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Energy Model of Boston

by gmoke Fri Feb 26th, 2016 at 01:35:08 PM EST

Video:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O46GkHSYvYE

The Sustainable Design Lab at MIT has built a model which estimates the gas and electricity demand of every building in Boston for every hour of every day of the year, nearly 100,000 buildings in total.

Next the MIT team will be validating the model against actual energy consumption data.  "We'll do this using any building-level energy dataset that we can get our hands on, so the models become more and more accurate," Professor Christoph Reinhart explained. "Ultimately, our goal is for every city in the world to rely on a citywide energy model to meaningfully manage its future energy supply and carbon emissions."  As Boston has an energy reporting and disclosure ordinance, Prof Reinhart and his team should have a lot of data to work with.

More at http://news.mit.edu/2016/mit-researchers-create-citywide-building-energy-model-boston-0222

The Boston city government will also be using the energy model in its energy planning process and MIT's Sustainable Design Lab is now working on energy models for Lisbon, Portugal and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Christoph Reinhart and his team had previously built a solar map which shows the solar electric potential of every roof in the city:  http://web.mit.edu/SustainableDesignLab/projects/CambridgeSolarMap/

Disclaimer:  I know Christoph and like him.  He is doing some great work.  


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wow, that is some kick ass stuff they are doing (just went to the mapdwell site)! Thanks as always, for the great Energy related links gmoke!

Now if only people would start acting on this information and utilities not oppose rooftop solar as apparately has already happend in Nevada of all places! (truly, a WTF moment when I read about that net-metering BS there last month)

by crankykarsten (cranky (where?) gmx dot organisation) on Wed Mar 2nd, 2016 at 04:19:21 AM EST
Thanks for your kind words.

Christoph is a very smart and capable guy.  There are a lot of smart and capable guys and gals at MIT, including the students and alums who have been sitting outside the President's office since October to get the 'Tute to divest from fossil fuels, coal at least.  Tuesday this week the Boston Globe had a story on it.

Maine, I hear, is trying to go down Nevada's path but in Georgia the Greens and the Tea Party got together to keep solar on rooftops.  Now the same coalition is trying to do the same thing in Florida which was a site for a solar boom in the 1930s.

There is so much we can do if we have the will and the savvy to do it.

Solar IS Civil Defense

by gmoke on Fri Mar 4th, 2016 at 04:58:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It's just amazing how the cost of solar PV has come down. And also how much Energy you can actually harvest on a modest area.

The BMW i3 uses 12.5kWh per 100km (officially, so let's just assume 15kWh per 100km).

A 100 x 160 cm monocristalline PV module produces about 250-290Wp and currently costs about 200-250 EUR.

If you say that you have a garage of let's say 300 x 500 cm then you could fit about 9 modules on that carport for a total of about 2.5kWp.

Even in not-so-sunny Germany this will produce well  over 2000kWh over the year, i.e. about 13.000km of drviing the i3 per year, i.e. more than most people in Europe drive their car.

Now just install PV on top of all garages, all business parking lots / garages, have chargers everywhere and a country even as far away from the equator as Germany could probably fuel all of their private transportation via the sun and not have to import energy (ignoring raw materials for batteries and the like...)

by crankykarsten (cranky (where?) gmx dot organisation) on Thu Mar 17th, 2016 at 04:21:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I've always instinctively believed this to be true, in fact to not believe it is to be victim of highly mediated disinformation.
By the same note, solar massively rolled out over S.Europe could redress the economic imbalance, providing homegrown power to help fuel the industrial north.
We should be training refugees how to install/maintain them. There are 60-year old women in India doing this.
And that's not even mentioning wind, biodiesel,  human/animal waste methane production, industrial scale composting programs, permaculture.
It's coming, or we're toast.


'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty
by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Thu Mar 17th, 2016 at 03:35:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yeah. I've been thinking the same. Seems a bit exaggerated and hyperbole but solar PV can "solve" the "migrant-crises" and ultimately "free" decentralized energy can bring about world peace.

Too many thoughts to put together but access to a certain amount of power will totally change the power structure in the world. Food for thought: a half way decently trained 25 year old man can do 300W on a bike for an hour or two. So over the day maybe lets say 1500Wh. So the same amount as 1-2 PV panels. Enough room for 10 panels is like 6 or 7 young fit men working for you. Think about it.

BTW do the same calculation with a barrel of oil and you'll see how many "slaves" are currently needed to sustain our wasteful Western life style.

Ok. Enough now. Need to put this all together in a more coherent article.

Full disclosure: I'm on my second bottle of red wine...

by crankykarsten (cranky (where?) gmx dot organisation) on Thu Mar 17th, 2016 at 05:35:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Solar is the very definition of local production or, as Gandhi put it, swadeshi, the heart of his ideas on political and economic non-violence.  I have had a couple of solar bike lights attached to my backpack for over a decade now.  Off the shelf technology that was affordable when I bought them simply sewn onto the pack for use every time I ride at night around town.

Walking around Harvard and MIT all this time, I can recall maybe one or two people who were carrying commercial solar backpacks, at least three times more expensive than mine.   Solar is available, affordable, and ready to be used from these small-scale uses to whole countries.  We don't fully recognize that really.  Yet.

Solar IS Civil Defense

by gmoke on Thu Mar 17th, 2016 at 07:02:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]


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