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PostPosted: Dec 24th, '11, 13:32 
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what if you used the tank on the hill to generate electricity ?
and pump it back when you have excess energy?
The calcs would change depending on the excess energy you had.
Say if you had 5kVA of solar panels, that you also used for your house, and all the excess went to pumping water up your hill. The head of water and the flow you allow all affect it too.
I thought 20 years out of a deep cycle was a bit excessive, but then I don't really know. Maybe if you only ever discharged them to no more than 80% (which is about the minimum capacity for normal auto batteries for long life). The more they are discharged the faster they wear out.
So then if you are only discharging 20% or 30% for ultimate longevity you probably need double or triple the amount of batteries to make up for the capacity you cannot use.
My comments about batteries being expensive was along the lines of more serious energy storage, not solely for a small AP setup. One battery is cheap, but if you are storing kWh then that's a whole different story. But then you would need a bazillion liter dam to pump water up to (and one to catch it all) to store sufficient water too....

Just get a place with private access to a big waterfall, I'm sure that's an easy solution :)

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PostPosted: Dec 24th, '11, 13:35 
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To buy all the capital equipment like you outlined would cost a lot.
But if you somehow got it all for free that would change things again...
free stuff is cool

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PostPosted: Dec 25th, '11, 01:39 
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SuperVeg wrote:
The problem with batteries is that they are expensive, and they need to be replaced regularly :(


And MicroHydro isn't expensive? ;)
I must admit it's not a subject I have researched much, but the dollars here:
http://www.microhydropower.com/price-list/
would buy a lot of batteries.
MicroHydro is also largely mechanical and mech stuff always always breaks, regularly and would require replacing.

Having said all of that, a micro hydro power station in the garden would be very cool :)

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PostPosted: Dec 25th, '11, 04:17 
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A post earlier in this thread linked to the story about "pico hydro electric" systems costing less than $100 and being used by people living near rivers in rural areas (maybe it was in Vietnam-it was late as I was reading it).
Like superveg said, using excess energy to pump uphill. Solar technology is also progressing and their are solar panels now that still make electricity even when overcast.
Yes, it would be a huge upfront cost, but if you are using solar to get off the grid, this provides power at night.
I don't know if its feasible, but I like thinking out loud and maybe someone else can run with it.

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PostPosted: Dec 25th, '11, 07:41 
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DuiNui wrote:

And MicroHydro isn't expensive? ;)
I must admit it's not a subject I have researched much, but the dollars here:
http://www.microhydropower.com/price-list/
would buy a lot of batteries.
MicroHydro is also largely mechanical and mech stuff always always breaks, regularly and would require replacing.

Having said all of that, a micro hydro power station in the garden would be very cool :)


Yeah like it said, it would be much nicer if all the stuff was already there somehow :)

I think I might disagree with the reliability of the microhydro though. Its basically just a pump and I would ASSUME that if you bought one it would be along the lines of a good quality pump and so should last for many many years...

And yeah, very cool :D

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PostPosted: Dec 25th, '11, 10:59 
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Jimbo,
It's absolutely feasible, I wasn't "dis-ing" the idea, just saying it's not very efficient, but like you say it has other benefits.

Earlier this year I started to play with DIY wind turbines, Neo magnets for a PMA etc etc.
Unfortunately in CM the average wind speed is not really high enough and I never got further than having a few LEDS light up.

I had also planned to build a small water wheel driven by some of the flow back to the ST, but never got round to it.
I even went as far as calculating the available energy from roof captured rain water in the monsoon system.
Lots of ideas, never enough time :)

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PostPosted: Dec 25th, '11, 11:38 
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DuiNui wrote:
Lots of ideas, never enough time :)

That says it all...especially with kids.

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PostPosted: Dec 26th, '11, 17:24 
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SuperVeg wrote:
[snip]
I thought 20 years out of a deep cycle was a bit excessive, but then I don't really know.


Yeah, I think telstra batteries (lots of people buy second hand 2 volt cells from telecommunications companies for their off grid stuff) are good for 20 years but I think it has a lot to do with them always being full. Thus the 10 years for real life applications. But the rule is the less you drain them, the longer they last.

My point was really just about the fact that you could buy a lot of batteries with 116,000 litres worth of rainwater tanks. and the environmental impact, and cost of batteries was not as bad a lot of people think.

We tend to see batteries as really scary things, because they are if you hit one with a sledge hammer in the middle of your lounge room, but when handled and recycled properly they are really just a rainwater tank with some acid and some lead added :)

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PostPosted: Dec 26th, '11, 20:02 
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true.
IMHO batteries the biggest bottleneck in the advancement of many types of technology.
And there is a shiteload of research currently going into them to try and get much more portable energy storage.
Obtaining big ass cheap batteries is a pretty good way to go. do you know how much the 2nd hand Tel$tra ones go for ?

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PostPosted: Dec 26th, '11, 20:45 
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ufos-iiW ... re=related
cheers


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PostPosted: Dec 26th, '11, 20:52 
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Cool!
Ummmm, I don't get it :dontknow:
But I do love random :)

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PostPosted: Dec 26th, '11, 21:26 
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lead acid lake? :)

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PostPosted: Dec 26th, '11, 21:44 
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SuperVeg wrote:
true.
IMHO batteries the biggest bottleneck in the advancement of many types of technology.
And there is a shiteload of research currently going into them to try and get much more portable energy storage.
Obtaining big ass cheap batteries is a pretty good way to go. do you know how much the 2nd hand Tel$tra ones go for ?


I know of someone who has some but I think they were already in their system when they bought their house (changed from a windmill and powering a radio and fluro in case of bushfire etc.)

But there is a site called fieldlines that I think you will find is the alternative power equivalent to BYAP for aquaponics. Those people know everything worth knowing.

I don't think telstra sells batteries direct, but flog them to resellers, probably at auction. I'm guessing they are sold when they are half way through their life or something, but I wouldn't buy any second hand from ebay or anything because they may well be 99% of the way through their lives.

From what I've read, there are other sources of batteries from places like server farms that use batteries for their UPSs and change them long before they expire due to the critical nature of the information they protect. These batteries may never have been "used" in that they may have always remained fully charged. No doubt they are still not as good as new or anything, but they may well be worth a look.

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PostPosted: Dec 26th, '11, 23:06 
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BullwinkleII wrote:
You also need a huge sump to take all the overflow of all that water that's entering your system throughout the night.

If you are going to have that much water, just make one big tank, and pump to your grow beds only at night.

Charge a battery during the day to run a powerhead at night. 12 watts will move 5000 LPH and keep your system oxygenated.

With enough water in the system, and not too many fish, pumping in daylight only is something people already do. I did it for a while to try to keep my water warm , but found I had to drop the amount of feed I was giving the system by quite a lot.

Making a really efficient system to make it financially viable to run on solar would be a good problem to solve.

I might run it through the invention engine and see what comes out.



Is it wrong to quote yourself? :dontknow:

but....

I posted the result on my system thread. Here is what the invention engine spat out :)

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