Mit ClimateColab Proposals Portlet Mit ClimateColab Proposals Portlet


dbayne




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Proposal
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    Hi, I hope the proposal was readily understandable. I realize that even after looking up the references and watching the videos that there still may be some questions as to whether this will actually work.

     To help visualize the project, do a Google map search, (or similar), for Brier Island, Nova Scotia. This small island could be considered part of a peninsula that extends out into the Bay of Fundy. Zoom out to get an idea of how it's positioned in the bay. Now visualize a 1 kilometer wide funnel dam facing the incoming tide on the southern tip.

     The tide that is moving up the bay as the high tide approaches may be approximately 4 metrers, (net of the standing tide), at this location. The calculations used in the proposal for water flow were based on a 1 meter tide.

     I am not advocating this specific site over any other, but hopefully this example will make the concept easier to understand. 


jameslau




Member


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OTEC (ocean thermal energy conversion) is a much better way for marine renewable energy. The basic thermal mechanical conversion factor clear show that 1 degree Celsius temperature increase in water has as much energy as water moving at 90 meters per second (or 200 mph). OTEC can use ocean water temperature difference of 20 C  or more. I fully understand the tidal power concept and know tidal power cannot hope to compete against OTEC in cost, generating capacity and almost all meaningful factors. About 2 % of the tropical area with OTEC plants can provide all energy (electricity plus conversion to all other forms. Read my entry in the alumni contest and contact me if you have more questions. 


jameslau




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I receive a response for my comment. However, I can only continue the conversation by writing another comment here. If you are interested to contact me more effectively, please use my email address in my other contest entry. Your response indicate that you look at my contest entry. One other factor in favor of OTEC over tidal power is OTEC can operated at near full generating capacity (more than 75 % of peak power) all the time, 24 hours a day, all years long. Tidal power only has two cycles a day and power during low tide phase (moon and sun at perpendicular position relative to earth) would have power generating capacity much less than 75 % of the peak power condition (high tide). If you are serious about tidal power, estimate the cost of electricity. OTEC electricity cost should be lower than any other electricity generating technology (both non-renewable and renewable).


ajdavis2004




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I apologize that I don't have a lot of time to fully understand the proposal.  There are many alternative energy proposals.  The principle discriminant is cost per kWh and the environmental impact.  It will be hard to get my support unless it can be profitable at a costs of around $0.02 per kWh, and be located in an area where people want to buy it.  Is there a potential for integrating it with something like desalination?

Here is a proposal we might collaborate on.  Use tides to raise water, use the hydrostatic head to force saltwater through a filter for reverse osmosis or to create a vacuum in an adjoining cylinder where salt water could be sprayed to evaporate it and draw the fresh water from distillation.  Might be cheaper than nuclear and a lot less wasted heat.


dbayne




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Proposal
creator

   Thanks for the comment. I believe the costs per kw/h would be slightly more than expensive than typical hydro-electric power plants. This extra cost would be primarily due to the saltwater environmental which would entail extra maintenance of the facility. Other monetary costs such as protecting the local habitat and occasional dredging would also add to the cost. Actual costs have yet to be determined, although it is hoped that it will be competitive with other low-cost energy sources such as nuclear.

   I have been shifting the emphasis of the proposal to offshore locations, which I think is easier to grasp, (see my first comment posted). I believe at shore locations could still be developed feasibly wherever there is a reasonably sized tide and a decent water depth to accommodate the plant. Of course, the greater the height of the tide and depth of the ocean/bay; the greater the potential power generation.

   I strongly recommend that you look up the 2 video references, which have a total viewing time of about 20 minutes. (references 3,4). The PBS video in particular is very informative as it highlights where the tidal pressure originates, which is what this whole concept relies on. A third video which I haven't referenced is from greenenergyfutures.ca which highlights the power found in the Bay of Fundy tides. This is the link - http:// greenenergyfutures.ca/episode/tidal-tech-101

    I am not presently looking to expand the proposal, as I believe that if this concept can be tested and proven viable, it will dramatically change how the world develops clean energy. That's why I have not included any specific references to hydrogen and synthetic fuel development as these technologies will naturally follow.


jameslau




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Your example of a 2.88 GW peak power tidal power plant include a doubling without real justification. The claim cannot be justified.

If the 2.88 GW peak power plant can provide 6,000 GWh of electricity, the duty cycle equivalent at peak power would be 2100 hours. There are only 8700 hours in a year. During the month, most of the tide level is much less than peak level. During each tide cycle, the power conversion would also be much less than the peak level. The 2100 hour duty cycle is clearly not possible.

Average induced tide over the world is just 55 cm for the moon and 34 cm for the sun. High tide at selected locations already intensified by the existing geometry are not as common as tropical water with thermal energy resource. Please look into ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC).


dbayne




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Proposal
creator

    Hi James, thanks for your comment and interest. The proposal is still a work in progress. The 2.88 GW total is a doubling of the peak output based on a doubling of the tidal range of the Rance Tidal Power Station of 8 meters. I am hoping the tidal range in the Tidal Energy Power Plant will reach 15 meters based on what is seen in areas with extremely high tides such as the Bay of Fundy and Severn Estuary in Wales. The tidal pressure all stems from the same sources. The 6,000 GWh is also an extrapolating of Rance which has a 500 GWh yearly output.

   Rance has an operating capacity of about 24%, so you re right that the numbers don't line up when it comes to comparing the expected operating capacity. That's why I have included the footnote about  Niagara Falls  - flow of 3,600 m^3  and 4.5  GW from a 50 meter height.  It's appears that the increased height can substantially increase the pressure with even a modest water flow. I am hoping to find a way to get a more accurate number but there are other things that are taking up my time. One thing to keep in mind as well with this concept is that I am basing this on a 1 kilometer dam. To extend it to 2 kilometers would not double the initial cost or maintenance etc. as it would just be the walls that would be extended along with perhaps larger turbines.

      You also mention that there might not be enough suitable locations. If you read further into the proposal you will see that this has been addressed and can be verified.

       As regards your proposal; I have been following it's progress. I find it interesting but I don't know if potential implementers of the idea would find it feasible; and by that I mean private investors who are looking for a good return on their invested capital.

      Thanks again for your comment as I appreciate people taking the time to try and understand it.

 


dbayne




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    Hi James, thanks for your comment and interest. The proposal is still a work in progress. The 2.88 GW total is a doubling of the peak output based on a doubling of the tidal range of the Rance Tidal Power Station of 8 meters. I am hoping the tidal range in the Tidal Energy Power Plant will reach 15 meters based on what is seen in areas with extremely high tides such as the Bay of Fundy and Severn Estuary in Wales. The tidal pressure all stems from the same sources. The 6,000 GWh is also an extrapolating of Rance which has a 500 GWh yearly output.

   Rance has an operating capacity of about 24%, so you re right that the numbers don't line up when it comes to comparing the expected operating capacity. That's why I have included the footnote about  Niagara Falls  - flow of 3,600 m^3  and 4.5  GW from a 50 meter height.  It's appears that the increased height can substantially increase the pressure with even a modest water flow. I am hoping to find a way to get a more accurate number but there are other things that are taking up my time. One thing to keep in mind as well with this concept is that I am basing this on a 1 kilometer dam. To extend it to 2 kilometers would not double the initial cost or maintenance etc. as it would just be the walls that would be extended along with perhaps larger turbines.

      You also mention that there might not be enough suitable locations. If you read further into the proposal you will see that this has been addressed and can be verified.

       As regards your proposal; I have been following it's progress. I find it interesting but I don't know if potential implementers of the idea would find it feasible; and by that I mean private investors who are looking for a good return on their invested capital.

      Thanks again for your comment as I appreciate people taking the time to try and understand it.

 


dbayne




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Proposal
creator

    Hi James, just to clarify. The 24% capacity factor I used was based on the Wikipedia article for the Rance Tidal Power Station. They also state 28% in the same article. I believe this is pretty close to what you came up with. I will try and come up with more accurate numbers based on the increased pressure etc. as I am going to try and do a comparison to other renewables using a levelized cost of electricity format.


jameslau




Member


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I hope you are willing to contact me using my email address jameslau2@gmail.com. My main file for OTEC is already 35 pages long. There is a lot of information that is not easy to send to you through this contest format. I also have trouble to include a picture from my file to this energy supply contest.

You are definitely diligent in maintaining this contest entry. This is much better than most contest entries. I think the cost of tidal power plant construction is best represented by the Sihwa Lake Tidal power station used by South Korea. The 254 MW peak power is just slightly more than the Rance plant, but the 2011 construction date at 293 million US dollars provides a more up to date base for cost estimate. With 25 % duty cycle, the annual electricity production is about 5300 GWH. My estimate for OTEC power plant is 100 million dollars for 50 MW plant. 300 million dollars is enough for 150 MW OTEC plant. With 90% duty cycle, the yearly electricity will be 12000 GWH, more than double the Korean tidal power plant. I still have 40 days to include information in my OTEC file to this contest format limit.

Tidal power plant are built at locations that amplify tidal height. The natural structure for tide amplification is much larger than your few kilometers. I think I can convince you that OTEC is better than tidal power if I can let you read my more complete file. I want to say again that suitable place for OTEC is far more common than tidal power so that the total electricity generation capacity high favor OTEC. I hope you can send me more complete information about your tidal plant proposal without the limitation of the contest format.


jameslau




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I think it is desirable to talk about the real source of tidal energy. Beyond solar energy to keep ocean water in liquid state, we must remember the rotation of the earth. The kinetic energy of the rotation is large, but now renewable. It is unlikely the natural tide and any tidal energy extraction can slow down the rotation of the earth. Gravitational force due to the sun and the moon do slowly slow down the rotation of the earth, but the rate of slow down is so small that we have no reason to worry.

A more relevant factor is the wave velocity. Rotation of earth at about 1670 km/hour cause the tidal wave phase velocity to be more than 1500 km/hour. However, phase velocity is not the same as group velocity with real mass movement. The high ocean wave velocity is generated by large quantity of ocean water moving up and down in phase with the relative motion of the moon and the sun, not water mass moving with the relative motion of the moon and the sun. The kinetic (or potential) energy is not associate with high motion speed.

I still hope we can communicate with more technical details using emails. my email address is jameslau2@gmail.com.


dbayne




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Proposal
creator

Hi James, thanks for your input. I highly recommend that you watch the PBS video that explains where the tidal pressure originates. Contrary to what is commonly thought, the water is not being lifted towards the moon and it is the moon orbiting the earth, not earths' rotation that is causing the tides. As is mentioned in the video, the moons' gravitational pull is only 1 ten-millionth of an earth g, which is not even enough to lift a grain of sand into the air at high tide.

   By understanding how the water is 'falling' towards the earth-moon line, will help with understanding where all the pressure comes from that will hopefully make this concept work. Thanks again, as I appreciate people looking into this and expressing their thoughts. Take care.


jameslau




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The least credible reference in your contest entry is the PBS digital material. I am wondering if you are trying to be self-contradictory. Almost all you other references use more standard physics reasoning and this PBS digital make oposite claims. PBS is a recognized symbol for public broadcasting station. I am sure this PBS digital use the name to confuse people. The PBS digital presentation misrepresent the standard physics assumptions, and the arguments presented are faulty.  The global ocean has enough continuity to allow global tidal connection. It is not possible for any lake to have similar global connection so that lakes cannot have tides. High tide speed has always been phase velocity. In shallow water, the originally vertical movement in funnel shape tunnel (including limit imposed by the bottom) can make lateral speed of real mass more significant, but there has never been speed above 200 mph.

Tidal power plants use naturally existing effective funnel dams to enhance tide height. The proposed funnel dam is so much smaller than the existing natural effective funnel dams. There are still some useful sites for tidal power that have not been used, but total tidal power cannot contribute more than 1 % of the global electric energy supply. 


dbayne




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Hi James, thanks for your comment. The PBS video is not critical for proving the physics of the concept. I have included the video because it helps explain where the tidal pressure comes from. I don't think there are many people who are aware that the tide in the ocean can travel 700 km/hr or that the tide can travel 150 km/hr in shallow areas  such as the English Channel. I am trying to make the proposal as comprehensive as possible so that people can understand it. I want people to look up and understand all the references if possible. I don't know if you have looked up the references on Amphidromic points; but just those references and diagrams go a long way to explaining the concept.   

Thanks


dbayne




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Hi James, thanks for your comment. The PBS video is not critical for proving the physics of the concept. I have included the video because it helps explain where the tidal pressure comes from. I don't think there are many people who are aware that the tide in the ocean can travel 700 km/hr or that the tide can travel 150 km/hr in shallow areas  such as the English Channel. I am trying to make the proposal as comprehensive as possible so that people can understand it. I want people to look up and understand all the references if possible. I don't know if you have looked up the references on Amphidromic points; but just those references and diagrams go a long way to explaining the concept.   

Thanks


perry




Catalyst


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Hi Damian,

Thanks for this interesting proposal. Many of the technical aspects are beyond my expertise; but I will try to make a few comments:

  1. The project is quite large and ambitious; “It is estimated that the cost of the test would be The project is quite large and ambitious; “It is estimated that the cost of the test would be $10 million dollars and would be carried out in 20 meters deep water.” Could this be tested in a smaller scale capacity? Would it be possible to prove out the technology in such a manner? 0 million dollars and would be carried out in 20 meters deep water.” Could this be tested in a smaller scale capacity? Would it be possible to prove out the technology in such a manner?

  2. Could you provide more information on the costs and benefits? Several concerns have been raised by James Lau on this point. You responded indicating that this could be provided at a cost not much more than hydro power, given the salt water location. On a quick search, I saw this on hydro power: “In the U.S., hydropower is produced for an average of 0.85 cents per kilowatt-hour (kwh). This is about 50% the cost of nuclear, 40% the cost of fossil fuel, and 25% the cost of using natural gas.’ http://www.wvic.com/Content/Facts_About_Hydropower.cfm

But seems like these costs would be a lot more due to salt water, new technology, distance from energy consumption etc. How much of the cost will be associated with transmission of the energy.

  1. As James Lau suggested,“Tidal power only has two cycles a day.” Could you talk more about the peak and low tidal flows and whether there would be energy generation near slack tide? Could you also specify whether you think the bi-directional solution you mention is the one that you would go with?

  2. I think the environmental impact could be larger than you predict. Could you elaborate on other potential risks such as navigational hazards; impact on sealife, etc.?

  3. FYI, some recent wave developments in Chile: http://www.juancole.com/2016/05/could-chile-arabia.html


 


dbayne




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Proposal
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   Hi Perry, thanks for the comment and for looking over the proposal. I am going to leave a reply in a number of parts.

    When it comes to the test, I believe most people will understand the concept of fast flowing water being funneled to create a head, (height differential).

   I am not sure if testing in a lab that has wave tanks would be sufficient as this concept is not about the waves that you see coming ashore on a beach.

   While I believe that computer modeling can demonstrate this; a real world test will likely be necessary to convince people. $10 million dollars is a relatively small sum to spend in order to prove it conclusively in the real world. It may be possible to test the concept in 10 meters of water offshore, which would likely halve the cost, but I think at 20 meters, it will be a better representation of the actual minimum depth that a full scale plant would be built at.

 Part 1 of reply

 


dbayne




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Proposal
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   Hi Perry, thanks for the comment and for looking over the proposal. I am going to leave a reply in a number of parts.

    When it comes to the test, I believe most people will understand the concept of fast flowing water being funneled to create a head, (height differential).

   I am not sure if testing in a lab that has wave tanks would be sufficient as this concept is not about the waves that you see coming ashore on a beach.

   While I believe that computer modeling can demonstrate this; a real world test will likely be necessary to convince people. $10 million dollars is a relatively small sum to spend in order to prove it conclusively in the real world. It may be possible to test the concept in 10 meters of water offshore, which would likely halve the cost, but I think at 20 meters, it will be a better representation of the actual minimum depth that a full scale plant would be built at.

 Part 1 of reply

 


dbayne




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Part 2 of reply

   I am aware that most people have never heard of the tide traveling 700 km/hr in the ocean of that it can travel 150 km/hr in the English Channel. In the example I used for the English Channel, that would be the equivalent at peak flow of a 1 kilometer wide wall of water, 4.5 meters high, traveling at highway speed. Most people would probably estimate that it would be far less. That's why I have included detailed descriptions and references to make it as easy as possible to follow the reasoning.

   Both the Rance and Sihwa tidal plants operate in salt water environments. In the appropedia.org reference, see the reference from the British Hydro Power Association. In the pdf it states in reference to Rance after 40 years of operation, '12,000 t of steel and almost no corrosion and no more painting coat.' In other words, just the paint on the turbines etc, had peeled.

   In terms of costs per kilowatt; I am going to try and include a levelized cost of electricity comparing different renewables such as solar etc. I haven't had much time to work on this yet, and it appears there are different degrees as to how much detail to include such as financing costs etc. I am hoping I can finish this before the deadline.

   With regards to the environment and navigation concerns. It's envisioned that there would be nets to deter fish from entering. For navigation, there could be pillars anchored to the seafloor standing 10 meters above the high tide, stationed every 10-20 meters apart along with warning lights. A quick search on Wikipedia for wind farms in the North Sea shows that there are well over 1000 wind turbines in operation, so it can be assumed that navigation hazards have been adequately addressed.


dbayne




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Part 2 of reply

   I am aware that most people have never heard of the tide traveling 700 km/hr in the ocean of that it can travel 150 km/hr in the English Channel. In the example I used for the English Channel, that would be the equivalent at peak flow of a 1 kilometer wide wall of water, 4.5 meters high, traveling at highway speed. Most people would probably estimate that it would be far less. That's why I have included detailed descriptions and references to make it as easy as possible to follow the reasoning.

   Both the Rance and Sihwa tidal plants operate in salt water environments. In the appropedia.org reference, see the reference from the British Hydro Power Association. In the pdf it states in reference to Rance after 40 years of operation, '12,000 t of steel and almost no corrosion and no more painting coat.' In other words, just the paint on the turbines etc, had peeled.

   In terms of costs per kilowatt; I am going to try and include a levelized cost of electricity comparing different renewables such as solar etc. I haven't had much time to work on this yet, and it appears there are different degrees as to how much detail to include such as financing costs etc. I am hoping I can finish this before the deadline.

   With regards to the environment and navigation concerns. It's envisioned that there would be nets to deter fish from entering. For navigation, there could be pillars anchored to the seafloor standing 10 meters above the high tide, stationed every 10-20 meters apart along with warning lights. A quick search on Wikipedia for wind farms in the North Sea shows that there are well over 1000 wind turbines in operation, so it can be assumed that navigation hazards have been adequately addressed.


dbayne




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Part 3 of reply.

   With respects to the slack water. It's stated in the proposal that pumped water storage, hydrogen production and synthetic fuels will be developed that can help mitigate the problem. What could also help would be the strategic placing of plants in different locations. Building a plant to also capture the outgoing tide will help as well. 

   The efficiency of the plant in the power output numbers is stated at 24%. That's an average output compared to the 100% capacity if the turbines were to run full out all day. Having the plant capturing both the incoming and outgoing tide may bring that up to 48% efficiency.

   In terms of the power output for the plant that I have used in the example: 10.8 peak gigawatts and 2.6 average gigawatts. To give that some perspective; the heavily industrialized province of Ontario in Canada with over 13 million inhabitants has had a maximum peak power requirement of just over 27 gigawatts.

   One thing to keep in mind is that there are going to be many variables in terms of tidal speed, tidal height and both the size and location of the actual plants. This will all affect final output numbers. I've tried to be as reasonable as possible in the estimates for power output numbers and costs.

    I'm aware that it will take most people several hours of looking over the proposal and reviewing the references before understanding the idea. I'm hoping that I have presented the material in a way that catches peoples' attention.

   I will try to include some of this information in the main proposal page, but I'm close to the character limit in many of the sections. That's one of the reasons I like people commenting as not only do the comments help me refine the proposal, I can also include a little more information in this comments section to get some points across. I understand as well that the judges don't review the comments section when they judge the different proposals.

                       Thanks again for looking into this.  Damian


dbayne




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Hi Perry.

   One more small point I should make. When I mention that the tide is traveling 150 km/hr in the English Channel; it's not the top 4.5 meters traveling that fast but the volume of 4.5 meters inside the total depth. It could be compared to a tsunami wave that quickly travels across the ocean but only causes a small ripple out in the middle of the ocean.


dbayne




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Hi, just a quick note for those who may be trying to understand the concept. In the section 'What actions do you propose?', reference is made to the Amphidromic system - see reference [.1a]. The Bay of Fundy diagram is very important as it also shows the tidal range as the tide progresses up the bay. This is the water being funneled. This diagram also shows the time element and distance traveled.

   It's also interesting to note the volume of water that enters the Minas Basin - see reference 7. The volume of water that is mentioned is just a fraction of the water that is entering the Bay of Fundy, because not all of it reaches the Minas Basin as the tide forces water to the north side as well. Water also piles up in the Bay itself.


Bobren




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My firm has developed a new technology which would reduce the cost of the Seawalls by over 70%.

If you can get the base technology assessment worked out there are ways to dramatically reduce capital costs.

Be great once you get the physics sorted we could talk about up scaling.

New technology is coming online all the time.


dbayne




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Proposal
creator

   Hi Robert,

 Thanks for the comment. The engineer I have had discussions with has suggested that the geotubes and construction method that is proposed for the Swansea Tidal lagoon is a solid choice. See the video link - reference 9. Other options can definitely be considered as the project progresses and plans are drawn up for testing etc. 

Thanks for taking an interest in this, I appreciate it.       Damian

  


perry




Catalyst


26 | share

Congratulations on making the semi-finals.

I saw your reply on lab testing and computer modeling:

"When it comes to the test, I believe most people will understand the concept of fast flowing water being funneled to create a head, (height differential).   I am not sure if testing in a lab that has wave tanks would be sufficient as this concept is not about the waves that you see coming ashore on a beach.   While I believe that computer modeling can demonstrate this; a real world test will likely be necessary to convince people."

You might be right; but I think lab and computer modeling would be interesting to see.

I was impressed by this computer modeling for solar by Jeff Grossman (no relation) at MIT:

http://news.mit.edu/2012/three-dimensional-solar-energy-0327

You might also gain some great insights that way.,

Perry


dbayne




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Proposal
creator

Thanks for the comment Perry. I looked up the webpage. It was interesting. It's pretty cool what can happen when you think out of the box or in this case cube. If I can figure out a way to use computer modeling, It would be nice to be able to demonstrate features of the proposal. One thing that would have to be given some thought would be, how to be unbiased. At the moment, the numbers that would be entered into any equations would come from my findings so they would be biased in a sense. I would like to add that I appreciate your help earlier, I was able to incorporate a lot of your ideas and thoughts to make the proposal more substantial. Any other suggestions you may have is appreciated.            Damian 


dbayne




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Proposal
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Math and physics help needed! I have created a thread on the general discussion page as I would appreciate some help with the math and physics of my proposal. The question is; how fast does the tide travel in places such as the Bay of Fundy and the English Channel? Finding the speed of something is possible when you know the time and distance, right? 

 

   Using the tide tables from tides.gc.ca and tides4fishing.com along with googlemaps.com to find the locations, what are the tidal speed numbers that you come up with? Does the speed vary?

 

   I came up with some numbers; see the main description page of the proposal and the evaluation page. Do your figures match what I have come up with? Please leave a comment here and on the general discussion thread that has the title - Math and physics help needed! Post your questions and answers here.   Thanks, I appreciate the help.       Damian 


jameslau




Member


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I can tell that you continue to improve the content. Seems like you are not getting much help in math and physics in the last 5 months. Tidal energy is really conversion of earth's rotational energy. during the last 600 million years, the length of day has increased from 21.9 hours to 24 hours. The rate of energy conversion during this time is about 2.3 tera-watt. Average total global energy requirement is around 18 tera-watt. Electricity is 15 % of global energy need with average of 2.7 tera-watt. Local electricity generation capacity needs to be twice the average power because peak electricity demand at any location is approximately twice the average demand. It is unlikely tidal power plant can converted all the rotational energy release into electricity. Even at the extremely optimistic 40 % tidal energy conversion, the tidal power generation power is less than 1 tera-watt, nowhere close to solve the global energy and warming problem. Tidal energy is also not renewable. About 34 % of the 173,000 tera-watt solar energy has been converted to ocean thermal energy (refer to NASA website for solar energy budget). With the 59,000 tera-watt ocean thermal energy renewal rate, OTEC (ocean thermal energy conversion) should be the focus for global warming solution. Just convert 1 % of the solar energy delivered to 1/30 of the global ocean, the energy problem can be solved.


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