Monday, February 22, 2010

Google Jackson the Lightning Thief

My kids saw Percy Jackson and The Olympians: The Lightning Thief over the weekend, while my wonderful wife gave me a Sunday afternoon pass which I spent cocooned in a really fascinating book.

Anyway, back to the post...

Entergy's worst nightmare may be unfolding. First this:

It’s Official: Google Can Sell Power Like a Utility


Editilla~New Orleans Ladder said...

Imagine an end to grid-wide power black-outs! Everyone has their own power plant --which can float too!

Imagine this power box costing around $3000 eventually, cheaper than the electric car it may very well power.

Imagine taking a few of these little Bloom boxes camping.

Imagine trains with these things.
Imagine not having to fight wars over basic energy needs.
Imagine there's no heaven...
I'm tollin'ya, it's easy if you try.

Here's to the Bloom Box!

Editilla~New Orleans Ladder said...

Oh and btw, one of my favorite books is "Prometheus Rising" by Robert Anton Wilson.
Information is Fire. Turn your back on it and all hell breaks loose.
They nailed his ass to the mountain because he didn't just give it to us, but showed us how to make fire. Now humans could dance all night long.
Information is the negative logarithm of entropy, how much we can pass down the line before the feedback generates its own heat thus degrading the signal.

Clay said...

Fuel cells that have used natural gas as the hydrogen source have been done, but always at tremendous cost. One of the research avenues that's been pursued for a while was "selective deposition." Basically, just put the expensive platinum where the anode will be the most active. Theoretically, if you get away with a small enough layer that's coated in just the right way, you could build them economically.

There's a lot of data that I'd like to see, but it's not a violation of the second law of thermodynamics (like most of these "magic box" pieces of crap).

One thing: they get major demerits for being so secretive. Sure they have Google, but what they really need is transparency, so we can know if it's physically possible, economically possible or just smoke and mirrors.

Dambala said...

You mean the first law of thermodynamics huh?

I don't think the fuel cell scenario is violating it anymore than a solar cell's just increasing the efficiency of energy extraction from the catalyst exponentially, in the case natural gas. I don't see how it's violating the laws of physics, but my real concern is the lifespan of the fuel cells vis-a-vis cost.

What would be really interesting is if you could power the cells with hydrogen per a solar based electrolysis process. I have no idea if the hydrogen would produce more efficiency than the propane, but think about that as a closed system. Using solar to create hydrogen to in turn power the fuel cells and create electricity. That would be a true autonomous power source which could potentially increase solar output exponentially. It sounds like pretzel logic and it may be, but it's got my mind whirring nonetheless.

One company which I have been following for a really long time still has me intrigued:

Essentially this guy figured out that instead of splitting or fusing an atom in order to tap release it's energy, they could basically force (the input energy) the electron to orbit closer to the neutron which...apparently, this is their claim...radiates tremendous amounts of energy greatly exceeding the input energy. At cursory glance that does seem to violate the 1st law to me, but I'm no physicist and these cats claim it's legit. They've been around since 2003, so there must be something to it.


The first thing I thought about with the Bloom Box was powering the new High Speed Rail initiative via Louisiana natural gas pumped into a BloomBox network. Wouldn't that be something?

Dambala said...

The atom in the Blacklight process also being Hydrogen.

Clay said...

It's the second law of thermodynamics that's usually phased as outlawing perpetual motion machines.

The first and second law of thermodynamics are about the most depressing science topics in school, when you sit down to think.

Anonymous said...

BLP is a notorious shuck. If they really had what they claim to have, they'd be selling units by the billions. Check out their wiki - none of their results have been independently reproduced and all of their patents have been rejected / withdrawn.

Indeed they have been around since 2003. At one point, Enron was once the #1 company in the Fortune 500 and had a larger market cap than GE. Be careful reading too much into business results.