generate electricity with coal

generate electricity with coal

PostBy: japar On: Mon May 19, 2008 8:44 pm

Ok all us smart people heat our houses with coal and save money and stay nice and toasty in the winter. We know they generate electricity on a large scale with coal but how can us home owners generate it on a small scale. I am thinking a custom made vertical wind generator on the top of the chimney. The wind blows it turns . Now heat rises coming out of the chimney it turns. This in turn will charge batteries that can hepl run the household. Any ideas
japar
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Hearthmate
Stove/Furnace Make: Hearthmate
Stove/Furnace Model: combo

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: LsFarm On: Mon May 19, 2008 10:02 pm

That's one idea,, but I was thinking of how much steam pressure is needed to generate say 10KW worth of electricity??

Are there small steam engines available that could run a generator?? Or small steam turbines??

Or is Gasoline and Diesel the only source of power to run a small 8-10KW genset??

Can we safely create enough steam pressure to run a turbine or a small steam engine.

Greg L.
LsFarm
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: Freddy On: Tue May 20, 2008 6:39 am

I can tell you two things about windmills. 1) the rising air from a chimeny would not create enough power to light a light bulb. Just not enough "wind". 2) The last thing you want is a windmill ON your house. The vibration would force you to live in the back seat of your car.

I have a home built 5.5 KW wind turbine. The blades are about 20 feet diameter and it's sits on a 60 foot tower. I've learned a lot about wind this last year. Basically I've learned I wish I lived on the coast, or out West. Even though I paid a guy to do a wind study, I do not have enough wind. On windy days it does well. (30KWH in one day is my record), but those days are few and far between. The wind needs to part your hair before it'll really crank.

That being said.... I'm halfway to making my own power plant...all I need to do is build a steam engine and hook it up instead of the blades! I'm sure it can be done, just a matter of time & money & know how.
Attachments
TOWER 1.JPG
(72.8 KiB) Viewed 105 times
View: New PagePopup • Select:BBCode
[nepathumb]4310[/nepathumb]
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: Steve.N On: Tue May 20, 2008 9:00 am

Nice looking wind turbine Freddy. The last turbine generator I worked on before my retirement was a 42MW General Electric unit. That was a three stage turbine and had 875 PSI first stage pressures. I would expect even a small turbine would require 100 PSI or more to produce a reasonable amount of power. If it were to be done I think a steam engine would be the answer so you could run at a more reasonable pressure. The problem with steam electric generation is the efficency. The best coal plants only achive 30 to 35% efficency mostly due to heat loss from piping and the turbine itsself. Also needed is a good condensing system to return the hot condensate to the boiler other wise you lose the BTU's in the condensate. I have no doubt that it could be done but the electricity would come at high cost
Steve.N
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman mkII
Stove/Furnace Model: Axeman Anderson 260 at store

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: Freddy On: Tue May 20, 2008 11:05 am

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.
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: coaledsweat On: Tue May 20, 2008 12:00 pm

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


A lot of pressure and or volume, pressure is easy but volume is tricky once the load starts to eat it up. It probably is impractical at a home. Member cokehead ran a thread on Sterling engines a while ago. That would seem more appropriate with a coal fired home but I doubt it would be cost effective, they are not cheap.

Personally, I think you are better off with running water, hydro is cheap and has the power needed at reasonable cost. Buy your next home on the river.
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: Freddy On: Tue May 20, 2008 1:35 pm

Dam the rivers? Oh no! The poor fishies! During the last 10 years or so they've torn out almost all the dams in the state. Gotta let the salmon get up stream so the hip wading tree huggers can play catch & release.
There's a stream here in town that is dammed & it makes a lake. It used to hold water for a paper mill, but the mill closed and just last year the town took possession of the dam. They don't want to drain it as there's homes on the lake now. It needs rebuilding with our tax dollars. I went to the town meeting & suggested they look into a small hydro power project. I'll venture a guess it would provide power for a dozen houses. The town fire department is within 200 feet of this dam. It seemed it might be a cool idea to have the stream make power for the town. Oh NO! Cannnn't do THAT! The tree huggers are donating money toward a fishway dam. If it produced electricity also it might bother the fish.
I have one thing to say.... Unplug your refridgerator and complain all you want.
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: WNY On: Tue May 20, 2008 4:03 pm

my sister is looking at a "Green" House to buy, That has Wind Power supplied only! No Grid tie.

Has 2 wood stoves for heat. It's a pretty big house (2900sqft) is built from "Strawbales"...really cool. The walls are 14-16" thick and stays pretty warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Has the water coils around the woodstove pipes to help supplement the Solar hot water heater.
WNY
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Keystoker 90K, Leisure Line Hyfire I
Coal Size/Type: Rice
Stove/Furnace Make: Keystoker, LL & CoalTrol
Stove/Furnace Model: 90K, Hyfire I, VF3000 Soon

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: Yanche On: Tue May 20, 2008 5:04 pm

There are simple hydro powered generators that look like an outboard motor engine. The below water prop turns a generator, actually usually a three phase alternator that's rectified to make DC. The DC is then converted to 60 cycle AC power. The product is an outgrowth of navy use to power towed arrays of sonar equipment. A large navy ship tows a huge array of microphones, the electric to power the equipment comes from the individual generators. Notice I didn't say what country's navy it was.

In most installations of substantial power, the DC is converted to AC near the river or stream in a small shed. Then the AC can be transmitted at high voltage, using smaller gauge wire, to the distant point of use. Sometimes batteries are use to meet peak demand. You don't need a dam, only water flow.
Yanche
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Alternate Heating Systems S-130
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Pea

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: LsFarm On: Tue May 20, 2008 5:34 pm

Hi Yanche, How much water flow?? would a shallow stream, say 20" deep with a 2mph flow be enough?? seems inadequate to spin much of an alternator..?

Greg L
LsFarm
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Self-built 'Big Bertha' SS Boiler
Baseburners & Antiques: Keystone 11, Art Garland

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Tue May 20, 2008 9:20 pm

LsFarm wrote:would a shallow stream, say 20" deep with a 2mph flow be enough??


Its the waters weight that makes the power, you just want to use it for a few seconds.


http://www.waterwheelfactory.com/HP%20Table.htm
This link is broken, either the page no longer exists or there is some other issue like a typo.


6,400 pounds of torque?


http://www.anselmamill.org/waterwheel.htm
This link is broken, either the page no longer exists or there is some other issue like a typo.


http://www.backwoodshome.com/articles/behrens17.html

Remember, you want wooden bearings. :)
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: jeromemsn On: Tue May 20, 2008 9:29 pm

Here are some people that seem to know how to make electricity from coal fired steam engines.
http://www.green-trust.org/steam.htm

http://home.earthlink.net/~dlaw70/12stmng.htm



I have also seen on Ebay coal and wood fired steam boiler engines go for 3 to 5 thousand dollars for a complete set-up. If I would of been able to get down to Texas and pick the one up I would of done anything to of gotten the boiler license to be able to operate it. Seems like the good ones where made back in the early 1900s or late 1800s
Last edited by Richard S. on Thu Nov 28, 2013 5:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: <removed dead link>
jeromemsn
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Keystoker 90 dvc
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman elite fireplace insert

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: rberq On: Tue May 20, 2008 10:24 pm

There's something called a thermocouple that generates electricity from heat. There. I have exhausted most of my knowledge of the subject. Could that take advantage of excess coal stove heat to generate electricity?

Or, on the generator idea, is there a working fluid other than water/steam that could be used, something at a lower and safer temperature and pressure? Perhaps to drive a Stirling cycle engine which would drive the generator?

I can see it's time for some research!
rberq
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machine 1300
Coal Size/Type: Nut -- Kimmel/Blaschak/Reading
Other Heating: Oil hot water radiators, propane

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Tue May 20, 2008 10:30 pm

jeromemsn wrote:Here are some people that seem to know how to make electricity from coal fired steam engines.


I'm not sure I want a boiler around the house making more than a few pounds of steam.
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea

Re: generate electricity with coal

PostBy: jeromemsn On: Tue May 20, 2008 10:36 pm

Yes coaledsweat I know what you mean........... seems like all the post that I have read on steam boilers for generating electric have said the same thing.......a steam engine will not quit, will not stall they either break or blow-up :shock:
jeromemsn
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Keystoker 90 dvc
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman elite fireplace insert