For comparison, I currently have ~7128wh of deep-cycle lead-acid batteries in my home. That's 5x 108 amp-hours each, @ 13.2v. I believe they cost around $110 apiece. Additionally, I have 5x 30amp Iota charger/inverters, that run about $150 apiece plus shipping. For a total of about $1500±.
So my system runs in two independent circuits, one with 3 of each at ~40v and the other 2 at ~26v. When I have power, the Iota inverters supply each circuit with 30 amps (1200 watts @ 40v, 800 watts @ 26v). When I don't have AC power the batteries will supply each circuit with about 5.4 amps (220 watts & 150 watts) for about 20 hours. I can draw more amps for shorter duration (and less efficiency) or fewer amps for significantly longer duration (more efficiency).
For reference, if every single light (all LED) in (and out) my home is on full brightness (and full color), it draws just over 30 amps, but realistically I doubt I'd ever be drawing more than 10, or even 5, which would be more than comfortable in an emergency lighting situation where I might have to go a week or more without power.
The Tesla battery converts from/to AC, whereas my setup only converts from AC. This is because I'm using DC exclusively for my lighting (the 40v circuit) and for a variety of other devices that use DC; cable modem, wireless router, Raspberry Pi, Chromecast, audio amps, USB charging outlets... (it's amazing how much you can do with DC only when you try) on the 24v circuit (which is stepped down to regulated 12v/5v).
I still have to rely on a variety of AC appliances, such as TV, microwave, washer and dryer, water heater, and much more. But as my system is designed for infrequent power outages (I've had one 24 hour period last year... A couple for a few hours the year before... Some flickering), so I'm okay with not having those appliances for short infrequent periods. I can charge my devices, run computers, open/close windows, lock/unlock doors/windows, go online, and listen to music. Besides, running anything more than a TV is going to drain my (or Tesla's) batteries quickly.
I've got all the efficiency specs... I think the Iotas and the 24>12/5 converter are around 90-94%. But I'd rather conduct a practical comparison from entry to end-use than to calculate a series of theoretical "typical" efficiencies. My system entirely does away with each and every wall wart adaptor... Which number maybe ten with a couple devices charging... So I'm thinking the efficiencies might be comparable when the Tesla is converted to DC again. But I doubt I could compare if I converted to AC.
The fact that I could wire everything from scratch during construction for DC was big, and I wonder how homeowners and electricians will manage sending their battery backup to all circuits versus only the appliances they want backup to.
I'd love to go off-grid, but I have a full shop, with heavy saws and a welder... Solar has a ways to go before it's in the running, compared to my $.11 per kwh rates and relatively reliable power (local community owned power company - tends to be much better response time than the state-wide utilities).
No conclusions, no direct comparisons. Just sharing my little alternative setup.
I think these batteries will be eagerly adopted by early... adopters. Which will subsequently help lower battery costs. It's all good. It's just definitely not for me.
P.S. Did you catch who wrote the article? Nexus book 3 will be out shortly.
Edit: The amps and voltages are accurate, but the wattages might be off.
It's only been active for about a year or two, and I haven't had any troubles with it so far, so I really have no idea. I fully expect the batteries to have a shorter life and be the weakest link, functionally, but I anticipate that the options available at that point will be worth switching to even if I still have functional higher-quality batteries at that point. I also bought the batteries two years ago.
One of the worst is when apps auto update when I've got slow service in town (it's pathetic, really)... But the fault lies with Google. Because, in order to stop the apps from updating, I have to enter the play storefront... Which needs to load the "stop" button... Which doesn't load because the updating apps have already congested my bandwidth. So in order for the storefront to load, I need to stop the apps from downloading long enough for the storefront to load. Bonus, it doesn't even bring up the page with the "stop" button first, the main landing page has to load, and then I have to select "my apps" and only then can the "stop" button load. Last night it took three minutes for this to happen. Three minutes of no internet because...
1) you can't select a window (say 2-4am) for which play services will auto update apps, ass opposed to whomever set up Tasker to only update apps when the screen is on, I'm using the device, and have low bandwidth (that's seriously what it seems like).
2) There is no local method to stop updating apps that doesn't require loading two pages that can potentially not load because the app updating hogs all the bandwidth.
Permalink here: http://www.scitechdigest.net/2015/05/whole-brain-staining-chemogenic-neural.html
Whole brain staining, Chemogenic neural switching, Neuronal secrets, Single electron radio, Remote immersive telepresence, Aural parsing machines, Novel materials scaleup, Self-guided bullets, Logistical automation robots, New visual prosthesis.
1. Whole-Brain Staining for Whole-Brain Mapping
A complex new brain-staining method called BROPA is the first of its kind able to stain an entire brain including all neurons and synaptic connections http://www.mpg.de/9161585/connectome-diagram-brain. This now raises the distinct possibility of using the now-standard block-face scanning electron microscope technique to image an entire brain, slice by slice, and stitch these images together into a complete brain connectome map. Until now brain-staining techniques have only been useful for small sections of brain tissue, which could be scanned to produce connectomes but piecing these together into whole-brain maps was infeasible. So far the technique has only been demonstrated for mouse brains and the group plan to produce a complete mouse connectome comprising 40 petabytes, but it is yet to be seen if the technique can scale to human level.
2. Chemogenic Switching of Neurons
A newly developed chemogenic technique allows neurons to be controllably switched on and off http://news.unchealthcare.org/news/2015/april/new-brain-initiative-technology-can-switch-behavior-2018on2019-and-2018off2019. The chemogenic technique essentially represents an improved DREADD technology (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Receptor_activated_solely_by_a_synthetic_ligand) in which neural cell-wall receptors were modified and engineered to be sensitive to specific synthetic molecules or drugs. Subsequently, these receptors - and the firing of the neurons they adorn - could be activated or deactivated by adding or removing the synthetic molecule from the animal’s system, and in this case two different receptors were introduced to mature mice via viral-administered gene therapies. In different tests both voracious feeding and drug addiction behaviour could be switched on and off at will.
3. A Duo of Fundamental Neuron Function Discoveries
The first of these sheds new light on exactly how neurons form connections and memories at the molecular and cellular level http://news.vanderbilt.edu/2015/04/new-insight-into-how-brain-makes-memories/; a specific signalling protein called Asef2 that actively promotes synapse formation by promoting outgrowths of actin from the neual cytoskeleton - its lack can lead to a range of disorders. The second shows that neurons make methylation alterations to their DNA on a regular and on-going basis http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/news/media/releases/neurons_constantly_rewrite_their_dna; this is believed to be important for maintaining consistent synaptic signalling activity by modulating the activity of key signalling proteins.
4. Detecting Radio Waves from a Single Electron
For the first time radio waves have been detected from a single spinning electron http://news.sciencemag.org/physics/2015/04/physicists-detect-radio-waves-single-electron via new ultra-sensitive experimental techniques that involve trapping single electrons ejected by radioactive samples in cusomised wave-guides. As cool as this is the group ultimately hope to use the technique to perform the most accurate measurements to date for determining the mass of a neutrino. I wonder about the reverse: using a similar setup to influence and control a single electron . . . or a neutrino.
5. Towards True Immersive Telepresence
An Oculus-linked robotic system is edging towards the first true immersive remote telepresence system in which a user can wear a VR headset and receive binocular video input from a distant, remote robotic system that mimics the movement of the users body and head http://spectrum.ieee.org/automaton/robotics/robotics-hardware/upenn-dora-platform. The key to maintaining the feeling of immersion and presence in the remote location is minimal and unnoticeable lag between you moving your head, the robot moving its “head” in exactly the same way, and an updated video feed from the cameras arriving on the headset. 20ms lag is not perceptible and 60ms is considered an upper limit; the group currently have 70ms but hopes to drop this in the near future.
6. Deep Learning and Aural Parsing
Software arising from deep neural networks has now been demonstrated able to separate human voices from background noise in a wide range of songs (often referred to as the cocktail party problem after the ease with which humans can do the same) http://www.technologyreview.com/view/537101/deep-learning-machine-solves-the-cocktail-party-problem/. The promise here isn’t just a next-gen karaoke machine able to remove the vocals from any and all songs of choice. This should also help make better hearing aids, bluetooth headsets, video transcripts, and other applications we haven’t thought of yet.
7. Scaling-Up Novel Materials: Semiconductors & Metallic Glass
A couple of interesting scale-up advances this week. First, a new fabrication technique called metal organic chemical vapour deposition can successfully produce wafer-scale atomically-thin (3 atoms) films of molybdenum disulfide or tungsten diselenide for high-performance semiconductor applications http://spectrum.ieee.org/nanoclast/semiconductors/materials/novel-process-promises-atomically-thin-semiconductors-for-electronics. Second, a new manufacturing process allows spinel (magnesium aluminate) to be produced in sheets up to 30 inches wide http://www.nrl.navy.mil/media/news-releases/2015/transparent-armor-from-nrl-spinel-could-also-ruggedize-your-smart-phone; spinel is a transparent mineral that is much tougher, stronger, and harder than glass - think display screens, camera lenses, building and car windows, etc.
8. The Latest Self-Guided Bullets from DARPA
DARPA’s new EXACTO bullet is a self-guided 0.50 caliber round that can adjust its trajectory mid-flight http://gizmodo.com/watch-darpas-scary-self-guided-bullets-swerve-to-hit-mo-1700601163. In the demonstration video you can see the bullet not only move to allow a trained sniper to hit a moving target, and not only move to allow a novice shooter to hit a moving target but, indeed to move and swerve mid flight to hit a target that starts moving after the bullet has been fired. I’m just imagining swarms of military drones that shoot and never miss.
9. Another Industrial Automation Entrant
This week Fetch Robotics announced a duo of new robots called Fetch and Freight to tackle the logistics market http://spectrum.ieee.org/automaton/robotics/industrial-robots/fetch-robotics-introduces-fetch-and-freight-your-warehouse-is-now-automated. The duo are intended to form a team in a warehouse, with the slower Fetch and its mobile manipulator shelf-picking arm confined to zones, and Freight a faster smaller unit zipping around between Fetches and a loading point. It’s good to see competition heating up in this space with the likes of Kiva and to a lesser extent ReThink for example. I also can’t resist a call-out to Stanford’s microtug robots able to 2,000 times their weight via novel controllable adhesive technology http://nextbigfuture.com/2015/04/tiny-bots-can-drag-2000-times-their.html.
10. A Vision Implant Powered by Light
A company called Pixium Vision is launching a new visual prosthetic that is powered by light and enables the blind to see http://spectrum.ieee.org/tech-talk/biomedical/bionics/blind-patients-will-soon-try-a-new-bionic-eye. The core of the system is based on a small chip that is implanted behind the retina and which includes pixels that have both a photodiode and retina-stimulating electrode; the person wears video glasses that capture the view in front of them and convert this into an infrared version that is beamed into the persons eyes which serves to both provide power and stimulate the retina. Tests in rats confirm restoration of 20/250 vision and they hope to soon achieve 10/120, below the limit of legal blindness.
Courtesy of !
He did say he stitched the images together... So I imagine it could be significantly challenging to achieve a particular projection, versus whichever small image stitching lends itself to.
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