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Posts posted by DrWatson

  1. On 25/02/2021 at 11:46 PM, aardvarkash10 said:

    not sure its quite that binary.

    battery electric vehicles are a tiny fraction of the world fleet atm.  As they become a bigger part, the waste disposal problem grows.  Tipping point (pun not intended) becomes a thing.

    The only real, long-term answer is less cars.  Less everything actually, but cars are a great example.  

    Fewer cars, and less distance to travel on an everyday basis. The pandemic has thought us that most office jobs can be done from home. Climate challenges have taught us that the whole model for urban development in Nz is fundamentally flawed from an energy (and time) efficiency perspective. We can live better lives and use far fewer resources. It really is simple, aside from the shift in thinking that’s required.

    Regarding h2 for cooking. A simple solar/wind powered h2 generator for your home that ticks along the whole time, building up a supply that’s bottled on site. Then burn it for instant heat. Or instead of h2, just use a battery...

  2. 14 hours ago, JK said:

    I'd taken the dog on Matarangi beach around the time the mayday was put out. I was surprised when I heard of the mayday as the weather was OK, Easterly 15knots maybe 20, not so much it bothered you on the beach. It was an Easterly & no way in hell it was 8m, I would have noticed when throwing a ball in the surf for the dog! Maybe 1.5m out to the Mercs. It did get up overnight though.

    I understood the mayday was broadcast late at night?


  3. I’d suggest that big problem facing democracies these days is that the public seem to think democracy means majority rule and fk all the rest. Even to the point of if you win the most votes, and that may only be 20% of the electorate, you can then put the rest to the sword (literally) and it’s all ok because it’s democratic. 

  4. 2 hours ago, wheels said:

    Yep, that is what the industry calls "green energy". So H is produced at times of least demand.
    The Steel Mill in Hamburg is currently installing a "Swing" Hydrogen plant. Sorry, I don't know what that actually is. They have carried initial trials using H to melt Iron. Now they are scaling up to a real world plant scale. If that works out, they will then install Wind generation to produce H in a "Green energy" way.

    Answering an earlier comment about steel needing Carbon. Actually it's Iron that has a high Carbon content.
    To make Steel, which is an alloy, they try to reduce the Carbon content.  
         Coal is reduced to Coke and the Coke is then placed into the Smelting vessel and Air is then blown into the coke to produce the heat required to melt the Ore. The molten ore falls down through the coke taking Carbon from the Coke with it. This produces what is called Pig Iron, which is pure Iron with a very high content of Carbon.
           In 1856, Henry Bessemer came up with an idea of blowing Oxygen up through the molten metal, which greatly reduced the Carbon content and that was the birth of the modern steel age.
          Today, Electric Arc Furnaces heat low carbon Iron and scrap and then other metal additives are introduced to produce Alloys of Steel.
    Using H to heat the Furnaces will change all the above completely.

    Also interestingly, the "Fly ash" that is currently dumped has been found to have a veracious appetite for eating Co2.


    At some point the oxygen that is bound to the iron in the iron ore must be taken out. That is done by reducing the iron oxide back into iron. The exact chemistry depends on the type of ore. But generally Carbon in one form or another is usually used to do this, and the oxygen is dragged off the iron ore by carbon as CO2. Some of the carbon ends up dissolved in the iron. It was my understanding that Pig iron is what flows out the bottom of the blast furnace, from there it’s refined. Pure iron has no carbon in it and it’s more or less useless. 

  5. On 12/02/2021 at 3:42 AM, erice said:

    pretty much everything but local fruit and vegetables costs waaay more than elsewhere, imho not because it's imported but because of high wages and taxes

    Actually the wages are sh*t. I think it’s greed at many levels that makes life in Nz expensive. 

    it really is expensive, and I live in what’s traditionally referenced as an expensive country... 

    I spent 29,389 Swiss francs on crèche last year. Bog standard normal crèche - nothing fancy. And that was only 4 days a week. And one of the kids was only there for 5 months...


  6. I love the loopholes vs intent arguments. Should we have lawyers make our class rules? Think I’ll start a new class. 

    You can sail any vessel you like so long as it was made without any metal or plastics. Handicapping by length alone. +1 min per mile if the boat was made without power tools.

    what do you choose?


  7. On 14/02/2021 at 5:53 AM, Fogg said:

    Yes MNZ can investigate any incident commercial or private. My neighbour was once on the receiving end of a prickly MNZ investigation after telling his fellow drinking buddies in the yacht club about hitting the bricks the previous weekend. He suspects one of his race rivals dobbed him in - and it worked MNZ spring into action. Make of that what you will.

    Was someone injured? There may not be any need to report some accidents unless there is third party damage (including environmental) or injury.

  8. On 12/02/2021 at 6:38 PM, Tamure said:

    Appreciate your in-depth analysis of govt policy and party mechanics and decision making process. Politics is a contact sport, and like this discussion over the phasing out of gas there are many points of view but ultimately a stake is put in the ground in the form of a proposal and through the parliamentary process for good or bad it gets refined into law if the support is there. 

    You have to be involved or someone else will do it for you or to you, voting is not about perfection but pragmatism- the lesser of two evils often times but not always. The current govt was given a mandate because they did an excellent job managing the pandemic and displayed the kind of leadership that we have not seen for a long time. 

    Does that mean they are perfect or represent in all respects my personal views for example? Come on, we are not 2 years old anymore.

    This is one of the best posts I’ve read on crew. 

    It points out an ugly truth about humanity. Many people want only what’s  best for them and fk all the rest. 
    Some people are willing though, to see that there is a greater good. 
    Yes I’ll give up my motorcycling and petrol headed ways even though I loved them dearly, because I’m  also able to see that they are not sustainable, and for the greater good, they will go. They went 20y ago. I will also give up my wood burner and gas bbq if I have to. Do I want to? Hell no! But I will because quite simply the science is pretty damn clear that they are not sustainable. And in exchange I will embrace the new technology that allows me to live a similar life. Can I  afford to? To be honest, I can’t, but I have to, and I’ll have to make cuts somewhere else. 

    It’s about priorities, and I will put the priorities of this planet over my own. I will vote for what’s best for the planet and best for people overall and not what’s best for me personally or my religion. 

  9. I have an early understanding of fuel cells, but my understanding was that at this point, despite the advances they would struggle to provide the current required to propel a vehicle. Fuel cells that are available for boat use for example, burn ethanol or methanol and are generally used to charge batteries that can then deliver higher current loads.

    Fuel cells are essentially one way batteries where you continuously replace the reactants. From my very old knowledge of electrochemistry, the reduction  potential of O2 (to h20) is about 0.4v, which is pretty minimal. So you need a lot of cells in series to get a workable voltage and then huge arrays to get some current. Where are we at with that at the moment?

    the h2 vehicles I’ve seen touted so far have all been ice based.


    h2 production via electrolysis can be undertaken in a renewable energy way, which is cool but yeah it’s inefficient and you do tend to produce oh as well., from Memory.

  10. 5 hours ago, harrytom said:

    With the modern diesil truck there is no fumes .with the added additive via a seperate tank disperses urea in to the exhaust system.apprantly combats immisions in the atmosphere.blody dad won't run without it 

    Electric trains fine for passengers..

    Any modern ice, diesel or not, and no matter what magic potion or snake oil you put in the tank or filters you put on the pipe will still emit CO2 and NOx. They are the main emissions that are fking the climate. Plus methane. If you still think that by using any kind of fossil fuel you will not have an impact on the climate, you are missing the point of the problem. H2 is a solution in some very specific areas, and cooking might be one of them, but the minute you put H2 into an ICE engine as your fuel source and burn it with air under the pressures inside the engine you will still produce NOx. 

  11. 38 minutes ago, harrytom said:

    Electric trains.Hmm why has kiwi rail virtually mothballed the freight trains??Because of running cost and in efficient.Diesil is more cost effective.


    Yeah but that's because they're competing with regular trucking. I'm talking about an analysis that examines emissions for line-haul (which as I understand it is regular point A to B.) vs diesel trucking.

    Trains are generally crap at delivering goods except for line-haul, from distribution centre to distribution centre. 

    Trains are best at delivering self dispersing cargo.... people. 

    Electric trucks for the short haul distribution from rail fed dist. centres are the new model in Europe - and it works.


  12. 8 hours ago, KM... said:

    Of course but not after spending 8 odd hours of telling anyone who'd listen, and many who tried not too, how superior his battery wagon was. The funniest bit is he is a commercial pilot so spends his days doing fuel to distance calculations. But I have zero doubt that was one of his best 'learning experiences', one he'll be reminded of frequently so I'm willing to bet large it doesn't happen a second time :)

    The post was more about the charging and how you need to plug into a HUGE pipe with much many kW's coming out the end if you want range fast, using a tonka toy sized genny just doesn't cut it. Everyone was a little surprised but some goggling confirmed what we were seeing.

    The other thing of interest to come from that is if my new wagon has to be a EV I am going to have to increase the farms storage capacity by 500% for a Nissan Leaf or 750% if it's a smallish Tesla, just to get one tank load. Which then comes with a expansion of recharging from the current 25 sq/m to something like 125 sq/m if not closer to 200 squares, that is a fecking big bit of land to kill off.

    So I'm starting to see the reports suggestion as yet another example of city folk looking after city folk at the expense of rural and those in the Burbs who are genuinely trying to do the right thing..........yet again.

    Well, if you hadn't bought a place in the middle of friggin nowhere ;) 

    My thought had always been to perhaps use the EV as the storage... 

    Why not look at an electric SUV? Rivan, for example, or if you like the Total Recall kind of aesthetic a CyberT. +500 miles...

    I can see a market in those who are range concerned - top-up batteries. Like people used to carry are fuel tin and walk/hitch to the next gas station (who has not done this?). One could carry a 50km range topper in the tray of your ute. After a couple of years as infrastructure and car batteries get better it wouldn't be needed, but I'll still sell you one


  13. 9 hours ago, darkside said:

    Hydrogen does have advantages at present for line haul trucking. Really even with battery swapping it is hard with batteries.

    For metro or intercity up to 200km battery EV wins by sheer efficiency.

    But was line haul trucking also compared to electric trains? no energy storage necessary...


  14. I think the gains in efficiency that could be made could easily see sufficient battery storage easily brought within range. Especially if we couple good weather electricity generation (solar) with bad weather (wind).

    we could eventually move away altogether from grid power.

    Also, the pandemic and success of work from hone has shown that a fairly large amount of commercial space is just a massive waste of energy and space and resource. Many large office buildings are nothing more than a massive inefficient corporate dick swinging affair - all ego and pride. I have been to the office 4 times in the last year. My companies ( I changed jobs in the middle) are doing fine. 

  15. On 6/02/2021 at 6:15 PM, wheels said:

    You say add on 16K to your 500K mortgage like it is nothing. Well it is something for most. And interest will not stay low forever. Think about this Doc. You had to go overseas to find a job that paid what it does. The kind of pay that makes 16K seem like nothing. And many Kiwis did the same thing and are now coming home cashed up and are forcing the Housing market out of reach for nearly all of us left here. You are not going to struggle to find a $500K home in NZ now for instance. 

    For the sake of accuracy, yeah I did have to go overseas to find a job that pays, but 16k is still a lot of money for me. We bring in about 11k a month together, but it disappears damn fast; 2500 rent, 1000 health ins, 5000 crèche (normal every day  crèche!!!), 1000 food. Pretty quickly that good salary doesn’t go far, so 16k is significant.

    My point was more along the lines that the cost to borrow 500 or 516k, is not that different (2078 vs 2145) Especially given that by next year that house is going to be worth 80k more anyway!  But yeah that’s at cheap lending, although 2.7% in NZ is still a long way off the 0.5% we’re getting here...

    Hydrogen tech still produces NOx if you’re using an ICE. There’s also an enormous infrastructure task; not only does the fleet need changing but the h2 supply needs sorting and transporting. Electrons are easy to transport. H2 far more difficult. 
    Electricity infrastructure is already there, even if it does need expanding/upgrading. The start is there. 
    The price will continue to fall as demand grows and it will be more and more affordable. Also, it’s easy as piss to make your own electricity. Making your own h2 is a lot more complicated and risky (can also be fun). I honestly can’t understand why people are so dead set on clinging to technology that requires them to pay others for their energy. We’re already at the mercy of t he energy companies. Time to give them them flick (oil).

    It doesn’t need to be solar. A low noise wind generator could be mandatory on all new houses... with suitable bird protection.

    lastly in response to KMs query about my mate who generates surplus in summer to see him through winter. His house is really efficient, electrically etc. And sure it won’t work forever if they keep putting the buy back rate down lower and lower. But it works for him at the moment. Peak summer output per day is 5-6 times what he needs.

    and in the last 10y sunshine hours in Kerikeri have steadily grown for a bit over 1200h per year to about 2000h now...

  16. Just now, DrWatson said:

    Def on the energy consumption of the internet. Check your Gmail and delete all the spam. You’ll actually save carbon emissions. All that digital info needs to be stored somewhere and it all takes energy...

    Wheels I think the solar options have become so much cheaper even in the last 3 y that they can actually be economically viable now. A friend with an 8kW array generated enough credit in the summer that it covers his winter usage. 
    if you’re borrowing 500k to buy the house, add another 16k and have solar installed...

  17. 1 hour ago, wheels said:

    Free electricity? I didn't know there was such a law. However, I suggest that is negated by the fact that most providers charge a penalty rate for low users. Not a good first step in persuading people to save energy.

    We have a record situation in NZ of a shortage of Homes and prices out of reach for the average Kiwi. It is all very well saying people have to build X type of Home, but it is out of reach for that vast majority.
    For those that do build, the cost of energy alternatives is also out of reach for the vast majority.

    Then add in that eco-energy producing devices are not that "green either". One the hugely growing polluters in the world are old Solar panels. Close behind that is Lithium Batteries.

    As for warmer homes. All new Homes in NZ have a minimum standard to meet. As for older existing homes, insulating them brings problems too. All older homes were designed to "breath" and a large fire heated and over powered the loss of heat. Today, these homes are shut up and almost sealed against air entering. Thus the heating by electric, or worse, by gas heaters and then everyone complains that things go moldy.

    And here in NZ at least, Solar simply is not economic, nor environmental and under the current system in NZ, you cannot make money from it, so you cannot cover costs. And then there is the added issue of infrastructure not copping once many adopt alternative power solutions.

    Once again, don't get me wrong. I may sound negative, but I am not. I am trying to point out that it is not simple and the remedies are not all they are pushed to be.

    By the way, if everyone was REALLY serious and concerned about energy consumption=Green house gas emission reductions etc, then they should really be concerned about our Digital World we are now living in. If we stopped all Social media today, our world energy/polluting concerns would end over night. For just one instance, Google in the US accounts for the same energy consumption of the entire area of San Fransisco. The vast majority of energy consumption in our world today is the digital world and this is growing at a rate beyond exponential. So really, just how serious are we about saving or Planet??

    Def on the energy consumption of the internet. Check your Gmail and delete all the spam. You’ll actually save carbon emissions. All that digital info needs to be stored somewhere and it all takes energy...

  18. 32 minutes ago, harrytom said:

    What sentence would be appropriate for this person.

    Alcohol fueled accident.didnt check on the victim 

    If not jail .what then??

    What would of satisfied the cotton wool brigade.

    I'm not addressing this based on allegiance to any perceived cotton wool nor cup full of concrete brigade.

    I think the reporting of the incident could be tightened up to include details from the judge's decision and sentencing to reflect which exact breaches of the law were those that attracted the sentence handed down, and also any details surrounding why the accused's health/injury/mental state may or may not have been included in the defence or in any decision to imprison him.

    I think that better reporting would reduce the speculation on this thread and lead to more informed and fruitful discussion where currently disparate sides may even find consensus. 

    None of us know enough about the case to reliably nor expertly proffer an educated informed opinion on whether the sentence was justified.

    Maybe he's an asshole and he deserves it. Maybe he's been wronged and is, aside from his drunken idiocy with the boat, also a victim. He lost a mate, after all.




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