[extropy-chat] energy from osmosis

The Avantguardian avantguardian2020 at yahoo.com
Mon Oct 3 10:40:39 UTC 2005

--- BillK <pharos at gmail.com> wrote:

> On 10/3/05, spike wrote:
> > This is a fun puzzle to drop on the desk of
> > your tech-minded buddies.
> >
> This idea is so good that it has an entry in the 
> Museum of Unworkable
> Devices Annex.
> The entry also refers back to an answer given in
> April, 1972
> Scientific American.
> This idea was also discussed last year on:
> However, although the stand-alone idea doesn't work,
> similar systems
> with the addition of pumping mechanisms are already
> in use around the
> world. Some just using the cold water for cheap
> air-conditioning, etc.
> And some are producing remarkably cheap freshwater.
> As you might
> expect, this is a growth industry world-wide.
> Google on - energy deep seawater pipe reverse
> osmosis

Actually the first link you posted assumes that
sea-water and fresh water have the same density which
they don't, then they leave it as an excercise for the
reader why it wouldn't work despite the differences in
the density. The second link seems to have as many
posts saying it will work as it does posts saying it
won't. In a situation such as this, my instinct as an
empiricist is to design an experiment to figure out if
it will work or not. This reminds me of all those
scientists that said that it was physically impossible
for a redwood to get water from its roots to its
leaves 200 ft up with the known laws of physics, yet
obviously it does. Until somebody figured out the
concept of "transpiration pull", you had physicists
outsmarted by trees. Any how I am getting a glimmer of
a way to build a small model of this device to test
the idea, I will have to do some digging and some
thinking on it.

The Avantguardian 
Stuart LaForge
alt email: stuart"AT"ucla.edu

"I don't want to achieve immortality through my work. I want to achieve it through not dying." - Woody Allen

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