Hypothetical crazy turbine steam boat

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by parkland, Mar 12, 2015.

  1. parkland
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    parkland Senior Member

    This is the answer right here:
    Jet engines with power turbine:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hjUHIdjnQto
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fDT2tu03OM8

    Apparently the gas turbine with steam co-generation can go over 60% efficiency.
    Of course, that wouldn't be using automotive turbochargers, lol.
    However, it could still boost the economy of the power plant to something respectable.

    I also am now wondering how a steam turbine would compare to the steam piston engines you can buy, I'm guessing very inefficient.

    That would sure be cool to have zero reciprocating parts!
     
  2. Rurudyne
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    Rurudyne Senior Member

    Steam turbines are very efficient but work best at their designed speed. They don't like low speed. But in cogeneration systems they are usually driving a generator, critters which also love high RPMs.

    Elmer's Engines is a PDF of a book you can download project by project and it includes one type of turbine. http://www.john-tom.com/html/ElmersEngines.html

    There's also other pages you can navigate to and other turbine plans.
     
  3. parkland
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    parkland Senior Member


    So if the steam turbine, and free air turbine, are geared way down to prop shaft speed, at a speed, where they are at the most efficient speed just below hull speed, maybe economical cruise speed would be possible.
    We know that the power to push the boat increases much more than a linear curve as speed increases, so if the turbines don't have much power down low, it really might not matter, as they won't need much power down low.
     
  4. fredrosse
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    fredrosse USACE Steam

    Steam Turbine vs Reciprocating Steam Engines

    I have spent nearly 50 years as a mechanical engineer, designing steam machinery, for submarines, for ships, for large utility generating stations, and for small combined heat and power systems. Below about 500 horsepower, reciprocating steam engines have better efficiency than steam turbines. The best low horsepower steam turbines (we are talking 1,400 horsepower here as "small") need to run at 30,000 RPM. There are small steam turbines that run at lower speeds, but their efficiency is absymal. Move into the 100 horsepower range, and a recip makes much better sense, and does not need a high tech gearbox either.

    My steam sidewheeler runs on propane, and gets about 4 MPG, typically running at about 4 MPH. The wheels turn 50 to 60 RPM, I like to watch.
     
  5. parkland
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    parkland Senior Member

    Any idea what power the thing puts out? haha.
    It seems like maybe 5 hp or in the ball park?
     
  6. rwatson
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    rwatson Senior Member

  7. Rurudyne
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    Rurudyne Senior Member

    Run it on alcohol ... that way you could almost honestly tell folks you took nothing but engine fuel with you when you went fishing.
     
  8. parkland
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    parkland Senior Member

    100% Ethanol lol.
    I'm pretty sure a guy can get an alternative experimental fuel license for that.
    I know you can for cars here haha.

    I'm surprised more people don't use that as a ticket to legally brew shine, like the "legitimate licensed" weed growing guys do, and sell piles of it under the table lol.
     
  9. Rurudyne
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    Rurudyne Senior Member

    New meaning for: "The only thing gassed up in that Jeep was us!" -- Hawkeye, 4077th

    PS: a large houseboat powered by hootch. Sort of a traveling distillery.
     
  10. Rurudyne
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    Rurudyne Senior Member

    BTW, if anyone is interested in ways to improve economy, and while I know it isn't steam power a part that I'm not quoting does mention jets, so take a gander: http://www.fastcompany.com/60868/motorhead-messiah

    Goodwin seems to have focused on the Duramax engine or his turbine-electric hybrid: http://www.hlineconversions.com/h-line-conversions.php

    The patent by Kruger and Young mentioned seems to be this one: http://www.google.com/patents/WO2010135355A1?cl=en#legal-events

    This patent does address something I'd wondered about: if there's more power you may need, for some engines, either a beefed up crank / transmission or some way to restrain power to no more, or not much more, than normal levels. It takes the second route. This makes sense given that it mentions things like tractor trailers which are biased towards durability.

    I wonder how spiking the fuel with extra hydrogen would work with producer gas?
     
  11. parkland
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    parkland Senior Member

    Where do we buy hydrogen gas for anything close to waste oil prices?

    I've made and played with hydrogen gas many times, but to get the gas uses hydro.

    Cheap oil and using steam to recover the heat is the closest thing I can think of to a free lunch haha.
     
  12. Rurudyne
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    Rurudyne Senior Member

    Aside from direct powered water fuel cells the most practical set up I've come across for generating hydrogen was a small stationary steam plant (it actually was "stationary", but it could have well as just been one not driving a vehicle) powered by solar, driving a water fuel cell, and charging metal hydride storage cylinders, the guy running his car from the results.

    I understand the reluctance about hydrogen because of the power needed to liberate it, however it seems most people seem to expect that hydrogen will be used alone rather than as a burning agent in conjunction with something else. The article, and elsewhere, points to replacing half of the fuel but that doesn't necessarily mean that it's a 1:1 BTU substitution since it appears that what remains is more completely burned, why emissions drop.

    The patent too cites an issue with increased power that it seeks to address by further refining on the fly fuel input (running the engine leaner).

    One caution though: burning hydrogen to run steam is a horrible idea because water is formed which is why doing the above, multi-fuel set up, helps to cool the engine.

    Also: other more aggressively burning fuels, like propane, appear to be usable this way too., not just hydrogen.
     

  13. WestVanHan
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    WestVanHan Not a Senior Member

    Just recalled there was a guy on here a few years ago-got waste oil for free and would filter the hell out of it-ATF,gearbox/diff oil,engine oil etc.
    Exhaust would heat up the oil,and ran it in his old Ford IDI diesel pickup. His tube videos showed no smoke.

    If you search "waste oil" or "ATF" you'll find his posts.
     
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