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Off grid energy

 
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Hello,

Has anyone here tried any of the following and would be willing to share experiences?

1.  Off-grid electricity like biodiesel , rather than solar PV
2.  Waste-to-enery for your homestead (from plastic or other waste)

Regards,
Ashish
 
Rocket Scientist
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Hi Ash;
Do you mean running a diesel generator from bio diesel?
Most of us prefer the silence of solar panels for our power.
But there are times when a generator is needed.
I run mine on propane. In the US, diesel generators are cost prohibitive.
Using bio diesel would be great if you have a diesel genny.

As far as waste to energy... that is known as a Co-generation plant.
Not practical on a homeowner basis but on an industrial scale they are very good.  
 
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Location: New Mexico
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I have made Bio, I had a restaurant and a diesel pickup, made sense right. Well it takes heat, lye and methanol. Pumps to move it around, hard to do off grid. Then there is finding Lye and Methanol.
 
pollinator
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I have ran a generator with charcoal that I have made.  

This video shows the process.

 
pollinator
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I would second that. Charcoal gasification is the most practical home made alternative fuel out there. Bio diesel is fine if you have access to it but it has an established market now so there is no more free fat around. Plastic to fuel is doable but is all but illegal and I would say for good reason. When the price of solar panels dropped to now less that $0.50 cents a watt a lot of the alternatives stopped making much sense so lost a lot of their energy and backers.
 
Mart Hale
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David Baillie wrote:I would second that. Charcoal gasification is the most practical home made alternative fuel out there. Bio diesel is fine if you have access to it but it has an established market now so there is no more free fat around. Plastic to fuel is doable but is all but illegal and I would say for good reason. When the price of solar panels dropped to now less that $0.50 cents a watt a lot of the alternatives stopped making much sense so lost a lot of their energy and backers.




The very reason I moved to Florida, and I am now off grid ;-)    I just bought used panels for .30c   a watt.     A combo must be had solar and a propane generator is what I recommend.     Propane you don't have to worry about gas geling up.      
 
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I know of people who use home produced methane in their LP generator to charge batteries during cloudy days. But these were short run times and no more than a few hours a week. And, they had minimal electrical needs.
 
pollinator
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Someone mentioned that co-generation doesn't make sense at small scale.
I am wondering if anyone that uses a generator has tried putting an EGR cooler in the exhaust.
Something like this:
https://truckserviceparts.com/dorman-egr-cooler-for-international-dt466-904-5020/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIgL2Iz9fh8QIVIB6tBh2MBQboEAQYBCABEgKOoPD_BwE

So the exhaust will heat water.

Expensive new but used they are cheap, I just got 3 TDI EGR coolers for free.
They are stainless.
They are meant for exhaust to pass through and water to circulate around.
 
Ashish Mukherjee
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How much voltage can it produce for what length of time? I guess this is kind of similar to a thermal/coal power plant but on a small scale. I think a lot of charcoal would be required for even charging a laptop for an hour, perhaps. Right?
 
Ashish Mukherjee
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Thanks for this idea.

1. How do you produce methane at home?
2. What's a LP generation? Liquified Petroleum?
 
Ashish Mukherjee
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Does anyone use ThermoElectric Generators for producing small amounts of power?
 
David Baillie
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Back in the day when I was working that out we had figured out a ratio of roughly 12bs of charcoal per us gallon equivalent and 2 to 3 lbs per kw hr. Those calculations were from the Yahoo charcoal gasification group now gone but the small engine group on www.driveonwood.com has an active charcoal gasification group still...
 
Oh, sure, you could do that. Or you could eat some pie. While reading this tiny ad:
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