X-Message-Number: 21961
Date: Fri, 13 Jun 2003 00:41:53 -0500
Subject: Re: coal/oil/gas/solar

Kennita Watson asked,
>For now I have a question -- how much of a gap in price
>would need to be closed for solar power to become a
>financially attractive alternative (not just in theory,
>but to investors and on Wall Street) to coal, oil, and/or
>natural gas?  Do you see this gap closing?  If so,
>when and how (by rising oil/natural gas prices and/or by
>falling solar prices)?  What are the major impediments --
>political, cultural, regulatory, etc. -- to such (IMHO)

Your questions cannot be answered precisely.  However, research on solar
power continues, progress continues, breakthroughs come all the time.  And
I don't see oil and gas getting cheaper.

You may enjoy rooting around the web site of Spheral Solar Power - it makes
solar sheets rather than solar panels.


Note that Spheral Solar Power is rather vague as to exact cost saving in
manufacture - but it only has a pilot plant at this time, and besides, such
information may be proprietary.

The solar sheets it makes are like tough flexible cloth - tiny silicon
beads are sandwiched between two aluminum sheets.  The sheets are flexible
and can be cut to fit various shapes like a curved roof or car.  They can
even fit a jacket - power your cell phone.  The sheets are very tough - a
car can drive over them with no effect.

  -- Martha Olijnyk

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