Scientist Burns Water

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by TimJim, Sep 11, 2007.

  1. TimJim macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    Link
     
  2. psychofreak Retired

    psychofreak

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    #2
    Could be awesome...hopefully we'll get some info sooner rather than later/never...
     
  3. the vj macrumors 6502a

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    I am glad he made the discovery and not me. If I see water burning I would say: oh... cool, another way to boild water and I am sure I am the last one to find out. And continue doing something else.

    I hope that works for something really. Imagine tanks of salty water, not flamable. A gift from the gods.
     
  4. ErikCLDR macrumors 68000

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    Yay I can't wait for tree huggers of the future protesting global drying.
     
  5. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor

    WildCowboy

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    Well he's going to have to figure out how to make it produce more energy than he puts in. I think it'll be a while.
     
  6. gauchogolfer macrumors 603

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    #6
    ^^ That's exactly the problem with most of these alternative energy solutions, finding out how to make it efficient enough to be viable.
     
  7. MacNut macrumors Core

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    #7
    If your car is heating over 3,000 degrees you might have problems.
     
  8. gauchogolfer macrumors 603

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    #8
    How hot do you think it gets inside your engine's combustion area?
     
  9. MacNut macrumors Core

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    #9
    The sarcastic remark was that if my cars water temp gets over 250 I have problems. I think 3,000 would be a little much.:p:rolleyes:
     
  10. MrSmith macrumors 68040

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    Now if someone found a way to ignite the entire sea, that would be awesome.
     
  11. Genghis Khan macrumors 65816

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    #11
    *bangs head against wall*

    you do realise that they won't combust the water in a plastic tank?




    but surely this technology now could be used as a terrorist weapon?

    imagine a nuclear powered radio wave emitter next to a salt water reservoir (or a fresh one with salt tablets in it) and a cigarette lighter

    *watches CIA frantically search through nation's list of reservoir's and swimming pools*
     
  12. Moof1904 macrumors 65816

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    #12
    Okay, here's what I don't understand

    I'm not an expert at this, so bear with me.

    This subject has been talked about before on other threads and someone made the same point as a previous poster: that the process must be made to produce more energy than is put into it or it won't be viable.

    On the surface that sounds reasonable, but I must ask, are there any energy processes out there that produce more energy than we put in? I don't think there are. If so, that would be akin to a perpetual motion machine. If one factors in the cost of drilling, processing, transporting, and then burning gasoline, far less energy is produced than is spent producing the gasoline and getting it to the point where it's burned in the car's engine. Whether speaking of gasoline or natural gas or coal, it seems that they all return less than 100% of the energy spent to produce the energy source.

    It seems that all this process needs to do is produce an energy return that's commensurate with the efficiencies of other energy sources and it's a viable alternative.

    If this is horribly wrong, please point out the flaws in my understanding.
     
  13. Abstract macrumors Penryn

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    #13
    Humans have lots of water inside....and lots of salts.......:eek:
     
  14. balamw Moderator

    balamw

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    #14
    Yeah, but we burn already :p Soylent green fuel. It's made of people.

    Moof1904, fossil fuels are a net positive in Energy today 'cause we are releasing the energy that was put into these fuels millions of years ago when the sun shone on the plants and animals that decayed into the coal and oil we pull out of the ground. The production & distribution cost of a gallon of gas is already factored into its price and it definitely costs less to pull it out of the ground than the energy we get out of it. Maybe this would help?

    http://www.eia.doe.gov/bookshelf/brochures/gasolinepricesprimer/eia1_2005primerM.html

    B
     
  15. Eric5h5 macrumors 68020

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    Sure there are. If there weren't, civilization could never have existed. ;) If you gather up a bunch of dead branches and build a fire, you get a lot more energy out of it than you put in. It's nothing like perpetual motion...the potential energy is already there; it doesn't come from nowhere (mostly it comes from the sun, ultimately). It's just a matter of releasing it, and yes, with fossil fuels you do get more out of them than you put in by transporting etc.; otherwise they would be useless.

    --Eric
     
  16. Moof1904 macrumors 65816

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  17. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

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    #17
    But there is a big difference.

    When carbon is organized into trees, it is in a higher potential energy state (this is done by solar power, otherwise known as photosynthesis). When it is reacted with oxygen (burning), it reorganizes into a lower energy state (carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide). The difference between the 2 energy states is released as heat, which we can harness for mechanical or electric power or roast marshmallows on.

    But water (H2O) is already at a very stable, low energy state. In order to break the O - H bond requires a fair bit of energy (radio waves in this case). The Hydrogen that is released can then be burned, releasing that energy where it reacts with Oxygen to form... H2O -- water. Oops. There's the rub.

    Do you see the difference? If the starting point and end point are the same, it CANNOT produce net usable energy. It's like saying: "It's uphill 2 miles to the hilltop. I can get all kinds of energy out of coasting back down the hill to the place I started" It ignores that you have to put at least as much energy in to trudge up the hill, as you will gain coming down.

    Cracking water for hydrogen never, ever creates energy. All it does is store some of the energy you expend cracking it, in the hydrogen, for later release.
     
  18. Abstract macrumors Penryn

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    #18
    As a physicist, I'm going to have to pretend to understand what CanadaRAM is talking about and agree with him.


    I mean....."Yes, I agree with him. The amount of energy required to free a hydrogen is never going to result in a net positive release of energy."

    *cough*
     
  19. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

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    #19

    Might want to correct you there on the gas. We get more engergy (a lot more engery) out of a gallon of gas than it cost to get it from drilling all the way to in the car. Just the problem with it is that it comes from a fossil fuel so their is a very limited supply of it.

    That is the problem with oil is we really have not found anything that has a good of a rate of return for things like cars.
     
  20. balamw Moderator

    balamw

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    #20
    Agreed 100%, but the starting point and end points aren't exactly the same here. We have H2O + salt + RF -> H2 -> H2O vapor (no salt) + energy(?)

    I'm as skeptical as you are that this can ultimately be useful, but there may (or not) be some small amount of energy stored in the dissolution of a salt in a solvent depending on the specifics. e.g. http://www.chem.ox.ac.uk/vrchemistry/energy/Page_25.htm

    So the biggest issue here is how much RF needs to be put in vs. the energy out from removing the salt from the water.

    Of course this seems far too good to be true since the outputs are "free" energy and clean water. What more could you ask for? A pony? Powerbook G5? :p

    It's cold fusion all over again.

    B
     
  21. mrsollars macrumors regular

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  22. Counterfit macrumors G3

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    Nuclear powered? Why not just get the reactor to melt down and release all sorts of crap into the air and/or water? :p
     
  23. QuarterSwede macrumors G3

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    #23
    I'm wondering why no one has touched on the use for mass producing Hydrogen? Would this method produce enough fast enough to meet the demand?
     
  24. balamw Moderator

    balamw

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    #24
    No. It's a crock. Even if it does allow you to pull out some small amount of energy from salt water it seems highly unlikely to be scalable.

    B
     
  25. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

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    #25
    Nah, the salt is still there 2H20 + RF energy + {other 3#$^t} > 2H2 + O2 + {other 3#$^t}. Unless there is something unknown there, the salt is not being consumed, at the very most it's acting as a catalyst, either way it's still there, its not being turned into energy. Now if the process was cracking 2NaCl > 2 Na + Cl2 that'd be nasty. Sodium and Chlorine gas are not things you want coming out of yer home perpetual motion generator.
    Yup.

    The proponent probably slipped a decimal place in his calculations, and thinks he's getting output when he's actually consuming...


    Yup.


    Quite right -- IF this is anything at all, it might be a more efficient (but still net negative) way to crack water into H2 gas. Which is an OK advance, allowing a bit more cost effectiveness into the Hydrogen economy. But nowhere near free energy.
     

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