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2013industrialefficiencyjudges 2013industrialefficiencyjudges

Jul 10, 2013
05:23

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Congratulations, your proposal has been named a finalist in the Climate CoLab Waste management contest. You have until July 20th to edit your proposal. The Judges suggest that you focus your edits on the topics listed below. This is an intriguing idea that could have important implications for improving the efficiency of power generation, and the team is commended for its innovative idea. Specific suggestions for improvement: - First, the team should more explicitly describe the current proof of concept so the judges can better ascertain how the prototype works, if its results are repeatable and scalable, etc. In other words, what is the current state of the technology and what specific advancements would be targeted if this project were to be funded by an investor? - Second, it should be possible to put some rough numbers on the energy and emissions savings through readily available data. For example, EPA and DOE databases exist on U.S. power plants and their heat rates. The team should be able to estimate the percentage improvement attainable from reducing magnetic forces and apply this percentage improvement to the EPA/DOE data for an order of magnitude estimate. - Third, and similarly, please provide preliminary cost estimates, even if rough. In addition, the presentation was disjointed, jumping back and forth between different topics, such as cement, hydro power, desalination, geoengineering, gasification of waste. It would be better to focus on the technology and how it improves the efficiency of motors and what contribution this improvement would make in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. It would also be helpful to include a discussion of other research and engineering efforts in this realm and why the current proposal is superior.

Jimmy Johnston

Jul 11, 2013
05:08

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Just to enable me to consider your response, could I ask a question ? The proof-of-concept has a more explicit description in the Electric Power Sector competition, entitled "Re-use a Generator's Output to Magnetically Assist It's Turbine". I was waiting to see if that proposal made it through, but are you suggesting that I repeat specifics within the industrial efficiency proposal ?

Rob Laubacher

Jul 11, 2013
10:10

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Jimmy, Each contest is judges separately, so in making your edits, you will want to make your proposal read as a stand-alone document that can be fully understood by the judges, who will be looking only at that proposal and not at your proposals in other contests. Best, RL For the Climate CoLab team

2013industrialefficiencyjudges 2013industrialefficiencyjudges

Jul 29, 2013
02:14

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The proposal starts with the premise that generators and electric motors are inefficient, but the 1 GW generators of the 1970's had efficiencies of 99% (electrical output divided by mechanical input). There is not a lot of headroom there. And even smaller machines have efficiencies in the 90% range. The statement "a large proportion of the input energy expended to generate electrical current is required merely to overcome the magnetic interaction between a generator’s rotor and stator" may be referring to the magnetizing ("reactive") power that does not directly manifest itself in real power. There may be some confusion over plant input energy vs. generator shaft input energy. The proposal reads: "Specifically, there are various means of increasing efficiency in conventional plant. In particular, CCGT plants have a thermal efficiency of around 60%. Operators of these plants are therefore effectively wasting, in efficiency terms, 40% of the input energy. Assuming a mid-point efficiency increment due to counter torque compensation of 60%, then 60% x 40% = 24% which when added to the current 60% efficiency is an up-rating to 84%." But the 40% represents a thermodynamic loss of the (cascaded) heat engines, and NOT generator efficiency. In other words, the quoted section above confuses fuel input to the plant with shaft power input to the generator. All but a small fraction of the 40% is waste heat from the turbines. The description of the experiment was somewhat difficult to follow, but it is interesting to note that there are no experimental results given, only sketches. There appears to be some discussion of generation of DC (or pulses adding up to DC), but that can’t be done without a rectifier. We do, every once in a while, see attempts to go directly to DC, without any semiconductors, and it is always difficult. Also, if the proposed approach were technically feasible, a question left unaddressed is whether firms would purchase the unit or retrofit for the costs proposed or some slightly reduced cost.

Jimmy Johnston

Jul 30, 2013
04:55

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I have separated the individual segments of the comment and replied to them... you are >>. I am >>>. >> The proposal starts with the premise that generators and electric motors are inefficient, but the 1 GW generators of the 1970's had efficiencies of 99% (electrical output divided by mechanical input). There is not a lot of headroom there. And even smaller machines have efficiencies in the 90% range. >>> There Is no premise, indeed the invitation by an associate of ClimateColab to submit the proposal was made after stating that the principles did not seek to suggest that the electrical generator was inefficient. Size is the key. The larger the generator the higher the efficiency but the losses due to the necessity to provide higher pressure and heat are greater. The grant of the UK patent covering this was acquired by my contacting the patent assessor personally to state precisely the opposite to what is implied here. I insisted on a written statement to retract his implication and I got it. Anyone who has read the transcript presented to ClimateColab would not have stated what is suggested here. >> The statement "a large proportion of the input energy expended to generate electrical current is required merely to overcome the magnetic interaction between a generator’s rotor and stator" may be referring to the magnetizing ("reactive") power that does not directly manifest itself in real power. >>> Anyone with a basic training in electrical power production knows that reactive power is that power resulting from the supply of power to an electrical load that causes an angular shift in the relationship between the supplied voltage and current. This has nothing to do with the magnetic effect that occurs between the stator and the rotor at the time of power production. P = VI cos α where if cos α is at unity the actual power is VI. Where the angle increases the apparent power (the hypotenuse) increases due to the vertical (the reactive component) increasing. >> There may be some confusion over plant input energy vs. generator shaft input energy. The proposal reads: "Specifically, there are various means of increasing efficiency in conventional plant. In particular, CCGT plants have a thermal efficiency of around 60%. Operators of these plants are therefore effectively wasting, in efficiency terms, 40% of the input energy. Assuming a mid-point efficiency increment due to counter torque compensation of 60%, then 60% x 40% = 24% which when added to the current 60% efficiency is an up-rating to 84%." But the 40% represents a thermodynamic loss of the (cascaded) heat engines, and NOT generator efficiency. In other words, the quoted section above confuses fuel input to the plant with shaft power input to the generator. All but a small fraction of the 40% is waste heat from the turbines. >>> Confusion there might be, but not of mine. The 40% represents a heat loss but that is due to the turbines having to work overtime to overcome the braking effect. There is therefore no confusion (who am I telling this to ?) ; reducing the work reduces the heat loss which reduces the input energy required to accomplish the work. I agree, THIS IS NOTHING TO DO WITH GENERATOR EFFICIENCY ! >> The description of the experiment was somewhat difficult to follow, but it is interesting to note that there are no experimental results given, only sketches. >>> First, this is not an experiment. It is the proof, as in a proof of concept (Joe Romm would have used a “Duh!”), I don’t mean to be nasty, I’m just surprised I have to explain this. If it is difficult to follow, then maybe the assessor is not electrically orientated. I posted a proposal in the Electricity Production competition which had some added detail but about which I have heard absolutely nothing. Not even to say I’d failed. I wonder which version is being assessed. Not only is there a test summary there are also no “sketches”, whatever they might be. >> There appears to be some discussion of generation of DC (or pulses adding up to DC), but that can’t be done without a rectifier. We do, every once in a while, see attempts to go directly to DC, without any semiconductors, and it is always difficult. >>> This is very confusing ; the whole project revolves around the use of a full wave rectifier which, if the assessor had even glanced at what I call a composite diagram, is shown in full glory (maybe not in glorious “Technicolor”) as the required article to accomplish what I call Counter Torque Compensation. >> Also, if the proposed approach were technically feasible, a question left unaddressed is whether firms would purchase the unit or retrofit for the costs proposed or some slightly reduced cost. >>> It is at this stage that, having studied the calibre of the judges who are supposed to be judging the entries, that I start to become nervous. The first and second are presumably highly respected individuals who, I can only presume at this time, would similarly be nervous to be associated with the quality of the assessment that has occurred here. I still do not understand what this last statement actually means. Please clarify every statement so I can sleep easy. Thank-you and Regards Jim

Jimmy Johnston

Sep 7, 2013
11:13

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This is the response from one of the main organisers of Climate Colab. Whoever didn't understand received a response from someone else who patently didn't understand. I hope the reader understands ! b proposal laubacher 07/31/13 09:58 PM Hi Jimmy, The judges in the Industrial efficiency contest found your proposal intriguing, but they did not have the expertise required to assess it and so asked for reviews from two outside experts. One was an experienced researcher at a U.S. government lab and the other a senior faculty member at a leading American university. The comment posted from the Judges on your proposal is based mostly on the reviews by the two outside experts; the final remark was by one of the regular contest Judges. The proposal as it appeared on the CoLab site elicited the comments above from two senior experts in the field. I am not an electrical engineer and so cannot assess the validity of what they said; perhaps they are too wedded to conventional thinking and cannot see the advance represented by your ideas. But one way to view their comment is as a signal of the likely response of established experts in the field, and perhaps their response can serve as a guide for anticipating potential future objections, which could allow you to include proactive rejoinders to them in your write-up. While I'm not an engineer, for the past two decades, I have worked as a strategy consultant and researcher at MIT’s Sloan School of Management. The Judges’ final remark, noting that the proposal did not address economic aspects of the technology, seemed apt to me. I have found that several inventors who submitted technology ideas to the Climate CoLab also had gaps in their proposals when it came to providing analysis of the business aspects of their envisioned innovation. In the future, perhaps you might find someone who has experience with start-up ventures to advise you in this domain. We appreciate your contributions to the Climate CoLab and hope you will not be discouraged but instead will continue to try to test your ideas in the forum. Best, Robert Laubacher For the Climate CoLab community

Jimmy Johnston

Oct 7, 2013
05:03

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As an analyst, what transpired with my Industrial Efficiency entry may warrant analysis. When the initial notification of finalist status was made everything looked good and the comments supported that. It was suggested that I include figures based on EPA / DOE tables relating to how much emissions could be reduced ; after that the entry was scratched. I actually entered 5 proposals, wrongly assuming that the judges would appraise them as a group. I was made aware subsequently that each proposal needed to stand alone. The 5 proposals taken as a group would, if considered as complementary, explain how it might be that, by increasing the end-to-end process of generating electrical power, all parties, including the oil and gas industries, might prosper at the same time as starting to clean up the environment. If it was the case that the sidelining of the Industrial Efficiency proposal was as a result of the suggestion that raw material consumption would be reduced, then a re-appraisal of all 5 proposals is necessary. I am suggesting that raw material consumption would increase (it can do no other) by producing a clean energy-storage medium, at the same time as benefitting the environment. Such a solution is, I believe, unique.

Jimmy Johnston

Oct 30, 2013
04:42

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I’m adding this comment because I believe someone is at least reading what I had to say in the Colab competition and I have had another idea as to why my stuff works. Before I explain in more detail… I am aware of the copying to the collective commons area cognosis and terms and conditions. I am also aware of the recent addition of the CO2 scrubbing entry. This is good for several reasons. In the UK I have tried for several years to get some help in forwarding what I found back in 2009. It would be very good for the UK but I haven’t even been able to demonstrate the P.O.C. to people working even a few miles away. I know the reasons but it is disappointing anyway. No-one listens to the little man in the corner. If I can keep up with world events, then someone at MIT certainly can. You will know that there are now TWO major events, one in slow motion (CC) and the other unfolding rapidly (affecting directly western Canada and the US, google starfish, goo, depletion of fish stocks etc etc). In any case, it is very likely (in my opinion) that any clean-up, if possible, will require massive power supplies. In an attempt to get this over to Japan, I replied to an invitation to the PRESCO (Pacific Rim environmental conference) and got a reply. I was invited to send a YouTube video which I did but it was a botched effort because I could hardly speak (dentistry on-going) and it was my first introduction to using a video camera. I also had only 2 days. Useless, but the content was accurate. Ok, first my progress. I’ve got a mock-up of a compensator designed to fit directly to an off-the-shelf single phase generator. Those parts required to be stainless steel I’ve mapped out in ply. My son is calling in some favours for the shaft connection and stainless replacements and they are in the post to me as I type. I will add an image of that to the area that you already know in a few days. I will also include an image of the graph which I made last May from which the 46% reduction in induction braking was evident. I’ve had another idea as to why this thing works… We are talking mechanical forces produced by magnetic repulsion, creating pulses of charged particles within a virtually zero permeability substance i.e. air. We can’t see what is going on so certain assumptions have to be made. I suspected cloud compression and subsequent decompression but I now suspect it could be collective Lorentz Forces (in reverse in the P.O.C, affecting the only transitive component i.e. the compensator flux source). Whatever the mechanism, I would ask that what I’ve explained be considered as complimentary to NASA’s FES mechanics in terms of the reduction in friction and air turbulence. I believe there is a good chance that the electrical power requirements just might be catered for but that work to prove its worth should begin as soon as possible. I really do hope that someone out there agrees. Kind Regards Jim

Jimmy Johnston

Nov 1, 2013
01:37

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Ok, I’ve posted 2 more images over to Bluehost. The first is rather more than just the mock-up ; I’ve included the generator to be compensated on the right (I6) showing the rotor and the stator separated together with a replacement front-end on which will mounted a new front bearing. What I call an “inelegant” compensator (what I can do in my limited situation) is shown to the right in its partial state. Recap that the ply parts will be replaced with stainless steel. Also note that the compensator coils, of which there are 2, have a diameter which matches the width of the generator shoe, that being the 90° equivalent to the internal diameter of the stator. These are the P2 and P4 coils of the P.O.C. The flux per unit area has been calculated to match that of the generator. The compensator rotor will also be stainless and, in order to reduce initial costs, what would have been a coil will be replaced by permanent magnets. As testing progresses, this can change. The rotor is shown in the first 90% position, emulating the proof-of-concept. The second image illustrates the effect on the P.O.C of the applied compensation, the transition of the speed from 134 to 108 being the effect of the braking due to induction and the transition to 120 from 108 being the effect of what is only half the possible compensation applied.

Jimmy Johnston

Jan 28, 2014
04:29

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I indicated some time ago that I was building a prototype based on the proof-of-concept. That is now complete and I have begun testing. What might be interesting to anyone reading this is what I’ve found in the first test. The small 2 stroke petrol generator I’ve modified has a pneumatic governor which attempts to keep the generator speed constant. During the test the governor cut the fuel. Before this, the speed increased dramatically. So did the volts which caused the 650W halogen loads to shine brighter than they did when connected to the mains. I am not a mechanical engineer and I made the mistake of joining the generator shaft to the compensator with a bellows coupler which was deficient in Nm. The coupler was damaged and I’m in the process of replacing it but the contortions can be plainly seen to happen at the point where the maximum force is applied. It seems that more compensation is being applied than necessary. This could be that I had to assume a value for the current flowing in the generator rotor. The calculations I did were based upon NI but these are dependent on the reluctance of the medium in which the magnetic flux is flowing. For the rotor I calculated the flux density at 0.9377 Tesla. The compensator rotor is a permanent magnet and given the magnetic circuit length and the known surface flux of 1.25 Webers/square metre I calculated to effective flux density to be 0.5024 Tesla, which is half that of the generator rotor. I therefore used two NIB magnets stacked. The point is that I believe I overestimated the generator current a 1A ; it is probably more approaching 0.5A which means the compensation flux is twice what it should be. But, it worked i.e. it appeared that I could not only compensate but could also enhance the effect. I wonder if we could be looking at “magnetically enhanced power generation” which could (as I had hoped several years ago) encroach upon the losses due to friction (the reader might remember that I suggested NASA’s FES but this might be an enhancement ?). Testing ongoing…

Jimmy Johnston

Sep 18, 2014
02:36

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This is obviously late in the day, but at the 17th September 2014 the generator / compensator combination is in test. I have maintained a log on twitter, under the name of "withthechange". All the build / problem areas are documented, as is a complete overview of the theory of the device. The reader may be aware of other circumstances on-going which would necessitate a vast improvement in generation efficiency, specifically in the area of environmental cleanup. I have received very little feedback here at home, but the reader might appreciate that a technology such as this could be considered as severely disruptive in terms of changing established ideas and interfering with manufacturing / planning etc. Up to now, the generator prototype has behaved precisely as the proof-of-concept. At the time of writing I am reducing the compensation gap and observing the effect on the time the generator runs. As stated previously, once I have this right I will run 2 generators side-by-side in order to demonstrate that the compensated version runs for longer. Things look good. Good day/night. JtT.

Jimmy Johnston

Sep 18, 2014
05:20

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One more thing. The proof-of-concept was unable to prove that as the load increased the compensation increased. There would still be the requirement to cool the windings, but the prime mover losses would be reduced. This is a secondary test i.e. first the run-time of the generator is increased, but, secondarily, as the load is increased the input effort remains constant, effectively increasing the efficiency further. I'll tweet the result of my latest testing as I progress. JtT (Jim the Twitter). Sleep well.
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