• Welcome to our site! Electro Tech is an online community (with over 170,000 members) who enjoy talking about and building electronic circuits, projects and gadgets. To participate you need to register. Registration is free. Click here to register now.

Verification of green energy production

Lalentine

New Member
Good day to everyone!

I would highly appreciate if you could answer the following question: what are existing methods to verify that the power coming from a generating company is produced with the use of renewables?
For example, if a generating company produces power with the use of a fueled generator but claims that the generation is based on solar or wind power, how to check it?
Maybe you could advise me appropriate literature on this topic?

Thank you in advance.
 

debe

Active Member
You wont have any idea, except they usualy charge more for green energy. My exess solar energy i export they pay 1c/Kw, then charge 35c/Kw for my imported power at night.
 

Mickster

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
As far as I am concerned, this whole "Green energy" thing is a good idea in principle, but there has to be full transparency in order for everything to be considered and properly weighed against current non-green-energy, to fully evaluate whether it is the better option.
For instance, a wind turbine generator motor sits atop a huge metal tower, with long turbine blades, and miles of cabling to connect it to the grid, since nobody wants these things in their back yard. All of the manufacturing operations which are required to produce those extra parts, when compared to just the generator itself, have a carbon footprint. It seems that this carbon footprint gets glossed-over and the wind turbine as-a-whole is portrayed as the next messiah.

That same generator motor, in a different location that does not require all of the additional parts such as carbon fibre blades and a huge metal tower, may actually have less of a carbon footprint when the total manufacturing costs are taken into consideration.
 

AnalogKid

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
what are existing methods to verify that the power coming from a generating company is produced with the use of renewables?
There are no methods, existing or in the future. Think about a flashlight with two D cells. Is there any way for the light bulb to read the labels to confirm that both batteries are Duracells, as opposed to Eveready's? No.

ak
 

Nigel Goodwin

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
The entire idea is crazy - you usually get your power via a National Grid network, the input to that network is from ALL types of power generation, there's no way to route specific sources to specific destinations.

Assuming your energy supplier 'claims' they only supply 'green power' all that means is that they pay a green generator for the power they sell, and that power is simply squirted in to the grid and used by everyone (along with all other generated power).

So while you're paying for green power, you're not actually receiving it, or at least no more than anyone else.
 

kubeek

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
If you mean specifically some power generation site, then some audit should be able to tell whether they are burning biomass or coal. Other than that, no way to tell anything.
 

AnalogKid

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
There is a way for your power company to know, because they have access to the sensors at switch points. That is how they know who to pay for the power they distribute. But that data is not on the power lines going to the end users.

ak
 

sagor1

Active Member
There is no way to know. The power grid is a mixture of many power sources, all tied together into one big grid. The power you get is from the "grid" of power lines, and is a mix of many sources.
In other words, the total green capacity of the power company is in that grid. So, if the power company says they use 10% green sources, the power to your home contains 10% green energy of the total you use.
 

JimB

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
There is a way to tell the source of the electricity, but to do it you will need a microscope with very high magnification, ie an electron microscope.

If you examine the electrons coming from the wall socket, you will see that there are several distinguishing features:

Dark brown electrons = oil fired power station

Black electons = coal fired power station

Electrons which shine brightly = Solar power

Electrons surrounded by fast moving clouds = Wind power

Electrons which have a film of water = Hydro power (or subsea turbine, rare, still very experimental)

JimB
(In frivolous mood, the sun is shining, the weather witch says it may last for two days or so)
 

tvtech

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
Little Electrons wearing makeup and shiny or dull depending where they came from LOL.

:):)
 

gophert

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
There is a way to tell the source of the electricity, but to do it you will need a microscope with very high magnification, ie an electron microscope.

If you examine the electrons coming from the wall socket, you will see that there are several distinguishing features:

Dark brown electrons = oil fired power station

Black electons = coal fired power station

Electrons which shine brightly = Solar power

Electrons surrounded by fast moving clouds = Wind power

Electrons which have a film of water = Hydro power (or subsea turbine, rare, still very experimental)

JimB
(In frivolous mood, the sun is shining, the weather witch says it may last for two days or so)

I'm electron blind. I don't care what color an electron is (or it's generator of origin) as long as it cools my beer, lights up my TV or swirls the bubbles in my hot tub.
.

.
 

nsaspook

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I'm electron blind. I don't care what color an electron is (or it's generator of origin) as long as it cools my beer, lights up my TV or swirls the bubbles in my hot tub.
.

.
Seeing how electrons actually carry zero/nada electrical power from the actual generators everyone should be electron blind. Most are just slightly joggling one step forward and then one step backward so they never actually loop in the AC circuit and even on HVDC lines take centuries to move down the line. In theory it is possible to modulate the 60Hz carrier EM field with an phase-modulated identifier in the millihertz (>> 1Hz) range if the source uses electronic commutation instead of a base load conventional generator. Nobody does this because it would be sort of stupid for a user to care about the exact path X type of energy source travels to your home.
 

Latest threads

EE World Online Articles

Loading

 
Top