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Different systems of solar power

Please provide me with reliable sources in these three areas: (1) Solar energy from manufacturing to installation; (2) substitute fuel and its possible sources, plus ways and means to make it oneself; and (3) solar devices for use on the water. D.E. Ross Reno, Nev.

Well, taking them in order, here goes:

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* I don't know what kind of solar installation you're talking about. If it's a large installation, you might want to get in touch with Grumman Energy Systems , a subsidiary of Grumman Corporation, in Bethpage, N.Y. The phone number is: ( 516) 575-7474.

You also can get touch with a university, many of which have solar programs under way in some form or another. Further, you can ask if there is a state energy conservation office in Nevada. I should think it would be located in Carson City, the capital. Most states now have such offices which are designed to provide information on solar as well as many other energy-saving opportunities to the public.

How about the Solar Energy Research Institute, 1536 Cole Boulevard, Golden, Colo. 80401. the phone number I have in my files is: (303) 231-1235.

Maybe the National solar Heating and Cooling Information Center in Rockville, Md., can provide some data to you. Phone: (800) 523-2929. In Pennsylvania, phone: (800) 462-4983.

As for substitute fuels, Ron Stevenson of Solar Southwest, Odessa, Texas, has told me about a book entitled "Making It on the Farm." The author is Micky Nellis and it can be bought for $3.50 from the following address: PO Box 100, Iredell, Texas 76649.

The book has a bibliography which tells where you can get more information on the subject. Also, it spells out the cost of the various materials, the ethanol yield for many different crops, etc. The author, Mr. Stevenson says, had a triple major in microbiology, zoology, and chemistry.

Now, when you write about solar devices on the water, I assume you mean an auxiliary power system for a boat. Am I right? For photovoltaic devices you can check with Arco Solar in Palo Alto, Calif., according to Mr. Stevenson. It's not too far from Reno.

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Arco, among other things, produces photovoltaic systems for remote cabins, etc. -- in other words, where there is no access to conventional power.

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