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Old 08-10-2007, 08:47 PM   #1
genius2687
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Currently I think that hydrogen is our best bet.

The production

The biggest issue is being able to make it cheaply. There are three ways.

1. Electrolysis. This is problematic because you expend as much energy by separating the H2 molecules as you produce by combusting it with Oxygen.

2. Deriving it from hydrocarbons. You can get hydrogen from natural gas, and oil. Getting it this way kind of defeats the purpose of it's use for an alternative energy since natural gas and oil are running out and nonrenewable.

3. Make it using algae farms. This one seems to be the best approach which is currently being undertaken by biologists. They are focused on trying to improve the efficiency of hydrogen production. Some additional genetic engineering is necessary.

Storage

Next comes a practical way to store it

1. Store it as a gas. Not a good idea. You won't go far if you had a 22 gallon gas tank on your car filled with non-pressurized hydrogen gas. The fuel would be used up very rapidly.

2. Liquify it and store it in tanks capable of withstanding 10,000 psi. Hydrogen liquifies at -253 C and this requires a lot of energy to cool it down. Even hydrogen liquid is very lightweight and to put a substantial amount of it in a car would require quite a heavy tank or tanks (perhaps up to 6000 lbs).

3. Fuel cells. More work needs to be done in terms of cost and efficiency, but perhaps someday this could be practical.

4. Storage in carbon nanotubes. More work needs to be done here as well for this to be a practical method as well in terms of cost and efficiency but it could be promising someday.

Creating a Hydrogen Infrastructure

This is going to take a lot of work over the next 20-30 years. You need to convince the public to buy hydrogen vehicles, make hydrogen stations, etc. It would probably be best to have some federal funding program just like the space race to do this. An addition, oil companies like BP are spending money in alternative energy development as well.


Hopefully, these results will be promising someday. One thing is for sure though: we cannot keep relying on oil!
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Old 08-10-2007, 11:59 PM   #2
bokonon
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I'm still waiting for general acceptance of the theory that hydrocarbons like petroleum are formed in the earth's mantle, rather than being a product of decaying dinosaurs. The fact that it rains methane on Titan suggests that these molecules can form without requiring life. If it turns out that tapping virtually unlimited supplies of petroleum is just a matter of drilling deeper holes, the only problem we'll have to solve is how to deal with the resulting greenhouse gases.

That, or solar panels carpeting Death Valley charging capacitor batteries in electric cars.
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Old 08-11-2007, 12:29 AM   #3
bryantee
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How about some kind of self-sufficient mechanism that uses solar energy to perform the electrolysis. You have plumbing running into the system and hydrogen is stored for use right in your house.
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Old 08-11-2007, 06:14 AM   #4
Reverend Blasphemy
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bump
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Old 08-11-2007, 06:29 AM   #5
Rat Bastard
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'k, but what energy source do you think is going to be used to build all those tanks, and the rest of the infrastructure? Petroleum. Carpeting Death Valley is not going to happen. Think of the cacti! :o There are thermodynamic effects that can alter local climate in an array that big, as well. Solar panels on the roof of a house make a lot more sense, and there are technologies driving down that cost. Then, the DC power generated is local, and there will be less loss.
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Old 08-11-2007, 06:47 AM   #6
skribb
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Doesn't generating hydrogen produce carbon dioxide and other shit substances? I read on LiveScience that hydrogen is pretty much moot.
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Old 08-11-2007, 06:51 AM   #7
Rat Bastard
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Quote:
skribb wrote
Doesn't generating hydrogen produce carbon dioxide and other shit substances? I read on LiveScience that hydrogen is pretty much moot.
If you use petroleum for the electrical power generation for electrolysis, yes. That was my point. Truth is, nuclear energy is in the same boat- it requires mass quantities of petroleum to refine the fuel.
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Old 08-11-2007, 07:06 AM   #8
Mc
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Quote:
Rat Bastard wrote
Quote:
skribb wrote
Doesn't generating hydrogen produce carbon dioxide and other shit substances? I read on LiveScience that hydrogen is pretty much moot.
If you use petroleum for the electrical power generation for electrolysis, yes. That was my point. Truth is, nuclear energy is in the same boat- it requires mass quantities of petroleum to refine the fuel.
So where does that leave us?
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Old 08-11-2007, 07:58 AM   #9
skribb
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Quote:
Mc wrote
Quote:
Rat Bastard wrote
Quote:
skribb wrote
Doesn't generating hydrogen produce carbon dioxide and other shit substances? I read on LiveScience that hydrogen is pretty much moot.
If you use petroleum for the electrical power generation for electrolysis, yes. That was my point. Truth is, nuclear energy is in the same boat- it requires mass quantities of petroleum to refine the fuel.
So where does that leave us?
Self-explanatory, don't you think?:o
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Old 08-11-2007, 08:04 AM   #10
whoneedscience
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Hydrogen will most likely never happen. It's actually quite ridiculous, for all of the reasons genius himself gave and more.
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Old 08-11-2007, 08:12 AM   #11
skribb
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How the fuck are we going to fuel our vehicles in the future? Or rather, right about ASAP.
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Old 08-11-2007, 11:04 AM   #12
genius2687
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whoneedscience wrote
Hydrogen will most likely never happen. It's actually quite ridiculous, for all of the reasons genius himself gave and more.
If we use algae to produce hydrogen, the tables could turn. Algae use the light from the sun as energy and do the work for us to create hydrogen. We just need to find a way to make the process more efficient via genetic engineering.
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Old 08-11-2007, 11:15 AM   #13
ubs
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Quote:
skribb wrote
How the fuck are we going to fuel our vehicles in the future? Or rather, right about ASAP.
with our legs. as the price of fuel goes up we will all move back into the cities...we won't be able to afford anything else and then owning a car will be a bother, like it is in S.F. we will walk or ride a bike.

i think the era of cheap power is passing and won't arise again in our lifetimes.

Never give a zombie girl a piggy back ride.
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Old 08-11-2007, 11:41 AM   #14
Livingstrong
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ubs wrote
.....we will walk or ride a bike.
I don't have a problem with that :D
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Old 08-11-2007, 12:52 PM   #15
calpurnpiso
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I think the BEST source of energy is the one that comes from our Creator, the SUN. Unfortunately Christ-psychosis immense drag on the intellect, has stagnated technology for over 1000 years. If it weren't for those retarded psychos, we wouldn't be talking about energy today. We would be sipping a special drink at our Valley Marineris colony while enjoying movies projected on our Eye-lids, due to the NIC ( Neuro Implanted Chip). Religious-psychosis would have been eradicated and humans wouldn't have this HIV of the brain eroding reason inducing INSANE IRRATIONAL THINKING. :)

Christians and other folks infected with delusional beliefs think and reason like schizophrenics or temporal lobe epileptics. Their morality is dictated by an invisible friend called Jesus.
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