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#126 2020-01-04 18:37:51

kbd512
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Registered: 2015-01-02
Posts: 3,187

Re: Power to gas - the next step

tahanson43206,

I still think pipelines, trucks, and super tankers are the simplest way to get the job done.  The undersea transport of fuel is an interesting idea, mostly because we could construct a series of deep sea pumping stations not subject to inclement weather conditions on the surface of the ocean that are also much more difficult for unsophisticated terrorists to disrupt using handheld weapons (which would be most of them, thankfully), but this is necessarily a more expensive solution that requires greater technological development and operational cost.  If we can make LNH3 from seawater and air using offshore wind power, then nearly all industrialized nations on Earth can make that work.  A significant portion of Earth's population is very close to a river / lake / ocean, so your proposal deserves further study.  Apart from near 100% recycling rates, co-location of synergistic power-to-fuel infrastructure is also a key strategy for the reduction of energy usage and associated emissions.

In the end, all I'm proposing is exchanging fuels containing Carbon for fuels containing Nitrogen.  Unlike the Carbon, after the Nitrogen is separated from the fuel it's just an inert gas that has no effect on our climate.  By removing the Carbon from the fuel source before we start using the fuel and turning that Carbon into a lucrative revenue source from lightweight / high strength aerospace fibers, we're providing the incentive to figure out how to use the captured Carbon to its maximum potential.  My assertion is that an inexpensive and pervasive source of Carbon is a fundamental requirement for lightweight vehicles and wiring to reduce the consumption of energy-intensive metals and the energy required to power vehicles constructed from metals.

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#127 2020-01-04 20:17:47

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 17,841

Re: Power to gas - the next step

Well I can see transporting ammonia in pipelines under the ocean and even transferring of the product from storage as a good thing as the water would aid in deluting you from exposure that would kill. Ammonia gas is very harmful, and may be fatal, if you inhale it. A level of just 500 ppm (that is, 1 part in 2,000) of ammonia in air is potentially fatal. High levels of ammonia can irritate and burn the skin, mouth, throat, lungs, and eyes. Very high levels of ammonia can damage the lungs or cause death. Which means shipping as Anhydrous Ammonia.

This article is in support Could ammonia be shipping’s clean new fuel?

Concept-Design-Ammonia-Carrier-C-Job-Naval-Architects-2.jpg

https://nh3fuel.files.wordpress.com/201 … rvices.pdf

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#128 2020-01-04 21:29:48

tahanson43206
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Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 1,864

Re: Power to gas - the next step

For SpaceNut re #125

Thanks for the link to the research paper on use of Ammonia for shipping at some point in the possible future.

At the serving site, after the article, there were several other related articles.  One was about a ** real ** hydrogen carrier under construction in Japan.  The ship was launched and is to be fitted with a double walled tank to hold liquid hydrogen.  Interestingly (to me at least) the hydrogen is to come from Australia, where it is to be made from brown coal instead of a green source.

I understand the thinking that led to the current plans, but suspect there may be some changes to sourcing in the not-to-distant future.

it is good to see serious thinking going on for use of hydrogen on the scale of an ocean going ship, but that's just one ship, and it's not due to go into service for several months.

***
For kbd512 re #126

I'm generally in agreement with your position ...

However, if an investor is willing to fund a wind-to-energy-carrier project on the scale of 12 megawatts per facility, my guess is they'll be looking for ways to wring the last possible bit of economic value out of the enterprise. 

Flexibility may turn out to be more important than efficiency ...

For sure the facility should be seeking to extract every possible economically valuable molecule it can from the sea water intake.

Hydrogen is a precursor for any energy carrier that might be in vogue.  At this point, the idea of pumping oxygen into the ocean to stimulate fishing opportunities is the best idea that the forum has generated so far.   Oxygen might have economic value for the growing space industry, so that option should definitely be kept in the tool kit.

Ammonia is a potential product, as is methane, and recent discussion in the forum includes mention of related liquid energy carriers. Those would have distinct advantages for shipping, at the cost of additional energy investment at the production facility.

Conceivably truly green Hydrogen might become a preferred output, if customers are willing to pay extra compared to Australia's brown coal version.

(th)

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#129 2020-01-04 21:49:43

kbd512
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Re: Power to gas - the next step

SpaceNut,

Using NH3 fuel is not without its downsides, which most of us are aware of, but it also comes closest to a Carbon-free replacement for traditional hydrocarbon fuels.  Existing or slightly modified gas turbines and compression ignition engines can use it directly as a fuel.  That said, the greatest efficiency benefits would be realized by using it in Alkaline or Solid Oxide fuel cells.  The primary issue with fuel cells is that very few companies are making them and only in small quantities, which can never achieve cost reduction through mass production.

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#130 2020-01-04 22:18:25

SpaceNut
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Re: Power to gas - the next step

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#131 2020-01-06 19:18:16

tahanson43206
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Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 1,864

Re: Power to gas - the next step

For SpaceNut ...

The link below is from Lizard King of luf.org

It applies to more than one topic, so I'll be posting it where it seems to fit.

https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/09 … iquid-fuel

In this case, an Earth based facility would use this technology to capture water vapor and CO2 from the atmosphere.

(th)

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#132 2020-01-06 20:48:44

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
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Posts: 17,841

Re: Power to gas - the next step

Thanks for the link.
The dewater system for desert water creation has been around for a while now and gives the life blood for those that can not get water from wells.
A dehumidifier and boxed air conditioning that is use to condense the moisture out of the air.
The use of solar is a plus in those areas for power creation for those that can afford the panels.
Temporary batteries and an AC convertor is used to provide the power to the units that are beeing used.

The article talks about porous crystalline material, known as a metal-organic framework (MOF), that acts like a sponge or catalyst for the reaction to occur at temperature.

solar panel to power a fan and heater, which speed the cycles, the device produces up to 1.3 liters of water per kilogram of MOF per day from desert air. Yaghi expects further improvements to boost that number to 8 to 10 liters per day. Last year, he formed a company called Water Harvesting that this fall plans to release a microwave-size device able to provide up to 8 liters per day. The company promises a scaled-up version next year that will produce 22,500 liters per day, enough to supply a small village.

Its catalyst is multi function as it has the zirconia to split the co2 into co and o2 as heat is applied. Still in experimental state and not a commercial off the shelf.

The solar panel looks like a 4 ft x 6 ft size in the 300 -400 w size. connected to a invertor for the batteries at 24 v a piece for a 48 v source for the ac convertor.

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#133 2020-01-07 02:15:06

Terraformer
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From: Lancashire
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Re: Power to gas - the next step

Solar power in that case won't need batteries, since you can store water. Overproduce when you have power, and keep a few days storage on hand.


"I guarantee you that at some point, everything's going to go south on you, and you're going to say, 'This is it, this is how I end.' Now you can either accept that, or you can get to work." - Mark Watney

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#134 2020-01-07 07:14:48

tahanson43206
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Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 1,864

Re: Power to gas - the next step

For Terraformer re #133

Thank you for your interest in the new MOF technology. 

This post is in support of your daytime-only operating mode, for a fallback situation if batteries fail.

However, in practice (on Earth or on Mars) it seems likely 24 hour operation will be desired, because the production of a molecule sifting system is low to begin with, and the situation is compounded in dry climates, where this system is most needed.

That said, production of ** clean ** water even in a damp environment is so important for health of humans and other living things, I can envision plants like this becoming very popular very quickly, with the right marketing.

Some years ago, the inventor of the Segway transporter (*) invented a mechanical system to purify contaminated ground water for drinking purposes. The system was given a bit of funding by Coca Cola for demonstration purposes, but I have not heard much of it since, so I'm guessing the economics didn't work well enough for the concept to take off.

(*) Google lookup: Dean Kamen ... "Slingshot"  www.slingshotdoc.com   wikipedia >> slingshot(water_vaoor_distillation_system)

Perhaps this application of nanotechnology (working with individual molecules) will achieve success in the global market place.

(th)

Last edited by tahanson43206 (2020-01-07 08:01:24)

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#135 2020-01-07 18:08:11

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
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Posts: 17,841

Re: Power to gas - the next step

The batteries are used also to perform power regulation for the input to the convertor for the AC voltage that it will put out. Other wise it would oscillate and be unstable for supplying the power to the units that are doing the work.
The science was ahead of its time with Dean Kamen it was the price being to high for the commercial market average user.

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#136 2020-01-07 18:45:28

tahanson43206
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Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 1,864

Re: Power to gas - the next step

For SpaceNut re #135 and Dean Kamen

I was inspired by your comment to investigate a bit further.  The Slingshot invention has morphed into a video, apparently.

Slingshot
Critics Consensus50%
HD
CC
Documentary
1 Hour 28 Minutes
2015
5.0, 18 Ratings
A quirky genius with a sharp wit and a provocative worldview, Dean Kamen is our era's Thomas Edison. He takes on the world's grand challenges one invention at a time. Best known for his Segway Human Transporter, Kamen has reconceived kidney dialysis, engineered an electric wheelchair that can travel up stairs (the Ibot), reworked the heart stent, built portable insulin pumps, founded FIRST robotics to inspire young students, and on and on.Holder of over 440 patents, Kamen devotes himself to dreaming up products that improve people's lives. For the last 15 years, he has relentlessly pursued an effective way to clean up the world's water supply and has invented an energy efficient vapor compression distiller that can turn any unfit source of water (seawater, poisoned well water, river sludge, etc.) into potable, safe water without any need for chemical additives or filters. SlingShot is a film about an indomitable man who just might have enough passion, will, and innovative thinking to create a solution for a crisis that affects billions.

more
Rent $4.99
Buy $9.99

For anyone who may be interested in seeing the trailer of the movie, there is a free version available at the site below.

https://www.slingshotdoc.com/

As reported earlier, the Slingshot system is a mechanical device which can separate fresh water from sea water (or any contaminated water, apparently).

Since the Wind-to-Energy-Carrier system would require clean fresh water as input to electrolysis, the Slingshot system would (presumably) be worth considering for that phase of the process.

Since part of the economic potential of the Wind-to-Energy-Carrier system is recovery of valuable atoms from sea water, the output of the Slingshot system would be concentrated sea extract.  That extract might be worth shipping to on-shore facilities as is, without bothering with further refining at the facility location.

Something else to consider is recovery of deuterium, which exists in sea water.

From Google:

Deuterium. ... Deuterium has a natural abundance in Earth's oceans of about one atom in 6420 of hydrogen. Thus deuterium accounts for approximately 0.02% (0.03% by mass) of all the naturally occurring hydrogen in the oceans, while protium accounts for more than 99.98%.
Names: deuterium, H-2, hydrogen-2
Isotope mass: 2.01410177811 u
Natural abundance: 0.0115% (Earth)
Neutrons: 1

Here is a discussion about research to use graphene to pull deuterium from hydrogen.

https://www.chemistryworld.com/news/gra … 08.article

I ** think ** the process described would follow electrolysis.

The article makes plain that deuterium is a valuable substance in and of itself, so it should definitely be considered as an output from the Wind facility.

Edit: Here is some detail about operation of the Slingshot water purification system:
From Google:

Clean-Water Effort Combines Coke's Know-How, Segway's ...
https://www.bloomberg.com › news › articles › clean-water-effort-combin...
Sep 27, 2013 - The Slingshot, a washing-machine-size water purifier, produces 10 gallons of clean water an hour on 500 watts of electricity Photograph by ...

This is a mechanical system so the components will wear out over time.   The cost of replacement equipment needs to be added to the cost of operation to arrive at a figure for estimating for a wind-to-energy-carrier application.

(th)

Last edited by tahanson43206 (2020-01-07 19:19:53)

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#137 2020-01-08 17:50:31

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 17,841

Re: Power to gas - the next step

The conversion of air which can be processed for the co2 there is an energy required to process a given volume at the parts per million rate with in the volume of air process which will give us a net mass of co2 at gas level and then at a liquid volume pressure for temperature.
That said how do we compute some of this?

How much volume does 1 kg of CO2 occupy at room temperature and standard pressure?

CO2 has a molecular weight of 44 g/mol
1 kg CO2 = 1000 g × (1 mol/44 g) = 22.7 mol CO2

V=nRT/P, V=(22.7)(0.0821)(300)/1 = 559 L CO2 at 27°C (300K), 1 atm

This is a little more than half a cubic meter approximately equal to the volume of two bathtubs or the trunk of a large car.

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#138 2020-01-09 08:38:26

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 1,864

Re: Power to gas - the next step

For Post on NewMars forum in Power-to-Gas topic

SearchTerm:PutingItAllTogether
SearchTerm:Wind-to-Stored-Energy-Facility

This post is intended to contain a summary of all elements needed to create a global infrastructure for production of stored energy using wind available in the vicinity of Antartica

The ocean conditions in that region are among the most challenging that exist on Earth, but (I ** think ** ) they are relatively stable in severity.

Ocean going equipment able to operate in the region will be designed to continue operation for 30 years with only minor maintenance.

Outputs will depend upon market demand, but may include:

1)methane
2)hydrogen
3)oxygen
4)Any and all suspended atoms pulled from sea water
5)carbon dioxide from air and water
6)anything else that is available

Inputs will consist of air and sea water.

It should be noted that air in this environment will contain water which is comparitively free of salt, so that water would be preferentially selected for chemical processings to yield hydrogen and oxygen.

(th)

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#139 2020-01-09 08:46:01

tahanson43206
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Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 1,864

Re: Power to gas - the next step

For kbd512 ...

In another topic you described the experience of serving on an aircraft carrier in waters near Antarctica.

From that experience, and your knowledge in general, would you be willing to comment upon the notion of deploying a wind generator vessel in that region?

As noted in the post above, I understand that conditions in that region are severe most of the time, but I'm under the impression conditions are relatively stable in intensity. 

I am using the deep ocean wind generator design deployed off Scotland as the model for the concept.  Those are designed and constructed by a company based in the Netherlands (as I recall).  The ones deployed so far are anchored with cables, but the ones I have in mind for the Antarctic region would be free sailing, capable of steering themselves within a band of international water around Antarctica, or of holding position by driving against the ocean if holding position turns out to be a better choice.  In either case, some of the power collected by the wind turbine would have to be allocated to navigation.

(th)

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#140 2020-01-09 19:24:23

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 17,841

Re: Power to gas - the next step

Article Trouble Ahead for Natural Gas?

Of course a report indicates the nuclear picture is sliding, that fossil fuels as well are on the decrease for use but we still have not seen the goal of co2 emissions reached.

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#141 2020-01-13 04:42:18

kbd512
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Re: Power to gas - the next step

tahanson43206,

You'd need one hell of an anchoring system for wind turbines deployed in waters that rough.  I'm sure it can be done, but it won't be easy or cheap.  I think some university professor from Vermont figured out how to do this without going absurdly over budget.  His group has also built pre-fabricated composite bridges and fast boat hulls for US Navy Special Forces to withstand the pounding of the waves at high speed.

Even if you could economically put some wind turbines out there, why put them there?  That's hundreds if not thousands of miles away from any significant population centers.  Transportation is a major cost driver in business.  Whatever electricity of fuel from seawater that you could make there would then have to be delivered a quarter of the way around the world to reach any significant population centers.  Although that's presently done with oil and gas, only at fantastic energy cost.  Part of the solution is to stop consuming so much fuel to move things from Point A to Point B.  The closer Point A is to Point B, the easier that becomes.

The carbon fiber in BMW vehicles starts life in China as raw material, gets shipped to the west coast of the US for processing into strands of carbon fiber, is subsequently trucked to the east coast, shipped to Germany, turned into car parts in the BMW factory- a place that makes the Space Shuttle refurbishment facility look rather tiny and unsophisticated by way of comparison, and then the cars are trucked to a port and put on other ships to be redistributed to the rest of the world.  BMW makes great cars, but literally going around the world to deliver the finished product to market is nuts.  My take on this is that we make things where we intend to use them, at least at a national level.  If someone truly has a better idea about how to do something, then it can be licensed and copied elsewhere.  Productivity and workmanship comes down to your own personal belief in making something as well as you possibly can.  In the 1950's when energy was supposedly much cheaper and easier to obtain than it is today, in relative terms, we seldom did stuff like this.

SpaceNut,

With respect to the content of that article and the "reports" it's supposedly based off of, does the continued rate of increase of measured CO2 emissions not suggest that whatever came from that Lazard Report is utter nonsense, if it's suggesting in any way that fossil fuel usage has decreased?

This economic sophistry peddled by this "Lazard" company or character is a bright shining lie, plain and simple, and their "reports" are little different than tabloid drivel, apart from the subject that they've chosen to make things up about.

Inconvenient energy fact: It takes 79 solar workers to produce same amount of electric power as one coal worker

The solar energy industry employed 20% of the energy sector's total workforce, by numbers, yet produced less than 1% of US electricity in 2016.  Over that same year, the same number of natural gas workers produced 1/3rd of the electricity produced in the US, half as many coal workers produced the other 1/3rd, and nuclear plus hydroelectric made up the rest.

This silly "hide the true cost" game is, well, more than a little silly.  Louis doesn't like nuclear power, yet has nothing to say about the half ton of radioactive materials unearthed to produce the magnets in each 2MW onshore wind turbine.  Maybe he's going to pretend that mining rare earth metals doesn't produce any radioactive waste, but nowhere is it written that reality must agree with his belief system.  I say we put that stuff in our nuclear reactors to make power, but that's because I value practical solutions over religion.  You know how else we could "democratize" electricity production?  Put everyone on an exercise bike with a generator attached to it and make them peddle if they want electricity.  Surely that's the absolute best way to maximize employment in the energy sector (assuming all the jobs created by the renewable energy industry is something to brag about, given the efficiency of its output), is it not?

Even at that, it still doesn't matter.  100% wind power would require 700 million tons of rare earth metals and all of the world's known reserves only amount to 140 million tons.  Could the iron nitride magnets that our Los Alamos scientists developed and a new company is commercializing change that?  Sure, but the amount of fossil fuels burned just to make and ship all the steel and concrete required for the towers and foundations is around half a trillion tons, ignoring the fossil fuel requirements for mining those resources.  If that's not enough, this entire process will be repeated every 20 to 30 years.  I've never seen sunshine or wind refine iron ore into steel, either, have you?

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#142 2020-01-13 10:42:27

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 1,864

Re: Power to gas - the next step

For kbd512 re #141

Thank you for your thoughtful reply.  I'll study it carefully.  This is (more or less) the kind of realistic (more or less) feedback I am looking for.

Please note that the author behind the "Lizard King" nom-dl-plume is an investor.  Please try to avoid conflating the post provided by the individual with an article you disagree with.  I would venture to guess that as fellow Texans, you would get along just fine.

If you go back and look at what Lizard King sent us, you will (I expect) find that it is appropriately skeptical, but the individual has enough personal courtesy to offer information which he thinks might help me work out possible futures.

***
To your question about location .... The location has a significant number of benefits, along with obvious disadvantages, some of which you have noted.

***
To your observation about anchors ... this has already been discussed, in an exchange with SpaceNut ... Because of the depth of the ocean at the location of interest, I am NOT interested in anchors.  The question I posed to you was to evaluate the sea conditions where you were a participant.  I'll go back and study your post.  I think you answered my question.

Again, thank you for your reply! 

(th)

Last edited by tahanson43206 (2020-01-13 19:43:20)

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#143 2020-01-13 18:13:06

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 17,841

Re: Power to gas - the next step

The inconvience of energy is that if you are the one providing the backbone to get it then you are not looking to anything else other than what did it cost you in hours and funds for the material to make use of.
I found myself discussing solar energy for a town just 10 minutes north of mine and his response was that after getting the quantity panels that should be enough for the current use was that those that have them are not making the projected profit and are more or less break even to losing against the energy that is produced.
This lead to the side bar on heating and while its easy to use oil, or natural gas or propane its the cost that makes it not so attractive and that good old fashion wood is the choice to heat with. Not the more convient pellets which in the end will cost you more.
Its the note that greeen for wood is that its renewable that gets me in that we are burning it quicker than it its grown so its still not going negative for the co2 emissions.
Now onto the natural gas which is supplied by a cost structure that must be able to pay the bills so it can not just get more at a lower price to sell for that same profit as its going to take more funds to deliver it. Of course the cost model for a business that gets its fuel and is a reseller makes out like a bandit even charging just under the higher priced commodity. Its the delivery system that makes a business go out of business in this situation as the supply increases such that cost to the customer drops as they do not have the ability to save it for later.

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#144 2020-01-13 18:53:06

tahanson43206
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Posts: 1,864

Re: Power to gas - the next step

For SpaceNut re #143 ... thank you for your observations, including the report from the neighboring town about a solar panel installation.

For kbd512:

This is an edited version of a reply from Lizard King to kbd512.

Begin Edit with permission:

kbd512 <snip> make good points about the logistical challenges of locating in a difficult environment and then spending a great deal of money on shipping.  I previously suggested the US Gulf Coast as a location as "Shore Effect" produces steady wind power and the location offers easy access to pipelines and especially Louisiana's "Henry Hub" for the distribution of product.  I know you are concerned about hurricanes but the West Texas wind industry has already solved the engineering problem of wind getting "too strong".  The blades feather up to 90 degrees and turn slower and slower including coming to a complete stop in the most extreme wind.  You might also consider Brazil as it will also have shore effect and an equatorial location that is more or less immune to tropical cyclones.  You would have to compete with biomass fuel there (mostly sugar cane derived ethanol) but CH4 is a useful input to lots of chemical processes besides being a fuel.  Your main hurdle as I see it is that natural gas is historically cheap.  That challenges the economics.

Kbd512 <snip> , I should note has a misconception about steel.  Essentially all of the world's recycled steel and a growing amount of primary steel is currently produced without coal in electric arc furnaces.  It is a more cost efficient way, even with the cost of coal falling like a rock.  For specialty steels that require more heat than an EAF can produce metallurgical coal is still preferred but for most applications electrical processing is preferred to thermal processing. 

<snip> ... solar requires more employment than coal to produce a kW.   Wasn't the point of propping up coal to create and protect jobs to begin with?  Solar subsidies would thus be 20 times more effective at the stated goal!  At any rate my beef is not with fossil fuel subsidies but ALL subsidies.  The government needs to get out of the business of picking winners and losers and let the markets do a better job.  That includes ending the Production Tax Credit for renewables.

End of Edited version of reply to kbd512 from Lizard King of Luf.org

(th)

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#145 2020-01-13 19:38:28

tahanson43206
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Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 1,864

Re: Power to gas - the next step

Here is a report of planned progress along the lines being discussed in this topic:

https://www.yahoo.com/finance/news/uaes … 54749.html

(th)

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#146 2020-01-13 23:43:23

kbd512
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Re: Power to gas - the next step

tahanson43206,

First off, I never made any mention of the "Lizard King" in my previous post.  I said "Lazard".  Whether or not "Lazard" and "Lizard King" are the same individual or corporation or other entity, my point about what came out of the "Lazard" corporation still stands.  As previously stated, key metrics in their reporting are utterly lacking in sound economic principles, which should by no means be taken to mean that other reporting isn't equally lacking solid economic arguments.  Lazard's reporting on the matter SpaceNut linked to opines that giving people lots of jobs installing solar panels is a worthwhile objective.  Perry opines that maximizing energy output per unit of input worker productivity is the most important objective.  I happen to take a different view than either.  I want maximize worker productivity right up to but never beyond the point that we start diminishing the quality of life for the workers.  Please not that I also consider not having income from a job as diminishing QoL.  Therefore, we need a sustainable amount of resource input with a sustainable amount of energy (master resource) output.  We can't achieve that when we have a never-ending building project, which is precisely what 100% solar and wind is tantamount to, absent fantastic and heretofore unseen efficiency increases.

One of the reasons I supported the efforts of our own Makani Wind Power corporation (partnered with Google, IIRC) was that their approach uses vastly less resource input to achieve equivalent output to traditional gigantic wind turbines.  It's efficient enough to get the job done at reasonable cost and energy input while consuming comparatively tiny quantities of resources and requiring skilled labor ("careers", not just "jobs") to construct tethered flying wind turbines (semi-autonomous composite aircraft with wind turbines / motor-generators attached to propellers that can be tiny because they spin so fast and achieve high average capacity from flying at altitude- not limited by the physics of stationary wind turbines located on the surface of the Earth).

Scroll to Page 10 of the report linked below, entitled "Crude Steel Production by Process, 2018":

World Steel Association - World Steel in Figures 2019

One of those "traditional" (most definitely not carbon-free, nor even carbon-neutral) methods (not electric) accounts for 70%+ of all steel production.  Even if it was 100% produced by CO2-free electricity, we STILL have another major problem.  The world produced 1.8 billion tons of steel in 2018.  We need almost half a trillion tons of steel just for the towers, never mind the steel-reinforced concrete bases.  Divide 500 billion tons by 2 billion tons of production per year.  The result is 250 years of steel production, with not a scrap of that steel devoted to any other use.  Now, can we please come back to reality?  Nothing, and I do literally mean nothing, changes the math here.  This giant wind turbines to power everything nonsense just doesn't work at a global scale, period.  No amount of ideology or wishful thinking will ever change that.

And now, I'll circle back to the solar jobs silliness.  The coal industry employed 160,000 workers in 2016 and produced 30%+ of our electricity.  The solar industry employed 400,000 jobs during the same year and produced less than 1% of our electricity.  Employing really simple math, we'd need around 12 million people employed in solar to generate equivalent output.  Multiply that by a little over 3 and that's about the number of people we'd have installing / cleaning / making solar panels from now until the end of time.  Even if we eventually have AI-enabled robots to do the work, people will still be servicing the robots.  America's total workforce is about 160 million people and we'd have to devote around 40 million people to do this.  That means 1 in every 4 working age Americans will be doing unskilled manual labor.  I can only speak for myself when I say I'd rather have my children doing something that requires a bit more thinking.  I'm not raising them to endlessly chase their tails.

To answer the "Lizard King's" question regarding continuation of coal production, the point of propping up coal was to not have electricity become 350 times more expensive for equivalent output when coal was readily available for the taking.  That is precisely what will happen if this nonsense is taken to its logical maxim by illogical, ideologically motivated, and sometimes unscrupulous people.  When religious people confront something that disagrees with their religion, they don't simply stop believing their own ideology in the face of overwhelming evidence that directly opposes their ideology.  Instead, they nearly always double down on their ideology and/or destroy whatever or whomever dared to upset their sensibilities.  The US non-educational system has succeeded in infantilizing the people who are supposed to become the great thinkers and problem solvers of tomorrow.  This is just a basic math problem, yet I seriously doubt more than 1 in 50 Americans could do the math and we'd be lucky if 1 in 100 actually accepted the answer instead of ignoring the result or throwing a tantrum because it didn't work out the way they wanted it to.  Where do you suppose we go from there?

Even supposing we were willing to commit the resources to either of those two endeavors, we'll run into the natural resource problem even faster with solar.  With solar, nobody has figured out how to effectively (recapture the raw materials, no matter the cost) and economically (at least some thought given to cost, if only from the standpoint of energy expenditure) recycle them, either.  Some of the elements used in our most widely deployed photovoltaic technologies remain toxic forever, unlike radioactive waste.  None of my responses have even attempted to address the fact that the additional installed capacity to cover the 95th to 99th percentile of intermittency scenarios, with respect to the dramatic variability of solar and wind, requires exponentially greater installed capacity to supply sufficient power to cover those scenarios, versus simply producing equivalent output over an equivalent period of time.

Is the idea behind this notion of global deployment of solar and wind to achieve independence from fossil fuels in a reasonable amount of time and with a reasonable amount of resource expenditure?

If so, then neither will be accomplished with current technology.  We need tech we don't have or production greatly in excess of what's been achieved to date, along with discovery of vast new deposits of natural resources we're already short of.  That sounds like a plan for failure.  Anyway, I'm almost to the point that I just don't care to even try to explain this stuff anymore because it becomes pretty obvious to anyone willing to objectively think about the problem and the problems with the purported solutions.  So, what's the point?  Everyone just ignores whatever they don't want to hear, all the ideas that could actually work require substantial thought process adjustment, and most people would rather die than change.  With all the absurdly intelligent people working on these problems, people who are much smarter than I'll ever be, does anyone truly believe that they hadn't also thought of the "paddle faster" solutions to the problem of going over the climate cliff?  Methinks not, but YMMV.

I don't state any of what I state to upset people, even if it appears to have that effect more often than not.  It's just a cold hard reality check on wishful thinking and nothing else.  In a world where people generally did things that made logical and mathematical sense, we'd progress from using the most diffuse to the most concentrated forms of power that generate the least amount of waste and require the least amount of input of resources per unit of energy output produced.  This isn't a "Ford vs Chevy" type of argument, it's a "works at a global scale vs doesn't work at all at a global scale" argument.  Quantity, quality, an sustainability have profound meaning at a global scale.

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#147 2020-01-14 08:34:32

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 1,864

Re: Power to gas - the next step

For kbd512 re #146

As usual with your posts, there will necessarily be a delay before a reply.

Thanks for the thought you put into it.

(th)

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#148 2020-01-14 08:34:57

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 5,468

Re: Power to gas - the next step

Kbd,

This guy disagrees with you.

https://deepresource.wordpress.com/2017 … -turbines/

He claims with 1.3 million 5 Mw wind turbines you could cover world electricity consumption. Based on what seems a reasonable figure - 2900 tons of steel per turbine - 1 million wind turbines would require 2.9 billion tons or 88% of annual global steel production, he states.  So for 1.3 million turbines you'd need about 3.8 billion tons.

Your claim that "We need almost half a trillion tons of steel just for the towers" needs explaining. 500 billion tons of steel is a lot! so I think you need to explain how you got there. I am doubting your figure.

Even if we quadruple the 3.8 billion tons figure, to allow for a transition from all fossil fuel use across the whole of energy consumption, that still only take you up to 15.2 billion tons, not 500 billion tons.

But of course the name of the game here is renewables. I doubt we'd be going beyond 35% for power generation coming from wind.
The rest will be solar, hydro, geothermal and wave. They will be using far less steel I suspect, in the case of solar, a tiny fraction of what wind requires.








kbd512 wrote:

tahanson43206,

First off, I never made any mention of the "Lizard King" in my previous post.  I said "Lazard".  Whether or not "Lazard" and "Lizard King" are the same individual or corporation or other entity, my point about what came out of the "Lazard" corporation still stands.  As previously stated, key metrics in their reporting are utterly lacking in sound economic principles, which should by no means be taken to mean that other reporting isn't equally lacking solid economic arguments.  Lazard's reporting on the matter SpaceNut linked to opines that giving people lots of jobs installing solar panels is a worthwhile objective.  Perry opines that maximizing energy output per unit of input worker productivity is the most important objective.  I happen to take a different view than either.  I want maximize worker productivity right up to but never beyond the point that we start diminishing the quality of life for the workers.  Please not that I also consider not having income from a job as diminishing QoL.  Therefore, we need a sustainable amount of resource input with a sustainable amount of energy (master resource) output.  We can't achieve that when we have a never-ending building project, which is precisely what 100% solar and wind is tantamount to, absent fantastic and heretofore unseen efficiency increases.

One of the reasons I supported the efforts of our own Makani Wind Power corporation (partnered with Google, IIRC) was that their approach uses vastly less resource input to achieve equivalent output to traditional gigantic wind turbines.  It's efficient enough to get the job done at reasonable cost and energy input while consuming comparatively tiny quantities of resources and requiring skilled labor ("careers", not just "jobs") to construct tethered flying wind turbines (semi-autonomous composite aircraft with wind turbines / motor-generators attached to propellers that can be tiny because they spin so fast and achieve high average capacity from flying at altitude- not limited by the physics of stationary wind turbines located on the surface of the Earth).

Scroll to Page 10 of the report linked below, entitled "Crude Steel Production by Process, 2018":

World Steel Association - World Steel in Figures 2019

One of those "traditional" (most definitely not carbon-free, nor even carbon-neutral) methods (not electric) accounts for 70%+ of all steel production.  Even if it was 100% produced by CO2-free electricity, we STILL have another major problem.  The world produced 1.8 billion tons of steel in 2018.  We need almost half a trillion tons of steel just for the towers, never mind the steel-reinforced concrete bases.  Divide 500 billion tons by 2 billion tons of production per year.  The result is 250 years of steel production, with not a scrap of that steel devoted to any other use.  Now, can we please come back to reality?  Nothing, and I do literally mean nothing, changes the math here.  This giant wind turbines to power everything nonsense just doesn't work at a global scale, period.  No amount of ideology or wishful thinking will ever change that.

And now, I'll circle back to the solar jobs silliness.  The coal industry employed 160,000 workers in 2016 and produced 30%+ of our electricity.  The solar industry employed 400,000 jobs during the same year and produced less than 1% of our electricity.  Employing really simple math, we'd need around 12 million people employed in solar to generate equivalent output.  Multiply that by a little over 3 and that's about the number of people we'd have installing / cleaning / making solar panels from now until the end of time.  Even if we eventually have AI-enabled robots to do the work, people will still be servicing the robots.  America's total workforce is about 160 million people and we'd have to devote around 40 million people to do this.  That means 1 in every 4 working age Americans will be doing unskilled manual labor.  I can only speak for myself when I say I'd rather have my children doing something that requires a bit more thinking.  I'm not raising them to endlessly chase their tails.

To answer the "Lizard King's" question regarding continuation of coal production, the point of propping up coal was to not have electricity become 350 times more expensive for equivalent output when coal was readily available for the taking.  That is precisely what will happen if this nonsense is taken to its logical maxim by illogical, ideologically motivated, and sometimes unscrupulous people.  When religious people confront something that disagrees with their religion, they don't simply stop believing their own ideology in the face of overwhelming evidence that directly opposes their ideology.  Instead, they nearly always double down on their ideology and/or destroy whatever or whomever dared to upset their sensibilities.  The US non-educational system has succeeded in infantilizing the people who are supposed to become the great thinkers and problem solvers of tomorrow.  This is just a basic math problem, yet I seriously doubt more than 1 in 50 Americans could do the math and we'd be lucky if 1 in 100 actually accepted the answer instead of ignoring the result or throwing a tantrum because it didn't work out the way they wanted it to.  Where do you suppose we go from there?

Even supposing we were willing to commit the resources to either of those two endeavors, we'll run into the natural resource problem even faster with solar.  With solar, nobody has figured out how to effectively (recapture the raw materials, no matter the cost) and economically (at least some thought given to cost, if only from the standpoint of energy expenditure) recycle them, either.  Some of the elements used in our most widely deployed photovoltaic technologies remain toxic forever, unlike radioactive waste.  None of my responses have even attempted to address the fact that the additional installed capacity to cover the 95th to 99th percentile of intermittency scenarios, with respect to the dramatic variability of solar and wind, requires exponentially greater installed capacity to supply sufficient power to cover those scenarios, versus simply producing equivalent output over an equivalent period of time.

Is the idea behind this notion of global deployment of solar and wind to achieve independence from fossil fuels in a reasonable amount of time and with a reasonable amount of resource expenditure?

If so, then neither will be accomplished with current technology.  We need tech we don't have or production greatly in excess of what's been achieved to date, along with discovery of vast new deposits of natural resources we're already short of.  That sounds like a plan for failure.  Anyway, I'm almost to the point that I just don't care to even try to explain this stuff anymore because it becomes pretty obvious to anyone willing to objectively think about the problem and the problems with the purported solutions.  So, what's the point?  Everyone just ignores whatever they don't want to hear, all the ideas that could actually work require substantial thought process adjustment, and most people would rather die than change.  With all the absurdly intelligent people working on these problems, people who are much smarter than I'll ever be, does anyone truly believe that they hadn't also thought of the "paddle faster" solutions to the problem of going over the climate cliff?  Methinks not, but YMMV.

I don't state any of what I state to upset people, even if it appears to have that effect more often than not.  It's just a cold hard reality check on wishful thinking and nothing else.  In a world where people generally did things that made logical and mathematical sense, we'd progress from using the most diffuse to the most concentrated forms of power that generate the least amount of waste and require the least amount of input of resources per unit of energy output produced.  This isn't a "Ford vs Chevy" type of argument, it's a "works at a global scale vs doesn't work at all at a global scale" argument.  Quantity, quality, an sustainability have profound meaning at a global scale.


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#149 2020-01-14 10:03:25

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 1,864

Re: Power to gas - the next step

For Louis re #148

Impressive find! Thanks!  That is MOST reassuring! 

I'm also impressed by how rapidly you read to the essence of kdb512's argument.

It will take me a while longer.

My goal here is to try to work with the outline kbd512 provided, to see if I can find a way to work with it.  I had not anticipated your discovery.

(th)

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#150 2020-01-14 11:36:34

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 1,864

Re: Power to gas - the next step

For Louis re #148

Inspired by your post, and by an article in today's local paper as well, I decided to write to a major manufacturer of wind turbines.

I am not expecting a reply.  Often company policy is NOT to acknowledge unsolicited proposals.  However, to the extent the message circulates within the corporation, it may have a beneficial effect.

Hello,

Thank you for considering this inquiry.

I am leading a discussion of a concept to make methane using wind energy.

The wrinkle that I am hoping you will find interesting is the proposal to place the facility in International waters around Antarctica.

The discussion is going on at newmars.com/forums.

I am posting using the ID tahanson43206

This is an opportunity for someone with appropriate qualifications to shape the discussion.

The goal would be to supply all energy needs of Earth within 10 years.

Of course the goal will not be met, but it is easy to understand, and any progress achieved will be welcome.

The facility I am imagining would operate as a free floating system, able to survive and operate at full power for 30 years at minimum.

Inputs would be sea water and atmosphere, including fresh water from rain for input to chemical processes.

Outputs would be any molecules or atoms found in sea water that would have economic value, as well as hydrogen, oxygen, carbon and various useful combinations of hydrogen and carbon that would have economic value.

Shipment of product to onshore facilities would be by the most economic means, certainly including sailing ships, since there is no need to hurry.

Hydrogen can be shipped in inflatable systems which can be deflated on shore, and returned to facilities by sea.

The systems need to be operating within the context of United Nations rules which are protected and enforced by the member states.

Every nation would be expected to participate in the project, and portions of the waters around Antarctica would be allocated in the way geosynchronous orbit slots are allocated today, with adjustments as needed due to the expected participation of all nations.

Thank you again for your consideration of this inquiry.

tahanson43206

(th)

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