generate electricity with coal

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: SMITTY On: Mon Dec 08, 2008 8:57 pm

JJLL wrote:I've looked into this idea and the best solution I've found is here - http://www.greensteamengine.com/



I saw they have models up to 10 HP -- that's HUGE for a steam engine!! Probably 1500 ft./lbs. of torque! I like the pic of the guy in the motorboat with the boiler & stack in front of him! :lol: He was flying! 8-)

I've always wanted to build a steam engine to generate electricity. You could throw all scrap combustibles in it to burn & have free power....BUT......the amount of money you need to spend to get the system up & running is just completely impractical. You need to have a tank that can handle not only 800 PSI steam pressure ( at LEAST -- might need a little margin of safety on top of that :shock: ), but also an 1800* coal fire burning beneath it. I'd imagine finding someone with the skill to build something like that would be difficult........then, if you do find him, what do you think the bill would be on that???? :shock: :shock: :shock: :!: Then you have to build the pistons, cylinders, valves & rods, con-rods etc. etc. & the windings for the generator would probably cost as much as the rest of it!

I'm guessing it would be cheaper to buy a fully loaded Chevy Duramax diesel crew cab dually, remove one rear wheel & attach a massive chain & sprocket to drive the generator , & throw it in overdrive on jackstands..... :lol:
SMITTY
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Patriot Coal - custom built by Jim Dorsey
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Mark III (not currently in use)
Coal Size/Type: Rice / Blaschak anthracite
Other Heating: Oil fired Burnham boiler

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: Freddy On: Mon Dec 08, 2008 9:27 pm

rockwood wrote:How much would it cost to install a system like that?


It looks like a 7.5 or 10K Bergy. $25-$35,000. I hand built a 5.5K for $7500. I'd post a pic, but it's off topic.
Freddy
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 130 (pea)
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Reading piece o' junk in the barn (rice)
Coal Size/Type: Pea size, Superior, deep mined

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: JohnMck On: Tue Dec 09, 2008 9:37 am

Freddy wrote:What kind of steam pressure is needed for an old fashioned piston type steam engine?

Yup, it's hard to compete with the electric company. Any small generation unit isn't nearly as efficient as a monster installation.


The piston engines don't need higher pressures or superheated steam, because there's no turbine fins to damage witht he saturated steam.In NJ, the boiler would have to be inspected and tended to by a licensed Stationary Engineer, 24/7
JohnMck
 


Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: JohnMck On: Tue Dec 09, 2008 1:26 pm

SMITTY wrote:
JJLL wrote:I've looked into this idea and the best solution I've found is here - http://www.greensteamengine.com/



I saw they have models up to 10 HP -- that's HUGE for a steam engine!! Probably 1500 ft./lbs. of torque! I like the pic of the guy in the motorboat with the boiler & stack in front of him! :lol: He was flying! 8-)

I've always wanted to build a steam engine to generate electricity. You could throw all scrap combustibles in it to burn & have free power....BUT......the amount of money you need to spend to get the system up & running is just completely impractical. You need to have a tank that can handle not only 800 PSI steam pressure ( at LEAST -- might need a little margin of safety on top of that :shock: ), but also an 1800* coal fire burning beneath it. I'd imagine finding someone with the skill to build something like that would be difficult........then, if you do find him, what do you think the bill would be on that???? :shock: :shock: :shock: :!: Then you have to build the pistons, cylinders, valves & rods, con-rods etc. etc. & the windings for the generator would probably cost as much as the rest of it!

I'm guessing it would be cheaper to buy a fully loaded Chevy Duramax diesel crew cab dually, remove one rear wheel & attach a massive chain & sprocket to drive the generator , & throw it in overdrive on jackstands..... :lol:





If you dump your discharge steam into a heat exchanger, you could use it to heat your house and domestic hot water.
JohnMck
 

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: JohnMck On: Wed Dec 10, 2008 3:39 pm

Man, this thing really had me excited, at first. Figure a KA-6 set up for steam, then dump your exhaust into a heat exchanger to heat the house. Too bad it requires 20# minimum steam pressure to operate. It puts you over the threshold for a low pressure boiler.
JohnMck
 

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Wed Dec 10, 2008 3:44 pm

At 15#+, most states will require a permit, inspection and insurance to operate it.
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: JohnMck On: Wed Dec 10, 2008 4:04 pm

Doesn't a KA-6 run up to 15 #'s? Does it need to be inspected if it's in a residence?
JohnMck
 

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Wed Dec 10, 2008 4:19 pm

Anything rated for steam is good to 15#, as this is the bottom end of ASME approval. Whether or not it is regulated would depend on your state. I would doubt many would require inspection in a residence, a commercial install would in most states.

Residential steam boilers rarely need to make more than a few pounds to do their job.
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: JohnMck On: Wed Dec 10, 2008 5:13 pm

So a KA-6 would produce about 3.6 boiler horsepwer. I wonder if that would be enought o push a decent size generator.
JohnMck
 

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: Yanche On: Wed Dec 10, 2008 6:35 pm

Forget about the steam engine approach. Use the coal to make "producer gas" and then use that gas to run a low compression spark ignition internal combustion engine that turns a generator. It can be done in a rural setting that wouldn't be to upset over the smell. Ever been by a integrated steel mill still making it's own coke. That the smell. Search on "producer gas" for lots of links. Dust off you chemistry books too. While it's simple in principle it would be a real effort to make a system large enough to power a home. A better solution is a second job a WalMart and just pay the electric company. For a video on how it's done in Brazil see:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wlCzJj39cMM
Be sure to read the viewer comments for some details.
Yanche
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Alternate Heating Systems S-130
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Pea