Ted Cruz, Texan Senator attacks Solar Energy

Ted Cruz, Texan Senator attacks Solar Energy

Please see this link to see how the enemies of free enterprise and democracy plan their next move.

frmercado | 30 décembre 2013

Fu#@ing ass$%les!!!!

tezzla.SoCal | 30 décembre 2013

well put frmercado. Thinking about the pockets of few instead of the global good of everybody.

Dramsey | 1 janvier 2014

The OP's title is inaccurate; Ted Cruz is attending an ALEC function. He hasn't said anything, as far as I can determine, that could be construed as "attacking solar energy".

Making this interpretation is as logical as saying that Barack Obama supports Cuba's detention and torture of dissidents because he shook Raul Castro's hand. (Of course, a lot of conservatives did make this precise observation. But I'd like to think we're smarter than that here.)

Our existing grid was designed to distribute power from a relatively small number of large centralized generation facilities. If we're going to make a major move towards smaller, decentralized generation facilities with widely variable power generation and availability, the grid needs to change...dramatically. How should this change be effected, and more importantly, how will it be paid for?

These are discussions we need to have, now. But we're not.

ghillair | 2 janvier 2014

@Dramsey +1

Car t man | 2 janvier 2014

Yep, but also the car owners can pay, by letting 10-50% of power, however much they feel comfortable with in a particular day, be returned to the grid. It massively reduces costs for the power producers, if they can pull some power in, to cover peak demand, rather than needing to buy it in markets at excessive prices, or ramp up production, which is hard and expensive to do for those short periods.

Of course this is a topic that needs to be addressed. But it is good to note and warn of all the possible ideological shitheads who would try to embed a stupid partial agenda in.

So if he isn't actively promoting alec, OK, if he is, he is a shithead also.

Noone needs any ideologies to try to fully kidnap yet another important issue.

Haeze | 2 janvier 2014

Don't forget the EPA restrictions put on power plants. Without renewable sources feeding into their grid, it would be harder for the plant to maintain its greenhouse gas emissions standards. Renewables are helping the power plants more than hurting them.

Rocky_H | 2 janvier 2014

Something I think isn't talked about enough is how solar is perfectly suited time-wise to helping with peak load. It is not just another energy source. Its highest productivity is in bright sunny summer afternoons...when everyone is running air conditioning, and power demand is at its peak.

Mel. | 2 janvier 2014

Are you still in the UK ? Do you have an order in for a Tesla?

dutchstew | 2 janvier 2014

Hi Mel,
I have a test drive booked with order to follow. I need to persuade AN other that this is a sensible allocation of funds :)

Dramsey | 2 janvier 2014

@Rocky_H: Quite true, but we still have to handle the case where megawatts of PV power can vanish almost instantly when the sun goes behind a cloud. Instant brownout! The converse case, where megawatts of power appear instantly, must also be taken into account. Our existing grid can't gracefully handle either case now, which is why there's so much more to this issue than simply slapping PV panels everywhere.

Brian H | 3 janvier 2014

Coping with multiple small power sources is a far different game. Sort of the reverse of "economies of scale". The diseconomies of smallness.

nwdiver93 | 6 janvier 2014

It's simply not true that solar is not economic at the residential scale. I'm in the process of ordering another 30kW in addition to the ~30kW I've installed in the last 3 years; the drop in cost is truly staggering. While there is a ~30% drop in cost per watt from a 3kW system to a 10kW system there is only about a 10%-20% drop in cost from 10kW to 10MW... at least in terms of equipment and you already own your roof so you don't need to buy land like a utility does. By 2020 the cost to generate power at your house with solar PV will be ~$0.02/kWh. The 10kW system I'm helping a friend install is going to cost $19k BEFORE any incentives and produce ~23MWh/yr. Over 20 years that's ~$0.05/kWh and the system is much more likely to last ~40 years.

AC flows just fine in both directions... if the utility can deliver 10kW to your house then you can deliver 10kW to them. Yes, we're going to have to make the grid smarter but much of this can be done on YOUR side of the meter. Utilities need to create TOU schemes that incentivize "self-consumption" and storage. Tesla is already using their batteries for grid-storage; It's only a matter of time before you can use your car.

Nantang | 9 janvier 2014

As someone from Texas myself, I can say openly that being from Texas should disqualify anyone from holding office in Washington. Our batting average has been pretty rock-bottom since this millennium started. I remind you that this is the "free enterprise" state that curiously doesn't let Tesla sell cars without screwy workarounds. Ted Cruz is just the latest in a long line of idiots making our state look bad to the rest of the world. They are George W. Bush, Ted Cruz, and... the third... I forgot. Oops.

Nexxus | 10 janvier 2014

As I said before in another thread, the way you handle solar power into and out of the grid is with battery storage to handle the peaks and valleys of generation and usage.

Think af what Elon has created here besides a great automobile. He's created the perfect medium for energy storage after the life of the batteries has seen its tour in the vehicles.

After the battery packs are down to 70% of their initial state of power charging, people will start turning them back in to Tesla. If Elon takes them and puts say, 50 of them in a cargo container with all the controlling hardware/software/cooling equipment, he'd have a 3MW on-demand, drop-in energy source.

Just think, every military base, camp, or utility could use them to augment their power needs, either into or out of the grid as required.

And I bet my bottom dollar, if I thought of this, Elon has already done so too, and down the road, you'll see them as power storage for all the superchargers going in around the country.

Just my 2 cents.

bigd | 10 janvier 2014

Refer to mr. Dramsey post about the article and making an inference. Also, what “screwy workarounds” are you talking about?

Dramsey | 11 janvier 2014

Wdazew, I keep hearing this blue-sky idea that used batteries will be used as "buffers" for residential and commercial buildings once they're taken out of cars.

So far, I've seen no actual plans to do so. And remember, you can't just stick a bunch of old Mod S batteries in a shipping container: you'd need a very elaborate liquid-cooling and charging system as well.

That's not to say it can't be done, of course. But we've had hybrids with pretty big battery packs on the road for well over a decade; Japan's had them for more than 20 years. Nobody in either country is doing anything like this with old Prius and Insight battery packs yet...

Nexxus | 13 janvier 2014


"Enough with the negative waves Moriarity" Oddball from Kelly's Heros.

I appreciate your input, although I don't think the Priuses and Insight batteries are conducive to power storage. Too many packs to get the same Tesla equvalency. Also, their batteries have been pretty good in the longevity cases. Any idea how many have been swapped out for new ones? Your guess is as good as mine but I don't think there have been that many to date. The Insight and Civic hybrids I owned each had over 160,000 miles on them before I sold them with no reduction in charging capability.

I can so for certain though, there haven't been any Tesla packs turned in yet. I discount the wrecks that have totaled the Models S's to date because the packs may not be trustworthy over the long haul.

When there have been enough turned in somewhere down the road, rest assured Elon/Tesla will have a use for them. Time will tell.

Dramsey | 13 janvier 2014

Love the Kelley's Heroes reference! One of my favorite films.

Still, I'd want to at least see a plan and some sort of official statement from Tesla before touting used battery storage units as an advantage of EVs.

Nexxus | 15 janvier 2014


The standard ISO Cargo Container is 40'L x 8"W x 8.5"H. Given the Tesla battery pack is approximately 7'L x 5'W x 6"T give or take, you can package 50 battery packs vertically inside the container in roughly 25'L of the container. This gives you 2.5' of space along the sides for mounting/cooling hardware that links the packs all together and all the electrical connections required.

This leaves roughly 15' of container space length for controlling hardware/hookups to the outside of the container and cooling/chiller system for temp control. So I would think a 3MW drop-in-anywhere electrical storage device is certainly feasible.

When the time comes and enough battery packs have been replaced, I'm sure the Tesla engineers can come up with a workable solution.

I wouldn't mind being on the team that engineers it.

It goes without saying, that the battery packs haven't been refurbished at all and still retain about 70% of their capability when put into the container. Now, if they choose to refurbish or make the containers batteries brand new, then a 4MW device would be available. I wouldn't think they would use new batteries though, because the batteries are the current production constraint for the Model S and future vehicles till Panasonic can build out another factory or two.


Timo | 15 janvier 2014

I think you are talking about Wh not W. 50 battery packs certainly can give more than just 3MW continuous power.

Dramsey | 15 janvier 2014

@wdazew, I think you may have misunderstood me. I'm not saying the idea is impractical or technologically difficult; I'm just pointing out that while EV enthusiasts have been flogging it for a while, as far as I know no EV company has announced plans for doing anything like this.

Even if they did, I see logistical problems: you can't readily predict the supply of batteries, for example, so planning would be difficult.

But I'm all for it if it's something Tesla thinks they can do.

grega | 15 janvier 2014

I'm pretty sure that when Elon has talked about battery life, he's said that even when the battery loses its performance it can be refurbed and is back up to scratch - it doesn't get thrown away.

It may be that in 8 years it'll be a "buy a new battery" or "buy a refurb" (trade in your old one, in both cases). TBH I'm not even sure if a "refurb" battery is sold as "refurbed", or if it means all the component parts can be effectively reused in a new pack.

Nexxus | 16 janvier 2014


Sorry, I left off the "h". My math to come up with 3MWh storage is:

85KWh pack x 50 = 4,250MWh x .70% = 2,975MWh total storage power.

So, if Telsa decides to put the used battery packs into a drop-in power configuration instead of refurbishing them, it could be cheaper to manufacture the containerized power source. And they can almost name their price for the containerized power source, as no one has done this yet, and they don't have to cover the cost of refurbishment.

There should be plenty of life left in the packs even though Model S owners would want a 100% vs. 70% state of charge pack after 8 years. So, trade it in; get a new one, and the old one gets re-used in a storage device.

I was just thinking the other day while passing a transformer/grid power unit (where the power company knocks down the high voltage coming from the larger lines into the feeder lines for the local users) how several of these containerized units would do well for balancing out the grid as people charged their vehicles at night. Or maybe during the day as homeowners PV systems dump power into the grid they could balance out the grid when all the air conditioners run the most.

Just trying to think outside the box, well... inside I guess?

Timo | 16 janvier 2014

If you put those packs in hot-swap sleighs you could also add/remove used/failing packs in fly without interruption to output making them true UPS.

Car t man | 16 janvier 2014

Actually, containerized UPS isn't new and there are companies which sell them.
The cheapest tend to be with prismatic lithium cells. And the same gentleman who created first AC drive trains, made the first zinc air batteries, for vehicular and stationary use. They are the cheapest high density batteries, or
better said, fuel cell "batteries". A company in US is now doing same about 15 years later but is at about the same level...

But you can buy containerized UPS solutions today, with ease.
And if Tesla will have a direct supply of old batteries, which
it will, they will test them for capacity and impedance and
match them, sort them and install them into container or
larger/smaller format UPS systems also.