The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Roland to the rescue

Sir Roland on a chargerOne of the most popular topics among homesteaders is alternative energy.  We've done some thinking in that direction ourselves (and recently posted a series on assessing your site for microhydro.)  Unlike gardening, though, which is largely intuitive, really understanding alternative energy requires some grounding in physics.  My high school physics is unbelievably rusty, and I suspect many of our readers may be equally out of practice, so I thought it would be a good idea to bring us back up to date in a lunchtime series.

This is where Roland came to the rescue.  Regular commenters have probably noticed lengthy, well-thought out comments by Roland in the past, often correcting our engineering mistakes.  (Oops.)  Roland is a design and manufacturing engineer in the Netherlands, and when I asked him if he might be interested in writing a lunchtime series about energy, he quickly whipped off a primer on the physics of energy sources.  I have to admit that I'm beyond impressed at his writing skills since English is not his first language --- I barely cleaned up what he wrote at all.  If you're similarly enthused, maybe we can tempt him to write another series for us in the near future.

While you're waiting to hear from our guest writer, check out our ebook about quitting your job and making a living on the land.

This post is part of our Energy Primer lunchtime series.  Read all of the entries:

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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"Unlike gardening, though, which is largely intuitive, really understanding alternative energy requires some grounding in physics. "

Speak for yourself... I find physics more intuitive than figuring out why in the hell that plant that was perfectly healthy a week ago, now is a withering dying wretch.

Comment by Shannon Mon Mar 15 20:53:13 2010
I had a feeling someone might say that. Maybe plants just seem intuitive to me because I've been studying them for the last decade and a half...
Comment by anna Tue Mar 16 08:20:54 2010

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