems that they are considered spent when their purity goes down to like 90%, but it's not too difficult to separate out and remake new ones from the material. Better than storing it for hundreds of years. Was shut down though.
The idea seems to have been around for a while I guess, but sometimes ideas take a while to succeed in practice. It is a shame they dropped the project.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
It’s generally about 2% roughly speaking.
That’s not terrible.
So putting solar panels on roads isn’t the great idea…what we have learned from the solar roadways project and some other tests, it can make the roads slick and negate traction, it beats up the panels, and when cars are driving on them..you don’t get power.

If your going urban, far better to put them on top of buildings and parking garages.
You put them above the road. I’m fairly sure everyone here is talking about that, not solar paving.
 

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