posted on Aug, 26 2009 @ 10:48 AM
Possible? Yes, sure. There is little that is not possible in physics.
Practical? Not at all.
Pilgrum did a bang-up job of showing the calculations (although I would say 60% efficiency would be a safer bet than 80%). The power needed to crank a
spring for only ten minutes a day, or even a couple hours a day, would be massive to power a household with the current power requirements. Not to
mention the cost of those 'billions' of gears. My best supplier
sells small clockwork nylon
anything from $2 to $20 each, depending on the gear. Metal gears are higher, and would definitely be required. As a matter of fact, under the power
considerations for an entire household's daily usage, you're going to have to get some bigger gears
, which come
with a much bigger price tag (a recent project priced a single worm gear set at about $150.00).
Now let's talk about the spring. We're talking about a spring that would make the suspension under your car look like a toy! Think about taking a
steel I-beam (wideflange for the purists out there) maybe 12"-14" deep and bending it almost double to store the energy. Now think about what
happens if it breaks.
You could use that monster flywheel, but how exactly are you going to get a 10-ton flywheel mounted outside your house? Not to mention the safety
hazards if it developed stress cracks and fractured...
So you are going to have to pay more for that clockwork mechanism than it would cost for you to power your home as is right now for the next 100
years. You will have to use a turbo-charged V8 at high RPM to wind it for those ten minutes (and pay the associated fuel costs for that as well). In
the end it would be easier and cheaper to use that V8 to turn a few dozen alternators and charge batteries directly.
Keep thinking, but this one is busted.