Friday, November 02, 2007

Cutting Edge Energy Technology for Iran?

The present commotion over Iran is about the installation of 6,000 Mw of nuclear generated electricity.

Here is an alternative:

Insolation (i.e. received solar energy) in Iran is about 7Kwh per day.

There are 70 million Iranians.

If each Iranian were to be allocated 3 square metre of Photovoltaic film, the arrays would receive 1470,000 Megawatt hours of insolation per day.

At 10% efficiency (a conservative estimate, cutting edge PV reaches 20%) that gives 147,000 Megawatt hours (MWh) of electricity per day, from 3sq me solar per capita.

If the 6,000MW of planned nuclear capacity equates to 6,000 x 24 to give 144,000MWh per day, then the solar beats the nuclear. Including the down-time which forms such a fascinating part of civil nuclear power, I reckon we might need to give the Iranians only 2 sq meters of solar panel and keep one for ourselves.

I have not done the cost calculation. PV is expensive, but then so is a global nuclear war.

And yes, I know, mad Iranians might just break the panels up and use the sharp edges as a weapon against us.

It was just an idea...

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