How Much of the Grid Must Be Upgraded?

Guest Essay by Kip Hansen  —   12 April 2022

Have you ever seen a transformer mounted on a power-pole explode?  Marvelous fireworks. Why do they explode?   One energy company exec quipped “My experience and understanding of the way utilities do things is they just wait until the neighborhood is overloaded and then the transformer blows up.” [ source

And what overloads power-pole transformers?  Lots of things:  lighting strikes to poles or transmission wires, shorts caused by trees falling on wires, or, more simply, too much electricity being draw through the transformer by homes and businesses.

What would cause a home to draw too much power? Well, on  a neighborhood level, summer or winter. When every home in the neighborhood turns their air conditioners up to maximum on a hot muggy summer afternoon or in winter, when too many all-electric homes kick their electric heating up to fight the cold on a freezing winter’s  night. 

Or when too many neighborhood homes install electric vehicle fast-chargers.   What?  Say again….

“Currently available DC fast chargers require inputs of 480+ volts and 100+ amps (50-60 kW) and can produce a full charge for an EV with a 100-mile range battery in slightly more than 30 minutes (178 miles of electric drive per hour of charging).”  The more usual and affordable overnight chargers need 240v/50ampstimes two means you will need 100 amps available for car charging at night.

So, if your family were to have two EVs and wanted two overnight chargers – and who wants to argue with their spouse over who gets first dibs on the  charger – your home would probably have to have a new electrical service panel and a new 200 amp service drop installed by your local utility  — that is the wires that run from the nearest power pole to your home.

Pictured here is electrical service drop to a typical American home.  Suburban homes in the United States usually have 100 amp service.  My current home only had 60 amp service when we moved in in the 1980s which meant the lights dimmed whenever the water heater kicked in or the water-well pump motor started up.    Newer homes here usually have 200 amp service,  though a larger all-electric home – as in electric heating, air conditioning, electric water heater, electric sauna, electric hot tub, electric stove top and two electric ovens, electric clothes dryer plus the entertainment systems – may require 250, 300 even 400 amps service depending on the overall size of the home and number of electricity gobbling appliances.

“If you’re running large appliances frequently (central air, heating) or have items with large electric demands (in-home saunas, hot tubs), you could benefit from installing a 300- or 400- amp service instead.” [source ]

Large appliances include in the modern kitchen two electric ovens and electric stovetop, refrigerator, chest freeze, dishwasher and elsewhere in the home a washing machine, clothes dryer, heat-pump heating, whole-house air conditioning, window air-conditioner, hot tub, sauna, or pool heaters, electric water heaters (many larger homes have more than one).  Look around your home, you may be able to add to the list.

And now, EV chargers.  Repeating the data from above, almost all EV owners will want one overnight-charger for each vehicle. Each requires a 240v/50amp circuit breaker in the panel box. In a modern home with normal electrical appliances, it is unlikely that  local electrical codes will allow you to add two 240v/50amp circuits if you have only 100 amp service.

Note that this is not because 50 + 50 = 100. That’s not how you determine circuits in your panel box, it is more complicated.

In the end, you may be looking at the rather expensive job of replacing your electrical system from the pole to the main panel (see illustration far above) —  New service drop, service point, service entrance wires, service meter (usually supplied by your power company), probably a new service disconnect, and a new service panel.  Cost?  Up to $5,000.

What if you live in suburbia and everyone in your neighborhood wants two overnight chargers? 

The items in the red boxes may need to be upgraded or duplicated – base load generating stations, substations, and local distribution lines including pole mounted transformers.

Let’s look at a real example:  Palo Alto, California , one of the principal cities of Silicon Valley.  In this report:

City of Palo Alto Utilities Advisory Commission Staff Report (ID # 11639) 4 November 2020.  [ .pdf ]

Highlights of Study Results: Impact to the Electric Utility

The study shows that electricity demand for all-electric homes peaks on winter mornings due to heating, and averages around 3.62 kW per home, or 264% of a mixed-fuel home’s peak demand. EV charging can add an additional 1.216 kW to the average peak demand of an all-electric home. Assuming each distribution transformer serves 8 houses, the load on each transformer under the all-electric SFRs scenario is calculated at 2.64 times the current transformer load plus 9.74 kW for EV charging.

As shown in Table 1 below, the additional load will trigger the need to upgrade some of the distribution transformers, secondary distribution lines (which connect the distribution transformer to the homes served by the transformer), and feeder lines (which connects the substation to the distribution points).

The total cost to upgrade the distribution system grid is estimated to range between $30 million and $75 million. Around 40% of this cost is equipment cost, and 60% is labor cost. This covers the cost to upgrade 95% of the distribution transformers, 20% of the secondary distribution lines, and 25% of the feeder lines. The cost estimate does not include additional undergrounding of feeder lines or secondary distribution lines.”

How much is that going to cost?

Between $2,000 and $5,000 per home or in total for Palo Alto, somewhere between 30 and 75 million dollars

Those costs don’t include the costs to homeowners, who must pay for the service upgrade, service entrance wires, and circuit breaker panel box. And, of course, does not include the purchase new appliances or the installation of EV chargers.

To go all-electric in every single family residence (SFR) in California also means replacing all the natural gas usage with electrical appliances – heating, cooking, domestic water heating, and for many homes, pool heating.

The cost?

The cost of disconnecting the natural gas lines is estimated between $1,114 to $3,578 per home. That does not include the cost to the homeowner of replacing the appliances with electric models.  All told, for this piece of going electric will cost from $11 million  to $53 million – for Palo Alto’s single family homes alone.  This does not include businesses, apartment houses, retail shops and any other type of building. 

Palo Alto’s has about 15,000 homes….but there are approximately 7.5 million single family residences in California.  That means that the numbers given in the Palo Alto report will have to be multiplied by 500 to get an estimate for the state of California. 

For pole mounted transformers, that will require up to  335,000 pole mounted transformers alone. Also, millions of new electric stove tops, millions of electric ovens, millions of electric water heaters.  Not all of the 7.5 million homes in California use natural gas, but the California Public Utilities Commission tells us there are 11 million gas meters in California.    That’s a lot of natural gas customers.

A gold star for the first reader to give the probable cost to the individual California home owner to upgrade home to all-electric with two EV over-night chargers.  Give a list of what you are including.

For other readers, try to give an estimate of the materials needed to accomplish going all-electric just in California.  Components needed for the grid upgrade, new appliances in homes, EV charges, 200 amp  service entrance wire (currently costs about $20 per foot), new circuit panels, . . . . .  [this is a long list].  Give your opinion on whether or not you think that the manufacturing  and supply chain is adequate to the task in today’s world. 

Please be aware that there are about 140 million homes in the United States.  Anyone care to try the estimates for cost and time to convert all those homes all-electric?

# # # # #

Author’s Comment:

Personally, I don’t think there is the political will to carry-out the all-electric-cars-and-homes demand, not even in California.  I don’t think there is enough electrical generation to supply the U.S. grid with enough electricity to meet average demand for a nation made up of all-electric homes and all electric vehicles.  I’m not sure we can even supply the components for the transformation.

And then there is the task of replacing the 276 million cars and light duty trucks that currently exist in US households, even over time.    Can we manufacture enough batteries to replace those ICE vehicles? 

I hate to be a pessimist, but I don’t think it is doable.

What’s your opinion?

Thanks for reading.

# # # # #

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Old Man Winter
April 11, 2022 10:22 pm

The median home listing is ~$3.3M, with Old Palo Alto @ $5.2M! I wonder
what they want to rent the small storage shed in the back yard? 😉

BTW, a squirrel can also cause a short across a transformer. It
probably would have tasted like Cajun Style Chicken! 😉

Last edited 1 month ago by Old Man Winter
J C
Reply to  Old Man Winter
April 12, 2022 12:03 am

I did not notice your squirrel. They will do that. First day on a new job many years ago. Suicidal rodent shorted out an Xformer and dropped one leg of the building’s 3-phase. Employer was impressed that I had it sorted before teh parking lot got even half full.

Joel O'Bryan(@joelobryan)
April 11, 2022 10:41 pm

Now the electric utilities also use smart meters to impose peak demand metering and varied rate structures so they don’t have to build more base load generation. Peak demand metering is such that exceeding certain demand levels during certain parts of the day means that electricity is hyper expensive during high demand periods, and then those utility defined periods are continually shifting during the year from summer to winter.

I just said “No Thank You” to Tucson Electric Power when they were trying to get people to sign up for peak demand metering schemes a few years ago. My electricity costs per Kwh are the same no matter when during the day I use it so I don’t have to think about whether I should or shouldn’t run the clothes dryer, or adjust the HVAC thermostat if I’m hot or cold, or adjust the timer on my 240V pool pump. If you are on peak demand scheme and you go over your Kw demand threshold for that period, the per Kwh charge is enormous.

I ran the numbers, and for just a few dollars a month the hassle and worry wouldn’t be worth it.
Just say “No” to the Climate Scam.

AndyHce
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
April 11, 2022 11:34 pm

There was never any choice here. I think that is frequently the case.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  AndyHce
April 12, 2022 8:18 am

True, the utility just shows up and does the changeover.

Doc Chuck
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
April 12, 2022 12:36 am

Joel, the copper needed for all this supplemental wiring will alone be a huge additional factor bearing on the price of this critical metal, so I wonder if cost estimates in these studies also take that into account. Fortunately in my own fond dreams wind and solar energy (along with any attendant unicorns) are cost-free energy resources simply awaiting harvest so that surely must offset some of these ponderous electrical equipment outlays, bringing saving the planet by this means within reach. Yeah, that’s the way to a well thought out future well within reach, I tells ya!

Trying to Play Nice
Reply to  Doc Chuck
April 12, 2022 5:43 am

I’ve never seen anyone account for the rising cost of raw materials when changing to the all-electric world. The activists seem to think that, just like the weather, commodity prices never change.

AGW is Not Science
Reply to  Trying to Play Nice
April 12, 2022 10:02 am

They also seem to think that “commodities” are available in infinite quantities.

The phrase rare Earth metals does not give them one second’s pause.

George
Reply to  Trying to Play Nice
April 14, 2022 3:37 pm

“all-electric world”
We tried the all electric in the late 50’s and early 60’s.
It was abandoned for the most part

George
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 14, 2022 4:03 pm

No, I live in the deep south, natural gas has always been plentiful. In fact, until price controls were remove from “old” gas and oil during Jimmy Carters administration, Drillers would curse when they hit Nat. Gas. They would always flare it off at the well.

Last edited 1 month ago by George
MarkW
Reply to  Doc Chuck
April 13, 2022 6:11 pm

When I was a kid in S. California, I remember a large number of homes having to be rewired, at great expense to the owners.
In order to save money a number of builders had built homes using aluminum wiring. These aluminum wires worked loose over time and as a result switches and sockets were overheating and causing fires.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
April 12, 2022 6:10 am

When I was in my first apartment, just out of school, the local POCO (power company) was hyping time-of-day service. They defined the peak times and offered different rates for peak and off-peak service. The monthly service fee was a couple of bucks higher. Well, weekends were fully off-peak, and on peak was almost entirely when I was at work. Having an all-electric apartment, I was all over that offer like a duck on a June bug. Had I been married with an infant at home, it might have been a different story.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 12, 2022 8:46 pm

Bureaucrats have a problem distinguishing “living” from “existing.”

high treason
April 11, 2022 10:44 pm

Extra generating power from ??? Where will that infrastructure come from? Brownouts and appliance burnout insurance will add heaps to insurance costs.
Then there is additional insurance for the EVs catching fire and creating mayhem. House uninhabitable?-insurance up again. Re wiring whole cities would cost billions. Accross the nation, it would be in the trillions. Blown transformers would certainly occur, adding to the woes. Big blackout, can’t charge your car to drive to work- trouble.
The 5-7 k for rewiring your house/ fusebox is only the start when you consider the other infrastructure costs, to say nothing of the unreliability of the expensive energy.
Of course, the entire premise used to justify these absurd measures is beyond debate. This is a sure sign that something has a very bad smell to it when those with vested interests refuse to present any evidence whatsoever, let alone discuss the issue.
Someone upstairs would be shaking their heads at how gullible and brainwashed earthlings are. Come the Second Coming, it is likely we will all be told to “go to hell” for being so gutless in terms of standing up to total lunacy.

Frank from NoVA
Reply to  high treason
April 12, 2022 7:20 am

‘This is a sure sign that something has a very bad smell to it when those with vested interests refuse to present any evidence whatsoever, let alone discuss the issue.’

Absolutely. If the next non-socialist administration doesn’t ‘Red Team’ the junk science of CAGW and, shortly thereafter, strike down the EPA’s endangerment finding, we can kiss civilization good-bye.

Erik magnuson
April 11, 2022 10:48 pm

In my case, I’d have to fork over at least $20,000 just to bring my utility entrance up to current code – not enough spacing between gas meter and electric meter. AFAIK, the utilities were up to code when the house was built in 1980.

I had been thinking of getting an EV for commuting, but the cost of service upgrade pt the kibosh on that idea.

HotScot
Reply to  Erik magnuson
April 12, 2022 5:51 am

Has anyone actually witnessed a properly installed electricity supply ignite a properly installed gas main?

MarkW
Reply to  HotScot
April 13, 2022 6:18 pm

He didn’t say if the electric service to the house was underground or not If it is underground, is there any chance of stray currents corroding the natural gas pipes?

George
Reply to  MarkW
April 14, 2022 4:14 pm

nat. gas pipelines usually have corrosion sacrificial electrode to prevent this.
Test coupons are also installed and removed at regular intervals of verify safety of pipelines from corrosion.

Erik Magnuson
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 12, 2022 8:08 am

Kip ==> my commute is 45 miles, so a charge from a 15A outlet would barely do the job. I would also want the car to be able to more than the straight commute.

The isue with the service also makes solar installations pretty much a non-starter.

HotScot ==> I’m not aware of any natgas fires being started by the electrical panel, though there may be issues with a nearby lightning strike coupling between the underground electric service and gas line. FWIW, out municipal code prohibits new natgas hookups.

AGW is Not Science
Reply to  Erik Magnuson
April 12, 2022 10:06 am

FWIW, out municipal code prohibits new natgas hookups.

Got propane?

Jake J
Reply to  Erik Magnuson
April 12, 2022 11:18 am

I wouldn’t want to do it, but you could use a 120v charge cable, which will run at 12 amps and take about 10 hours to give you 45 miles of range. (Ugh.) On the other hand, you could plug it into your electric dryer circuit (30A/240v) and get 45 miles of range in a tad bit more than 2 hours.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  Jake J
April 13, 2022 4:15 pm

Assuming the dryer outlet is in a convenient location, which it probably isn’t. A longer cord gets hot and wastes electricity.

Jake J
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
April 14, 2022 5:05 pm

If the dryer outlet is not in a convenient location, then the EV owner would need to have a 240v/30A outlet installed in the garage. Are you telling me that a 10ga cord can’t handle 240v/30A? That’s not what I saw when I took a look, but I can always be educated by facts.

Streetcred
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 12, 2022 9:48 pm

Electric scooter 😉

yirgach
Reply to  Streetcred
April 13, 2022 5:18 am

In the rain…

Jake J
Reply to  Erik magnuson
April 12, 2022 10:25 am

Ignore this alarmist article. If you have a standard 30A/240v electric dryer circuit and plug, it will charge 80% of your new Chevy Bolt or Tesla Model 3’s battery in 8 hours. I’m far from some AGW believer, or an EVangelist. I own a cheap 1st generation EV, and a one-ton diesel pickup. My only interest on this topic is facts and realism.

ihfan
Reply to  Jake J
April 12, 2022 2:00 pm

My only interest on this topic is facts and realism.

Looks like Palo Alto did some of that “facts and realism” stuff and got some pricey estimates.

“Facts and realism” say that California won’t be able to force everyone to get an EV, because there simply isn’t enough power available to charge all of those batteries, plus operate the newly installed electric heaters (because natural gas won’t be available).

Jake J
Reply to  ihfan
April 12, 2022 7:33 pm

Please trust me: The only positive thing I have to say about California is the scenery and the accomplishments of they who came before the nutcases who run it now. California had a longstanding reputation for good governance. And then they threw it all away.

I am the very last person who will say anything good about what that state has become.

Jake J
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 12, 2022 7:58 pm

The airport is 70 miles away. If I had a new (second generation) EV and plugged it in at 7 p.m., by 4 am I would have added about 60 kWh, which in the very worst circumstances here would add 180 miles of range and get me to the airport and back with mileage to spare.

Now, let me add that it’s the Portland, Oregon airport. Hear about the crime? If I don’t park there and instead find a way to be dropped off or take a shuttle, I will do it. But not because of driving range.

MarkW
Reply to  Jake J
April 13, 2022 6:30 pm

When do you dry clothes, if you have to use your dryer connection to charge your car every night?
Also where are you going to charge a second car, remember their goal is to replace all cars with electrics.
Finally, have you priced how much 20 to 30 feet of dryer power cord costs? Not to mention trying to wrestle it into position. BTW, do you plan on leaving the garage door open all night?

Jake J
Reply to  MarkW
April 14, 2022 5:09 pm

Answers:

  • You don’t charge an EV every night if you’re smart. You charge it every three or four nights unless it’s winter, in which case maybe every two or three nights.
  • If you charge two of them, you’d probably wind up getting a couple of 240v/30 plugs installed in the garage. You wouldn’t have to, but you probably would.
  • I looked at the prices, and I’d say $65.
  • If it was a detached garage, I’d pop for an outlet. In fact, I did exactly that in the last place where we lived.
  • Wrestling a 10ga extension cord? Oh please.
Jake J
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 16, 2022 4:55 pm

If you actually knew anything about EVs, you’d never have accepted that ludicrous aspect of Palo Alto’s b.s. report that suggested two 50A/240v chargers. That’s really the crux of my pushback. Had others here not chimed in about EVs posing major challenges to the grid, this would have been a different discussion.

Palo Alto’s proposal is stark raving insane, on steroids, and that probably ensures that they’ll be stupid and rich enough to actually implement it. I have talked solely about EVs here, and my contrarianism is sharply limited to the stupid assertions (including implied ones) that they’ll wreck the grid.

That’s not going to happen. An extra electric dryer running overnight — and that’s what an EV is, appliance-wise — ain’t going to be a problem, with the proviso that it’s a big country and there will be exceptions. But they’ll prove the rule.

Jake J
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 18, 2022 4:26 pm

The upgrades contemplated by Palo Alto will be required not for EVs but for other stuff now powered by natural gas. EVs are a minor draw.

Jake J
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 21, 2022 12:39 pm

I don’t drive the EV when there’s snow or ice on the roads around here, but it has nothing to do with the power source. If I had the gasser equivalent (Scion iQ, same weight), I wouldn’t drive it on snowy or icy roads either.

It’s a matter of vehicle weight, along with my EV having “low resistance” tires. They could be replaced with regular tires at a cost of some fuel economy, but the car would still be too light for me to want to drive it on slick roads.

Palo Alto’s plan is stupid from a number of angles, but the EV component is a nothingburger regardless of what they say, or what you have ignorantly parroted. EVs simply don’t take enough juice to matter, especially given that home charging happens at night.

John Pickens
April 11, 2022 10:56 pm

The analysis calculates that only 20% of the secondary distribution lines will need replacing. I call B.S. This scenario will more than double electricity usage, so I’d guess that nearly all power lines at every stage of distribution will need replacement or have parallel added capacity lines added. Add at least another 30% to the cost estimates.

Old planning engineer
Reply to  John Pickens
April 12, 2022 12:12 am

Not so. The calculations are complicated as it depends on peak load at peak temperatures. Also most distribution lines have ample spare capacity as they would (should) have been installed at a size to cope with future 30 year demand. The thing to note is that most EV charging will occur at night when the lines have much more capacity than during the day

ghalfrunt
Reply to  Old planning engineer
April 12, 2022 4:12 am

Also single phase chargers in UK (240V ac) are rated at 7kW with 100A capable wires from grid and 100Amp Fuses. turn ALL cooker rings and ovens on and you are looking at up to 18kW. most people cook at very similar times. The grid has to handle this surge in power.
The difference between cooking and charging is that charging is continuous for many hours.
Chargers connected to 3 phase can charge at 22kW.

Most modern chargers measure the current being used by the house and modulate the maximum charge current to keep total to less than 100A. Some will also ensure charging occurs only while solar output on house pv is sufficient but also noting the time the car is required to be fully charged taking from the grid when necessary.

In uk daily use of cars is less than 20 miles (using 7kWh of battery energy) US 40miles/day (14kWh) so these will recharge within a couple of hours at minimum grid use. If smart meters are used then special cheap rates can allow choices to be made when to charge. In UK octopus energy offer a special deal to electric car owners – my costs are 5p/kWh from 00:30 to 04:30 and 15p/kWh at other times. – these rates are not currently offered

Derg
Reply to  ghalfrunt
April 12, 2022 4:27 am

Hey it’s the guy who told us to drink bleach…geez

John Pickens
Reply to  ghalfrunt
April 12, 2022 5:18 am

I have three friends with EV chargers expensively installed in their houses. None of them include this mythical whole house usage monitoring system. Try again.

From the USDOE:
“PEV charging infrastructure is considered a continuous load by the National Electrical Code (NEC)”

Streetcred
Reply to  John Pickens
April 12, 2022 9:52 pm

@John … do you have an old uncle called “Slim” ? Just askin’ as he appeared in nearly all of the old westerns 🙂

Jake J
Reply to  John Pickens
April 13, 2022 11:47 am

Your friends have too much money. Really, they do. All they had to do was go to Amazon and spend $179 for a 20-foot, 240v/32A charging cord. One end in the outlet, the other end in the car. Voila! Really, that’s all. Expensive charging stations at home are a joke. If the car is more than 20 or 25 feet from the outlet, just head to Ace Hardware for a 240v extension cord that can handle 30A. They’ll know, or at least they’d know at the Ace in the small town 6 miles away.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  Jake J
April 13, 2022 4:11 pm

How many unused 240VAC/32A outlets do you have?? It has to have its own breaker.

MarkW
Reply to  Jake J
April 13, 2022 6:37 pm

How do you get that cable out to the garage without leaving the door open all night?
Have you ever tried to fight with one of those cables?
Have you calculated the cable losses over a 30 foot cable?
When do you plan to dry clothes, since you are using the dryer connection to charge the car every night?

Tim Gorman
Reply to  MarkW
April 14, 2022 3:14 pm

30ft probably won’t do it. My dryer outlet is inside the house, not in the garage. Better plan on a 50ft extension cord. Meaning you will have to leave the mud room door to the garage open (mice anyone?) as well as the garage door.

Guess what that extension cord will represent to the local thugs. How often do you plan on replacing it?

Jake J
Reply to  Tim Gorman
April 14, 2022 4:53 pm

No, you’d simply cut a notch in the door, and plug it when there’s no cord running through it. That notch wouldn’t be at floor level, but a foot above the floor on the side of the door.

Thugs? Where I live, that thug would have a lead problem. Aside from that, we have an attached garage. Look, if it was that big a problem, I’d just have the electrician stick a 240v/30A outlet in the garage. I’ve done it that way.

Where there’s a will, there’s a way. If you’re looking for reasons to avoid EVs, I can come up with several of them. But not that one.

Jake J
Reply to  MarkW
April 14, 2022 4:48 pm

Answers:

  • You don’t charge the EV every night. Scroll around and see my detailed explanation of that.
  • I don’t plug into my electric dryer outlet, because I have other 240v outlets in the garage and a barn. But if I didn’t have those outlets and had to plug into the dryer outlet, I’d need only a short extension cord — no more than 10 feet.
  • If I were going to do it that way, I’d cut a notch in the door between the mud room where the laundry appliances sit, and the garage door. There’s a second door between that mud room and the rest of the house. There wouldn’t be much air leakage at all.
  • I just looked up the losses, and they are not material.
  • If I did it that way, I’d have to dry the clothes at a different time than I charged the EV. This might be too complicated for some poor souls, but not for me. I’d be charging the car once every few days, so I’d dry the clothes on the nights when I wasn’t charging the car. Wow, what a concept! Can I patent that?
  • If I did it that way, I’d win the “fight” with the extension cord.
Dave Fair
Reply to  Jake J
April 18, 2022 5:12 pm

Everybody can be a handyman, right?

Jake J
Reply to  Dave Fair
April 19, 2022 12:16 pm

I’m no mechanical genius, but even I can cut a notch in a door and make a plug that will fit into that notch when a cord’s not running through it.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Jake J
April 18, 2022 5:10 pm

Code compliance? Extension cords running everywhere? A couple of garage fires will put an end to EVs within housing structures.

Apartments? Farms? Transportation? Etc.

ghalfrunt
Reply to  John Pickens
April 14, 2022 7:21 pm

Zappi charger: When the Grid Limit is set, will automatically reduce the power going to the EV if it detects that too much power
is being drawn from the grid.
Sets the limit that can be drawn from the grid connection (i.e. the maximum import current or the main fuse rating).
Example: A property may have a grid supply limit of 65A. Several appliances are on so the property is consuming
12kW (52A). The user wants to charge in FAST mode. Without the Grid Limit set, the total consumption would exceed
the allowed import current and trip the supply or blow a fuse. However, with a Grid Limit setting of 60A, zappi would
temporarily limit the charging current to 8A (about 1.8kW) and the maximum allowed import current would not be
exceeded
https://myenergi.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Zappi-2-Full-Manual-V1_6_2.pdf

Reply to  ghalfrunt
April 12, 2022 5:38 am

Some will also ensure charging occurs only while solar output on house pv is sufficient”

So much for charging at night.
EV chargers for everyone is a nonstarter. Especially with people telling politicians that solar will charge the EVs overnight.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  ATheoK
April 12, 2022 8:21 am

Moonlight?

anthropic
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
April 14, 2022 2:02 am

Well, there are a lot of lunatics in Cali…

HotScot
Reply to  ghalfrunt
April 12, 2022 5:46 am

…my costs are 5p/kWh from 00:30 to 04:30 and 15p/kWh at other times. – these rates are not currently offered

In other words, not only do I subsidise your EV purchase, I subsidise the running of your EV as you pay no road fund licence and no fuel duties.

When the cost of those is added to your charging cost, and you’re also charged full whack for the 25% subsidy added to everyone else’s electricity bills to pay for useless renewables, you EV’s won’t be nearly as cheap to run as you currently enjoy.

Your 20 mile per day figure is also entirely misleading as it includes every car registered for the road, and I would wager those under SORN notification (Statutory Off Road Notification). The former includes the rapidly ageing and retired population who don’t do the mileage of a working man, and most of whom couldn’t’ afford an EV even if they wanted one.

The number also includes 52 weekends a year when the working population aren’t doing the mileage they do during the week. It also includes every car for sale, on every garage forecourt around the country. Millions of them.

The accepted norm for average mileage is around 10,000 miles per year. Over 365 days thats 27 miles a day for starters. Exclude the weekends and that figure jumps to 39 miles per day.

If, as is often the case, a household has two cars, that’s 78 miles per day per household. These might best be described as commuters. The working man who runs a van or car as part of his business might be doing two to three times that mileage per working day.

Your numbers are based on fallacious and maliciously distorted green utopian numbers designed to make a case for EV’s.

It’s all BS.

Dave Andrews
Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 9:41 am

Yes. Fuel Duty and Vehicle Excise Duty (Road Tax) brought in £37billion for the UK Treasury in 2019-20. EVs don’t currently pay these charges but things will have to change if the present stupidity continues.

ThinkingScientist
Reply to  Dave Andrews
April 12, 2022 12:10 pm

Fuel duty is the largest single source of domestic tax revenue to the Exchequer I believe.

kzb
Reply to  Dave Andrews
April 12, 2022 1:36 pm

Simple answer: road charging. It is coming.

ThinkingScientist
Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 12:09 pm

My car averages about 15,000 miles per year, my wife’s less at about 6,000 miles per year. I always considered average mileage to be about 12,000 per annum but our average is pretty close to your 10k pa.

Trying to Play Nice
Reply to  ghalfrunt
April 12, 2022 5:49 am

So you’re one of those nitwits that charges your EV overnight with solar energy. Maybe that’s why you have a problem every morning.

fretslider
Reply to  ghalfrunt
April 12, 2022 6:05 am

charging is continuous for many hours.”

Precisely why EV’s are useless except as milk floats.

Meab
Reply to  ghalfrunt
April 12, 2022 8:42 am

Ghoulfront, the average residential electricity use in the US is 10.7 kW-hrs per day. If you add 14 kW-hrs for one EV you have well more than doubled residential electricity demand. Add two EVs (most households have more than one car) and you have almost quadrupled residential demand. And increased peak power.

Every kW-hr must be produced somehow. Solar won’t work without massive grid-scale batteries, a technology that doesn’t exist. Same for wind. Hydro is tapped out. Home solar won’t work without back-up batteries for anyone who doesn’t park their car at home during the mid-day and isn’t possible during the winter in northern locations anyway. By promoting EVs, you’re promoting coal and natural gas.

It seems that the people who make the most noise are the ones who are least able to think things through. I’m afraid that you are one, Ghoulfront.

Jake J
Reply to  Meab
April 12, 2022 11:13 am

Average residential electricity usage is 11,000 kWh/year, which is ~30 kWh/day. If the average EV is driven 10,000 miles/year (the average is actually 13,000, but EVs have range limitations), that’s 9-10 kWh/day for EVs.

Thus, widespread EV adoption would raise electricity consumption up by one-third. That’s probably an overestimate, because I used 3 miles/kWh while the average is higher. I did that because EVs do badly in cold weather, plus we can assume that, as they’re more widely adopted and the drivers are less inclined to be zealots, fuel economy will decline.

In any case, you can quibble with 9-10 kWh/day, but you can’t rationally quibble by a factor of nearly 3.

https://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/use-of-energy/electricity-use-in-homes.php

Meab
Reply to  Jake J
April 12, 2022 12:36 pm

I apologize, I should have checked more than one source. It is 30 kW-hr per day. However, you are fudging numbers. The reason the average EV only goes 13,000 miles per year is because most EV owners also own one or more gas cars and they put more miles on the gas car than the EV. When gas cars go away, EVs will have to pick up the slack.

15,000 miles per year is a better estimate. An efficient EV runs through a kW-hr every 3 miles. If EVs take over for gas, there will be EV pickups, EV SUVs, EVs doing towing, etc. and the average amount of electricity use per mile will go up. I just watched a video of a Rivian pickup towing a trailer that used ~1 KW-hr per mile. A GM Hummer EV uses .65 kW-hrs per mile.

So, since the average number of cars per household is 1.88 (but both aren’t equally used) a more reasonable estimate is in the range of 15 to 20 kW-hrs per day per household. That would increase electricity usage by more than 50% per day for the average household.

The moral of the story is you shouldn’t believe the utopian estimates being pushed by GangGreen.

Jake J
Reply to  Meab
April 12, 2022 6:05 pm

Actually, I rounded up. The WSJ published a 9,000-mile estimate a while back. The U.S. Dept of Transportation gives a 13,000-mile average number for all vehicles. EVs don’t have practical “road trip” range, notwithstanding the promoters’ attempts to suggest otherwise, so I assume that between not being used for long trips plus not being used by the small group of people in the tail of the curve, i.e. those with long commutes or frequent out-of-town business, that a lower EV number is probably accurate.

Even if I were to set the EV average equal to the gasser average, i.e. 13,000 miles a year, that’s 35 miles a day. Typically, an EV will go 3.5 miles/kWh — more in summer, less in winter — so an extra 10 kWh/day is a pretty good bogey. But if you insist, call it 12 kWh/day. Or even 15 kWh. My point still stands, any “false precision” notwithstanding.

Sure, there are EVs with rotten fuel economy, but they’re outliers. Your point about households with more than one EV is well-taken. If I were doing the planning, I’d say 10 kWh per EV, and then add a 25% fudge factor.

Oh, and electric light trucks? It’s a big country and people will do all kinds of things, but I don’t see a bright future for them. The minute you tow anything with an EV, prepare to see the range collapse. I live in pickup truck country, and will be surprised if electric ones become popular around here given the towing and hauling limitations, which are pretty severe.

meab
Reply to  Jake J
April 12, 2022 11:40 pm

The Federal Highway administration says 14,263 miles per year for gas cars. That’s 39 miles per day for all types of driving, not 35.

You have to include charging losses, that subtracts about 5% from electrical efficiency.

There is no such thing as a “typical” EV.

The average Tesla Model 3 uses about .34 kW-hrs per mile, but gets much worse than that in the winter. As much as 40% worse. It also gets worse in the summer with the A/C running. It’s also worse for highway driving at speed.

Overall, EVs get from 0.24 to 0.87 kW-hrs per mile – there’s a wide range. Typically, the larger ones have poorer efficiency – and you can bet that if gasoline is regulated away people will be forced to buy EVs that, on average, get poorer mileage than the best EV econobox now sold. But let’s use 0.24 just for argument’s sake.

39 *.24 *1.05 *1.88 cars / household = 18.5 kW-hrs / household. Perhaps the number of miles an EV travels per day will drop because they’re so inconvenient. If it drops ~20% that’s 15 kW-hrs per day. If the average efficiency is worse (pick .34) that’s more like 25 kW-hrs per day.

I agree with your statement about false precision as there are a lot of unknowns but you (and GangGreen) appear to have forgotten the factor of 1.88 (a big factor which can’t be ignored). The electrical usage more likely to be in the range of 15 to 25 kW-hrs per day per household than the 9 to 10 that you came up with. This would be, no matter what GangGreen says, a very significant increase in residential electricity consumption – 50% to 100%.

I also agree that EV pickups will be a hard sell, heck, most EVs will be a hard sell as they’re expensive, inconvenient, and batteries do degrade over time.

Jake J
Reply to  meab
April 13, 2022 12:41 pm

Miles driven numbers vary quite a bit. I re-researched it, and found some claims for that 14,463 number, but could not trace any of them back to the Federal Highway Admin. The most commonly cited number is 13,400 and change, but there are lower numbers.

Federal Highway Adm, see table VM-1 in section 5.

2019: 11,599
2020: 9,780

And this, not precise but uses Federal Highway Admin’s 2018 data for cars. Note: 2018 was 11,576 miles for all light vehicles, including cars. Insurance companies use 12,000 miles, and so have most leasing companies although they’ve added lower mileage options in recent years.

I stand by my numbers, and think that I understated EV fuel economy and therefore overstated electricity use. I tend to want to shade any numbers AGAINST my argument to pre-empt accusations like yours.

Jake J
Reply to  meab
April 13, 2022 5:46 pm

The average Tesla Model 3 uses about .34 kW-hrs per mile, but gets much worse than that in the winter. As much as 40% worse. It also gets worse in the summer with the A/C running. It’s also worse for highway driving at speed.

Uh-oh, I am going to say the first positive thing about any Tesla in more than a decade of arguing online with the Tesloid cult. (Don’t tell any of them, okay? I have an image to protect.) Sorry, but that Model 3 uses .25 to .3 kWh/mile. In my experience, the EPA numbers for EVs are pretty accurate.

https://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/PowerSearch.do?action=noform&path=1&year1=2022&year2=2022&make=Tesla&baseModel=Model%203&srchtyp=ymm&pageno=1&rowLimit=50

The winter haircut varies by how cold the winter is, obviously. It’s absolutely true that there’s a substantial haircut. It’s even worse if you’re going uphill or towing anything. I saw a road test of a Tesla SUV towing a 5,000-pound load, and it was pathetic.

The one service it performed was to convince me that it’ll be quite a while until we see any kind of serious uptake of battery-powered work pickups. Trust me, no one’s going to be using an electric Ford or Rivian (or that ugly Tesla pickup) to haul a horse trailer to the rodeo. For that to happen would require a different battery chemistry for both cost and weight reasons.

You have to include charging losses, that subtracts about 5% from electrical efficiency.

I wondered the same thing, but almost a decade’s worth of experience with my EV convinced me otherwise. My first-generation EV has a 24 kWh battery. As an experiment, I ran it down to zero (wouldn’t move), and it took 25 kWh at the plug to fill it to 100%. Any charging loss is trivial, and wouldn’t be material for any purpose mentioned in this thread. I’d set it approximately equal to the errors on gas pumps that are usually related to ambient temperatures.

you can bet that if gasoline is regulated away people will be forced to buy EVs that, on average, get poorer mileage than the best EV econobox now sold

I agree with you on that, but there’s a counterargument from personal experience. At the risk of looking like a promoter, the first thing you learn from driving even a dinky little Think City EV (mine) is that they have a lot of torque. Mine has two settings, “drive” and “economy,” and I use “economy” 90% of the time.

And I have a lead foot. I’m anything but the proverbial old lady behind the wheel. There will be less-aerodynamic EVs out there (in fact, they already exist), and bigger ones. On the other hand (geez, now I’m an economist? kill me now), one of these days someone’s going to stick a 2-speed tranny into an EV, and that’ll raise fuel economy by 15%.

39 *.24 *1.05 *1.88 cars / household = 18.5 kW-hrs / household

How about this:

  • Average commute is 30 miles, but let’s call it 35 just to have a cushion
  • 3.5 miles/kWh, or .28 kWh/mile
  • 9.8 kWh per car

So we get to the same result (or close enough for horseshoes) through different calculations. My other posts have been “per car” without saying so. But yes, if it’s a two-EV household then you have to double the number if both users are daily commuters.

most EVs will be a hard sell as they’re expensive, inconvenient, and batteries do degrade over time.

I think the biggest selling objection will be the cost, which isn’t just the sticker but just as importantly the resale value. We don’t yet have good data on EV resale value, but given how crucial it is that an EV owner treat the battery well, plus the distortions from that federal tax credit, I think resale value is going to make used EVs look like used computers. Not that bad, but pretty bad. We shall see.

I don’t think EVs are “inconvenient.” You could argue it the other way, in fact. Charge it at home, and there’s essentially zero drivetrain, exhaust or tranny maintenance. All I’ve had to do with my EV is replace tires 12v batteries from time to time. Degradation is, to me, mainly a resale issue because the used buyer doesn’t know what condition the battery is in.

But let’s say you buy a Chevy Bolt and keep it until it dies or you do. Taking a conservative 1,000 charge cycle estimate, and assuming that you’re not stupid and therefore recharge at 20%, the battery is going to run for 180,000 miles at 3.5 miles/kWh. The car will be junk before the battery is a dead duck.

MarkW
Reply to  meab
April 13, 2022 6:49 pm

For someone who claims to be just a disinterested observer, Jake sure does spend a lot of time arguing in favor of electric vehicles.

Jake J
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 14, 2022 5:01 pm

I am arguing against your stupid assertion that someone needs not just one, but two 240v/50A electric car chargers. I can tell that you’ve never owned an EV. That’s fine. I don’t care either way. But you’re so typical of an ax-grinding zealot. You cannot possibly handle it when someone knows a lot more about a subject than you do.

Tesloids, meet Kip Hansen. Have fun! You don’t know it, but you are brothers under the skin.

Jake J
Reply to  MarkW
April 14, 2022 4:58 pm

I need to change my Iron Law.

It used to be: “You can always tell a ‘progressive’ but you can never tell a ‘progressive’ anything. They hate facts, and think they know everything.”

I need to be, ugh, more inclusive. Change “progressive” to “ax-grinding zealot.”

EVs have their strengths and their weaknesses, and I’ve discussed their weaknesses. To me, they are just vehicles. Not causes, and not threats. They’re just a way to get from point A to point B. Nothing more, nothing less.

You have a grudge. I don’t. Yep, I own an EV. I also own a diesel truck and a compact SUV gasser. The problem here is that I actually know what I’m talking about, and that (for who knows what reason) threatens your self-esteem or something.

John Pickens
Reply to  Old planning engineer
April 12, 2022 5:12 am

You’re doubling electricity usage and it won’t require doubling the capacity of the distribution lines? Sure…

Trying to Play Nice
Reply to  John Pickens
April 12, 2022 5:50 am

We don’t have to worry about 30 year growth or peaks any more once we hit the promised land of total electrification. Maybe our old planning engineer should have been in on operations at some point in his career.

Last edited 1 month ago by Trying to Play Nice
Carlo, Monte
Reply to  John Pickens
April 12, 2022 8:23 am

And how many already have 20+ years of load increases…

Jake J
Reply to  John Pickens
April 13, 2022 12:46 pm

The average household uses 30 kWh/day. The average commute rounds up to 30 miles/day. Depending on what number you’d use for EV fuel economy, that’s an increase of 8-1/2 to 10 kWh/day per EV. Keep in mind that home charging of EVs happens at night when power demand is low.

Trying to Play Nice
Reply to  Old planning engineer
April 12, 2022 5:46 am

When everyone is driving EVs and charging them at night, night will be peak demand time. Since you need to charge your EV when you are at home and not when driving, there is no way to move to off-peak.

Jim Gorman
Reply to  Old planning engineer
April 12, 2022 7:47 am

The big problem won’t be suburban, it will be downtown, city center, and old housing developments where old lines proliferate. Places where space is a premium.

You estimate 335k transformers. In what, 10 years? Good luck even if only half need to be newly manufactured.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Old planning engineer
April 12, 2022 8:54 pm

… most EV charging will occur at night when the lines have much more capacity than during the day

That is true today. However, what about in the future when everyone is trying to charge their batteries at night?

Jake J
Reply to  Clyde Spencer
April 13, 2022 1:56 pm

It won’t be everyone. EVs will be charged every three or four days in most weather. In winter, or if the terrain is steep, or there’s heavy towing or hauling, more frequently.

Jake J
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 14, 2022 5:03 pm

And you know nothing about EVs either, but that doesn’t stop you.

John Pickens
April 11, 2022 11:03 pm

And I should add, the whole reason for embarking on this project is to reduce CO2 emissions. By front loading in time these replacement systems, CO2 emissions will be far greater than if nothing was done. In fact, a simple program to assist in repairing and prolonging the service life of existing ICE trucks and automobiles would drastically reduce emissions vs. replacing them.

Tim Gorman
Reply to  John Pickens
April 12, 2022 4:24 am

I’m not sure this is true, at least for residential loads. It probably is for industrial/commercial loads. Residential loads should peak somewhere in the evening hours when everyone is home doing things like washing clothes, cooling/heating the house to a comfortable temperature, using computers/TV’s, etc. Then add in car charging. Residential transmission lines installed prior to the 1990’s probably didn’t account for things like car charging which will be a huge load increase.

Frank from NoVA
Reply to  Tim Gorman
April 12, 2022 6:58 am

There is no doubt that ‘coincidental peak load’, which is the basis for sizing transmission lines, will increase dramatically with the forced substitution of electric vehicles and appliances for their fossil-fuel powered predecessors.

MarkW
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 13, 2022 6:52 pm

Palo Alto has a mild climate, that is it’s summers aren’t all that hot and it’s winters aren’t brutally cold. As a result, I suspect that both the cooling and heating load for Palo Alto dwellings, is a lot less than for most cities.

Dave Andrews
Reply to  Tim Gorman
April 12, 2022 10:06 am

In the UK there are c.300,000 low voltage (LV) substations and c1m feeders with about 450,000 kms of buried cables. About 80% of these LV networks are built for ‘lighting plus’, c.1.2kW loads, not the 7kW EV and 9kW heat pump loads that net zero implies.

It has been estimated that upgrading these networks would cost at least £60 billion and involve digging up most of the non motorway roads in the country.

https://v2g.co.uk/2021/05/electric-vehicles-as-energy-appliances/

Dave Andrews
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 13, 2022 6:52 am
Jake J
Reply to  Tim Gorman
April 13, 2022 1:52 pm

An EV charger = an electric clothes dryer. EVs are charged at night. I think the power grid can accommodate home charging without breaking a sweat.

MarkW
Reply to  Jake J
April 13, 2022 6:55 pm

The experts, who actually run the Palo Alto power grid, disagree with your opinion.

Jake J
Reply to  MarkW
April 14, 2022 4:27 pm

Insofar as EVs are concerned, those “experts” are full of it.

Earthling2
April 11, 2022 11:43 pm

Well, that confirms it. The enviros must be big time pro mining if they want to gather up all the Copper and Bauxite on the planet, not to mention Lithium, Cobalt and Nickel, et al. When I bring this touchy subject up, they just get mad and stomp their feet. No mining in my back yard they say. We can recycle…and on it goes. Must be pro fossil fuel too if you want to mine all these resources. Just had this exact same discussion earlier today.

Last edited 1 month ago by Earthling2
HotScot
Reply to  Earthling2
April 12, 2022 2:02 am

If we replace all of the UK vehicle fleet with EVs, and assuming they use the most resource-frugal next-generation batteries, we would need the following materials:

• 207,900 tonnes of cobalt – just under twice the annual global production;

• 264,600 tonnes of lithium carbonate – three quarters of the world’s production;

• at least 7,200 tonnes of neodymium and dysprosium –nearly the entire world production of neodymium;

• 2,362,500 tonnes of copper – more than half the world’s production in 2018.

And this is just for the UK. It is estimated that the manufacturing capacity for EV batteries would have to increase more than 500-fold if we want the whole world to be transported by electric vehicles.

Professor of engineering, Michael Kelly for the GWPF.

Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 3:35 am

Hotscot

And that’s just for the cars themselves not the infrastructure to support them.

HotScot
Reply to  bob boder
April 12, 2022 5:15 am

100%.

And our governments know this. No one can be stupid enough not to. Which begs the question, what is the motivation behind all this?

Hasbeen
Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 6:16 am

The motivation is of course to get us out of our cars, & off aircraft. Peasants were never allowed horses, & we were never meant to have cars. Just a few years sleeping at the wheel & the elites suddenly woke up to the privileges we had obtained, & have been trying to put us back in our boxes ever since.

There is no intention to actually let us change to EVs, just to make private car ownership impossible.

Meanwhile half the population have become useful idiots, wanting EVs to come full steam ahead.

HotScot
Reply to  Hasbeen
April 12, 2022 1:06 pm

There’s one problem with this argument, and all the others which promote eugenics for example. If the population isn’t wealthy or big, who buys the products of the uber wealthy?

They can steal from the poor all they want, but eventually the money runs out and, ultimately, the peasants revolt.

Cars are part of our wealth equation. It’s baked into society that travelling to do business is still by far the most effective means of business exchange.

Matthew A. Siekierski
Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 7:54 am

You underestimate their stupidity.

Those that do understand don’t care, as it just means they get a political punching bag they can use for the rest of their careers.

Dave Andrews
Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 10:12 am

And he got those figures from Professor Richard Herrington’s paper ‘Mining our green future’ in Nature Reviews. Prof Herrington is in the Department of Earth Sciences, UK Natural History Museum.

https://doi.org/10.1038/s41578-021-00325-9

HotScot
Reply to  Dave Andrews
April 12, 2022 1:14 pm

Obliged. Kelly does reference his source which is here;

https://www.nhm.ac.uk/discover/news/2019/june/we-need-more-metals-and-elements-reach-uks-greenhouse-goals.html

The link includes reference to Herrington’s paper.

Ian Magness
April 11, 2022 11:52 pm

Kip,
Thank you for this excellent summary.
Needless to say we have exactly the same issue in the UK and, incredibly, grid supply is not an issue that almost anyone in the media or politics has even begun to get to grips with (very rare sceptics aside). There are two huge issues that should make much of what our great Prime Minister is trying to achieve absolute non-starters until solved both from standpoints of availability and cost:
1) the battery storage necessary to back-up all those lovely windmills and solar farms that must, it seems, now be the answer to Putin. That is a story for another time;
2) the electricity supply both from the standpoints of reliable generation capacity (again a story for another time) and actual grid delivery (especially to homes) on the ground – the subject of your post.
Right now, in terms of what is being done and planned by our heroes in both local and national government, it’s even “worse than we thought” with respect to British homes. Why? Because the politicians and media would like all homes old and new to move over to heat pumps – ground source where possible (rare, generally only some new homes) and air sourced – ASHPs – for all other homes. Why is this relevant to your article? Because, aside from the incredible installation-related costs involved – up to tens of £thousands per home – they use one hell of a lot of electricity and are generally never turned off between about October and May (and that’s in southern England).
On the subject of running costs, the usual subjects have been trumpeting for years that ASHPs will slash your energy running costs so, naively, I thought I’d find out what these costs were. For that I needed to find out the input power rating and multiply that by the cost per kwh from the energy supplier. Simple – or so I thought. Now, if you needed, say, a 2kw electric fire, you’d go online or down to your appliance shop and you’d easily find boxes with “2kw fire” or similar written on it. Just try that with ASHPs in Britain. It’s almost as if you are not allowed to know – the information is at best buried, at worst impossible to find out without contacting the manufacturer. Just how can you work out the cost of something that for long periods will run 24/7 if you don’t know the power rating?
Perhaps you are not allowed to know because you are saving the planet so it really doesn’t matter?
Turns out that ASHPs for (very) small houses generally start at 3kw and figures like 10kw may well be necessary for large houses (and I don’t mean mansions). If you do the simple maths on the hours and even assuming that these things turn themselves off when (if) household temperatures reach the desired numbers, you reach the inescapable conclusion that they will significantly increase, not decrease your energy bills.
Back to your article, my point is that, imagine you take all of your figures, then add another 3-10kw to the peak needs PER HOME and just imagine what that will do to a national grid not deigned for either ASHPs or BEV charging? It is literally insane to pursue these policies without a complete, multi-£billion renovation of the UK electricity grid. But that is precisely what we are told has to happen to save the planet.
Beam me up Scotty.

michel
Reply to  Ian Magness
April 12, 2022 12:20 am

Yes, completely correct.

The UK Net Zero plan (only somewhat modified in the direction of greater realism after the invasion of Ukraine) was basically this: to convert the electricity grid to run on intermittent wind and solar generation, while at the same time doubling demand for electricity by converting cars to EVs and gas heating to heat pumps.

To do this without having any plans for storage on the required scale to make electricity supply reliable during calms and evenings.

And at the same time as the gas heating is converted to heat pumps, also convert the gas grid to hydrogen, for which there is no current or future source. And for which there will be no demand, once the electricity conversion is done.

This is what happens when a country permits its political class, its activists and its media to be run by people educated only in the modern liberal arts after which they immediately move into positions where they make or advocate policy. they have never worked in business. They have none of them the slightest idea what project management is, they have no experience of planning the implementation of anything more complicated than changing a light bulb, they have never had to reason quantitavely about anything at all complicated in their lives. But the thing they know for sure is that they are the nation’s intellectual elite and they are well qualified to come up with policy by sheer power of intellect.

It is Dunning Kruger on a national scale.

Chaswarnertoo
Reply to  michel
April 12, 2022 12:24 am

Carrie Antoinette ‘let them buy Teslas’…..

Steve Case
Reply to  michel
April 12, 2022 1:21 am

It is Dunning Kruger on a national scale.
________________________________

First chuckle of my day (-:

Gerald the Mole
Reply to  michel
April 12, 2022 3:33 am

First class summary of the UL ruling class.

Mark
Reply to  Ian Magness
April 12, 2022 1:01 am

Indeed – we have been banging on about this for a couple of years. The switch to electric ain’t gonna happen once these real world limits are hit. I predict a gentle row-back on many of the wilder prophesies and policies. Or a sudden row-back once people start taking to the streets.

on the heating front – I don’t understand the love affair with heat pumps. Why not just fit some IR heating panels at a fraction of the cost? Genuinely interested in why radiant heaters aren’t an option.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Mark
April 12, 2022 4:32 am

I use radiant heaters all the time. I usually run them at half-power as that seems to add to their longevity, and is probably a good idea for homes with older wiring. They keep me nice and warm.

Steve Richards
Reply to  Mark
April 12, 2022 4:33 am

Apparently heat pumps are 3 to 4 times more efficient than direct electrical heating.
Ie 1Kw pump can move 3 to 4 Kw worth of heat from outside to inside.

Problems arise when you need more heat than this such as in the middle of winter and the HP is less efficient.

Luckily!!! heat pumps have direct heating elements built in to cover these periods.

Yes, that’s right, Full price electricity to heat your whole house!!

Paul C
Reply to  Steve Richards
April 12, 2022 6:18 am

I believe that was one of the problems that hit Texas in their valentines day massacre. Apparently, as their typical climate (weather) does not include a long heating season, ASHP is quite a common option installed with air conditioning – which is the primary requirement during their long, hot summers. However, in winter when the air is cold, and heat is most in demand, the ASHP is at its least efficient – on a par with direct electrical (resistance) heating. So just like the wind power, it was not there when most needed. However, that failure was probably more predictable than the sustained failure of intermittent wind power.

Weylan R McAnally
Reply to  Paul C
April 14, 2022 2:52 pm

I live in north Texas and have a heat pump. The heat pump is of zero value once the temperature drops below freezing. The pump will run non-stop and produce little heat because the pump cannot pull heat from outside air that is already freezing. The heat pump works well for mildly cold temperatures. Once the temp drops below freezing, I must use my Emergency heating to keep my home warm.

Jake J
Reply to  Weylan R McAnally
April 14, 2022 4:20 pm

We have neighbors who have nothing but a heat pump, and it gets below freezing around here for 4+ months. Our houses are roughly the same size, but their heat pump is twice as big as ours. We have a propane backup furnace, and use it when the temps go below freezing.

There’s a way to compare the cost of running a heat pump to the cost of using propane (or natural gas) at various temperatures. The formula is complicated, at least to me. I worked it out one time, and promptly forgot the specifics.

I do remember that, the lower the ambient temp, the less advantage for the heat pump. Then there are ground-source heat pumps, which have a few alligators that made me steer clear of them.

DMacKenzie
Reply to  Mark
April 12, 2022 4:49 am

“….why radiant heaters aren’t an option.” ?? Cuz you have to pay for electricity…. If the COP of your heat pump is 3, then you consume 1/3 the electricity of a radiant heater putting out the same heat… Or you could use PV panels and use the free electricity and heat your house when the sun is shining….yes, that’s a /s, you’d likely run the heat pump in air conditioning mode when the sun is shining….

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  DMacKenzie
April 12, 2022 6:33 am

The key thing with radiant heaters is that you are warming the target items, not the entire target space, so you’re not heating the entire volume of air in the house and every stick of furniture. The downside is that as you move from radiant target to radiant target, it’s mighty chilly in between. These are much more useful in industrial or commercial spaces where you might have a 10′ x10′ working area inside a 50,000 square foot warehouse. You use radiant heaters to keep those in the working space toasty and let the warehouse go at much reduced heating, maybe just enough to keep the domestic water and sprinkler piping from freezing.

HotScot
Reply to  Mark
April 12, 2022 5:11 am

Infra red radiant heating. In’t dat sumfink like dat nucleer radiation I done been warned about.

Not having dat dangerus stuff in my houze……..

Tom Halla
Reply to  Mark
April 12, 2022 5:15 am

Heat pumps are much more efficient, but only at the temperature differential for which they were designed. Air sourced heat pumps go to nearly pure resistance heating at low temperatures, as Texas was forcibly reminded of in Feb 2021. An installation that is efficient at 30F outside temperature goes all to hell at an outside temperature in the teens.

Jake J
Reply to  Tom Halla
April 13, 2022 1:50 pm

I remember trying to do those numbers a few years ago. I managed to complete the task, but it was so complicated that I promptly forgot everything.

Weylan R McAnally
Reply to  Tom Halla
April 14, 2022 2:56 pm

I run heat pumps on my home in N Texas. When the temperature drops below 35 degrees F, the pumps run non-stop and do not produce much heat. I cannot run my pumps at 30F and keep my home warm.. .

Jake J
Reply to  Weylan R McAnally
April 14, 2022 4:25 pm

Another issue with heat pumps for warmth is that the air coming out of the registers isn’t very warm. In fact, it will feel cool, because it’s lower than body temperature.

One fallout from that is that if you leave home on a trip, you need to set the thermostat to run the heat pump for a few hours in advance of your return. If you switch over to propane or gas, the air from the registers is warm and more satisfying, and the house heats up much faster.

Ours doesn’t run continuously below 35 degrees. Maybe yours is smaller than ours? In any case, I generally am not a heat pump fan below freezing either.

TonyG
Reply to  Weylan R McAnally
April 15, 2022 6:47 am

Maybe it’s what they sell in different regions?

Mine (here in NC) seems to work ok until around 20F, when the aux heat kicks in. One thing I was told when having it installed is that it works best when you keep the interior temperature pretty stable – so keep it at 70 and it does well holding it there, but if you drop it to 65 then try to raise it to 70, the heat pump alone can’t do it.

Jake J
Reply to  TonyG
April 16, 2022 4:43 pm

I suspect that the size of the unit matters quite a bit.

J C
April 11, 2022 11:55 pm

My mother’s quite nice house in the Museum District of Houston was built well over 100 years ago. It’s now surrounded by 5k square foot townhouses, and 6-8k square foot swankiendas. The area is still served by one 60KVA Xformer, although the current draw has increased by a factor of perhaps 20. Perhaps a squirrel will give its all, and short out the Xformer, requiring a replacement and upgrade.

HotScot
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 12, 2022 9:45 am

Blow the squirrel. No, that doesn’t sound right in polite company.

Forget I said it.

Jake J
Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 7:52 pm

I used to live in Northern Virginia. Squirrels in transformers were a regular occurrence. Where I live now, we solve that issue with rifles.

Robert Cherba
Reply to  J C
April 12, 2022 11:36 am

I worked in the distribution engineering department of a midwest utility in the 1950s. ‘Seems to me we normally installed neighborhood transformers that were expected to be loaded at about 20% over their rating. Apparently worked out OK.

Jake J
Reply to  Robert Cherba
April 14, 2022 4:13 pm

What’s the rated capacity of a pole-mounted neighborhood transformer? Could you do Transformers 101 here? I’m curious.

waza
April 11, 2022 11:56 pm

How does this work for india, china and the rest of the developing world?

HotScot
Reply to  waza
April 12, 2022 1:55 am

LOL. Good question. Vast areas of India are rural, much of it with, at best, rudimentary power supplies.

HotScot
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 12, 2022 9:43 am

Some of them are still sh*tting in the street. Seriously, it’s a big health hazard there. I don’t think ever scooters are affordable for many.

Ewan Macdonald
Reply to  waza
April 12, 2022 1:06 pm

IIRC about 25 – 30% of India’s generated power is pirated by simple CT loops over the supply lines.

waza
April 11, 2022 11:59 pm

Why do yanks use KWs and KW hrs when they use feet, inches and gallons? 😉

Ian Magness
Reply to  waza
April 12, 2022 12:08 am

..and Brits too waza 🙂
We like using pounds too, especially when describing fish that we have caught.

tygrus
Reply to  waza
April 12, 2022 12:20 am

Why do Yanks still use miles, feet, inches, BTU’s & gallons etc when there are perfectly good SI measures (International System of Units)? SI units make it easier to do the scientific calculations & conversions with base10 instead of multiple scales?

Chaswarnertoo
Reply to  tygrus
April 12, 2022 12:25 am

Good enough for moon landings.

HotScot
Reply to  Chaswarnertoo
April 12, 2022 1:54 am

France, the home of cheese, uses metric. The moons weight must therefore be calculated in Kilos.

Ron Long
Reply to  Chaswarnertoo
April 12, 2022 3:23 am

That’s right, Chaswarnertoo, the only feet on the moon were size 12 American.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  Ron Long
April 12, 2022 8:27 am

Maybe size 9-10, those test pilots were all short dudes.

ThinkingScientist
Reply to  Chaswarnertoo
April 12, 2022 12:20 pm

I am sure the Romans said the same: good enough for aqueducts.

Doesn’t make it rational or sensible.

We do still use miles in the UK. And working in oil I am very comfortable in feet, inches, metres, acres, us/ft etc

HotScot
Reply to  ThinkingScientist
April 12, 2022 2:03 pm

Knots, fathoms and cables as well I daresay.

I still remember a Guinea being the preferred means of payment under some circumstances, although it was a tradition rather than a reality as the coinage had long been discontinued.

tygrus
Reply to  Chaswarnertoo
April 12, 2022 7:19 pm

“NASA has ostensibly used the metric system since about 1990, the statement said, but English units are still employed on some missions, and a few projects use both. NASA uses both English and metric aboard the International Space Station.”
https://www.space.com/3332-nasa-finally-metric.html

Last edited 1 month ago by tygrus
Steve Case
Reply to  tygrus
April 12, 2022 1:48 am

atto, centi, deca, deci, exa, femto, giga, hecto, kilo, mega, micro, milli, nano, peta, pico, tera, and was that liters or meters?

Smart remarks aside, every machine shop I’ve ever been in has a fraction to decimal equivalent chart on the wall. I don’t mind inches, feet, yards and miles, but having to deal with eighths, sixteenths, thirty secondths, sixty fourths and even one hundred twenty fourths of an inch is just nuts.

HotScot
Reply to  Steve Case
April 12, 2022 5:01 am

We fill up our gas tanks in the UK with fuel costed in GBP per Litre. Speed limits are posted in MPH.

Vehicle gas consumption is quoted in MPG, and power is quoted as HP not Kw.

And what do we call an inchworm if everything is to be converted to metric?

This illustrates a point I mentioned earlier. The UK government invariably screw up any major project they ever get involved in. We had our currency converted from pounds, shillings and pence to metric pounds, shillings and pence in the 70’s about when we joined the common market.

Kids were educated in school in metric but 50 years later are still dealing with imperial they were never educated in.

The whole concept is like life in general in the UK, utterly chaotic.

Earthling2
Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 7:38 am

I never knew that about metric ‘pounds’ in the 1970’s, but explains a lot now in hindsight and just about when everything went to hell in a handbasket. Must have driven everyone mad.

As for the ‘inchworm’, that’s a tough one. Maybe a millimetre worm? centimetre worm?

Mr.
Reply to  Steve Case
April 12, 2022 10:08 am

Every small-scale measurement can be best understood by the term “poofteenths”.

Some people prefer the alternative term “bee’s-dick”, but I find this a bit too imprecise.

(Cold conditions are known to affect the resting state stability of male appendages of all species)

ThinkingScientist
Reply to  Steve Case
April 12, 2022 12:21 pm

Litres or metres, please. We are British you know.

atticman
Reply to  Steve Case
April 13, 2022 6:02 am

Don’t you mean one-hundred-and tewntyeigths, Steve?

MarkW
Reply to  atticman
April 13, 2022 7:14 pm

How many stones is that?

Robert Cherba
Reply to  tygrus
April 12, 2022 11:26 am

Maybe we’re just a stubborn bunch. I’m an 85yo yank with an electrical engineering degree from the middle ages (1959). I grew up with the British system, but worked some metric in high school and both systems in college. I still think in terms of inches, feet, pounds, gallons and have to convert when I see some stupid report say a truck overturned and spilled 10,000 liters of something or other. I worked in and around nuclear generating plants for 30 years and since I retired radiation exposure has been expressed in terms that are foreign to me. Over the last 60 years we changed cycles/second to Hertz which I can deal with; however, scientific measurement nomenclature has been changed to the point I have look up the new terms so I can relate them to what I worked with for years and years. Now I can’t recall the dimensions of an acre, but I once owned a home on a 2.4 acre lot, so I can picture an acre. I can’t picture how big a hectare is. Hell, I can barely pronounce it.

atticman
Reply to  Robert Cherba
April 13, 2022 6:05 am

Robert: a square acre is 69.57 yards by 69.57 yards…

atticman
Reply to  tygrus
April 13, 2022 5:59 am

Ah, tygrus, but there are gallons (16 fl. oz) and gallons (20 fl. oz). It all depends where you live.

Frank from NoVA
Reply to  waza
April 12, 2022 7:11 am

Yank engineers and technicians are conversant in both systems. I think a lot of the resistance wholesale metric adoption, besides inertia, was a reaction to the appalling atrocities committed during the Terror of the French Revolution, as well as people generally being opposed to being pushed around by elites. Btw, at the ‘height’ of their revolution, the French also proposed metric clocks and calendars, which never caught on anywhere.

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  waza
April 12, 2022 9:07 pm

To annoy the pedants among us.

Old planning engineer
April 12, 2022 12:08 am

Kip

Unfortunately there is an error in your second paragraph. Transformers do not blow up due to peak loads – they typically have this thing called a FUSE. The reason that they do blow up is from an internal short when the insulating paper fails due to moisture. The moisture in turn comes from a breakdown of the insulating oil which in turn is highly dependent on temperature which in turn is dependent on both load and external temperature due to internal resistive electrical losses (gain) and external thermal losses.

If you charge during cool nights the transformer will not be effected by the increased load as its thermal rating will be much higher than during day time temperatures. So the simple answer is to turn off vehicle charging during times of high temperatures. (Let the peasants walk or use a push bike instead)

The next thing is that it is not the number or size of electrical appliances installed that determines your peak load – it is the number active at any one time. So again, a smart controller should prioritise the load circuits – pool heating first, then vehicle charging and finally air con last (you have a pool so why do you need air con?) I think that this is probably the basis of the thinking in the optimistic scenario.

I am very surprised by the low ADMD (After Diversity Maximum Demand) figures used in the study. In South Australia even new cheap and cheerful housing uses 6 kW per house and the more expensive housing uses 8 kW (No gas supply).

As an aside the reason that the LV street wiring will only need limited upgrades is because utilities have typically oversized wires (small, medium and large sizes) to keep spare parts simple. Installing a larger wire usually costs little more than installing a smaller wire when constructing new lines and you have the advantage of lots of customers averaging out their demand (this is the After Diversity part of the ADMD calculations). Also the wires are typically temperature limited (high temperatures = high droop = infringed clearances) and a change in line tension will resolve the issue.

Its important to realise that upgrades are a series to step changes and therefore small changes (a few chargers per street) will not have any impact at all. However, once the infamous tipping point is reached it will get very expensive indeed as this will trigger an avalanche of changes.

Nick Graves
Reply to  Old planning engineer
April 12, 2022 12:23 am

Over here, by far the majority of our power supply lines are underground, when compared to the US. Three-phase on a stick is generally only for final supply to farms.

That adds a whole new level of cost and complexity…

HotScot
Reply to  Nick Graves
April 12, 2022 1:52 am

I asked an electrician about power supplies to lamp post, which are frequently cited as convergent charging points for the 40% of UK households that don’t have off street parking. He said they were usually 240v and the effort and expense involved to rewire enough of them to meet demand would be horrendous and take years to achieve.

UK government will, as usual, mandate a course of action, and it will fall apart because the underlying infrastructure isn’t there. EV’s will be a running joke for decades.

Jake J
Reply to  HotScot
April 13, 2022 1:48 pm

If 40% of the UK has no off-street parking, a transition to EVs will be an absolute nightmare.

Jake J
Reply to  Nick Graves
April 12, 2022 10:50 am

I see no logic behind three-phase service to charge EVs. Overkill on steroids.

Matthew Sykes
April 12, 2022 12:35 am

100 amps 240 v in the UK, but if everyone in the street tried using that at the same time…..

In reality half that as an average, so good luck charging your car at night!

Disputin
Reply to  Matthew Sykes
April 12, 2022 7:12 am

Ah, but you must remember that you will have a “Smart” meter. That will allow the Powers That Be to drain your car’s battery to support the grid.

H.R.
Reply to  Disputin
April 12, 2022 12:33 pm

Yup. Someone plugs in their EV at night expecting it to charge. Instead, in the morning, the battery is depleted.

Of course that won’t happen every night. But it will happen, and usually at the most inopportune time, because that’s what triggered the reversal; adverse conditions.

Jake J
Reply to  H.R.
April 12, 2022 5:51 pm

If that ever happens, I’ll find a way to disable the “reverse” feature.

H.R.
Reply to  Jake J
April 12, 2022 5:57 pm

👍👍You will not be the only one, nor the first one for that matter.

When the government throws up roadblocks, people find detours around those roadblocks.

It’s been that way ever since the first Sumerian tax on beer. Bootlegging to avoid taxes has been alive and well since the dawn of civilization.

Jake J
Reply to  H.R.
April 13, 2022 11:36 am

In that particular case, you wouldn’t even have to risk voiding the warranty. Just make a substitute 240v plug that would let the electricity flow in one direction only.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  Jake J
April 13, 2022 4:05 pm

Exactly how do you propose to do this??

Jake J
Reply to  Carlo, Monte
April 13, 2022 4:52 pm

I don’t know. I will rely on others.

MarkW
Reply to  Jake J
April 13, 2022 7:21 pm

It’s AC, how exactly do you get it to flow in one direction only.

BTW, there are no electric cars that have the circuitry needed to transfer power from the battery to the grid.

Jake J
Reply to  MarkW
April 14, 2022 4:11 pm

I don’t know how to get it to flow in one direction only. Maybe it’s impossible, in which case my brave statement is empty posturing and I’d be out of luck. I believe I’ve read that some EV makers are including a two-way feature to allow the car’s battery to be used as a backup.

Jay Kitsap
April 12, 2022 1:22 am

Goeing all electric is certainly doable, but from a least cost / benefit analysis it needs to happen at only 10% of the rate they are talking about, basically replace with the new as the old equipment reaches it end of life. I still see 1950’s electrical around, time to change and upgrade.

The new mini-split heat pumps are great but the Puget Sound is usually in the low 40’s, by the 20’s high efficiency gas is far better. On a emergy cost per passenger model basis I really doubt electric is all that great.

MarkW
Reply to  Jay Kitsap
April 13, 2022 7:22 pm

It’s doable, so long as cost is no object.

JohnC
April 12, 2022 1:28 am

The same is true across the world. I believe the cost here in the U.K. has been estimated at several billion pounds. We don’t have the generating capacity. Air conditioning is still a rarity in the U.K. but we are probably not that far behind parts of the USA.
The U.K. alone would require the world’s output of cobalt, which of course would appear like magic already refined out of the ground.

On a more practical note
Not everyone has off road access to their properties, so it would depend on on road charging, there was a story a while back where someone had an electric car and depended on recharging it at a point attached to a lamp post in their neighbourhood. There were occasions when they had to get up at midnight to move the car to the charging point after someone else had moved out of the way.

HotScot
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 12, 2022 9:31 am

That’s a very good question and one which we would all like answered. 40% of the country has no off road parking so will be forced to rely on public chargers. The greens are keen to say lamp posts can be used, but they have a 240v supply.

There are also issues with creating parking around these lamp posts in already congested streets. Expensive, but in most cases impossible. Then there’s ripping up 40% of streets in the country to install 3 phase cabling for the chargers.

Then, who has first dibs on the chargers? If there’s 5 chargers and ten cars in the street, how will that be managed. There will be punch ups over it.

A fairly typical street in the UK is shown.

Last edited 1 month ago by HotScot
HotScot
Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 9:31 am

Typical street.

Typical street.jpeg
H.R.
Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 12:37 pm

Looks like the red car won the Charger Lottery today😉.

HotScot
Reply to  H.R.
April 12, 2022 1:17 pm

👍

Problem is, you have to get the cable from the lamp post to the car without garrotting pedestrians.

I forgot to mention, trailing electric cables across pavements is illegal in the UK AFAIK.

H.R.
Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 2:05 pm

Copper thieves! Don’t forget the copper thieves.

MarkW
Reply to  HotScot
April 13, 2022 7:32 pm

I would assume that the wiring used for streetlights was sized with the draw from the lights alone in mind. Using them for charging stations would involve a huge increase in the amount of current being provided.

In many of the places where I have lived, street lights are mounted on regular power poles. To use those poles as charging stations, you will have to bring in electricians to run the power all the way down the pole. Not a trivial cost.

HotScot
April 12, 2022 1:44 am

There is a calculation done by Professor of Engineering Michael Kelly in one of his reports for the Global Warming Policy Foundation on the cost to the householder, on a national scale, to equip their houses with the kit to achieve NetZero.

Roughly speaking, to have an average three bedroom house brought up to spec. including installing full house insulation (much of the UK housing stock is Victorian, Edwardian or even Tudor, solid masonry walls), heat pump, double glazing, full house ventilation etc will cost between £75,000 and £100,000. Factually, like America, material costs have risen dramatically over the last couple of years, so name your price now.

I know this to be an accurate reflection of cost as I conducted the exercise on my very modest, three bedroom Victorian cottage a year or two before Prof. Kelly’s report came out.

What was more surprising, although predictable, is that we in the UK simply don’t have the labour to conduct the exercise. And we’re not just missing the target by a bit, we have about one third of the skilled labour required.

So where’s the rest coming from?

One might suggest immigrant labour, but they’ll be in demand in their own country to reach their own NetZero policies.

Our governments historic solution to this problem e.g. the double glazing boom in the 70’s/80’s, the cavity wall insulation drive in the 2000’s and, of course, the solar panel roof installations of the 2010’s. All of these initiatives were notable for for their ‘cowboy’ (sorry America) rouge traders who comprehensively screwed up everything they touched. Then there were the incentive schemes which were routinely abused by the cowboy element until they were withdrawn and often, compensation from the government paid.

But the real problem is recruitment and training of tradesmen, electricians, gas fitters, carpenters etc. most of whom are conditioned to leave school and pay £50k for a university course in advanced Macramé or a Masters in the climate change effects on the lesser spotted natterjack toad.

Five years, say, to recruit and train these kids which, if it began now, would take us to 2027/2028. That window to the 2050 deadline is closing, fast, by then, and costs to the householder will have risen even more, especially as the inflation the west is suffering now will take at least 10 years to bring down to manageable levels.

We can pretty well double the original estimate for these conversions by then, so conservatively £150,000 when the average house price in the UK is – England £275,000, Wales £185,000, in Scotland £167,000 and Northern Ireland £149,000 (Office for National Statistics).

Frankly, most people won’t be able to afford to pay the Banks for what represents more than one third of their houses value, and in some cases, double what it’s worth.

If it’s compulsory we are heading for some derivative of the Sub Prime disaster of a few years ago.

Sorry, a bit longer than I intended…….

PS The guy who estimated the cost of a heat pump for my house was kind enough to tell me I was mad even considering one as no matter what modifications I did wouldn’t make it work.

Last edited 1 month ago by HotScot
Simon Derricutt
Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 3:11 am

HotScot – there’s also the slight problem of a building materials shortage and thus the costs of materials being much higher if you can even source them. Those materials will need energy to produce them, and trucks to transport them to where they are needed, so you also need to figure on increased requirements for oil and gas in the meantime while production of same is being impeded by policy. Piss-ups and breweries come to mind.

Reply to  Simon Derricutt
April 12, 2022 3:43 am

Simon

Don’t worry, when the left ids done destroying the west we will all be living in grass huts with a nice fire to keep us warm.

H.R.
Reply to  bob boder
April 12, 2022 12:41 pm

Until all the trees and bushes are gone, bob.

HotScot
Reply to  Simon Derricutt
April 12, 2022 4:51 am

Simon – this is also dealt with, or not, by Michael Kelly. He mentions it, but doesn’t include in his calculations the enormous CO2 emissions necessary to produce all that Big Oil dependent insulation. It’s another subject entirely.

As you rightly point out, materials costs have risen dramatically over the last year or two. Guess where much of Europes building timber comes from?

Yep, Russia.

H.R.
Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 12:45 pm

HotScot: “Guess where much of Europes building timber comes from?

Yep, Russia.”


This looks like the right place to post an oops!

HotScot
Reply to  H.R.
April 12, 2022 1:19 pm

🤣

HotScot
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 12, 2022 9:18 am

Kip, The problem is if every other country in Europe is going NetZero as well, they will need all their labour to implement all their own madcap schemes.

Likely you are right, the government will go double dipping by counting labour that would have done something else being directed to learn a trade just to fulfil a manufactured need.

The work created by the green revolution has been, so far, a red herring. The SNP in Scotland at various times announced tens of thousands of jobs created by renewables, only a couple of thousand have materialised.

HotScot
Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 9:11 am

ROTFLMAO.

Sorry folks, I didn’t mean rouge traders, I meant rogue traders…….All those red characters running around. 🤣

atticman
Reply to  HotScot
April 13, 2022 6:16 am

You mean red cowboys (as opposed to red indians)…?

Sean
April 12, 2022 2:00 am

The premise about two high speed chargers seems overdone. Most People drive less than 50 miles per day and many electric cars have 200 mile ranges which means charging every 3rd or fourth night. Also batteries hold up best with slower charging albeit more frequently but that’s done on a lower amperage service.
If you look up the average monthly amp hrs used in the avg. California homes and you look up the number of amp hrs needed for a 30 mile commute in a Tesla Model 3, each car increases the home electricity consumption by 50%. But this consumption is at night when other appliances are not in use so possibly manageable. But when you electrify all heating and cooling in the home, your cars, the electric furnace and water heater compete for a limited supply, particularly cold winter night when demand peaks, the system is overloaded. But where the system really breaks down is that Solar accounts for a very large part of California’s renewable generation so it’s not available at night and may be limited in winter. Unless you have lots of batteries that are not mounted on four wheels, all electric nirvana is a pipe dream.

Trying to Play Nice
Reply to  Sean
April 12, 2022 6:08 am

That’s fine in California, but what about the rest of the world, where it gets cold and EVs’ range go down by a factor or 40% to 50%. The planning required to ensure that both vehicles are always charged would be difficult. I can’t imagine what it would have been like when I had two teenagers and four vehicles. Why do you not admit that the average is the average and there are many people with greater or lesser needs.

Tim Gorman
Reply to  Trying to Play Nice
April 12, 2022 8:30 am

You nailed it Trying. At one point in my life my daily commute was 200 miles round trip. That included in freezing winter weather as well as hot summer weather. Not something I would want to try with a partly charged EV,,heck not even with a fully charged EV!

Clyde Spencer
Reply to  Tim Gorman
April 12, 2022 9:19 pm

In my younger days, in California, I used to commute about 100 miles per day for a total of about 24,000 miles per year. Housing has become so expensive in ‘Silicon Valley’ that it isn’t unusual for people to commute a couple hours each way just to have a job.

Jake J
Reply to  Tim Gorman
April 16, 2022 4:22 pm

If someone had a 200-mile roundtrip commute and asked me if they should consider an EV, my answer would be “No.”

HotScot
Reply to  Trying to Play Nice
April 12, 2022 9:08 am

You mean to say there’s a world outside California?

Well I never.

Jake J
Reply to  Trying to Play Nice
April 13, 2022 11:33 am

If typical EV performance is 3.5 miles/kWh, you can use 2.75 miles for cold weather, and 1.5 miles for third week of January in Minneapolis. In the current EVs, with typical commutes, you’d recharge about every 4 days in fair weather; every three days in cold weather, and every day or two in bitter cold.

Jake J
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 12, 2022 5:49 pm

We have three vehicles plus a gas-fueled ATV. I cannot remember when everything has been full, although I’ll admit that the recent Xiden shenanigans has made me top off the diesel truck more often lately.

MarkW
Reply to  Jake J
April 13, 2022 7:40 pm

There’s a huge difference between a vehicle that you can refill in a couple of minutes at any one of dozens of nearby locations and a vehicle that takes hours to recharge and you can only get a few hundred miles when full.

There is no reason to keep an ICE vehicle topped off. Keeping the electric topped off could be vital to keeping it useful.

TonyG
Reply to  MarkW
April 14, 2022 7:02 am

“Keeping the electric topped off could be vital to keeping it useful.”

Jake suggests letting it drop to 20%. Where I live, that would be extremely impractical.

Jake J
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 14, 2022 5:51 pm

20% of my truck’s gas tank is 6.4 gallons, and that’ll get us about 100 miles. It’s rare that I let it go very far below a half tank, and very rare to have it go below a quarter-tank.

But if push truly came to shove, we could get all the way to Portland from where we live even if “antifa” bombed all the gas stations along the way. Not that we’d be all that interested in getting to Portland to begin with, especially if antifa bombed all the gas stations.

If things got really, really bad, well, we have a friend with a big ol’ underground diesel tank. But if things got that bad, we’d probably stay home unless we had to leave. “Their walls are built of cannon balls/Their motto is ‘Don’t Tread On Me.’ ” – Grateful Dead

Anyone who wants to yank us out of here is going to learn just how difficult a task that would be.

Jake J
Reply to  TonyG
April 14, 2022 4:06 pm

All of the EV manufacturers tell the owners to use 80% of the battery capacity. The trick there is whether or not to go to 20% and fill to 100%, or go to 10% and refill to 90%.

You do the latter if you live in a place where is gets really hot in the summer, and your car filled to 100% sits there without being driven. This is why Nissan had such a problem with battery life in EVs owned in the Southwest.

Now, let’s imagine that someone drew a second-generation EV down to 30%, and then had to get out fast, and the only vehicle was a BEV. And let’s use the Chevy Bolt and the Tesla Model 3 as examples, and further posit that their batteries hold 65 kWh. (Precise capacity is pretty much impossible to measure, so you have to approximate and build in wiggle room.)

That 65 kWh battery, at 30% state of charge, would have 22 kWh remaining. In good weather, that would be 77 miles of range. In winter, 60 miles. In January in Minneapolis or upstate New York, or Burlington, Vermont, maybe 45-50 miles. What, you say? But Jake says not to run it to empty.

Au contraire. Jake says don’t habitually run it below 20% state of charge. If there’s an emergency, i.e. a one-shot deal, no problem. Now, if 50 to 77 miles of emergency range (and it will probably be more than that) isn’t enough, then refill at 30% if you want.

I am an inveterate traveler, having driven half a million road trip miles in all 50 states. You have to go quite far into the yonder for 50 to 77 miles to be a danger. I’ve been there, and it’s why I scoff at the idea of using an EV as a road trip vehicle, at least for the road trips we take.

All of that said, if you have to keep that EV at a very high state of charge all the time, and top it off when it gets below a much higher SOC than 20%, you shouldn’t own an EV unless you’re prepared to swap out its battery much more often than you’ll want to given how much they cost. Really, if you’re deep rural, like my one rancher family friends who have a 100-mile trip to the nearest hospital in each direction, an EV ain’t for you.

Tim Gorman
Reply to  Jake J
April 15, 2022 5:25 am

I’m guessing you’ve never been in a blizzard in western Kansas, Nebraska, or the Dakotas. Traffic can come to a standstill for a 200 mile range. If you get caught in one it can last hours. You don’t dare try to continue travel cause you can leave the road and never know it. Pretty soon you are in the hinterland with no way out. It’s no different for an EV than it is for an ICE vehicle. Every time you run the heater you drain your available energy. It’s why I always carried a 2 gallon can of gas when storms were likely. Can’t do that with an EV.

EV’s may be ok in an urban environment. They simply aren’t in much of rural America, especially for those families that can’t afford multiple vehicles. Yet the government keeps focusing on one-size-fits-all just like they always do!

Jake J
Reply to  Tim Gorman
April 16, 2022 4:40 pm

So you know, I have driven half a million road trip miles in all 50 states, and a few thousand miles in Europe. I was born and raised in snow country, and have driven in blizzards, albeit not in the places you mentioned. Does U.S. 395 through the Sierra Nevada count?

Reading between the lines, I am guessing that you’re thinking of me as some sort of EV promoter. If so, it’s simply not true. I have taken so much (expletive deleted) from EVangelists for my opinion that EVs aren’t road trip vehicles, those so-called “superchargers” (Tesla) and “fast DC chargers” (everyone else, also called “Level 3”) notwithstanding.

It’s weird, yet unsurprising that some EV facts get me blasted by the zealots. Today, and I think for quite a while if not forever, EVs are best seen as commuter cars. The latest generation ones are well-suited for most (but not all) people in cities, suburbs, and exurbs, but there are some qualifiers there too.

Rural? That really depends on which level of “rural.” We’re rural, on 20 acres, but not “deep rural.” Our EV has an 80% of about 60 miles in winter and 75-80 in summer, and works fine for errands into town. That’s how I use it. It’s so light that I don’t use it year-’round in spite of giving a “winter” range.

It’s not a matter of the shorter range, but rather that we get snow around here and the car is very light. I don’t want to risk running off the road, so from December until (usually) mid- to late March, we use the big pickup, equipped with studded winter tires. The studs were a cheap experiment that added about $60, and the results are “meh.”

By the way, about the heater. That was a big + surprise in my dinky, plastic Think City. Not only is there no wait for heat because of how the heater works (a coil), but it’s amazingly powerful. The fan uses a lot more juice than the heater, and the lowest setting is quite toasty. But it’s a tiny car, so I’d expect all of it to be different for a 4-door EV.

In any case, for deep rural, the range limitation is definitely a factor even for the newest generation EVs. If, for instance, you live in John Day, Oregon, an EV isn’t going to serve you well (to put it mildly) for shopping or medical trips to Pendleton, Bend, or The Dalles.

Jake J
Reply to  Kip Hansen
April 18, 2022 4:17 pm

Mine is a dinky 2-door. It’s so ugly it’s actually kind of cute, or so I am occasionally told. That said, a Think City is about a foot longer and a few inches taller than a Mercedes Smart gasser. The practical result is that it has more cargo space than anyone would ever believe by looking at it.

But yeah, it’s a two-door. It looks VERY much like the Scion iQ, which I think is no longer made. Same dimensions and weight. It’ll go 70 mph, but you wouldn’t want to spend much time on the freeway. If you crashed, they’d have to use a dental suction tool to get your body parts out.

Still, it’s a whole lot more fun to drive than a gasser microcar. I think it makes 50 hp, but the thing is amazingly peppy. Quite small and spartan. The list price was $36K, which reflected the cost of batteries + the lack of a sugar daddy either corporate or venture capital. Only crazy people paid that.

Net of the stupid tax credit, the thing cost me $8,500.

Simon Derricutt
April 12, 2022 2:45 am

Kip – apologies for somewhat of a thread-bomb, but I’m spreading this idea as far as I can and it is somewhat relevant to your subject.

The same equations of motion apply whether the force accelerating a body is relative to the reference frame (the environment) or relative to the object being accelerated (such as a rocket). If you calculate the work done as force times distance in the reference frame, then the force times distance equals the kinetic energy acquired in both cases. However, in the case of the rocket, the energy consumed to produce the acceleration is a constant rate, but the work done is the product of velocity times thrust.

The equation of motion of an accelerating body is
d=ut+0.5at², where d is distance travelled, u is initial velocity, t is time, a is acceleration.
Thus if we’re applying a constant force f, W (the work done) is fd. If we start from stationary, u=0, and the equation translates to
W=0.5fat².
Note that W is the output work, and translates to kinetic energy acquired.
The energy used to produce the thrust is constant with time, so if e is the energy input per second and E is the sum of energy used at any point, then
E=et (straight line through the origin with slope of e).
Plot E (energy input) against W (energy output) over time. Fairly obviously, since E is a straight line and W is a parabola, at some point W will exceed E.

Note that this is totally classical physics and applies to any body that produces thrust relative to itself, whether that’s by ejecting reaction-mass or any other method. Once you exceed a certain velocity and you’re still applying that thrust, you will be producing more kinetic energy than you’re using to generate the thrust. I’ll call that velocity the break-even point.

See https://ivolimited.us/press-release-ivo-ltd-introduces-the-worlds-first-pure-electric-thruster-for-satellites/ . This uses electrical power only, with no reaction-mass required, and is specified to produce 45mN for 1 watt input. Taking these figures as true, the break-even point for this is 22.22m/s, and it will be producing enough kinetic energy per second to run itself. Once you reach 44.44m/s it will be producing twice as much energy as it uses and can power something else too, though right now that’s only one watt. However, it’s a net gain of energy produced from *nothing*.

On the face of it, this looks impossible, and of course most people will consider it impossible and thus can’t be true. I can’t however find an error in the maths. We’re using a single reference frame here, so no problems from changing frames. It’s hard to see why this has been missed for so long.

I’m expecting the electric thrusters to be developed as regards thrust available, since it’s a new technology. It looks like a few orders of magnitude improvement is possible. Thus in future I’d expect we’ll build these devices (the design of a generator is pretty obvious) rather than wind or solar. Of course, this energy will be available 24/7 rather than when the weather is right.

Go through the derivation yourself. I’m waiting on the tests of the IVO thruster in space, which will be absolute proof that it works, but I expect it to work given the previous experimental data.

*****

OK, some other notes that are relevant. Noether’s theorem states that symmetries lead to conservation laws. If we find out what symmetry causes a conservation law, and can break that symmetry, the conservation law will not apply. What we are doing here is breaking the symmetry by making the force relative to the object being accelerated, and whereas the work done by the force relative to the object is zero (strange but true) the work done in our frame rises as the velocity, and though it’s also zero if the object is held stationary the rate of work done per second in our frame is the force times the velocity.

I’d expect the cost of producing a generator to be lower than the equivalent Diesel generator. Lower parts count, and no exotic materials required. It may take a few years to improve the available thrust to get up to being able to generate kW levels, so not an instant fix to the grid problem. However, we can see it from here.

HotScot
Reply to  Simon Derricutt
April 12, 2022 6:15 am

Due to its use of electricity only and zero fuel, the IVO Quantum Drive has zero emissions and is self contained. This allows it the unique ability to be internal to the spacecraft itself. The IVO Quantum Drive’s modular design allows it to scale on multiple axes to meet the needs of each individual spacecraft regardless of thrust requirements.

Daft question I’m sure, but why would zero emissions be important in space?

Simon Derricutt
Reply to  HotScot
April 12, 2022 6:47 am

HotScot – if you’re using reaction-mass in space, after a while it runs out, and then your expensive satellite can’t manoeuvre any longer and drifts off-station. Thus the last bit of reaction-mass is now normally used to de-orbit the satellite so it doesn’t add to the space-junk in orbit.

With a thruster that only needs electricity and no reaction-mass, you can get power from solar panels, thus the satellite life is extended until something critical breaks. Thus you get a longer life in service for the same outlay.

Thus a purely-electric thruster is actually immediately a very valuable thing.

Also consider trips to Mars, where the limited reaction-mass available means that you get a short burst at the start of the trip, and deceleration when you reach the planet, and you coast most of the way. Add some constant acceleration, even 1% of g, and the trip time reduces significantly. Electric thrusters thus make travel to the planets somewhat faster, especially if you can get a significant fraction of g.

Here on Earth, though, is where I think the majority will get used, for generating power. However, it takes a bit of thinking to see why this will work, rather than just rejecting it as obviously impossible.

HotScot
Reply to  Simon Derricutt
April 12, 2022 9:05 am

I didn’t reject it. I just asked a straightforward question.

Simon Derricutt
Reply to  HotScot
April 13, 2022 2:01 am

HotScot – my apologies, since I didn’t intend to imply that you dismissed it. I was seeing the negative votes mounting up, now reached -4. I should have worded this better.

Jake J
Reply to  Simon Derricutt
April 14, 2022 8:22 pm

Could you explain in layman’s language how an electric thruster works? I don’t even remotely begin to have the slightest scintilla of doubt that they exist, but I’m thinking of a jet engine and wondering. Please give the junior high-school explanation. Thanks!

Simon Derricutt
Reply to  Jake J
April 15, 2022 2:05 am

Jake J – unfortunately such an explanation is not possible. All the explanations require a deep dig, and most also need you to work with ideas that are non-intuitive and often paradoxical. For example, in the QI “leaky capacitor” thrusters such as IVO are using, it is proposed that each particle emits Unruh waves that cannot be detected by any other particle, and only act on the emitting particle, and where though they are EM waves they are both limited to the speed of light and can transfer information instantly from the edge of the universe. This probably means that the explanations are not what’s really happening, and at some point we’ll find a better explanation. Despite that, the equations based on this explanation actually work and the predictions are being borne out by experiment. Thus with the “leaky capacitor” type of thruster, it is predicted that the thrust to power ratio improves as the dielectric thickness reduces, and the original Becker and Bhatt experiments tested various thicknesses and found that this relationship holds.

For Richard Banduric’s spinning disks thruster (see https://electricspacecraft.org/index.html# ) the theory is different, using a v²/c² element of Maxwell’s original equations that is normally regarded as being zero and thus has been dropped and forgotten about. Richard is producing around 8mN per watt (about 200mN for around 25W). Note that this is enough thrust to be sure of the measurement.

Shawyer’s explanation of the EMDrive gets very deep into quantum theory. Mike McCulloch has an alternative explanation of how it works using QI. The EMDrive however has a pretty low thrust per watt, about 3 orders of magnitude down on the “leaky capacitor” or the Banduric drive, and it’s hard to keep the thing in resonance as the temperature changes because of the high currents, so apart from the historical importance as the first such drive to be demonstrated, I think it won’t actually be useful.

I can also point out that momentum is not actually a fundamentally-conserved quantity, since if you use a changing field to transfer the forces then because light travels at a finite speed the action and reaction are no longer equal and opposite. However, that is regarded as heresy and rejected by all right-thinking people.

I’d thus suggest that you just look at the experimental results. How much thrust does it produce per watt? Surprisingly, it seems that you don’t actually need any energy to produce that thrust in theory, and so the energy we actually use all goes into heat or is otherwise wasted with the thrust being a side-effect of that waste. TANSTAAFL may not actually be true. The links I’ve put up can lead you to many happy hours of digging into the various (conflicting) theories as to what’s really happening, but I’d also suggest not believing any of them. Look at the predictions and the experimental verifications instead. The real question is “does it actually work?”. Reality just is, whether or not you believe it. I know of around half a dozen different projects that do produce measurable non-reactive thrust, thus needing only electricity and no reaction-mass.

Jake J
Reply to  Simon Derricutt
April 18, 2022 4:09 pm

I appreciate your effort, but there’s too much technical info in your explanation for me to follow it without commencing a research project that would take more time than I’d want to spend.

I think my civilian-level (by which I mean “non-specialist”) mental block concerns outer space. I believe (correct me if I’m wrong) that the vacuum and lower gravity combine to reduce the amount of thrust needed. That much I did glean from what you wrote and what I think I knew already.

In my sparsely-educated lizard brain, thrust in an object moving through air is a matter of moving gasses rearward at a speed and density sufficient to overcome gravity and air resistance, aided crucially by making planes out of aluminum and the design of wings.

On earth, that means either propellers or jets. The former obviously doesn’t work in outer space, but the latter (I include rocket engines as “jets,” not being a specialist) does by sending gas rearward.

The sticking point is this: With an electric thruster, what takes the place of gas shot rearward by a rocket engine? This is a question, not a challenge. I am obviously missing something, just as I did for a while as a kid when I struggled with algebra. In that case, it was the constants that got to me, until the lightbulb clicked and I got it.

Simon Derricutt
Reply to  Jake J
April 19, 2022 3:37 am

Jake J – sorry, but the only full explanation is technical and requires swallowing theory that contains paradox, so there isn’t a simple way of understanding it. Maybe the best way though is to consider a pair of boats on the sea, where the wave action pushes those boats together because the waves between them are damped somewhat. Thus the energy-level between the boats is lower than the energy-levels either side, and the boats move together. This effect is well-known to mariners. It’s however not a precise analogy, just somewhat close.

The Casimir effect is pretty-well documented, and worth looking at too. There, only the set of wavelengths that fit precisely in the gap are allowed, so instead of a continuum of wavelengths possible outside the gap there are a much smaller and quantised set in the gap, so wave pressure again pushes the barriers closer.

In reality, though, the wave-damping isn’t complete, and depends on the materials, so we don’t get only those waves whose nodes are on the barrier even if you could say precisely where the barrier is, since atoms do not have a hard edge but are fuzzy.

Bit of a kludge.

It’s also worth considering that a charged particle responds to the electric field it sees right here and right now, and that the force it sees does not depend on the source of that field, only what it actually is at the point in space and time that we’re looking at it. Since with a changing field (say a wave) the change travels at the speed of light, a wave will have a different phase by the time it reaches the particle we’re looking at. Thus basically we can consider that the force that charged particle sees is related to the bit of space it’s in at the time we’re looking. You don’t need to eject mass to produce a force on that charged particle, since it’s really pushing on the field. I’m still working on understanding this, since it’s a different viewpoint.

If light had an infinite speed, then all the action/reaction would be symmetric, and momentum would absolutely be conserved. Since the speed of light is finite, though, a changing field will break that symmetry and we can produce forces without an equal and opposite force.

Thus to answer the question of what we’re pushing against, the nearest answer is space itself, or actually the distortions of space that we call fields that are localised in space.

Whatever theory you wish to use, however, practically it works, and there are several alternative methods to produce a thrust without using reaction-mass. There may even be one that does not require energy to produce a thrust, but that needs to be experimentally tested because it seems unbelievable.

Jake J
Reply to  Simon Derricutt
April 19, 2022 12:12 pm

Oh, I believe it works. Not an “electric thruster denialist” here. LOL. I just don’t understand how it works. Being blessed and cursed with curiosity, it drives me a little crazy (or crazier) to not know something even after someone has patiently explained it to me. That really doesn’t happen very often, but it did this time.

In any case, I do appreciate your efforts, I really do. Argggggh.

Simon Derricutt
Reply to  Jake J
April 20, 2022 3:53 am

Jake J – sorry I couldn’t explain it well enough. Maybe watch Mike McCulloch explain the theory at https://www.altpropulsion.com/events/apec-3-6-pais-navy-gravity-patents-the-horizon-drive/ section 3 and 4, since he does enough graphics to explain what’s happening. Pictures help. An hour’s watch, or 2 if you watch the discussion afterwards.

The APEC discussions are generally interesting, but a mix of theories that do work and theories that seem unreal. Also a mix of stuff that’s experimentally valid and stuff that may never work. However, the universe is really weird so things I currently think are impossible might be produced by these people at some point.

Jake J
Reply to  Simon Derricutt
April 21, 2022 12:28 pm

It may well be impossible to put it into civilian English. I had a career that called for me to translate specialized telecommunications knowledge into plainer English, and can attest that it was often a challenge.

I was forever trying to make my explanations simpler and shorter, and would occasionally tear my hair out doing it. In any case, I really appreciate your effort. It’s not easy.