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      CommentAuthorTrim
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019
     
    • CommentAuthorAsterix
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019
     
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019
     
    It's dismaying to see, in the middle of trying to raise funds for something real.
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      CommentAuthorTrim
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019
     
    Musk should build it in a big hole, one way to avoid the wind.
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019
     
    That's more or less what AP was inventing a bit earlier.
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    It seemed the obvious way to go, and the least obtrusive to the landscape. First order estimates placed the cost of construction (thanks to ping I think it was) competitive with Lithium Ion storage.

    There is a deal of detail to deal with though (deal?), as with any serious engineering project. Take for instance the issue of initial available power from a stationary mass, which is proportional to velocity (not potential energy). It would have to be constructed with a fast energy cache (just like computer memory) and optimised for cost and performance. So that's a hybrid system.
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019
     
    Competitive with Li ion storage is not competitive, since batteries are greatly nicer and more beautiful than big holes in the ground with weights in.
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    Rhotacism
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019
     
    OK. I mean Ew-Eye stowage.
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      CommentAuthorTrim
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019
     
    Why expensive concert blocks, why not bags of heavy waste?
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    There may well be a high school reference imminent
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      CommentAuthorTrim
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019
     
    How about reversing the process?

    Use deep water to submerge large floats via land based cables and a fixed submerged pulley, when you want to store power wind the cable and submerge the float, to get power let the cable unwind.

    The most expensive part would be the anchored pulleys.
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    I believe this has been tried. I also believe that the world is not gobsmacked about it. But it does solve the "instantaneous initial power" issue in a superior way to top-down gravity storage.
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      CommentAuthoralsetalokin
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019 edited
     
    Go a step further: locate your buoyancy powered inverse yo-yo in a location with deep tides, and wind in at low tide, let out at high tide.
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019
     
    These guys did a project using balloons under Lake Ontario. I haven't heard much from it recently.
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      CommentAuthorTrim
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019
     
    Thanks, I like that idea, wished I had read it earlier as my musing has been wasted as I came up with a similar idea to do away with the floats.

    How efficient are the turbines?

    My idea ended with powering air tools in a factory.

    And of course how economical is it compared with all these new batteries and super capacitors?
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019 edited
     
    The problem with compressed air storage is that when you compress air you heat it up. That heat will then be lost to the environment over time, but it represents a portion of the energy you put in. Unless you have somehow stored the heat to . put back in when the gas cools as you re-expand it, you have wasted a good portion of the energy by heating the gas. Hydrostor claims to have a way to do it.
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      CommentAuthorTrim
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019
     
    Obviously not a hundred per cent efficient but every bit helps but heat batteries add to the cost and complexity.
    • CommentAuthorAsterix
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019
     
    Shades of MDI
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      CommentAuthorTrim
    • CommentTimeAug 16th 2019
     
    That tends to make outrageous claims on range, although it is quick to top up if you can find a filling station, liquid air is also possible as is liquid nitrogen.

    I have seen ideas of using liquid air with a biogas catalytic heaters (doesn't use flame or nasty pollutants) to warm the air instead of relying on ambient heat but why not use biogas only?