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New battery could change world, one house at a time

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posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 10:17 AM
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reply to post by TheRedneck
 


RedNeck... have you actually built a system as you described --- with the LA batteries in series to yield 240v? I'd be very surprised if the batteries could handle that kind of voltage running through them for very long without breaking down. What's your take on that? Also, what kind of a system would you use to charge these at 240v?




posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 10:32 AM
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This pretty interesting. I had solar panels installed on my out side privacy fence and 4 panels on the roof a couple years ago. I haven't seen a BGE bill since, in fact I carry about a $1,000.00 per month credit because I share power distribution for the excess power generated by my units. I think all in all my system after installation was in the area of $21,500ish but I recover almost 85% of the cost in tax breaks so I really only put out about $4,500 for the system. The only true way to break fossil fuel use is solar,wind,aquamotion. The battery technology is helping as well. I am saving up to purchase a bulk amount of portable solar power RV panels to rent out to people who need portable power. We use 2 RV units when we tail gate at the football games. in fact we have 6 cars who plug into our units so we run 3 large LCD screens and stoves and food warmers..Solar is tha answer.



posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 11:03 AM
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reply to post by jtma508

You're right: a standard 12V lead-acid battery will most definitely NOT handle 240 volts! That's not what I was saying, so let me further explain.

As per what I am trying to accomplish, which is 100% self-sufficiency for an average house with enough surge power as to make the fact it is not on the grid invisible to the occupants, I chose a 240V system for the sole reason that the inverter needed to produce a needed true sine wave AC output would be simplified to a great degree if the input and output voltages were kept equal. Any inverter which uses a lower voltage than 240V would need to include a step-up transformer in the output, and the current feeding that transformer would need to be increased from the output current by a factor dependent on the ratio of the input to output voltage.

As an example, a 240V dual-phase inverter (which is the power supplied to homes in the USA) drawing from a 12V supply such as a marine battery would need at least 20 times the input current as it supplies in output current (in actuality, a bit more than 20 times, because there will be losses due to the internal circuitry). So if a power source will produce 200 amps (the typical size most homes are fused for), the draw from a battery would be 20x200=4000 amps!

Now enough batteries connected in parallel would be capable of delivering that current, but the problem is when one considers the windings of the step-up transformer. It would literally take a section of copper pipe to handle that much current! As it is, I will be using 00 gauge copper for the windings.

The option I chose is to connect 20 batteries in series rather than in parallel, that is, connecting the positive of the first to the negative of the second, the positive of the second to the negative of the third, etc. Stacked this way, each battery sees only 12V, the voltage it is designed for, but the array can still deliver 240V from the negative of the first to the positive of the 20th battery. That can then power the inverter and allow for smaller wire to be used in the windings, making the entire apparatus more affordable.

There is a trade-off: in order to charge such an array, 20 separate charging circuits will be required, since each battery is operating at a different voltage range with respect to 'ground'. Of course, since each battery only needs one twentieth of the total wattage produced, each charging system can be downsized appropriately. In simpler terms, if you were charging this array from a reworked automobile alternator, you would need 20 alternators, each running on an independent circuit, but each only needing to be sized for one twentieth of the total amount of power produced.

That is the reason I am so excited about this new battery design: it can handle the higher voltages directly, further decreasing the costs of producing the power as well as the complexity of 20 individual production units.

I have also considered using more available units in parallel, such as one inverter for lights, one for hot water, one for the well pump, etc. Such a configuration could be assembled quicker and would only require the 12V input allowing any number of batteries to be connected in parallel, but this would also (according to the cost estimates I have run) be a bit more expensive and, I believe, more prone to breakdown. I tend to have more faith in the continued operation of something I designed and built than something I bought off a shelf somewhere, because I do have a tendency to overdesign.

I have not been able to build such a system yet, for the simple reason that my resources are going more toward producing the power than converting it for home use at this time. I have no real water flows that could considered dependable, and wind here is iffy and unpredictable. Solar is simply too expensive for me to set up a solar generator and continue to work on my present projects. So I need something else (those projects) to power the inverter system.

That said, all the principles I have outlined in this thread are far from experimental or theoretical. This is all first year electronics.

(Oh, and if anyone else is at all confused by any of my posts and wants to try some of the things I have mentioned, please, please, make sure you understand what you are doing before you do it! Pumping 240V into a 12v battery will most definitely be a bad thing! Post any questions here, or feel free to U2U me before you do something like that.)

TheRedneck



posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 03:57 PM
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Just to help clarify (and because someone got me thinking about it again, lol) my above post, I have uploaded a .gif format schematic of a typical charging stage for a 12V lead-acid battery. It's pretty big, so I am not going to embed it. You'll have to click the link below:

A typical Battery charging circuit for a stackable series battery bank.

Now, to explain, this is simply a throttle voltage regulator fed by a multi-layer transformer and bridge rectifier. If multiple power production units are used, then the input coil (which is only one of 20 output coils from a single transformer in my design) can be omitted. Also, if you are supplying DC power instead of AC power, you can omit the four diodes just after it (which is actually a bridge rectifier circuit).

Input voltage should be between 14 and 18 volts DC or AC as mentioned above, and if AC can come from a multiple-coil transformer that feeds each stage individually form one AC source. The rectified power is fed through a normally-open relay into the throttle regulator which supplies the correct voltage to the battery. The rest of the circuit is protection and information circuitry.

The voltage is fed to two op-amps used as comparators which rive a small logic section. This logic section is also driven by a 10KHz oscillator composed of the top op-amp in the picture. This provides a signal to the indicating bicolor LED which will be red if below about 10V (discharged), yellow (alternating green and red) if between 10-12V (low charge), and green if above 12V. Another comparator senses if the voltage rises above around 15V, which would indicate a problem with the circuitry that could potentially harm the battery. When this safety kicks in, it overrides the logic circuit and turns the indicator LED red, as well as releasing the safety relay and removing all charge power from the battery. The sensor circuit will continue to function on the overcharge of the battery (it can handle 18V maximum itself) and once the voltage drops back into the safe area, the safety relay will engage and try again.

There is also a cooling fan for the throttle regulator built into the design, which uses a NTC thermistor to monitor the operating temperature of the main throttle transistor and energize the cooling fan if needed.

These stages are completely stackable, meaning they do not require any sort of ground connection. One unit can be built on top of the other to increase the voltage output of the aray.

Enjoy folks!

TheRedneck



posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 04:08 PM
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The price of a $2,000 battery to supply your home with electricity seems pretty nice. The sad part is you will need to have solar on your home to charge the battery, and that costs well over $10,000 for just a small home.



posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 04:25 PM
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reply to post by TheRedneck
 


Redneck,

Thanks a bunch. For what it is worth I mentioned a bunch of designs (e-mail addresses) available through the Farm Show Magazine (30th year) on the "free Energy ATS for wind mills and generators. Farmers are pretty practical and good at building useful stuff cheap.

I am using several ideas around the farm that I got from the book (at 482 pages it is no mag) I picked it up at tractor supply.

Thanks again, and yes the deep cycle marine batteries are probably the way to go at this point unless its worth using Auto batteries until this new one comes out.

I think the real problem is going to be zoning, EPA and the rest of the alphabet soup. They say they want "green energy" and then strangle you in red tape. SIGHHhhh I do not even know where to begin and I hate to ask for fear of getting "big brother" inspecting my farm and finding lots of stuff they want to fine me for that I didn't even know about.



posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 04:57 PM
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reply to post by RussianScientists
 





The price of a $2,000 battery to supply your home with electricity seems pretty nice. The sad part is you will need to have solar on your home to charge the battery, and that costs well over $10,000 for just a small home.

Actually, after tax credits, several people on ATS have mentioned that the final cost for solar was around $4,000 to $5,000 for a single family home.



posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 06:07 PM
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safe enough, to sit in your basement and power your home.



chunk of solid sodium metal


This battery can not be safe in your basement if it contains chunks of metallic sodium.

All you would need is a flooded basement and a cracked case on one of these batteries.
or a fire that damages the case and water from the fire department fire hose.
www.periodictable.com...
www.youtube.com...
en.wikipedia.org...

I don't want metallic sodium in my basement.



posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 06:23 PM
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reply to post by ANNED
 





or a fire that damages the case and water from the fire department fire hose.

Well, a fire in the basement of homes that have natural gas heating units would be just as deadly.



posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 08:42 PM
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It's nice but it's not great. These only store, they don't generate so the cost is the cost of storage not of the energy itself.

Now if you get a lower rate on off peak hours and use the cell during peak hours, it might be cost effective.

Most approaches to generating your own off grid energy does not yet pay back the investment over their life, never mind providing savings in most areas. The one exception is geothermal, but that requires a substantial investment.



posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 10:01 PM
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reply to post by TheRedneck
 


Outstanding! You never cease to amaze me! Truthfully, only about 50% of what you wrote is clear to me; your schematic helps some. Not your fault, just my own lack of knowledge in this arena. Edit to add: I read again. Okay, it's starting to gell. I get what you're saying about the rectifiers. Really good information, TheRedneck. I'm now up to about 80%, I think.

reply to post by crimvelvet
 


Keep in mind that much of what is labelled "deep cycle" and/or "Marine" are so in name only. Many of the so-called deep-cycle batteries have thin plates, and a short life. I've been burned by these knock-offs (*cough Exide *cough) before.

reply to post by ProfEmeritus
 


Well, for those of us out of the U.S., it costs a heck of a lot more
I just spent about twice that, and will run the lion's share of our house, but not all. Still, I think it's great that you all up there can get a tax credit. It should be so, particularly if various pundits are going to preach about "going green". If it were cost effective, EVERYONE would flock to it. I can't complain. I don't have a tax credit, but I also don't have taxes. weeeeeeeeeeee!


[edit on 19/8/09 by argentus]



posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 10:06 PM
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reply to post by Cyberbian
 


Spot on. The only reason it will pay off for me is that our energy costs are exorbitantly higher than yours. Right now, I heat a hot tub and house water for free with homemade solar collectors. We have gas cooking, run just a small a/c (7 amps @ peak) for 6-8 hours a night, have no clothes dryer (we use the sun) and yet our power costs average $350 - $400 USD per MONTH.

But, yeah, it's a break even at best for most of you IF you can keep the system alive for it's projected period. Wind generators are getting better, but most that I looked at require a pretty hefty wind to reach their rated output.



posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 11:32 PM
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The all-round best battery for home electrical storage is the old nickel iron battery.
en.wikipedia.org...

Some of these batteries have been in use in europe for over 100 years and still take a full charge.
No one knows how long a nickel iron battery will last for as some of the original batteries manufactured by Thomas Edison’s battery storage company are still in use today.

Battery companies want you to buy deep cycle lead acid batteries because they last only 10 to 20 years and then they can sell you new ones.

Discharging lead acid batteries below 40% on a regular bases will shorten there life span.
NiFe batteries can be discharged to 0% charge every day for years and never be damaged by it.
www.ironcorebatteries.com.au...
www.beutilityfree.com...



posted on Aug, 20 2009 @ 06:57 AM
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reply to post by ANNED
 


yep, they seem like wonderful batteries, safer that standard lead-acid, longer lasting........... but WHOA! DADDY! the prices!!!



posted on Aug, 20 2009 @ 09:33 AM
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reply to post by TheRedneck
 





I have not been able to build such a system yet, for the simple reason that my resources are going more toward producing the power than converting it for home use at this time. I have no real water flows that could considered dependable, and wind here is iffy and unpredictable.


As I recall from my caving days, Alabama is not exactly flat. Can you use my idea of wind mill and ponds at two different heights? There maybe some one willing to exchange pond building for your expertise in designing a system.

One of the farmers came up with a windmill designed for use in light wind that does not have to shut down in heavy winds. It is called the Wedge Wind. The patent is HERE



posted on Aug, 20 2009 @ 11:29 AM
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reply to post by crimvelvet

As I recall from my caving days, Alabama is not exactly flat.

Actually a lot of it is; but in my area, you're right. As a matter of fact, if you have been caving in Alabama, you weren't far from me.


I live in the rugged area, and the unfortunate fact is that there's too much elevation change for me to have even a single pond. I have only about 10 acres that could be considered acceptable for a pond, and that is being used for farming. What water power I might could get would be mountainside run-off, and that is not concentrated in any single drainage area.

I love the two-pond idea, though!

TheRedneck



posted on Aug, 20 2009 @ 12:43 PM
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reply to post by Cyberbian
You are absolutely right; this is only a storage device. Think of it like one link in a chain.

There are plenty of ways one can create electricity at present. If you have a creek running near your house, you could attach a water wheel to that creek and use it to turn generators. If you have regular winds, you could erect a small windmill to generate power. Solar is indeed expensive, but the cells are coming down in cost every day (I want to touch on that more in a moment). One could even heat water with a myriad of means and use the steam generated to drive am electrical generator, just as a lot of steam-powered plants still do today.

The real problem with all these technologies is that we have become so dependent on electrical energy being there whenever we want to flick that switch. Think back to the last time power went out in your area. What could you do? At night it is too dark to do much of anything, and even during the day you are effectively cut off from the world: no TV, no computer, no internet, no machinery, no telephones if you don't still have one of the old 'el cheapos' that don't have a power cord. Even a cell phone requires electricity, albeit from a cell tower and not your house.

So in order to keep ourselves supplied with lights, cooking, entertainment, and climate control, electricity we create ourselves must be stored to allow for drop-outs in the production. That's where these batteries come into play.

As I said: it's like a chain, only as strong as its weakest link. If you can put in solar collectors for $100.00 tomorrow, few people would come completely off the grid. Why? Because they want power at night, power during cloudy days, power during solar eclipses, power during rain storms. at least now, should solar power become affordable (efficient?), there is technology that can smooth out the bumps on a 100% self-sufficient system.

As I stated above, there is something I just don't get concerning solar cells: I run a small R&D set-up here out of my little shop. It's a small part-time operation, but not one that is lacking for resources. I have a list of suppliers for everything I can imagine. I can pick up the phone and have any shape of cold-rolled or hot-rolled steel I want delivered within one week. I can type in an address and get magnets of all sizes and intensities, chemicals, plastics, exotic metals, glues... heck I can get radioactive materials in experimental quantities! I can pick up the phone and have any electronic components I want delivered to my door on a net-30 account. I have a complete set of wood/plastic working tools, a machine shop, welding equipment, design tools, and a home library that is literally larger now than the public library in this town. This is not some fly-by-night operation. It's a life's work in progress.

Any of the materials I mentioned above I can get at pretty reasonable prices, at least as low as a small contractor or OEM could get them. I have spent decades building relationships to allow for this. There is precious little I cannot build for less than it costs to buy, discounting my labor of course. But I can buy a solar powered yard light for less than half of what my cheapest source wants for the solar cells alone. And that particular supplier I am thinking of is surplus! I know the cells are being bought and sold for a tiny fraction of what I am seeing, or that would not be possible, but how is it that I cannot find a supplier?

My suppliers have the same problem. I have spoken to several of them about this issue, and I keep getting the same answer: they can't find them any cheaper, and in fact have to order vast quantities to keep their prices as low as they are. Apparently only certain companies are able to get solar cells at a true wholesale cost, while the rest of us, even most corporations, are stuck with prices 10 times higher than theirs.

Who is holding back on cheap solar power?

TheRedneck



posted on Aug, 20 2009 @ 12:51 PM
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Me thinks the leaders of this company will be fitted for cement shoes or found "dead from suicide" some time in the near future...



posted on Aug, 23 2009 @ 02:52 PM
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Magnets. It's all about magnets. Mybe we should try and compress a new type of metal. or alloy.

id like to see a core sample proving the center of the earth is iron. because if it is then the iron is conducting the electricity passing through the polar regions. what type of metal is compressed at the center of the earth? everyone is trying to find new energy what we need is a new conductor.

[edit on 23-8-2009 by enlightenedwarrior]

[edit on 23-8-2009 by enlightenedwarrior]



posted on Aug, 23 2009 @ 03:00 PM
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sorry runon on and on.

geothermal pockets. i think it has something to do with quartz and geothermal pockets. mybe diamond and gold have something to do with it. i dno im trying to figure this out still.



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