* To establish feasibility, it is necessary to include some items in the energy invested term that are normally not thought of as investments. For example, the cost of sequestering such carbon dioxide as will be produced by the energy technology under investigation should be added to the energy invested term because feasibility requires that our society be sustainable (until astronomical events intervene). In this thought experiment, the support of an alternative energy technology would be the sole concern of every citizen.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Time Delay and Spatial Separation for ERoEI



I think I know how to treat time delays now. It strikes me as too arbitrary to piggy-back the time value of energy on the current time value of money. We would much rather use something with a physical basis that
would remain constant throughout most periods of interest. Suppose that the consumer of the Energy Returned has to wait 24 hours for the delivery even though he is obliged to consume energy constantly at the rate contracted for. The value of the Energy Invested over the life of the project should be increased by the value of the energy from the best available replacement technology adjusted by the appropriate transformity as discussed at http://www.dematerialism.net/ops.htm#_Toc173388355; however, the life of the project must be increased by one day. Suppose that a crucial part in an energy installation like an electric turbine generator is not available until one year after the time it was needed by the builder of a wind power
installation. The Energy Invested should be increased by the value of the substitute energy just as in the previous example with the life of the project extended by one year. Presumably, the energy cost per unit of energy recovered of the substitute technology exceeds the energy cost for the planned technology, which is why the new technology is contemplated provided they are both renewable. Other similar cases require similar consideration; however, nothing relieves the analyst from the intelligent and judicious application of the principles of his craft. The fundamental principle of dealing with all departures from ideality, such as intervals in space separating the locations where the energy is produced and consumed or emission of greenhouse gases, is adding all energy costs of such additional equipment as would restore ideality. It is clear that the energy embedded in any material that must be considered in any analysis can be computed properly by making as many adjustments as are required to the straightforward cost of production by the method of judicious substitutions.

Perhaps it is worth mentioning, especially to a person like yourself (Tom Robertson of Energy Resources) who is interested in treating the spatial domain of a given problem as an ecological system, that a numerical analyst lecturing at Rice University earlier this year had solved linear systems of equations from quantum
electrodynamics (QED) in an ordinary vector space (as opposed to a Hilbert Space) to the extent of 25 million equations in 25 million unknowns. So, we need not be especially daunted by systems ecology or the energy cost accounting of an alternative technology. However, it should be realized that these require lots of work by a large number of  energetic dedicated people. The corporate, mainstream academic, and big (centralized) government worlds don't seem terribly interested to help. If you know of any small decentralized government, you might ask them if they are interested. Probably, they have already transcended the impenetrable obstacles represented by market and growth economies. Try North Korea and
Cuba.

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