A simple stirling engine might be a good way to pump water uphill to store in a microhydro pond--You have a solar absorptive pipe with one-way valves all along its length, and concentrate sunlight along it.
mekennedy1313 wrote:Land with running water is expensive, at least much more so than dry property.
Really? I'd be interested to hear more about why it doesn't work; it was described to me matter-of-factly by one of my design teachers. I don't know the proper name for it, or if it has a proper name. It doesn't seem to me that you would need to cool the pipe alternately along its length--letting a section of pipe cool off every few feet or so shouldn't be hard either, though.
Thanks for the diagrams, much clearer now.
I've always seen those described as "fluidyne pumps" rather than "liquid Striling."
I think Kerrick's pipe-and-valves pump would work if the valves were tight enough, but there would be very little throughput. it isn't a thermosiphon, though, because it isn't driven by convection, it's driven by the change in volume of the whole mass of water in the pipe.
it might work better to add a large pressure tank with an air bladder to the system since the volume of a gas will change so much more than a liquid with changes in temperature.
It would work only until the initial water in the pipe boiled out. With no cooling there would be no contraction to pull more water through the lower 1-way valve. The vapour pressure of the steam would hold the water out until heating stopped and contraction began. Small amounts might seep in during heating but would become steam. Not a good strategy for pumping water.
Regarding batteries for storage, I've used deep cycle, lead-acid "wet cells", sealed gel lead-acids, and Edison nickel-iron cells in both cars and houses. The lead-acids are over 99% recyclable, easy to find locally, easy to turn in for recycling, and relatively inexpensive. But the sealed gel cells can't leak, never need refilling with distilled water, never off-gas explosive gases, and are mechanically sturdier for vehicle applications. They cost slightly more than wet cells or AGMs (absorbed glass mat) but have 3 times the "cycle life" (number of available charge-discharge cycles for a given percent draw-down) and 98% charge eficiency.
The Edison cells use nickel and nickel oxide electrodes in a bath of potassium hydroxide with lithium hydroxide as a catalyst. They work well in very low temps, are lighter than lead-acids, and are sturdy but they have poor charge efficiency (about 70%), they are hard to find, and they cost a bundle unless you can find used ones cheap. You use them for about 10 years, then drain the electrolyte (which turns into potassium carbonate from reaction with CO2) and refill with fresh electrolyte. The diluted electrolyte makes a good potassium fertilizer on orchard trees, if needed.
You can find more details from the text and links on our web page at http://www.geopathfinder.com/9659 .
By the way, the BEST off-grid electricity is what you have available in your area! For us that's PV.
Whisper McCoy wrote:High water volume or large drops may not be necessary after all! Check this out- another "why didn't I think of that!" common sense idea!