Monthly Archives: February 2013

What I do for money

I was asked to put together some words on what my research involves today. To make life more interesting I decided to have a go at doing it ‘up goer five’ style. This is the result:

My work tries to find out how well sun power is working.
First I looked at how much light coming from the sun reaches sun power making things. I have to work out how much light falls on something lying on the ground between places where I know how much light there is. Then I have to work out how much more light there is when you are pointing in some other direction (like if you are lying on top of a building).
Once I know this, I can find out if the sun power making thing is working well or not. This is important because the better it does, the more money I get and if I find it is doing bad, I can fix it.
Second I look at how much of the air which is making the world hot like a green house stays out of the sky because of sun power. Most people just use the same number all year round to work this out but power is made by burning a different set of things at different times so you really should change this number at different times of day and year.
If sun power is used instead of very very old dead trees, more bad stuff is not made than if you use sun power instead of air that you burn that comes out of the ground. I am using a big set of numbers about where our power came from to find out how much ground air and how many really old dead trees weren’t burned because we got some power from the sun instead.