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Old 11-25-2021, 07:23 PM   #1941
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Maybe that is why the billionaires are building their own rockets.
I would love to see the billionaires trying to escape the earth in their own rockets.

What chance do they have, surviving on Mars or the Moon, if they even make it there? If they televise back to Earth, it would be the first ever reality TV show I watch.

Why don't they try to live out a winter in Alaska in the wilderness, which is vastly more hospitable than Mars or the Moon?
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Old 11-25-2021, 07:37 PM   #1942
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Which is why LEDs should not be mandated. People should be able to make a choice, based on their own needs, and not a "one-size-(doesn't)-fit-all" mandate...
I used to believe in libertarianism, but I have realized that people are frequently too dumb to know what's good for them. And that their poor choice may end up hurting more people than themselves. Balancing that factor is the fact that the people in power may not be that smart either, and may pass non-sensical policies.

It's not easy to find the balance between personal freedom of choice against the good for the community.
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Old 11-25-2021, 09:37 PM   #1943
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Earlier in this thread, a poster brought up superconductors.

Some of us still remember the craze about high-temperature superconductors in the 90s or so. What happened since?

Superconductors have been known for a while. A superconductor wire has no resistance, and can carry a formidable current, with no losses. It would be great to use a small wire to transmit great amounts of electrical power over great distances.

Superconductivity was discovered in 1911, by a Dutch physicist, when observing the conductivity of mercury when cooled with liquid helium at a temperature below 4.2K ( -452F, or -269C).

Scientists later discovered "high-temperature" superconductors that exhibited the same characteristics at a "balmy" temperature above 77K (−196.2 C, or −321.1 F). That means you can use liquid nitrogen instead of liquid helium as a coolant. This is a really big deal for lab applications, to use liquid nitrogen instead of liquid helium. But to use this in an industrial environment? To use it on power poles?

Recently, a superconducting material was found that can work at a temperature of 15C or 59F. Nice!

However, it needs to be pressurized at 267 Giga Pascals. What the heck is that? That pressure is 39 million pounds/square inch!

I don't think we will see applications of superconductors outside the lab environment any time soon.
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Old 11-25-2021, 09:45 PM   #1944
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Earlier in this thread, a poster brought up superconductors.

Some of us still remember the craze about high-temperature superconductors in the 90s or so. What happened since?

Superconductors have been known for a while. A superconductor wire has no resistance, and can carry a formidable current, with no losses. It would be great to use a small wire to transmit great amounts of electrical power over great distances.

Superconductivity was discovered in 1911, by a Dutch physicist, when observing the conductivity of mercury when cooled with liquid helium at a temperature below 4.2K ( -452F, or -269C).

Scientists later discovered "high-temperature" superconductors that exhibited the same characteristics at a "balmy" temperature above 77K (−196.2 C, or −321.1 F). That means you can use liquid nitrogen instead of liquid helium as a coolant. This is a really big deal for lab applications, to use liquid nitrogen instead of liquid helium. But to use this in an industrial environment? To use it on power poles?

Recently, a superconducting material was found that can work at a temperature of 15C or 59F. Nice!

However, it needs to be pressurized at 267 Giga Pascals. What the heck is that? That pressure is 39 million pounds/square inch!

I don't think we will see applications of superconductors outside the lab environment any time soon.

Why are you not a believer? These are only minor details. Musk figured a better way to do this when he was at lunch visualizing an auto manufacturing plant on Venus.

(It's late, I had too much pumpkin pie today)
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Old 11-25-2021, 11:06 PM   #1945
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applications of superconductors outside the lab environment
airborne gravity gradiometers using superconductor accelerometers.

Used in exploration for minerals used in making EVs - and 'everythingelse'.
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Old 11-26-2021, 03:10 AM   #1946
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I don't think we will see applications of superconductors outside the lab environment any time soon.
When I wrote the above, I meant applications of superconductors as means of transporting electric power. The prohibitive factor is of course the cooling requirement with liquid helium.

Superconductor wires have been indeed used, but mostly to build supermagnets for maglev trains and MRI machines. The cooling requirement necessitates a cryogenic containment of the liquid helium along with the magnet wire coil, and that's a major complication. There's no way we can cool a long transmission line the same way.

As I remember, "high-temperature" superconductors proved to be a disappointment, as they would lose their superconductivity when passing a large current. That would negate their usefulness. On top of that, the material was brittle, and could not be easily made into wires. Cooling with liquid nitrogen would be a major improvement compared to cooling with more expensive liquid helium, if it could be made to work. Hence, the initial excitement with the discovery in the 90s, although the applications would still be supermagnets, and not power lines.


PS. Out of curiosity, I looked into the construction of superconducting supermagnets, and learned that the insulated vessel of liquid helium is surrounded by an outer jacket of liquid nitrogen. It makes a lot of sense. That reduces the heat gain by the liquid helium because it is surrounded by something a lot colder than the ambient temperature. It minimizes the boiling off of the helium.
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Old 11-26-2021, 03:33 AM   #1947
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airborne gravity gradiometers using superconductor accelerometers.

Used in exploration for minerals used in making EVs - and 'everythingelse'.

I did not know about this. Looked on the Web, and learned of the SGG project (Superconducting Gravity Gradiometer). It has been ongoing for a few decades, and its status is not clear.
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Old 11-26-2021, 06:28 AM   #1948
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Well, NW-Bound, I was the poster and I was hoping someone would get past my snark and fill in the details for those not in tech and who haven't followed the ups and downs of the story. You did so, thanks!

The high temp super conductors were all in the tech news in that 20 to 25 year ago period. I mean, they were in the news A LOT. Tons of excitement. If solved, and if it truly became room temperature SCs, the world would change. So, I think people got drunk on the progress and saw a line leading to the -40 C to 50 C sweet spot. But it hasn't happened (unless you press it enough to make a diamond).

Still, there's potential, and there are some slowly moving projects going on that involve short runs of high power transmissions lines (Essen Germany, Chicago IL). These lines require liquid nitrogen running through them, so for now, the tech only allows specialty applications, and in this case, really just research test cases.
Quote:
Originally Posted by NW-Bound View Post
Earlier in this thread, a poster brought up superconductors.

Some of us still remember the craze about high-temperature superconductors in the 90s or so. What happened since?

Superconductors have been known for a while. A superconductor wire has no resistance, and can carry a formidable current, with no losses. It would be great to use a small wire to transmit great amounts of electrical power over great distances.

Superconductivity was discovered in 1911, by a Dutch physicist, when observing the conductivity of mercury when cooled with liquid helium at a temperature below 4.2K ( -452F, or -269C).

Scientists later discovered "high-temperature" superconductors that exhibited the same characteristics at a "balmy" temperature above 77K (−196.2 C, or −321.1 F). That means you can use liquid nitrogen instead of liquid helium as a coolant. This is a really big deal for lab applications, to use liquid nitrogen instead of liquid helium. But to use this in an industrial environment? To use it on power poles?

Recently, a superconducting material was found that can work at a temperature of 15C or 59F. Nice!

However, it needs to be pressurized at 267 Giga Pascals. What the heck is that? That pressure is 39 million pounds/square inch!

I don't think we will see applications of superconductors outside the lab environment any time soon.
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Old 11-26-2021, 08:04 AM   #1949
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airborne gravity gradiometers using superconductor accelerometers.

Used in exploration for minerals used in making EVs - and 'everythingelse'.
Maybe you should start a new thread in the "Science Fiction" sub-forum. This one is about EVs.

Anyhow, if superconductors can be used in exploration for minerals used in making EVs, they probably can be easily applied to exploration for petroleum, and we'll find plenty of oil for future efficient cars.


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When I wrote the above, I meant applications of superconductors as means of transporting electric power. ....
I never understood the fascination some people have about superconductors for power transmission. Pretty sure I covered this earlier, but we have all the technology today to reduce conduction losses, just make the wire bigger. Double the radius, and you have four times the cross sectional area, and 1/4 the conductive losses (with maybe a little allowance for the steel center used to provide strength). Double it again, and the losses are ~ 1/16th. Now you are hitting diminishing returns (*see note 1). I've read average losses are ~ 8% (I assume most of that is conduction, some must be transformer losses, some parallel/ground bleed?), So two doublings and you are down to around 0.5% losses.

Why would we go to complex,expensive super-conductor unobtanium, when the simple solution, completely understood and available today is right in front of us. Another example of letting the 'perfect' be the enemy of 'good'?

Of course the utilities know this. And they apparently don't even think it is cost effective to double the radius of the wire (*note1 - IOW, they already have hit diminishing returns). More material cost, and heavier so it needs more support which also increases cost, etc. Then we can go back and consider the environmental cost of mining and processing all that extra material. Might not be a big deal, but there is no free lunch.

So if big wires aren't attractive, how could the expense and complexity of super-conductors be even getting any attention. If we start to see a road-map for room temperature, affordable, high-current superconductors, I think that's the time to start thinking how they might be used on the grid. I suspect even then, there will be far better applications for a likely somewhat limited resource (like reducing losses in motors). But we don't even have anything like a road-map for that today, it's really out there Science Fiction dreaming.

-ERD50
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Old 11-26-2021, 10:17 AM   #1950
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<<<Mod Note:>>>

We try to be reasonably hands-off with this thread, as the debate is always spirited and a bit more inherently argumentative than other topics. Community rules still apply (read them, again).

However, some recent posts have pushed the boundaries. One can disagree without being disagreeable. We're among friends, so dial back the tone a bit maybe? Drop some of the attitudes...

Might actually encourage others to participate. As of now there are surely many newer members who open this thread and and wish they hadn't.
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Old 11-26-2021, 01:25 PM   #1951
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Of course the utilities know this. And they apparently don't even think it is cost effective to double the radius of the wire (*note1 - IOW, they already have hit diminishing returns). More material cost, and heavier so it needs more support which also increases cost, etc. Then we can go back and consider the environmental cost of mining and processing all that extra material. Might not be a big deal, but there is no free lunch.


-ERD50
And we can't even get all the utilities to maintain the grid they have. When we have to shut down "ancient" sections of the grid because of winds, we know they will not consider doubling conductor radius, let alone go to super conductors. YMMV
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Old 11-26-2021, 01:40 PM   #1952
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The high temp super conductors were all in the tech news in that 20 to 25 year ago period. I mean, they were in the news A LOT. Tons of excitement. If solved, and if it truly became room temperature SCs, the world would change. So, I think people got drunk on the progress and saw a line leading to the -40 C to 50 C sweet spot. But it hasn't happened (unless you press it enough to make a diamond).

Still, there's potential, and there are some slowly moving projects going on that involve short runs of high power transmissions lines (Essen Germany, Chicago IL). These lines require liquid nitrogen running through them, so for now, the tech only allows specialty applications, and in this case, really just research test cases.

This is only peripheral to the EV topic, but I did not know about that superconducting transmission line in Essen, Germany. Thanks for mentioning it. They actually installed and put it in operation in 2014, and it is still in use. Son of a gun!

However, upon further reading, I found that the line was only 1 km long (0.6 miles). It was only a trial, and I found no mention of following up with a more extensive run. It was said to cost 10 million euros, and this will be recouped over its lifetime of 40 years with the savings from eliminating the power loss of regular copper cable. I think this is after accounting for the maintenance cost of continually pumping liquid nitrogen to cool the cable.

The Essen cable is cooled with liquid nitrogen to 67 K (-206C, or -339F), so is a true "high-temperature" superconductor. That's cool (pun intended), even if the line is so short.

See: https://www.extremetech.com/extreme/...ars-in-savings


About the Chicago superconducting transmission line, it was also planned in 2014, and appeared to be much longer than the Essen line, but I have not found anything about its current status.
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Old 11-26-2021, 02:45 PM   #1953
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Maybe you should start a new thread in the "Science Fiction" sub-forum. This one is about EVs.
I provided links to media articles on EV relevant scientific research not fiction.

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if superconductors can be used in exploration for minerals used in making EVs, they probably can be easily applied to exploration for petroleum, and we'll find plenty of oil for future efficient cars.
And are. Which is relevant as ICEVs and EVs are in competition.

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it's really out there Science Fiction dreaming
it's really hypothesis induction. No hypothesis, no evidence based hypothesis testing, no science.
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Old 11-26-2021, 04:22 PM   #1954
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but we have all the technology today to reduce conduction losses, just make the wire bigger. Double the radius, and you have four times the cross sectional area, and 1/4 the conductive losses (with maybe a little allowance for the steel center used to provide strength). Double it again, and the losses are ~ 1/16th. Now you are hitting diminishing returns (*see note 1). I've read average losses are ~ 8% (I assume most of that is conduction, some must be transformer losses, some parallel/ground bleed?), So two doublings and you are down to around 0.5% losses.
See, ERD50 always somehow manages to give me nightmare flashbacks to my Electrical Engineering classes. Oh man, I hated this topic. I was a digital guy, so stuff like the above was like chewing sand. Most of us students "agreed the topic was disagreeable." (Just trying to keep it light, please mods, just a joke.)

Still, something stuck from those classes and it helps me view a lot of the hype with a critical eye.
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Old 11-26-2021, 05:40 PM   #1955
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See, ERD50 always somehow manages to give me nightmare flashbacks to my Electrical Engineering classes. Oh man, I hated this topic. I was a digital guy, so stuff like the above was like chewing sand. Most of us students "agreed the topic was disagreeable." (Just trying to keep it light, please mods, just a joke.)

Still, something stuck from those classes and it helps me view a lot of the hype with a critical eye.


If conductance and cross-sectional area is bringing back some nightmares, it's a good thing I didn't get into Skin Effect (look away!):

from wiki:

Quote:
Skin effect is the tendency of an alternating electric current (AC) to become distributed within a conductor such that the current density is largest near the surface of the conductor and decreases exponentially with greater depths in the conductor. The electric current flows mainly at the "skin" of the conductor, between the outer surface and a level called the skin depth..... At 60 Hz in copper, the skin depth is about 8.5 mm.

The skin depth is thus defined as the depth below the surface of the conductor at which the current density has fallen to 1/e (about 0.37) of JS. .
And if that is making you feel a bit queasy, *do not* go to the wiki page and look at all the background formulas!

-ERD50
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Old 11-26-2021, 06:00 PM   #1956
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The double E stuff was not bad....remember the Chem E classes? (even worse than Differential Equations) LOL!
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Old 11-26-2021, 06:24 PM   #1957
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<<<Mod Note:>>>

We try to be reasonably hands-off with this thread, as the debate is always spirited and a bit more inherently argumentative than other topics. Community rules still apply (read them, again).

However, some recent posts have pushed the boundaries. One can disagree without being disagreeable. We're among friends, so dial back the tone a bit maybe? Drop some of the attitudes...

Might actually encourage others to participate. As of now there are surely many newer members who open this thread and and wish they hadn't.
Thanks for the reminder, this is an excellent thread but all the snarky remarks are a big turnoff, all they do is inhibit discussion.
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Old 11-26-2021, 06:28 PM   #1958
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The double E stuff was not bad....remember the Chem E classes? (even worse than Differential Equations) LOL!

Differential Equations, I loved differential equations so much I took the course twice. It is possible that the 2nd time may not have been entirely voluntary.

To make matters worse it was not until junior and senior years that I discovered that Fast Fourier Transformation was stuff you needed to know for electrical engineering. Digital is so much easier.
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Old 11-26-2021, 06:43 PM   #1959
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Differential Equations, I loved differential equations so much I took the course twice. It is possible that the 2nd time may not have been entirely voluntary.

To make matters worse it was not until junior and senior years that I discovered that Fast Fourier Transformation was stuff you needed to know for electrical engineering. Digital is so much easier.
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Old 11-26-2021, 07:37 PM   #1960
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Differential Equations, ... Digital is so much easier.
There are many digital algebra 'calculators' that make differentiation / integration accessible to the moderately computer and mathematic skilled.

Many online, some are very limited, some astonishingly proficient; evolution is rapid.

https://www.symbolab.com/solver/ordi...ion-calculator
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