Shipping

If polywell fusion is developed, in what ways will the world change for better or worse? Discuss.

Moderators: tonybarry, MSimon

Helius
Posts: 465
Joined: Sun Oct 21, 2007 9:48 pm
Location: Syracuse, New York

Postby Helius » Thu Jun 26, 2008 10:50 pm

I think his idea is related to those "spray gliders", which are in my mind a brilliant invention. They work by changing boyancy. When they are heavy, they dive downward using the wing to glide horizontally. When they get to a predetermined depth, they increase boyancy, making them lighter than water. They then glide up to the surface using their wing to make them move horizontally. All in all they can travel hundreds of miles using very very very little power.


Here's a link.
http://www.whoi.edu/instruments/viewIns ... do?id=1498

In any case, if the concept works in water, a similar concept should work in air.


David


Hmmm. Maybe Someday they'll swim with the Cetaceans on Europa.
Thanks, I like the machine!

Jeff Peachman
Posts: 69
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2008 2:47 pm

Postby Jeff Peachman » Fri Jun 27, 2008 6:13 pm

Yeah the spray gliders seem pretty cool. It would be difficult to create an airborn version but likely possible. I didn't think of changing the bouyancy.. hmm..

rcain: Yeah your idea is different than what I thought but still interesting. I'm still trying to wrap my head around a practical use for it.
- Jeff Peachman

Jeff Peachman
Posts: 69
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2008 2:47 pm

Postby Jeff Peachman » Sun Jun 29, 2008 9:08 pm

Heres an idea that would be good for shipping:

So imagine that electric powered vehicles start to become popular. An interesting civil engineering project for the government could be charging vehicles with Resonant Induction.

I imagine that would just electrify the interstate freeways. That way electric cars only really need to travel a max of about 30 miles around town, and you can charge the car in your garage at night. If you go on a long trip, you use the freeway and get charged along the way.

Apparently they studied this problem in the 1990s using induction technology, but the technology didn't exist for resonant induction when they did the study. (See wikipedia article above). It might be cheaper to implement with resonant induction because the range and efficiency of the system is much better.

So, if we built it, truckers would never really need to stop for gas. If we get artificially intelligent cars that drive themselves, shipping gets cheaper and faster. And all of it could be powered cheaply by polywells.

What do you guys think?
- Jeff Peachman

drmike
Posts: 825
Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2007 11:54 pm
Contact:

Postby drmike » Mon Jun 30, 2008 1:16 pm

That's something I wanted to do 30 years ago. I would expect others have thought about it too.

It is fundamentally a great idea, but you need to ensure that roads without a power grid have a way for vehicles to recharge too.

You would think that trains would already do that if there was an economic advantage to it, but I think the long range power distribution becomes a problem. For inside a city though, I think it's a fantastic way to go. For long range, I think some modification is needed. I'm not quite sure what yet.

Jeff Peachman
Posts: 69
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2008 2:47 pm

Postby Jeff Peachman » Mon Jun 30, 2008 8:22 pm

Good points, but just for the sake of argument...

drmike wrote:... you need to ensure that roads without a power grid have a way for vehicles to recharge too.

Charge it at home. You should have enough range on battery alone for at least 30 or 40 miles, any further than that and you might as well use the freeway. In case you run out around town, put it in neutral and roll it to anyplace where you can charge it with an extension cord. Or maybe jumpercables will be replaced by cords which allow you to transfer power from one car to another.

drmike wrote:You would think that trains would already do that if there was an economic advantage to it, but I think the long range power distribution becomes a problem.

Well long distance distribution is pretty efficient using the HVDC power provided by the polywells. The question is whether it will be expencive to step down the voltage at various points along the highway.

I know that induction is used in transformers to step down voltage. Perhaps the resonant induction transmitters can transmit using HVDC and the cars can receive at lower voltage? I'm not entirely sure since electric systems are not my field.

drmike wrote:For long range, I think some modification is needed.

Well as long as the car recieves the power at an equal or greater rate than it consumes it, whats needed?
- Jeff Peachman

Roger
Posts: 788
Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2007 2:03 am
Location: Metro NY

Postby Roger » Mon Jun 30, 2008 10:08 pm

Jeff Peachman wrote:
So, if we built it, truckers would never really need to stop for gas.


Currently one train uses one gallon of diesel to travel 430 miles, those truck should be/will be off the road.

Plus the 300 mph train should be up and running by then. Seriously reducing planes and trucks.
I like the p-B11 resonance peak at 50 KV acceleration. In2 years we'll know.

MSimon
Posts: 14331
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 7:37 pm
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Contact:

Postby MSimon » Mon Jun 30, 2008 11:15 pm

The problem with maglev trains are that the "rails" are very expensive.

Now if BFRs reduce the cost of aluminum that might change the equation.

Then there is the problem of getting energy to the train. Liquid fuels are probably the way to go for a long time to come. If you want to get the train speed up to 300 mph (500 kph) or so.

Then there is the political problem. Every pol wants the train to stop in his town. If that happens then the top speed will make practically no difference in travel time. So then you need connection point cities and feeder cities.

The need for autos doesn't go away. However, you park and recharge/refuel. Catch the train and in an hour you are 250 miles away. In 15 hours you have crossed the continent.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

Helius
Posts: 465
Joined: Sun Oct 21, 2007 9:48 pm
Location: Syracuse, New York

Postby Helius » Mon Jun 30, 2008 11:49 pm

Roger wrote:
Jeff Peachman wrote:
So, if we built it, truckers would never really need to stop for gas.


Currently one train uses one gallon of diesel to travel 430 miles, those truck should be/will be off the road.

Plus the 300 mph train should be up and running by then. Seriously reducing planes and trucks.


We're missing a term, I think... Is it .. 430m/g/ton?

Scupperer
Posts: 139
Joined: Mon May 05, 2008 3:31 pm
Location: Huntsville, AL
Contact:

Postby Scupperer » Tue Jul 01, 2008 3:57 am

MSimon wrote:The problem with maglev trains are that the "rails" are very expensive.

Now if BFRs reduce the cost of aluminum that might change the equation.

Then there is the problem of getting energy to the train. Liquid fuels are probably the way to go for a long time to come. If you want to get the train speed up to 300 mph (500 kph) or so.


If new rails are going to be built, then the width of the new trains could just as well be widened to accommodate a BFR.

Average american rail car width is 10 ft. While I've seen the BFR dimensions projected at 1.5m-2m (5 - 6.5 ft) in diameter, what's the projected overall unit size, including the vacuum chamber and shielding? Unless it's larger than 12 ft, I'd bet many existing long-distance rail routes without tight tunnels or low overpasses could be easily converted, though any side-by-side tracks might need to be adjusted if the existing clearance is too tight.

Couple of numbers: it's 8 ft min. clearance from center of tracks to adjacent structures, and 13 ft min. from center of track to center of tracks on adjacent lines.

Another obvious question is how would motion and vibrations affect the BFR?
Perrin Ehlinger

dch24
Posts: 142
Joined: Sat Oct 27, 2007 10:43 pm

Postby dch24 » Tue Jul 01, 2008 6:18 am

Scupperer wrote:If new rails are going to be built, then the width of the new trains could just as well be widened to accommodate a BFR.

Average american rail car width is 10 ft. While I've seen the BFR dimensions projected at 1.5m-2m (5 - 6.5 ft) in diameter, what's the projected overall unit size, including the vacuum chamber and shielding? Unless it's larger than 12 ft, I'd bet many existing long-distance rail routes without tight tunnels or low overpasses could be easily converted, though any side-by-side tracks might need to be adjusted if the existing clearance is too tight.

Couple of numbers: it's 8 ft min. clearance from center of tracks to adjacent structures, and 13 ft min. from center of track to center of tracks on adjacent lines.

Another obvious question is how would motion and vibrations affect the BFR?
Rail companies have a hard time building new tracks. I'm actually in favor of widening rails to a new standard (metric, not imperial?). Let's just say 4 m and be happy.

But a friend of mine works for a major rail company. New rail lines have several obstacles:
  • Political problems: environmental impact, safety concerns, right of way, NIMBYs. Result: best case delays of about 3-5 years between new rail construction being proposed and when construction can start.
  • Logistical costs: purchasing and procuring steel (aluminum has also been mentioned, for maglev trains), manufacturing costs, etc. Result: construction costs are estimated at roughly $2 million per mile of track
The net effect is that current rail lines are saturated and freight delivery by rail has typical wait times of between a week and a month average. This means that tearing out current rail lines that are in heavy use is completely impossible without bankrupting the company. It's a catch-22.

drmike
Posts: 825
Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2007 11:54 pm
Contact:

Postby drmike » Tue Jul 01, 2008 1:01 pm

You'd have to lay double tracks. The new tracks would be wider by a large enough margin that the old tracks could stay inside. I've seen them replace the ties without moving the tracks, so the bed could be widened, ties replaced and leave the old tracks while the new ones get installed. Just have to design the equipment to move off the line of the tracks when a train has to come thru.

More expensive than laying plain new track, but a lot less expensive than losing the line!

Nanos
Posts: 341
Joined: Thu Jul 05, 2007 8:57 pm
Location: Treasure Island

Postby Nanos » Tue Jul 01, 2008 1:44 pm

How about underground vacuum trains, like these:

http://davidszondy.com/future/Living/subtrains.htm

Perhaps built using this approach:

http://www.geocities.com/Area51/Shadowl ... ct017.html

Mike Holmes
Posts: 308
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2008 1:15 pm

Postby Mike Holmes » Tue Jul 01, 2008 9:16 pm

Yeah, consider that train guage is merely a matter of conventions that go all the way back to Roman times. Uh, basically it's the size of a horses backside that determines the guage we use. No particular reason it has to be that size. Trains have gotten dangerously top-heavy (you've seen the double-deck loads they carry these days, no), in an attempt to carry more per unit length of train. Widening the loads out by, say, doubling the guage of the track would help a lot.

But in addition to rails, that means all new rolling stock to use the system as well. And it had better be built on the same beds, or we're going to be having ninteenth century warfare over land-rights all over again.

I like the idea of really fat trains. I just think that if it were practical that it probably would have been moved to previously.

Mike

tombo
Posts: 334
Joined: Fri May 09, 2008 1:10 am
Location: Washington USA

Postby tombo » Wed Jul 02, 2008 12:31 am

You would think that trains would already do that


They used to.
I remember seeing transcontinental electric trains passing near my house when I was a kid.
They used dynamic braking on the trains going down one side of the mountains to power the trains going up the other side.
Ran it all off of Grand Coulee Dam.
I was a nice system quiet, no smoke etc.
They ripped them all out in the '60's & replaced them with diesels.
Rumor has it that it was due to political pressure from the oil companies.
-Tom Boydston-
"If we knew what we were doing, it wouldn’t be called research, would it?" ~Albert Einstein

MSimon
Posts: 14331
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 7:37 pm
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Contact:

Postby MSimon » Wed Jul 02, 2008 9:28 am

tombo wrote:
You would think that trains would already do that


They used to.
I remember seeing transcontinental electric trains passing near my house when I was a kid.
They used dynamic braking on the trains going down one side of the mountains to power the trains going up the other side.
Ran it all off of Grand Coulee Dam.
I was a nice system quiet, no smoke etc.
They ripped them all out in the '60's & replaced them with diesels.
Rumor has it that it was due to political pressure from the oil companies.


More likely the high cost of maintaining the electrical delivery system. It is hard enough keeping the tracks open in the winter. Businesses do not destroy capital for no reason or even political ones.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.


Return to “Implications”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests