Re: Methane and other winds (was Re: alternatives to big oil and if they can ...

From: Robert J. Bradbury (
Date: Fri Feb 04 2000 - 04:37:29 MST

On Thu, 3 Feb 2000 wrote:

> MMB Natural gas and wind power-for whatever the drawbacks, are currently the
> growing-est sources of energy in power production.

The pseudo-downside of Methane/Natural gas is the CO2 emissions
and the fact that for high efficiency (esp. power generation) it
requires large installations. Home gas turbines are not available
yet. Fuel cells using methane are currently expensive and fairly
heavy (making them good for buses but less good for cars).

> Now to cut to the chase-got nano-got solar-got fusion????

Well, you "got nano" now in biomass to methanol production which
does occur now in countries from the U.S. to Brazil to India.
The problem currently is that its a less dense fuel source and
the market isn't as big as it is for petroleum products. Cool
nano comes as Eugene and I have been discussing when we can engineer
photosynthetic methanol producing self-replicating machines.
You obviously have solar now since the market is growing by
leaps and bounds every year. This gets subsidized and justified by
the Europeans and Japanese as way to reduce foreign power sources
(gas from Russia, oil from the MidEast, etc.). Fusion is the
only thing you really don't have and thats from underinvestment,
because as others have pointed out, there are so many other energy
sources, why do we need fusion. I've also seen papers that indicate
that you cannot make it a "clean" source due to the problem of disposal
of the radioactive materials created as side effects radiation produced
from the reactions. This is, in contrast to, wind or Methane (with a lot
of tree planting), wich could be considered relatively "clean" (considering
of course the energy required to produce the wind or gas turbines)...

> Lets have some material, off the shelf examples-real world stuff.
Done. If you want more, the net is an abundant resource for this

> And tomorrow is always just around the corner and to quote the book "Wasn't
> Tomorrow Wonderful?"

And its getting more wonderful every day... :-)


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