Author Topic: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?  (Read 1157 times)

Offline Judi Durber

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Offline shortscotsman

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #1 on: August 27, 2021, 11:58:25 pm »
yes : because it gets pulled out again

Offline Cantclimbtom

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2021, 08:04:30 am »
No, it's silly.

We'd discussed this previously and people had done some back-of-a-fag-packet calculations and realised it's not any better than a couple of old forklift (reachlift) batteries. Possibly worse.

The mine idea has far more potential to extract money from investors. Viewed in terms of potential investment not potential energy it has great promise. Amusing mine parallels with the old salting scams?
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Online Fjell

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2021, 08:11:12 am »
It’s quite hard to make energy storage pay outside of providing very short term stability to large utilities, whether that is electricity or gas. I once operated something in the UK that we were paid £100mln a year over 20+ years to keep on standby that could cover supply shortage for a few hours for a large chunk of the UK. It was barely used and we once got (tried anyway) to be prosecuted by Ofgem who didn’t get the point somehow (ie it was the last reserve for when all else has failed) - regulators are often not the brightest.

I tried for a while to make pumped storage work, but there was no money in it. The price difference between low and high demand wasn’t there. The more storage is installed the less money will be available per unit capacity, so I would think hard about putting your life savings in it.

Offline Graigwen

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2021, 08:47:47 am »


The mine idea has far more potential to extract money from investors. Viewed in terms of potential investment not potential energy it has great promise. Amusing mine parallels with the old salting scams?

There is a great multi-national tradition of mining frauds. While an old Australian definition of a mine is sensible (and works for Mid Wales as well):

"A hole in the ground with a Cornishman at the bottom"

The American equivalent is:

"A hole in the ground with a liar at the top"

The latter quote is also the title of a book by Dan Plazak subtitled "Fraud and deceit in the Golden Age of American Mining"  While checking the authors name I noticed next it on my bookshelves four books on the Bre-X fraud.

When I lived in Cwm Pennant I was familiar with a quote from a descendant of the 19th century owner of Gilfach Mine, "...they poured scores of thousands of pounds down holes in Cwm Pennant and called it mining."  The English owners visit coincided with trams of rich ore being wheeled out of the mine. The local miners had been hiding it in the mine for months as they thought the owners were intending to close the mine.

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Online Fjell

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2021, 09:34:00 am »
I do in fact have a fair sum invested in wind, solar and standby generation of various sorts. I thus get sent regular updates on what transpires. The number one risk is government policy and regulation. We recently had the EU telling the UK to stop subsidising standby generation because they thought it distorted the market (presumably they believed the UK should import it instead).

This is exactly the the problem I had with Ofgem. They prioritised short-term price over security of supply, which is fab right up to the moment the lights go out. If the lights went out in the UK was the EU going to fill the gap? With what? It’s a mismatch of accountabilities. They did the same with vaccines - they thought is was a price issue when it was palpably a security of supply issue.

Offline davel

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #6 on: August 29, 2021, 11:07:14 pm »

The American equivalent is:

"A hole in the ground with a liar at the top"

The latter quote is also the title of a book by Dan Plazak subtitled "Fraud and deceit in the Golden Age of American Mining"  While checking the authors name I noticed next it on my bookshelves four books on the Bre-X fraud.

The above book is available to read free online at https://archive.org/details/holeingroundwith00plaz - I found it depressing.

Dave

Online PeteHall

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #7 on: August 30, 2021, 12:04:21 pm »
It’s quite hard to make energy storage pay outside of providing very short term stability to large utilities

I'm currently working on a number of data centre projects. For these, any outage, even a few seconds would be catastrophic, so they are very keen on instant access standby power.

The backup generators take 20s or so to start up, so large battery banks are usually provided to plug this gap. One technology starting to appear on the scene is the use of flywheels, which can provide instant power for up to 40 seconds in the event of an outage, uf they need to be in constant motion so they are ready if/when needed.

In this scenario, a drop-weight in a mine shaft would be ideal,  but I wonder how many suitable shafts exist in the right areas... You can't build a data centre anywhere, you need power and data in sufficient quantities.

Slough is where it's all happening, any deep mine shafts around there?

Offline davel

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #8 on: August 30, 2021, 02:18:08 pm »
... backup generators take 20s or so to start up, so large battery banks are usually provided to plug this gap. One technology starting to appear on the scene is the use of flywheels, which can provide instant power for up to 40 seconds in the event of an outage, uf they need to be in constant motion so they are ready if/when needed.

In this scenario, a drop-weight in a mine shaft would be ideal ...
I'm not so sure that a drop-weight in a mine shaft would be ideal. Assuming the weight is at the top of the shaft ready for action and generator coupled to it is not rotating, it would take some seconds to spin the generator up to speed as the weight starts to drop.

I would think that constantly-rotating flywheels (running in an evacuated or hydrogen-filled enclosure to reduce windage losses) would be a far more practical solution.

Dave

Offline pwhole

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #9 on: September 01, 2021, 06:16:44 pm »
Not energy storage, but generation - looks like an interesting idea though. The footsteps will always happen, so in that sense it is 'free':

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/sep/01/hi-tech-wooden-flooring-can-turn-footsteps-into-electricity

Scientists have developed technology that can turn footsteps into electricity. By tapping into an unexpected energy source, wooden flooring, researchers from Switzerland have developed an energy-harvesting device that uses wood with a combination of a silicone coating and embedded nanocrystals to produce enough energy to power LED lightbulbs and small electronics. This device, called a nanogenerator, is based on sandwiching two pieces of wood between electrodes.

Offline ChrisJC

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #10 on: September 01, 2021, 09:23:27 pm »
Not energy storage, but generation - looks like an interesting idea though. The footsteps will always happen, so in that sense it is 'free':

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/sep/01/hi-tech-wooden-flooring-can-turn-footsteps-into-electricity

Scientists have developed technology that can turn footsteps into electricity. By tapping into an unexpected energy source, wooden flooring, researchers from Switzerland have developed an energy-harvesting device that uses wood with a combination of a silicone coating and embedded nanocrystals to produce enough energy to power LED lightbulbs and small electronics. This device, called a nanogenerator, is based on sandwiching two pieces of wood between electrodes.

I have heard a similar idea some years ago but using road surfaces instead. Of course, the energy does come from somewhere, so presumably fuel consumption would go up slightly.

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Online RobinGriffiths

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #11 on: September 01, 2021, 10:22:08 pm »
I'm wondering with mine shafts, with so many being flooded, whether dragging a big balloon to the bottom and letting it rise on the generation phase would be an option? Although you'd probably need an impractically large balloon made of impracticaly strong material, with some impractical mechanics in a presumably acidic environment. Still, viable for an alternative steampunk universe I'm sure. - I'll get me coat - and leather goggles.

Offline Cantclimbtom

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #12 on: September 02, 2021, 08:23:53 am »
No, sorry Robin, you'll have to try harder than that. No investment!

Pwhole is far better as that bandies about the term nano in interesting combinations: nanogenerator nanocrystals etc

I need you to re-write your business pitch and include the balloon uses carbon nanofibers (US spelling please), the balloon release is timed based on an AI algorithm and the power comes from harnessing differences in fluid densities, gravitational acceleration and displacement mechanics. Be sure to suggest the technology should be suitable for bundling in a carbon offsetting related ETP investment vehicle
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Offline Speleotron

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #13 on: September 02, 2021, 10:59:10 am »
Don't forget the blockchain.
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Online RobinGriffiths

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #14 on: September 02, 2021, 11:06:52 am »
Think I'll invent an anti-splashback toilet instead. Already got the name - The Vortex Turdmaster™.

Offline NewStuff

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #15 on: September 02, 2021, 03:01:56 pm »
The Vortex Turdmaster™.

Sounds like a 1950's British motorcycle...
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Online RobinGriffiths

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #16 on: September 02, 2021, 09:39:24 pm »
The Vortex Turdmaster™.

Sounds like a 1950's British motorcycle...

Ha, ha. In British Racing Green?

Offline ChrisJC

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #17 on: September 02, 2021, 09:46:14 pm »
Think I'll invent an anti-splashback toilet instead. Already got the name - The Vortex Turdmaster™.

It's already been done. It's called the Shove-Some-Bogroll-Down-The-Pan-Before-Opening-The-Bomb-Bay-Doors™.

Installed at most reputable establishments.

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Online RobinGriffiths

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Re: Should we be dropping 50,000 tonns down a mine shaft?
« Reply #18 on: September 03, 2021, 12:22:15 am »
Yes, but that requires a degree of pre-planning on the part of the tod dropper. But a valid point nevertheless.

 

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