U.S. Navy says it can now convert seawater into fuel

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posted on Apr, 7 2014 @ 11:07 PM
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Now that I don't have to worry about paying for fuel maybe I can talk the wife into buying that 100' yacht. I wonder if this process will only work in the Gulf Of Mexico near the BP oil spill.


www.rawstory.com...





US experts have found out how to extract carbon dioxide and hydrogen gas from seawater. Then, using a catalytic converter, they transformed them into a fuel by a gas-to-liquids process. They hope the fuel will not only be able to power ships, but also planes.





“For the first time we’ve been able to develop a technology to get CO2 and hydrogen from seawater simultaneously, that’s a big breakthrough,” she said, adding that the fuel “doesn’t look or smell very different.”


Well I guess I'm going to have to wait on the yacht for another 10 years. I was so close.



Drawbacks? Only one, it seems: researchers warn it will be at least a decade before US ships are able to produce their own fuel on board.


Once it becomes a reality and feasible for the civilian population I wonder what kind of maritime type communities might evolve (waterworld?) and how long before the salt tax is implemented?
edit on 21430America/ChicagoMon, 07 Apr 2014 23:21:26 -0500up3042 by interupt42 because: (no reason given)




posted on Apr, 7 2014 @ 11:25 PM
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Not a bad idea.

I always thought they could do something like this.

Maybe the process could help the (alleged) CO2 imbalance in the air.

Global Fueling is coming !!




posted on Apr, 7 2014 @ 11:26 PM
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Without having to re-engine ships and planes this really is a big deal if they can scale up production as they believe they can.. S&F



posted on Apr, 7 2014 @ 11:30 PM
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“Basically, we’ve treated energy like air, something that’s always there and that we don’t worry about too much. But the reality is that we do have to worry about it.”

As long as we don't start thinking that way about water...



US experts have found out how to extract carbon dioxide and hydrogen gas from seawater.

And the GW people will be thrilled we have a way to make more CO2...

Great article though, it was something that was eventually going to happen, I think.



posted on Apr, 7 2014 @ 11:30 PM
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Here comes the Water War. Using Water as fuel sources can be very dangers. Just like Biofuel ,using food as fuel source instead of feeding people. The US navy couldn't even convert drinking water from the sea without removing radiation and toxin(been to Bahamas, water taste like fking poison as the ship was converting water). What makes you think this is a good idea to turn water into toxic gas burning.



posted on Apr, 7 2014 @ 11:31 PM
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reply to post by interupt42
 


What happens when they discover that distilled water works best for the process?

Drinking water shortage? Inflation?



posted on Apr, 7 2014 @ 11:34 PM
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reply to post by interupt42
 


I read about this before but at the time I read congress cut funding for the research. I think the process consumes a lot of energy however when we are talking about fleets in the navy they wouldn't need fuel transports. The plans were to convert some of the older carriers that have nuclear reactors into fuel production plants that would ride along with the fleet. Overall I think it would cut down on the price of fuel for them cause it isn't cheap to transport their supplies to them all over the world. Don't quote me but ATM I think a gallon of fuel once transport is figured in costs $50 to $60.


Turning sea water into liquid fuel is a huge breakthrough. If we ever achieve sustainable fusion that would be the end to energy concerns.



posted on Apr, 7 2014 @ 11:37 PM
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reply to post by Elton
 





And the GW people will be thrilled we have a way to make more CO2...


Actually the process would also remove CO2 from the oceans possibly working as a carbon sink allowing the oceans to de acidify.

Overall a great thing at the very least it would be carbon neutral.



posted on Apr, 7 2014 @ 11:38 PM
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BELIEVERpriest
reply to post by interupt42
 


What happens when they discover that distilled water works best for the process?

Drinking water shortage? Inflation?



Distilled water would have no CO2.



posted on Apr, 7 2014 @ 11:40 PM
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reply to post by Grimpachi
 


If we remove it from the ocean and put it back into the atmosphere it does not seem neutral. But I do not know enough about the process to be an expert...



posted on Apr, 7 2014 @ 11:50 PM
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reply to post by greencmp
 


Lol, yeah didnt think about that. What about fresh lake water? If fish are breathing in it, it must have a CO2 byproduct. My point is, what role does salinity play in the process? Would fresh water or salt water be more cost effective?



posted on Apr, 7 2014 @ 11:52 PM
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Grimpachi
reply to post by interupt42
 


I think the process consumes a lot of energy


I was thinking the same thing and wish the article had a little more meat on the process and numbers to analyze.
From what it sounds the efficiency could be a bit better and probably the reason for the decade away.



“We’ve demonstrated the feasibility, we want to improve the process efficiency,” explained Willauer.


The cynic in me towards gov't and corporations makes me always ask whats the motive behind this? Why disclose this information at this time, Funding reasons, disinformation,pounding of chest, etc? Hopefully they will release some more info.
edit on 02430America/ChicagoTue, 08 Apr 2014 00:02:05 -0500000000p3042 by interupt42 because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 7 2014 @ 11:59 PM
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Elton
reply to post by Grimpachi
 


If we remove it from the ocean and put it back into the atmosphere it does not seem neutral. But I do not know enough about the process to be an expert...


It would be neutral because it does not add carbon to the environment. It balances.


Unlike fossil fuel which is buried ancient carbon.

Consider this. Refineries use almost as much energy as they produce in fuel the process produces quite a bit of CO2 doing so. By removing CO2 and hydrogen from the water it gives the oceans organisms room to process more CO2. Just by removing the need for a refinery cuts down on carbon emissions. Also, a byproduct of splitting water to get hydrogen leave oxygen which would be released into the atmosphere. 2 parts oxygen for every 1 part hydrogen. Good deal IMO. I think it will quickly recombine in the atmosphere (not sure). Anyway below is a chart of carbon emissions and carbon sinks.








posted on Apr, 8 2014 @ 12:03 AM
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reply to post by Grimpachi
 


But aren't they removing the volume of water that can absorb that original CO2 from the system at the same time? (by making it into Hydrogen ?)

Again I am no expert, just trying to wrap my head around it.

EDIT-

Like: H20 + CO2 -> CO2 & H (& possibly O as well?)
edit on 8-4-2014 by Elton because: more info



posted on Apr, 8 2014 @ 12:03 AM
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reply to post by interupt42
 


I am sure they are working on the efficiency and it will improve. But hey from the article they said they could produce a gallon now for about $6 which is way better than what they are paying at $50 to $60. Still from what I understand they will use the nuclear reactors to power the conversion process.

This is a serious eureka moment in energy.



posted on Apr, 8 2014 @ 12:13 AM
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reply to post by Elton
 


The amount of water used in the process will not even help balance the rising seas I do not think an effect could even be measured.

Think about how there are manhattan size pieces of ice dropping into the Arctic yet it barely registers.





EDIT-

Like: H20 + CO2 -> CO2 & H (& possibly O as well?) - See more at: www.abovetopsecret.com...


Err yeah. Brain fart.
edit on 8-4-2014 by Grimpachi because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 8 2014 @ 12:15 AM
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reply to post by interupt42
 

i smell bunk here. co2 is burned carbon. fish exhale co2 into seawater. no energy possible there. lots of hydrogen in seawater, but wait. it is burned hydrogen..h2o. no energy there.
But if you have a energy source...a nuclear reactor for example, or solar panels, etc you can yank the c from the o2 and the h from the o2 and recombine them into a long hydrocarbon. germans did it in wwii. fischer tropff maybe.

so high school chemistry will show you how to go from co2 and h20 to hydrocarbon fuel. only thing missing is a really cheap energy source. and that is the secret, and the Navy is not telling.



posted on Apr, 8 2014 @ 12:16 AM
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reply to post by Grimpachi
 


It just seems (mathematically) that if you remove the CO2 sink at the same time you release the CO2 it is a slight loss in the system. Even if it is just a tiny loss..

EDIT: I agree with the above poster it will take an efficient energy source to drive the process. I am interested to see what it is.


edit on 8-4-2014 by Elton because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 8 2014 @ 01:31 AM
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The oil companies butt holes just pinched up tight. I doubt WE will see it any time soon.



posted on Apr, 8 2014 @ 02:22 AM
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Well, you could split water using sunlight, and in the presence of carbon (as an additive) get H2 and CO2. With the right catalyst, and possibly some added energy, you can create a hydrocarbon from CO2 and H2, possibly release some O2 in the process. The question is how much extra energy is required to produce the fuel and where does the extra carbon come from?

It would be a benefit if the energy source was renewable (like sunlight) or a waste product (like heat from the engine). Some CO2 could also come from the engine exhaust. I'd imagine a lot of it would. On the whole, if doing this reduced the amount of fuel which had to be carried or transported in a supply ship for a given mission time, then there would be a benefit to the Navy almost regardless of cost. I would expect the catalyst to be expensive and it may take a lot of energy to produce both the catalyst and whatever other substances / equipment which might be needed. Expensive often equates to high cost in energy in some other place.

In the end, it could easily be a large net negative in energy but a useful one IF it extends mission time sufficiently. The idea would be to move the high energy cost steps onshore where energy is plentiful by comparison. In any case, burning fuel is exothermic -- it releases energy which we use to do work. Making fuel is endothermic, meaning it requires more energy at some point in the entire process to create the fuel. There is no free lunch, each conversion will have an energy loss.

So, not you won't get free gas in your car. In addition it's unlikely to become widely available on personal boats except maybe the really high end mega-yachts. And I'd venture a guess that the oil companies have nothing to fear from this at all. OTOH, laptop battery makers might have an issue as they already use expensive materials although a fuel cell might be a lot more efficient as a battery replacement.

It would be nice if these guys manage to get the process to scale up to a meaningful size. Lots of great things happen in test-tubes but don't work so well when they get scaled up for meaningful use. Warship sized fuel generators would be pretty big, and probably pretty vulnerable as well. I wouldn't hold my breath on this happening in 10 years. If ever.

Then again, this could be clever misinformation designed to throw a foreign power off track, spending limited resources on something which won't / isn't likely to pan out as a net positive. We could easily throw a few researchers at it almost forever as long as there was a gain somewhere even if it isn't fuel efficiency.
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