A good place to start to create energy from the tides is in the Bay of Fundy where there is one of the highest tides in the world in order to tap its Vortex.
As usual it took an inordinate amount of time to raise the initial amount of investments mostly from various government bodies from both Canada and United States. Then the predictable came true, the propellers of the turbine system failed. Risks can be expected when working in entirely unfamiliar environments. Then, there is more time wasted trying to raise funds for a different type of blade.
We are talking about a five-story turbine that weighs 400 tons for a 35 kW turbine. Size and weight has become the problem. The cost of the power sky rockets to $0.53/kWh compared to the current average of $0.06/kWh.
OpenHydro and Nova Scotia Power
So how does these “innovations” start? It starts with a minimum requirement of one megawatt. The formula for kinetic energy dictates how big this system has to be, which is humongous. Think of the maintenance problems if these huge systems were on land, and then double the problem under deep water.
Researchers at the Korea Ocean Research and Development Institute (KORDI) chose the site because it has flows up to 12 knots between islands at Uldolmok. Again the unexpected happened: the installation time was miscalculated and a 1000 ton system on a barge capsized, which caused a two year delay.
There is an important reason why a large engineering company (Boeing) walked away from commercializing the R.E.R 250 kW hydro turbine system costing $130 million Canadian, which was tested at the Lachine Rapids near Montreal: maintenance. Bankruptcy was declared at losses of $49 million.Continue reading TAP THE VORTEX→
How can we deliver true energy transformation to the world?
“An investment in atrue energy transformation requires governments, research institutions, businesses, and private investors to work together.”
The world is going to be using 50 percent more energy by mid-century than it does today.
Bill Gates, the co-founder of Microsoft, has emerged as a force for innovation: “No Investor or group of investors can do this alone. Breakthrough Energy is committed to encouraging a broad network of public and private capital to work together to solve the problem. An investment in a true energy transformation requires governments, research institutions, businesses, and private investors to work together.”
“The Breakthrough Energy Coalition created BEVto address some of those challenges in the energy market. We are willing to wait a longer time for returns than other funds. Finally, the fund is committed to discovering breakthroughs, wherever they are.”
“We must stop looking for business plans and look instead at the innovation after all it is the innovation and not how the owner of the IP will run a business which will stop CO2 emissions.”
Which renewable energy source has the most potential?
The HUGis feasible, renewable and clean alternative for low cost power production. An estimated 10 million people live mostly in urban areas along the banks of the river in any under developed country.
Only 3 percent of the nation’s 80,000 dams currently generate power. An Energy Department-funded study found that 12,000 megawatts of hydroelectric generating capacity could be added to existing dams around the country.
New damless hydro electric energy invention will change the way we power the world.
Which renewable energy source has the most potential? Mankind has been benefiting from the “energy of moving water…since before the Roman Empire” to power waterwheels for mills. Today the global renewable energy industry is worth $615 billion. Today it is probably wind or solar, whose technologies are falling precipitously and making those investments economical. However, don’t discount hydro power, which now accounts for about 10% of the electricity and which could also grow in the coming decades.
“Let’s not lose sight of what we know for certain about hydro power — it has greatly contributed to a healthier environment and economic prosperity and can sustainability grow to do more. Hydro power provides many benefits in the fight to address climate change and for cleaner air,” says the National Hydropower Association.
Base level electricity is a requirement. Most hydro power facilities can quickly go from zero power to maximum output, making them ideal for meeting sudden changes in demand for electricity.
The US government is so focused at other renewable sources of energy like wind and solar, it may be overlooking the contributing potential of hydroelectricity. More investment into damless hydro is the key to its development into a feasible renewable and clean alternative for power production.
The advocacy group points to a US Department of Energy (DOE) report that says the energy form could grow by 50,000 megawatts by 2050. That, in turn, would cut greenhouse gas emissions by 112,000 metric tons of CO2/megawatt and save $4.2 billion/megawatt in avoided damages from heat-trapping emissions.
The next phase of hydro power, however, will focus on smaller hydro units that are less disruptive environmentally but still useful in supplying electricity to remote areas. A 2007 Electric Power Research Institute study estimated that there is a potential for adding a 300 megawatts of damless hydro power in the US by 2025. Meanwhile, at least 100 countries are developing small hydro plants, with the most potential in the former Soviet Union, South Asia and South America.
Only 3 percent of the nation’s 80,000 dams currently generate power. An Energy Department-funded study found that 12,000 megawatts of hydroelectric generating capacity could be added to existing dams around the country.Continue reading DAMLESS HYDRO ELECTRIC ENERGY→
If water is not managed better, today’s crisis will become a catastrophe.
As water becomes ever more scant the world needs to conserve it, use it more efficiently. Researchers from MIT predict that by 2050, more than half of humanity will live in water-stressed areas, where people are now extracting unsustainable amounts from available freshwater sources. We can expect a water crisis that will go viral into a catastrophe if we continue with business as usual.
Many people have a strong moral aversion to paying for the life-sustaining liquid. Some feel that water is a right, and should therefore be free. Others lobby governments to subsidize its distribution to favored groups. This results in vast, but preventable waste.
To make matters worse, few places price water properly. Usually, it is artificially cheap, because politicians are scared to charge much for something essential that falls from the sky. This means that consumers have little incentive to conserve it and investors have little incentive to build pipes and other infrastructure to bring it to where it is needed most.
Researchers from MIT predict that by 2050, more than half of humanity will live in water-stressed areas, where people are now extracting unsustainable amounts from available freshwater sources.
One reason is that as the world’s population grows larger and richer, it uses more water. Another is climate change, which accelerates hydrologic cycles, making wet places wetter and dry places drier. The World Resources Institute found that 33 face extremely high water stress by 2040 (see map).
And as the global population rises from 7.4 bn to close to 10 bn by the middle of the century, it is estimated that agricultural production will have to rise by 60% to fill the world’s bellies. This will put water supplies under huge strain.
In many countries people can pump as much water as they like from underground aquifers, because rules are either lax or not enforced. But it is unsustainable: around a fifth of the world’s aquifers are over-exploited.
People do not drink much water—only a few liters a day. But putting food on their tables requires floods of the stuff. Growing 1 lb of wheat takes 125 gallons of water; fattening a cow to produce the same weight of beef involves 12 times more. Overall, agriculture accounts for more than 70% of global freshwater withdrawals. Farmers in parched places grow thirsty cash crops such as avocados, which could easily be imported from somewhere wetter.
In many places water demand is high and the quality is also at risk: as in many of the most stressed watersheds, it is often compromised by pollution. A polluted water source increases the risk of sickness not just of the environment but of the people and communities that depend on it for their survival.Continue reading WATER CRISES: COMING CATASTROPHE→
There are many applications or spin-offs of the HUG, a new invention or a new good, which are named by their function:
The Funnel HUG, used in ‘Run-of-River’ (Run-of-River HUG), and in a waterfall (Waterfall HUG) and the Reservoir HUG used to house an array of Funnel HUGs.
The Pump HUG used in a river (River HUG), at a pylon (Pylon HUG), in an ocean current (Ocean Current HUG) and a tide (Tidal HUG)
The Wave Energy HUG: creating electricity from wave energy
The HUG pipe or HUG pipeline
The Recycle HUG to recycle gray water
The HUG Siphon for Waterfalls, Watermills and Dams
The Pump HUG uses the physics of the vortex to create a spiraling motion to accelerate the flow of fluid in order to generate electricity or provide irrigation pumps from the water flow from tidal flows, waves, rivers, rapids, ocean and other fluid flows using a helical turbine and to transfer this fluid like water, oil or natural gas at near zero friction.
The “prior art” helical turbine is used to provide rotation to either the submersible pump or the electrical generator. One of the companies—GCK Technologies Inc. has a patented turbine using the helical blade. Lucid Energy Technologies patented the same helical turbine in a pipeline, but there is no vortex claimed for either patents.
The Wave EnergyHUG utilizes an artificial reef in order to create a slab wave. The “prior art” artificial surfing reef has a filing date of September 3, 1991. The abstract reads: “The artificial surfing reef is a generally Y-shaped structure made of many large sized polyvinyl chloride pipes…”. As a swell moves toward the shore, its bottom is resisted by the artificial surfing reef to form the perfect surfing waves. The closest competitor is a system called Wave Dragon, which is as heavy as a ship of the same size: the waves are much smaller and the turbines do not use the power of the vortex.
All these prior systems do not use the physics of the vortex in order to increase the velocity of the laminar flow. Hence, many companies have patents for much larger and more expensive turbines, simply because the velocity of the flow has not been accelerated by a vortex. Typically they place their turbine directly into a tidal flow or rapids: the size is so large that maintenance becomes a big factor.
Imagine having a hundred such huge systems in a set of rapids and then having to raise each for maintenance. R.E.R. had such a prototype at the Lachine Rapids near Montreal and they were finally producing electricity at 2.3 kW/m2. The system was so huge that they had to replace the blades of the turbines with stronger alloys and their system required an underwater generator (you never mix electricity with water).
R.E.R. had to declare bankruptcy because they could not find a buy like ABB Inc. (Canada), who was already part of a consortium and who was willing to take on the guarantee of providing constant electricity.
There are ways a business communicates the value of innovation to financiers: industry benchmarks that allow the investor to compare the business to other similar businesses.
How the Technology Innovation is different than the Incumbent Technologies
Presently no patents exist to capture energy from fast moving rivers up to now. The Power Density of any pilot projects designed to capture energy from tides is 2.4 to 6.9 kW/m2.This Power Density is a measurement of the efficiency of a hydro electric system: the area The reason for the low efficiency is that the flow of a current treats all these turbines as obstacles to be avoided.
The HUGPower Density is an unbelievable 73.5 kW/m2. The Power Density increases to the cube of the velocity and the HUG velocity is four times faster than the competition. This is why the HUG can be small and modular.
The most important consideration is the HUG cost: the Cost of Construction for a 100 MW project is $88.5 million, which is 22% of the typical average cost . The HUGcost of $885/kW is unusually lowcompared to most other hydro electric generation systems. In 2009, Hydro-Quebec (Canada) was permitted to build a number of hydro projects totaling 4500 MW, with a total price of US$ 23 billion, which is $5,100/kW.
The present costs of generation of small hydro plants are in the range for small hydro of $45–120/MWh with an average of $83/MWh. There are still many ideal sites, which are close to the existing electric power converter/generators, thereby reducing these costs by a further 40%.
The cost per mega watt hour of the HUG is very low at the rate of $5.46/MWh, which is 360% on the low side and 1,100% on the high side. The Energy Availability Factor (power plant performance) can be increased by the same range
HUG can provide extra revenue from the upcoming sale of carbon credits: those companies, which exceed the emission limits, will soon be forced to buy $284,000 worth of carbon credits for every 1 MW of new clean energy.
The United States Department of Energy has approved a second round for Hydroelectric Production Incentives allow for up to 2.3 cents per kWh — indexed for inflation, which amounts to $180,000/MW.The maximum payments of up to $750,000 per year for energy generated by facilities (4 MW) during the incentive period.
The risk factor is low because the initial Prototype & Feasibility Study of the HUG costs only $750,000. New technology in the form of three-dimensional printing further reduces the risk of a high cost prototype. This 0.24 MW power project has an admirable cost recovery of $65,350/yr. The Return on Investment is 17.5%/yr.
There are 5500 locations for a total of 11,000 MW in Canada alone where this technology can be applied according to studies done to support low head (1.5 m -3 m) turbines . It was estimated that as much as 3,400 MW of electricity generation potential could be exploited in U.S. rivers by small, unconventional systems such as free-flow (damless) turbines.( Hall et al. 2004)
Remote areas do not have access to expensive dams and so electricity is a northern company’s biggest cost after labor. Northerners use costly diesel. Mines in remote areas would pay premium prices for this technology.
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Our Mission: to help solve the problem of carbon dioxide build up in the world by growing and managing mature forests of foliage, fruit and nut trees that eventually are used in lumber — not firewood. The Carbon Tax Fund supports a Micro finance initiative to support women farmers and their families who will nurture fruit and nut trees over their lifetime. The Net Present Value of each tree is $0.49/tree plus $1.00/tree for auditing and maintenance for 25 years.
Innovation is usually geared toward improving efficiency or effectiveness. Efficiency innovations decrease the cost to market. For this reason, investors are not so much interested in the “new” aspect of innovation, as they are in the “improved” part. HUGTidal power is more than improved: it is an entirely new good.
What must be done to create new products, enhance market penetration, lock in customers and lower operational costs?
Often the risk and the costs associated with achieving competitive advantage is formidable
Developing new and unique products that are not easily duplicated by competitors: one provides more value to the customer, which in turn creates brand loyalty because having one’s name associated with a new product (much like snowmobiles have been called “SkiDoos” for years). One simply becomes the “go to” company as Wal-Mart did.
Enter the HUG!
None of the Present Technology use the Power of the Vortex, like the HUG.
The Dam has inherent disadvantages:
The large size includes concrete construction involving high construction costs.
Each dam plant is very expensive because a custom-designed, one-off project.
Fish-passage facilities need to be provided to help fish bypass the power station.
Investment in helical turbines has increased to US$257 million (Korea) in 2007. Kordi of Korea had planned its pilot turbines in ocean currents at Uldolmok. Korea have very strong currents up to 6.5 m/s. They have designed 24 jackets (16m by 16m) along 3 lanes. The difference is that the helical turbines are not placed in a vortex of a pathway like a HUG. See Figure 1.
Ireland’s OpenHydro has spent $2.2 million on their propeller system in the Bay of Fundy to date. This company has not really reported any news about their new invention, since they installed it several years ago. The total device weighs 360 tons, which is a large burden. The power density is 2.6 kW/m2.See Figure 2. The HUGPower Density is an unbelievable 73.5 kW/m2.
France’s Alstom Hydro Canada Inc. , having licensed Clean Current’s technology, planned to demonstrate its tidal turbine, which is in the form of a propeller. See Figure 3. [Consortium Members: Emerson Electric Co.; Clean Current Power Systems Inc.; Alstom Hydro France]
Verdant Power (SDTC support) is currently installing six Gorlov turbines in New York City’s East River. Each turbine will have a blade diameter of 16 feet and is rated at between 25–30 kW. Again, these turbines are simply placed in the path of a tidal flow. The Power output at 2.5 m/s is only 168kW/turbine. The power density is only 2.8 kW/m2. [Consortium: Consortium Members:Mohawk Council of Akwesasne; St. Lawrence College of Applied Arts and Technology; St. Lawrence River Institute of Environmental Sciences; Ontario Power Authority; Niagara Region Ventures Fund] See Figure 4.
United Kingdom’s Atlantis Operation (Canada) (SDTC support): 1 MW AR1000 propeller turbine which is immense and very heavy in size. [Consortium: Lockheed Martin Canada (LMC);Irving Shipbuilding] See Figure 5.
Canada’s Clean Current Power Systems Inc.(SDTC support): propeller turbine 65kW needs a 5.5 meter depth and an unlikely stated speed of the river of 3.0 to 3.5 m/sec., unlike the 1 meter depth of the HUGwith a more likely river speed of 2 m/s. [Consortium: EnCana Corp.; New Energy Corporation Inc.; Tidal Power Generation] See Figure 6.
Canada’s New Energy Corporation Inc.(SDTC support): using superior four helical blades producing a small 5kW and much larger 25 kW system designed for high velocity of 3 m/s. Again this system relies entirely on the affluent flow of the current…unlike the HUG, which uses a system to increase this to a laminar flow thereby creating a zero friction boundary layer along the inside lining of the HUG. [Consortium: Nova Scotia Power Inc.] See Figure 7.
R.E.R (SDTC support)is installed at the Lachine Rapids near Montreal. Unfortunately, their system has to be built as big as the Kordi system in Korea: 2.3 kW/ m2. The maintenance on such a large structure will be a huge expense. [Consortium: ABB Inc. (Canada); Agence de l’efficacité énergétique du Québec] BANKRUPT!See Figure 8.
The prototype of a VLH system, developed with a French partner by Turbines Novatech-Lowatt Inc. in Beloeil, Quebec. Once connected to the network, the first VLH turbine has been submitted to exhaustive commissioning tests. (Area = 15.9 m2) The weakness of this system is the low velocity (2 m/s. The maintenance on such a large structure will be a huge expense. See Figure 9.
The most advanced companies from a commercialization standpoint are two European companies: Marine Current Turbines of the UK (cost unknown) and Hammerfest Strøm of Norway(Investment to date: $13.4 million). Both of these companies use a propeller style turbine, which have received significant support from their respective federal governments. In contrast, the HUGhas negative pressure or a suction action at its entrance. Also, a propeller style turbine, which is used by the competitors, has a lower efficiency of 20% compared to the helical turbine’s 35% efficiency.See Figure 10.