I'm still amazed by that European power grid thing. Someone *lost* a few dozen GWh and now clocks are running late all over Europe because of the slightly lower grid frequency ⌚⚑

@Nervengift it's a bunch of bullshit, only some very cheap or old clocks powered by the mains use the grid frequency as a reference

@MightyPork yes but they exist. Some of the clocks on my kitchen devices are running late for example.

@Nervengift it's amazing to me someone would use that just to save 20 cents on the 32kHz crystal

@MightyPork oh, and then there's this soldering oven that toasts everything 20% longer because it was made for a 60Hz grid

@Nervengift read Blackout by Marc Elsberg. Good thriller and i learned a ton about the euro power grid

@Nervengift Do you know in which way a reduced frequency actually saved so much energy? I mean seriously why don't we make this the default to run at a bit lower frequency, apparently we can save tons of energy and thus CO2 with it? Isn't this also a great way to deal with fluctuations of renewable energy? Apparently, pulling down the frequency for *months* doesn't cause any issues except for some old clocks.

@natanji @Nervengift It does not save any energy though, e.g. motors also run slower, hence they need to run a longer time to move the same distance, which needs energy again.
Frequency is just a arbitrarily agreed on parameter of the transmitting system just like voltage. (And different elsewhere in the world, e.g. 60Hz in the US)

The frequency and voltage of the transmitting system need to be controlled closely, if they drop or rise to much attached systems will be damaged. 1/2

@Nervengift @natanji The GWh which are produced and introduced into the transmitting system (as well as those used/extraced by electrical loads at the other end of the system) are also a input into the control loop stabilizing the frequency. There are fast acting power plants which are used only for the purpose of stabilizing the frequency. And if the frequency drops to much the whole system needs to be shut down to avoid damage. Someone didn't provide the GWh to the system they should have, 2/3

@natanji @Nervengift causing the slightly reduced frequency. Which means the whole system is a lot closer to becoming unstable and also causing clocks usually relying on exactly 50 ticks per second the system *should* provide to diverge from actual time. But sadly there is no magical way to save energy here.^^

If you are interessted you can read more about this e.g. here and adjacent wiki-pages:

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