Date: Sunday January 26, 2014
Speaker: Dr. Alan D. Eastman
Alan Eastman obtained a PhD in Chemistry from the University of Utah, spent 29+ years in the research division of a major oil company, and is now the chief technology officer of a startup geothermal energy company, GreenFire Energy, and has dabbled in biodiesel and alcohol fuels as well. He has been awarded 37 US patents in fields ranging from refinery catalysts to process control to spectroscopy to biodiesel, as well as numerous foreign equivalents and several patent submissions now in the labyrinthine depths of the US Patent and Trademark Office. When not doing science, he can often be found at a piano keyboard playing jazz or at an organ console playing Bach.
“Most people have heard about lots of different types of alternative energy – wind, solar, nuclear, geothermal, biomass, etc. – but relatively few know enough about the various alternative energies to decide which one(s) show the most promise (or the least), and why. This lecture will describe the most important alternatives to hydrocarbon-based power, covering how they work, plus their advantages and disadvantages. We’ll concentrate on the energy sources for electrical generation, since that is the largest single use for energy, but will also touch on transportation, the second-largest use. Coming to this session won’t give you all the answers, but it should enable you to ask all the right questions.”
Speaker Suggested Websites (See http://www.questioning-minds.org for easier access and caveat.)
http://alternativeenergy.procon.org – Interesting discussion, but focused strongly on transportation fuels. Note who writes each comment and who they work for – not much neutrality here.
http://spectrum.ieee.org/energy/renewables/a-skeptic-looks-at-alternative-energy – Title says it all; he has cogent and reasoned arguments for his skepticism. Well worth a read.
http://www.afdc.energy.gov – The Department of Energy’s site on alternative transportation fuels – Reliable data with minimum spin.
http://nationalatlas.gov/articles/people/a_energy.html – National Atlas articles about energy resources – Another site with excellent information and links to more.
http://www.nrel.gov/rredc – National Renewable Energy Laboratory – Gateway to the National Renewable Energy Lab’s resource database.
http://www.eia.gov/totalenergy/data/monthly/pdf/sec10.pdf – Energy Information Administration’s Renewable Energy Data – The gold Standard for data.
http://energy.gov/science-innovation/energy-sources – The Department of Energy’s general-public site; lots of good information with minimum spin.