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Author Topic: Using wasted engine heat to improve electrolysis  (Read 2477 times)

Offline Logic

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Using wasted engine heat to improve electrolysis
« on: May 26, 2008, 01:28:02 AM »
Hi Everyone

I have been watching this  forum (and others) for a while now and have been wondering about using the waste heat from an ICE to produce the hydrogen to run, or help run, it:

All ICEs are, at most, 30% efficient:
So if you are getting 100KW (at the crank) of am ICE you are losing 100KW into the cooling system and another 100 KW out the exhaust. (give or take)
Now you could do what BMW has done and use this energy to produce steam to turn a steam engine that helps the engine.
However piston type steam engines are also only 30% efficient (assumption) so you will only be adding about 20KW to the engine.
Turbines (as used by industry) are the most efficient way to utilise steam to produce electricity.  I have not yet done any research on this, but it seems to me that using this waste energy to produce your hydrogen might be a good idea?

Another way to use this waste heat:
The hotter the electrolyte/water the more efficiently it can be turned into H & O gas as some of the energy usually supplied by electricity is now supplied as heat.
You do not want your water boiling though.
The boiling point of water is directly proportional to the surrounding gas pressure: (the higher this pressure the higher the boiling point.)
If you do your electrolysis in a pressurised container you can get the advantages of the heat without the boiling.
A pressure regulator, as used with compressed air equipment, could be used to maintain the correct constant pressure while bleeding of the HHO.
The higher pressure would also make for smaller O & H bubbles; increasing electrode surface area/efficiency.
The bubbler could take on a secondary role of cooling the gas before it goes to the engine.

I wish I had the time and equipment to experiment with these ideas myself.  As it is I will be hard pressed to get a system together myself when the tech matures enough:  I spend too much time making too little money here in South Africa.

Good luck guys.  Keep at it!