Tidal Power has been lost in the shuffle.
The most powerful engine on planet Earth is being ignored while other, less cost effective alternatives flourish.
How can that be?
The Ocean is right in front of our eyes, surrounding us with its awesome power.
Yet we have made very little progress tapping into the perpetual energy of Tidal Power.
My thought, after a decade of research, development, and correspondence with the top people in the field is, they are making it too difficult.
All involved seem to believe that generators must be installed in locations with accelerated flow, such as inlets, estuaries, and other choke points along the coast.
This limits potential sites to a few unusual locations with extreme tidal flow, such as The Bay Of Fundy, The Holy Grail of Tidal Power.
In 2009, the most advanced, single unit generator ever made was placed in The Bay's flow.
It was destroyed in no time, not just to the point of not functioning, this device was physically torn apart from the unimaginable torque of the tide.
The top guys in the field, with millions invested in R&D, grossly underestimated the basic force they were attempting to capture.
My design simply borrows the Motion Of The Ocean for a moment, and turns it into rotational force via shafts and gearing, consuming nothing along the way.
Permanent Magnet Generators require powerfully driven, predictable rotational speeds to operate at maximum efficiency.
Increased flow speed is not the solution.
The key is constant velocity, with rotor shaft RPM as low as 200.
Gearing up from single digit RPMs to 200 RPM is easily accomplished.
The drawback in gearing up has always been loss of torque along the drive train.
The source ends up costing more than the device is capable of producing.
With the immeasurable torque of the tide, losses are insignificant, and the input cost does not increase.
I can generate 5Mw per unit, from just the fractional MPH of incoming and outgoing tide over a naturally sloping bottom.
This can be done for under $1,000,000 per megawatt.
Installing a wind generator still costs $1,500,000 per Mw, even after decades of R&D, and use in the field.
My Tidal Power unit can be produced at the $1,000,000 per Mw figure before the first 10 unit production run is completed.
The low speed of tide flow over the bottom does not matter when one considers the constant, but grossly misunderstood, torque of the tide flow.
Previous developers have overlooked this crucial factor.
RE Open Hydro, the current State Of The Art.
I chatted with Neil Kermode, one of the top tidal guys in Scotland, and an Open Hydro proponent, about the Bay Of Fundy event after the fact.
We had several pleasant back and forths until I mentioned to him that I felt the real problem with the Fundy device was extreme cavitation, causing the blades to flex in directions never intended, twisting and turning the frame like the famous Tacoma Narrows Bridge, not just the force of the water.
Cavitation bubbles eliminate thrust, cause vibration, and make the device of little use, even if it did not tear itself apart from vibration.
Cavitation defeats torque.
Spinning freely in accelerated flow, the rotor gains momentum to the point that the driving blades are chopping the water into froth as one blade rotates into the bubbles created by the one before it.
Frothy water has no torque, no driving force.
Open Hydro is an inherently flawed design.
The blades have convex surfaces, are exactly alike on both sides, and are angled to deliver the same response either way.
This theoretically enables the device to work in both directions without turning 180 degrees on tide change.
Changes have been made since 2009, but the basic concept of two way blades remains.
It will never be truly effective with said design.
When this was mentioned, Kermode got all defensive and said the blade design was proprietary to another vendor.
He never wrote back again.
I hit a sore spot that he and others have chosen to ignore in the face of no better plan.
Open Hydro, while never yet proven effective, is still considered the State Of The Art at this time.
My contention is, it will never produce anything but expensive lessons on what not to do.
But, the generator design itself, with rotor and stator combined into the perimeter of a large circle is genius.
My plan includes this type of Permanent Magnet rotor and stator mechanism, with an 8 to 10 foot diameter.
Picture the same type of generator, rotating horizontally, driven by a vertical shaft turning at a predictable 200 RPM, powered by the entire force of The Atlantic Ocean, all day, every day.
The blades I have designed work only one way, allowing for maximum thrust with zero cavitation.
The entire blade, shaft, and gearing mechanism turns 180 degrees on tide change, triggered by the moment of slack tide.
Allowing 15 minutes for turnaround time, my device will generate at high efficiency 23 of 24 hours daily in a region with two high and low tides daily.
Where there is only one tide change it is 23.5 hours daily.
There's a lot here.
It has evolved online, from early observations about Climate Change/Sea Level Rise, and their effects, both real and imagined, to the where, why, and how of Tidal Power.
Absorb as much as you like.
You'll feel better about The Future.
Click Shoreline Earth to get the in depth look at this project.