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  1.  (6712.41)
    Well the average cost of solar cells is still around US$5 a watt. So a two kilowatt unit would cost around $10,000.
  2.  (6712.42)
    The cost depends on the resourcefulness of the buyer. I've seen a 1000 watt setup that was built for $5000. Home systems are based heavily on the storage system, the actual wattage used coming from the batteries, not the panels themselves. If a person is inclined to set up solar, you can go all in at once or just a little at a time, honestly.

    I'm considering going back to school and solar is one of the avenues I am looking at. This subject is completely fascinating to me...
    • CommentAuthorgzapata
    • CommentTimeSep 4th 2009
     (6712.43)
    Cosmic rays are always talked about in comics and such but is there any science to using cosmic radiation as an energy source?
  3.  (6712.44)
    Gzapata, I saw an article a couple of years back about a team that was looking to extract energy from background radiation. including cosmic rays, but haven't heard anything since.

    As far as collisions go: most of the space junk is concentrated in a couple of bands at specific altitudes so if you can avoid them you're okay. IIRC, geosynchronous orbit is a lot less dangerous than low Earth orbit.

    But collisions is one idea why I like the modular idea - lots of small solar sats transmitting power back to a single transmitter for relay to Earth. That way too, you don't need big new boosters to get the powersats into orbit.
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      CommentAuthorOsmosis
    • CommentTimeSep 5th 2009
     (6712.45)
    This popped up in an RSS feed a couple of days ago. I thought it might be relevant to the discussion.

    Solar power the world.
  4.  (6712.46)
    Oh golly jeepers, this is awesome. Thanks for the linky, Mr. Ellis...

    Cheap, efficient solar panels you can print.

  5.  (6712.47)
    I was wondering what had happened to Nanosolar. Nice to see that they’re still doing well.