Secretive energy startup backed by Bill Gates achieves solar breakthrough

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Link "We are rolling out technology that can beat the price of fossil fuels and also not make the CO2 emissions," Bill Gross, Heliogen's founder and CEO, told CNN Business. "And that's really the holy grail." Heliogen, which is also backed by billionaire Los Angeles Times owner Patrick Soon-Shiong, believes the patented technology will be able to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions from industry. hmmm
 
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Not the first "miracle" energy tech to be announced over the last 40 years. Bottom line with solar is a theoretical max of about 1KW per square meter. That's high noon at Death Valley at 100% efficiency. Goes downhill rapidly from there.
 
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Solar reflectors have been made for years. Read about Ivan ho to understand why they are a bad idea in the 21st century Old school silicon has so many advantages
 

JHZR2

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If you wish to discuss the fundamental technical basis of the tech, be my guest. But not the inflammatory or politically sensitive topics.
 
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It would work in a band around the equator that gets enough year round energy and plenty of cloud free days. While Calgary has the most sunny days in all of Canada, the amount of energy within that sun drops 90% in the winter months. These people seem to think the world's center is Los Angeles and if it works there it'll work anywhere. The tech seems very limited. You could "make" cement and steal using it in the middle of the gobi desert, but then what? Transport it via diesel truck to where it's useful. Perfect.
 
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Originally Posted by JHZR2
If you wish to discuss the fundamental technical basis of the tech, be my guest. But not the inflammatory or politically sensitive topics.
Why was my post deleted? The entire subject in the OP is political?
 
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Using heliostats for CSP definitely isn't new. Ivanpah is the ultimate White Elephant of this tech. The cost of a nuclear plant with a fraction of the output and the complete inability to function as a baseload generator. Trying to force solar into roles where its simply not suited has been going on for ages.
 

CT8

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The climate crisis and game changing as well as nano graphene I still want the Hydrogen revolution.
 
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Originally Posted by OVERKILL
Using heliostats for CSP definitely isn't new. Ivanpah is the ultimate White Elephant of this tech. The cost of a nuclear plant with a fraction of the output and the complete inability to function as a baseload generator. Trying to force solar into roles where its simply not suited has been going on for ages.
Plenty of people profit on it however.
 
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Originally Posted by hatt
Originally Posted by OVERKILL
Using heliostats for CSP definitely isn't new. Ivanpah is the ultimate White Elephant of this tech. The cost of a nuclear plant with a fraction of the output and the complete inability to function as a baseload generator. Trying to force solar into roles where its simply not suited has been going on for ages.
Plenty of people profit on it however.
Yes, yes they do.
 
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That's how you know they have nothing special. If they had a breakthrough they would simply start building them and watch the money flow in. When they go all buzzword they are needing "alternative funding" to get money to their account.
 
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Originally Posted by hatt
That's how you know they have nothing special. If they had a breakthrough they would simply start building them and watch the money flow in. When they go all buzzword they are needing "alternative funding" to get money to their account.
thumbsup
 
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So you guys are saying this is nothing groundbreakign or exciting? Just asking I know little about this stuff.
 
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Originally Posted by buster
So you guys are saying this is nothing groundbreakign or exciting? Just asking I know little about this stuff.
First, it would be of benefit for you to look up Ivanpah. You can start with the Wiki on it: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivanpah_Solar_Power_Facility The idea of using heliostats to concentrate solar energy at a receptor, be it a molten salt or some other medium to spin a steam turbine, isn't new. The idea that you can use the heat in a process heat application is a slightly different twist on it, but still runs into the inherent issue of intermittency associated with solar. Steel mills, concrete factories...etc Industrial operations that utilize process heat run constantly. Becoming weather-dependant isn't a viable business model, even if it makes the process heat free. And it wouldn't be as easy as using it as a fuel saving device for existing applications because of the fundamental design differences in how one harnesses CSP versus a traditional fossil-powered furnace. There have been a number of different ideas floating around as to how to replace fossil fuels in industrial applications that utilize a furnace, such as making steel. One that comes closest to maintaining existing structures and models would be the most likely to succeed, such as using hydrogen: https://www.sei.org/publications/hydrogen-steelmaking/ There's a lot of hype about VRE and fitting it into roles where it is ill-equipped. Separating these wild fantasies from what's real and obtainable within a reasonable timeframe can be frustrating when you are bombarded with propaganda promising everything from solar-based energy independence in Winnipeg to wind turbines providing baseload if we only ran cables the entire length of the Atlantic wink
 
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The basic idea has been around for quite a while and gets trotted out for various sundry 'crises' over the decades. Here's one from the June, 1978 cover of Popular Science magazine... [Linked Image]
 
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Originally Posted by buster
Very interesting, thanks. I will look into it. cheers
You are quite welcome. I deal with these topics regularly in my nuclear discussions on twitter, so if you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask.
 
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Originally Posted by OVERKILL
Originally Posted by buster
Very interesting, thanks. I will look into it. cheers
You are quite welcome. I deal with these topics regularly in my nuclear discussions on twitter, so if you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask.
Awesome thank you! thumbsup
 
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Originally Posted by tcp71
It would work in a band around the equator that gets enough year round energy and plenty of cloud free days. While Calgary has the most sunny days in all of Canada, the amount of energy within that sun drops 90% in the winter months. These people seem to think the world's center is Los Angeles and if it works there it'll work anywhere. The tech seems very limited. You could "make" cement and steal using it in the middle of the gobi desert, but then what? Transport it via diesel truck to where it's useful. Perfect.
No energy solution works everywhere in the world. If it works fine in one area I'd say this is fine. Still, heliostat is not a new idea.
 
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