Solar panels are a topic on which Ken Wheeler declares himself to be a connoisseur. Find out why he’s obsessed with solar energy for all the wrong reasons and why his advice would be disastrous for any household naive enough to follow it.
Interest in solar panels is booming these days. A growing number of people are concerned about their carbon footprint, and are considering using solar panels to replace some or all of their electrical consumption from power grids.
Ken Wheeler is oddly fascinated by solar panels. He claims to own fifteen of them, and many of his videos involve tinkering with photovoltaic cells and related electrical gadgets.
Solar panels are the product of Einstein’s discovery of the photoelectric effect. He demonstrated that certain metals emit electricity when light shines on them because light is composed of quantum particles called photons.
Solar Panels Come from Einstein’s Photoelectric Effect
When these photons strike the atoms in these “photovoltaic” metals, the interaction causes electrons to escape. The ingenuity behind solar energy technology involves finding ways to capture these freed electrons and use them to power electrical devices.
We accomplish this using solar panels, which use silicon and other materials known as semiconductors. Scientists call them this because they fall somewhere in between an insulator and highly conductive metals like copper.
Solar panels consist of photovoltaic cells made from semiconductors. The photoelectric effect causes the electrons to flow through the photovoltaic cells to metal contacts made of conductive material.
Electrons Flow Through Photovoltaic Cells
These metal contacts make up the gridlines we can see in a solar panel. They convey the electric current, allowing users to extract energy from the photovoltaic cells and harness it to power appliances.
Attempting to set himself up as a fake expert on yet another topic, the Angry Photographer has declared himself a “connoisseur of solar panels.” This is bizarre and ironic for a range of reasons.
The most obvious logical fallacy about the Theoria Apophasis host’s obsession with solar technology is his denial of both photons and electrons. He insists that Einstein was mistaken about the photoelectric effect, and he calls the Quantum Mechanics behind solar power a “made-up, woo-woo word.”
Calls Quantum Behind Solar “Made-Up Woo-Woo Word”
It must be difficult for Ken Wheeler to endure this cognitive dissonance. He seems infatuated with generating free electricity from the sun, yet he vehemently denies the process by which technology achieves this.
For Ken Wheeler, light and electricity are both ether perturbation modalities. We explain how the Michelson Morley Experiment proves the ether doesn’t exist under Field Theory – Why Ken’s Wrong. Charles Proteus Steinmetz, who Kentucky Ken calls one of the “gods” of field theory called the ether hypothesis a “mistake.”
However, there’s another bizarre aspect of the Angry Photographer’s fascination with collecting free energy from the sun. It’s his attitude toward the climate crisis that’s driving the global green energy boom.
Doesn’t Accept Climate Crisis Is Real and Caused by Humans
The Theoria Apophasis host is a climate denier. Setting impossible expectations of proof for climate scientists, he stubbornly denies that global warming is happening, caused by humans, and a crisis.
Ken Wheeler couldn’t care less about his carbon footprint, because he doesn’t view carbon emissions as a problem. So, once again we have to wonder what his motivation is in embracing renewable energy.
One impulse is the Angry Photographer’s innate tendency to hoard gadgets, including cameras, lenses, light meters, magnets, microphones, Geiger counters, frequency counters, ham radios, refrigerators, water filters, water barrels, knives, firearms, ammunition, sewing machines and other items he doesn’t need. At one point, he was able to purchase a parcel of land with a cabin on it by selling off only half of the gadgets gathering dust around his house.
Solar Cells Fuel Obsession with Impending Disaster
Ken Wheeler’s other rationale for tinkering with solar panels is his obsession with conspiracy theories predicting an impending disaster. He tells his viewers that he’s been predicting the coming apocryphal collapse of modern civilization for the past twenty years.
We can set aside the logical fallacy that two decades have passed without any of the Angry Photographer’s prophecies of doom materializing. In this post, we can just point out that his fascination with solar panels stems from claims by fake experts that he’ll need to survive off the grid in his post-apocalyptic fantasy world.
The Theoria Apophasis host has made it clear in a number of YouTube videos that he plans to install solar panels at his home and especially at his cabin as part of a disaster preparedness plan. Presumably, he can’t imagine functioning without being surrounded by his cherished digital gadgets.
Uses YouTube Platform to Spread Misinformation
There are a lot of hoarders around the world, and most of them are relatively harmless to others. The difference with Ken Wheeler is that he uses his YouTube platform to spread misinformation about how to apply solar energy in residential settings.
For example, the Angry Photographer recently posted a video in which he endorsed a 3,000 watt power inverter connected to a charge controller and lead acid batteries. This rig was intended to harness the power from the solar array he plans to install at his cabin.
Cherry picking some technical specifications, Kentucky Ken tells his viewers that he “plans to” use this setup to provide “all the power I need, including a high efficiency refrigerator and a small freezer.” Experts recommend that a typical homeowner plan on using at least 7,500 watts (10,000 watts is more realistic) when planning for their solar energy needs.
Experts Tell Homeowners to Plan for 7,500-10,000 Watts
Yet, the Theoria Apophasis creator implies to his viewers that he’ll be able to function during his anticipated boogaloo on just 3,000 watts of power. He may manage to keep his camera, laptop and cell phone sufficiently charged to carry on posting YouTube videos (assuming YouTube still exists).
He’s not going to be able to power a household using the limited capacity of the solar rig he endorses, and his lead acid batteries won’t be able to store it adequately. Interestingly, he touted his setup in a video prior to having installed and tested it.
It’s worth noting that Kentucky Ken already has a way to supply electricity to his remote, off-the-grid cabin. He keeps a high capacity, gasoline-powered, portable electric generator there, because of course he does.
Gadget Hoarding and Delusions of Impending Disaster
Ken Wheeler’s attraction to green energy would be commendable if it was for the right reasons. Instead, it seems to be motivated by his propensities for gadget hoarding and his delusions of impending disaster.
The Angry Photographer misleads his viewers about the scientific principles on which solar panels work. He also leaves them with an unrealistic impression of the wattage required to power a simple household. As always, he’s just plain wrong.
“Truth Is Like the Sun. It Ain’t Going Away”
There are many much more reliable sources for learning about solar panels on YouTube and on the Internet generally than Theoria Apophasis. Elvis once said, “Truth is like the sun. You can shut it out for a time, but it ain’t going away.”
Ken Wheeler can make all the “plans” he likes while ignoring the laws of physics. They won’t ignore him. Time will tell.
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Field Theory – Why Ken’s Wrong
Photography – Why Ken’s Wrong