Contest #635: Hornsdale Windfarm, Australia

The problem with most forms of renewable electricity generation is that they are dependant on fuel sources that can’t be controlled by the generating entity. Wind is a perfect example — wind can not typically be used for “base load” because, oddly enough, sometimes the wind does not blow.

Hornsdale is a step in fixing that problem. By storing the generated electricy in the world’s largest battery bank (provided by Tesla), that power can be tapped when the wind does not blow hard enough to meet the needs of the local community. This is a pilot project, but it does provide a first step in providing scalable solutions to turn renewable generation into base load capable generation.

Those who powered up were:

  • Walter_V_R
  • Garfield
  • hhgygy
  • Phil Ower
  • Martin de Bock
  • Paul Voestermans
  • Andreas Meister
  • René De La Carte
  • Борис Карлофф
  • Lighthouse
  • Eloy Cano
  • Wendy Coburn
  • Mika
  • Rob de Wolff

Contest #634: Portvakten Söder, Passive House Apartment Buildings, Växjö, Sweden

Passive house architecture is a set of standards and methodologies for creating extremely energy-efficient spaces. Passive house uses technologies like superinsulation, dynamic heat-exchange units, low energy-loss windows, and intelligent air-exchange to minimize heat loss from the structure, allowing the tenants to leverage passive heat sources like body heat to keep warm, even in cold-weather climates like that found in Scandinavia.

In Växjö, they have taken this even further — Portvakten Söder is two, 8-story apartment complexes with 64 apartments between them. They have no traditional heating system. The heat produced by the residents, body heat, lamps, ovens, toasters, coffee makers, etc, is kept in the complex. Exhaust air is “mined” for heat which is redistributed throughout the buildings. A small allowance is made for unoccupied apartments, a battery that generates heat is built into each apartment which comes on only when the sensors in the air-handlers determine that the unit is not producing its fair share.

Those who moved in and save a bunch on their heating costs included:

  • Paul Voestermans
  • Martin de Bock
  • Garfield
  • Phil Ower
  • Luís Filipe Miguel
  • hhgygy
  • Walter_V_R
  • Teemu Pukki
  • Hans1789
  • MuThDdDe

And after the hint:

  • Andreas Meister
  • Lighthouse

Contest #633: Cerro Prieto Geothermal Power Station, Mexico

Cerro Prieto sits on top of a large geothermal field associated with the Cerro Prieto volcano. The whole thing sits on the southern end of the San Andreas fault system.

The power station is the largest (in size) geothermal complex in the world, producing about 850MW of electricity.

The verified users who found it were:

  • Walter_V_R
  • Martin de Bock
  • Phil Ower
  • hhgygy
  • Paul Voestermans
  • Luciano P.
  • Andreas Meister
  • Lighthouse
  • Hans1789
  • MuThDdDe
  • John Gospel IV
  • Garfield
  • René De La Carte
  • Nancy Barbato

And after the hint:

  • Rob de Wolff

Rule Change starting #633

We have had a large number of correct answers (17 in the last 2 games) coming from non-verifiable e-mail addresses. These answers appear to be coming to us via anonymizing services such as TOR and/or VPNs, and judging from the structure of the answers and the fact that a large number of them seem to be from people with famous names, we strongly suspect they are coming from the same person or small group of persons. Why they are doing this is beyond us — there doesn’t appear to be any financial gain to be had from this, it just appears to be someone having their idea of “fun”.

This is a problem because we have had so many suspect answers that it is diluting the hard work that you wonderful people put in.

In an effort to combat this, we are instituting a slight rule change effective immediately. This change may or may not make a difference, but we feel we owe it to our regular players to at least try to combat this stuff.

So, here we go:

  • For a player to be recognized in the reveal, leaderboard or past winners page, they will need to provide a verifiable e-mail address and respond to a verification e-mail following their first contest entry following this post with the following exception:
    • Anyone who has played prior to Contest #630 and is in our database of players prior to Contest #630 will be considered to be verified already.