[amsat-bb] Satellites and Solar

Robert Bruninga bruninga at usna.edu
Fri Apr 8 16:35:24 UTC 2016

Solar Rant:

Last night I gave a talk to a local Ham club about Emergency Power (solar)
for the Ham.  Turns out, I had given a similar talk on the same topic to
the same group 6 years ago (2010).

But the world has CHANGED (and most of us (and them) have not… except get

I began “How many of you pay about $200/mo for electricity?”  Most hands
went up

“How many of you went solar since my last talk?” (one hand went up).  “Why
not?” I ask.

General response was, “.. it costs too much…”

I went on, “Do the rest of you with the $200/mo electric bill realize you
have spent almost $15,000 to the utility since my last talk, and did not
also take the $5000 tax credit, so you have wasted over $20,000 and have
absolutely nothing to show for it except another $200 a  month for the rest
of your life, and another $24,000 thrown away every ten years (probably
twice that with inflation)…”

“Don’t tell me it costs too much…. It costs too much to do nothing!”

“This other solar guy hardly pays anything now, or the last 6 years or the
rest of his life!”

Most people in the room said they would probably go solar “someday”.  But
now they are starting to realize that every single month they send another
$200 to the utility, that is another $200 thrown away… when instead it
could have gone for their solar investment which remains EQUITY in their
hands, on their roof, or in their yard and which pays back over 10% annual
return on the investment every year for the rest of their life.

Sorry for the rant.  Every AMSAT station needs power.  Are you going to
continue to burn coal to supply your energy and pay the utility forever, at
higher cost, or are you going to do something about it now and start
getting free power forever and breath cleaner air.

See http://aprs.org/solar-now.html

AMSAT TOO:  I just looked it up. I gave this talk at the AMSAT/TAPR Dayton
Banquet in 2011.  In the 5 years since, you (with $200 electric bills) have
spent over $12,000 in electric bills and have not taken the over $3600 tax
credit either.  How many more years are you going to throw away good money
every month and do nothing?

Sorry, if you have shade, you are out of solar luck, but hug your trees and
birds instead!  In some states, such as Maryland, you can still invest in
community solar where your solar panels will be credited to your bill.

Also in Maryland and some other progressive states, if you have some remote
land or antenna farm somewhere else,  You can install your solar panels
there, and get that electric meter to provide 100% credit to your own home
bill.  Neat!  Its called “virtual-net-metering”.

It’s a whole new world of energy changing under your feet…. Every day..


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