Hybrid Car – More Fun with Less Gas

A "steam" producing solar elecric panel

register ::  Login Password  :: Lost Password?
Posted by Steven on December 29, 2004, 9:49 pm
 
Back during the summer, it got hot enough for my solar hot water panels
to generate steam. I had the pop-off valve blow off the excess pressure.
  This got me thinking of a little bit cheaper way to produce
electricity with solar energy.  The idea is to spin a small turbine
generator with "steam" produced by a solar panel.

I see a few problems that must be overcome for this to work, but they do
not seem to be all that hard to work out.  First, the solar collector,
and all the associated hardware will need to be able to handle
substancial pressure, about 100 PSI or so.  That should not be too hard
with ordinary plumbing products, that are able to withstand 150PSI or
even more.  The next issue, is that a substance needs to be found that
has a boiling point lower than water, but higher than ambient tempratur.
  A boiling point of around 120F-140F degrees or so would probably do
perfect. Naybe some type of alcohol substance. I will then need to come
up with a small steam turbine or recipocating engine to drive the
generator.

Now, the cycle would begin at the solar panel, with the substance
getting  boiled on a nice sunny day.  The pressurized vapor would then
spin the generator and make electricity.  After the vapor has expanded,
it would need to be condensed.  This could be done many ways.  By using
the vapor to heat the home during the wintertime, or by discharging the
waste heat into the ground during the summer, or we may even be able to
condense the vapor into the ambient air if it is not too hot outside.

The economies of scale would seem to come into play on this.  A small
system would probably be rather expensive, but a system that makes a
couple thousand watts or more could possibly be significantly cheaper
than a photovoltiac system.  Yes, there would be maintaince issues
because there are moving parts and fluids, but the savings in inital
manufacture could more than pay back the service cost of keeping it going.


Posted by Ecnerwal on December 29, 2004, 10:09 pm
 


They do. Which is why people wo are already doing this, on a small
scale, use piston type steam engines, which work better at a small scale
than turbines do. Has been going on for some years, as I recall, and
compared favorably with PV for $ per watt (more so if there was also a
heating use). Of course, it is also not suitable for people who seek to
do no maintenance on their system...

--
Cats, Coffee, Chocolate...vices to live by

Posted by andre_54005 on December 29, 2004, 10:24 pm
 Steven wrote:
<<  snip  >>

tempratur.

<<  snip  >>

Everything from propane to mercury has been tried.  Exept in a very few
special cases they end up back with water.  Everything else that works
is very expensive and/or highly toxic.

Andre'


Posted by Arnold Walker on December 30, 2004, 9:50 pm
 Mercury is a 30's era trick to get hotter than water generated steam.And
were mighty expensive since you were building two "steam" plants. Mercury in
the high temp.Then water in the low range.

----== Posted via Newsfeeds.Com - Unlimited-Uncensored-Secure Usenet News==----
http://www.newsfeeds.com  The #1 Newsgroup Service in the World! >100,000
Newsgroups
---= East/West-Coast Server Farms - Total Privacy via Encryption =---

Posted by andre_54005 on December 29, 2004, 10:24 pm
 Steven wrote:
<<  snip  >>

tempratur.

<<  snip  >>

Everything from propane to mercury has been tried.  Exept in a very few
special cases they end up back with water.  Everything else that works
is very expensive and/or highly toxic.

Andre'


This Thread
Bookmark this thread:
 
 
 
 
 
 
  •  
  • Subject
  • Author
  • Date
please rate this thread