Saturday, May 16, 2015

Audi e-Diesel

Alchemy by Audi

Audi's Announcement on its e-diesel has sparked quite a bit of excitement in me and I have written a couple of pieces on it as a result, the main one linked below.

However, years of experience has taught me to be cautious. That cautious attitude set me looking for some more meaty and substantial analysis of Audi's stories.

I have just very recently stumbled upon an article by oil expert and science writer Robert Rapier where he uses his deep knowledge to pick a few holes in the Audi story. Primarily on what realistically it might cost per litre for this magic diesel from air and water.

Robert has kindly given me permission to quote from his article and I am currently preparing a post which I will hopefully publish in a few days time - please watch this space.


Sunday, May 10, 2015

Ireland an Oil Producer?


Government of Ireland 
It's Gambling History

In September of 2008 Ireland's Government took the biggest financial gamble EVER in the history of the nation. Under duress, it undertook to guarantee a total of €440 BILLION the which to cover the bad ass banking systems mistakes, its bad judgements, and what amounted to nothing short of its sheer criminality.

That fatal decision caused Ireland countless losses, much depression, and not a few suicides. It directly cost the Irish taxpayer €40 BILLION or €10,000 for every woman, man, and child in Ireland.

It was possibly the biggest single policy decision ever taken by an Irish government. The decision bet the stability, the very future of Ireland and of its people, on the survival of the banks.

If you boil the whole thing down to its bones what the government decided was that those who made and played with millions were to be guaranteed and bailed-out by the struggling masses, by those on welfare, by the sick and by children, and by future generations.

1925 Ireland Gambled and WON

In 1925, the Irish Free State took another very large gamble. But at that time it wasn't putting the nation and its future generations into hock, nor was it guaranteeing the rich at the expense of the poor. The gamble was on new technology to bring Ireland into the industrial age. It was the so called "Shannon Scheme".

On the 13th of August 1925 Ireland awarded the German company Siemens the contract for the electrification of the entire country. The core of the project was the hydroelectric power plant on the river Shannon with three 30 Mega Watt water turbines. The whole project including the distribution grid came to £6,721,000.The decision proved to be one of the best investments in the history of the nation.

Time for Another Bet?

What if Ireland had its very own Green-diesel oil supply?

(1) We would prevent hundreds of millions of Euro leaving the country (in recent years total oil imports averaged around €4 billion a year).
(2) There would be jobs from the refining and distribution of this oil.
(3) We would be less subject to the massive market fluctuations in oil prices.
(4) We could insure minimal supply at times of crisis.
(5) It would give Carbon Credits to Ireland.

Would Ireland taking a chance on Audi's e-diesel process be a fair bet at this time? Ireland has tons of spare Green Electricity being generated every night by our increasing number of wind farms. During the night much power is generated when it is not needed and therefore goes mainly to waste. This waste wind energy could be purchased at a cheap price and used to turn our other plentiful resources WATER and AIR into Blue Crude. Stripping Carbon from the air would gain Carbon Credit to Ireland.

1.25% of our BIGGEST Gamble Might suffice?

It would no doubt be taking a chance a gamble, and it would take a fair sized financial investment.

I am suggesting that a mere 1.25% of the size of our biggest gamble, the one we will be paying for far into the future, might buy us a foothold in this new Green Oil technology. I have no idea of what I am talking about in terms of costs but just maybe a half a billion would get us a foot in the door - maybe?


Friday, May 08, 2015

Diesel from Air and Water


Super Clean Diesel Oil
from just
Air and Water

Tesla Cars and Elon Musk have been hogging the Green Lime Light. And I say good luck to Mr Musk I admire his open patent on his battery technology.

Audi, yes the car maker, has recently been sounding trumpets and letting off fireworks in announcing it is a major investor / player along with two other companies ClimeWorks and SunFire in the advanced development of an alchemy to create very high quality diesel from just the air and water.

This is NOT a Spoof

A joke? No, no joke here, it has, to my nose, the smell of something far more substantial. If the hoopla is not overstated, it might just prove to be something REALLY BIG in green technology and in saving the planet.

A pilot plant is already producing approximately 160 litres or 35 Gallons of so called "Blue Crude" per day with a stated 70% overall efficiency figure. Nearly 80% of this Blue Crude can be converted into synthetic diesel.

Very High Quality Diesel 

This fuel – they are calling Audi e-diesel – is totally free of sulphur and aromatics. It also has a high cetane number, which means that it ignites very easily. This means the burn is very good and clean giving excellent results. The chemical properties of this oil facilitate its blending with regular diesel.

The Alchemy Step by Step

(1) Air in motion = wind. Wind turbines generate green electricity,
(2) The green electricity is used to to power the splitting water into it two components Oxygen and Hydrogen,
(3) A separate plant extracts Carbon Dioxide from the air,
(4) The Carbon Dioxide is processed into Carbon Monoxide,
(5) The Hydrogen and Carbon Monoxide are then put through two processes at very high pressure of 25 bar or 363 psi and high temperature of 220C. "Blue Crude" is what comes out the far end.
(6) The Blue Crude can be processed into various fuels etc. 

Not New Science 

The essential process is not a new concept. What is new is that this manifestation takes carbon from the atmosphere and uses water as the basic ingredients. The process was developed by Franz Fischer and Hans Tropsch at the "Kaiser-Wilhelm-Institut für Kohlenforschung" in Mülheim an der Ruhr, Germany, way back in 1925.

The 1925 Fischer–Tropsch process is a series of chemical reactions that turns a mixture of carbon monoxide and hydrogen into liquid hydrocarbons. The process has been explored by various researchers over time. It is only now it has gone fully GREEN and left the laboratory and been demonstrated as capable of proving a viable source of low sulphur diesel. 

The Possibilities 

If the Audi - SunFire - Climeworks process can be successfully up-scaled from a shed in the car park to a facility producing tens of thousands of litres a day and those factories replicated all over the world, while continuing to make use of the ClimeWorks extraction process of CO2 from the air as its raw material, it certainly could make an impact on global CO2 and be a major contribution to climate protection. Let's just say I am excited and hopeful that this one is a runner.

SunFire say that their analyses have shown that the synthetic fuel is more environmentally friendly, and additionally has superior combustion qualities when compared to regular fuel. This would possibly mean better starting and better running of the engine, much less pollution from the exhaust, better fuel efficiency, more engine power.

"The engine runs quieter and fewer pollutants are being created," SunFire Chief Technology Officer Christian von Olshausen says in a press release.

Cost of this New Super Eco Diesel?

The Audi announcements suggest that their e-diesel will sell to the public for between 1 and 1.50 Euros per litre, dependent on the price of Green Electricity. That should be able to favourably compete with normal diesel that is if governments don’t tax the ass off it.

"If we get the first sales order, we will be ready to commercialise our technology", said von Olshausen.


Wednesday, May 06, 2015

FreeTrade Ireland

Dumping Rubbish
Costs Dearly

Bin charges increasing? All rubbish is now weighed so it's costing a fortune to get rid of heavy items. At 23+ cent per Kg to get rid of rubbish it is worth thinking about other ways of disposing of unwanted things and materials.

So for instance maybe you have some left over stuff after renovating the kitchen, the old sink and taps, some left over tiles, the old but still good work-tops, and perhaps perfectly good old kitchen cabinets. It would cost you a considerable amount to hire a skip.

Also disposing stuff over time using bin collections will lead to smaller but still significant cost 50Kgs will most likely run up a bill of around €12.50.

Many people will think of placing an advert in the local advertiser etc. and that is even going to cost and you will have the trouble of placing the advert. Local paper adverts will not of course have a photo of what is on offer, so they are likely to have limited effect. 

Totally Free Adverts 

Now, through an innovative bunch of people there is a totally FREE on-line system that offers completely free adverts of stuff you don't want complete with your photos.

The really great news is that you are also saving the environment by re-cycling the goods and additionally helping out a fellow citizen in the process.

This is our Enda promoting FTI (Our Enda the Irish PM)

The effort is called Free Trade Ireland, and is funded through. an Irish Government scheme. The basic idea is you want rid of something - you offer it free - the advert and the service are free. It is an alternative to charity shops and you have almost no restrictions in what you offer. The service has been active since July 2010. The graphic below shows the results for 2013.

In 2013 FreeTrade Ireland announced the following figures:
• Over 14,000 items were reused
• Over €1.4 million in savings made by users of the site
• Over 412,000 unique visitors to the site. 

So What Kind of Stuff is on Offer?

The stuff being advertised and recycled ranges from pianos and furniture down to teddy bears and hair straighteners. As the process spreads wider across the nation, a wider range of goods and materials are being offred. It needs many more people participating in order to really get motoring, consider signing up as a members - it is totally free.

SmartPhone App 

Recently Free Trade Ireland launched a free smartphone app. as part of the EU Week of Waste Reduction. The app works much the same as the website. You can download the app free from iTunes and Android Play Store.

The facility is in its infancy - simply because not enough people are aware of the advantages. However, to date, the website has clocked up over 3 million visitors, and more than 42,000 items have passed hands to new users and been reused. 

Free and Kosher!

The Free Trade Ireland service is funded by the Environmental Protection Agency under the National Waste Prevention Programme.

I recommend you visit the site and sign up as a member. It is Free - it is Kosher - it saves money - it saves the environment. The more people involved - the better it gets.