Does hydrogen and oxygen fed to a petrol engine improve performance?

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Offline chiralSPO

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Some people claim they can get increased gas mileage on their cars by employing an electrolyzer to generate hydrogen and oxygen gas (HHO) which is fed into the combustion engine. Since the energy used for the electrolysis comes from said combustion engine, I don't see how there can be any real increase in efficiency unless this energy would otherwise be wasted (or if the energy comes from application of the breaks, as in a hybrid vehicle). Even with optimal conditions, the electrolyzer will probably waste about 20% of the energy (output = 80% of input).

Is there something I'm missing here? Is there substantial improvement of combustion having some H2 and a little extra O2 in the mix?
« Last Edit: 09/10/2013 09:32:41 by chris »

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Offline peppercorn

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Re: thermodynamics and automotive HHO
« Reply #1 on: 07/10/2013 21:10:05 »
No, there is nothing you are missing. 'HHO', as you show by simple deduction, is - at best a naive myth - at worst a scam.

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Offline alancalverd

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Re: thermodynamics and automotive HHO
« Reply #2 on: 09/10/2013 00:58:22 »
"Brown's gas", a 2:1 mixture of hydrogen and oxygen, is a useful fuel but not a magic one.
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Offline peppercorn

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"Brown's gas", a 2:1 mixture of hydrogen and oxygen, is a useful fuel but not a magic one.
Calling it a 'useful fuel' implies it's out there hanging around in the world, ready to be exploited.  But unlike proper fuels (petroleum, methane, wood, etc) it isn't.
So it's useful in the sense that if you already have some way of freely generating it - it will burn  But the only practical everyday means to produce it is with an electrolyser and that's a far less efficient use for electricity than running an electric motor.
« Last Edit: 09/10/2013 13:40:38 by peppercorn »

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Offline chiralSPO

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I don't think calling it a fuel implies that it is out in the world. A fuel is just a substance that stores energy. All fuel has to be made somehow, and that takes energy (all that petroleum and natural gas is just fuel that was made a long time ago.)

But thanks for confirming my skepticism.

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Offline alancalverd

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It's an interesting fuel because it burns without additional oxygen and produces only drinking water, so is ideal for generating a flame in a confined space - like a house!

You the taxpayer are subsidising windmills, either to destabilise the grid by producing electricity when the wind blows (so you have to shut down conventional and nuclear stations, which work best when run continuously), or not to generate electricity at all when it is not required. Far better to use all this opportunistic electricity to generate HHO that can be stored and fed into the existing, reliable, gas grid, instead of foreign, fossil methane that produces CO and CO2 when you burn it.
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Offline peppercorn

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It's an interesting fuel because it burns without additional oxygen and produces only drinking water, so is ideal for generating a flame in a confined space - like a house!

A flame? In a house? ... Are you suggesting generating it using, what, Economy 7 electric? And then storing it until you want to cook or have a shower in the daytime? Something like that?
I did have to grin at the thought of this 'fuel' in a 'confined space' - a large tank of low pressure hydrogen and oxygen somewhere in your house ... it sounds like an excellent way to demolish a house to me!

If you are, on the other hand, using it as fast as you make it, what's the point?
Why not turn electricity directly into heat and save all the complexity and waste power?

And in terms of what burning it produces, that 'natural gas' stuff looks promising! Less water vapour and harmless CO2 through a simple jet on your cooker or boiler.

Far better to use all this opportunistic electricity to generate HHO that can be stored and fed into the existing, reliable, gas grid, instead of foreign, fossil methane that produces CO and CO2 when you burn it.

As an alternative to pumped storage and other grid balancing strategies, again why do it?  It will be more lossy than pumping water uphill, and probably cost nearly as much as a battery bank does.  Alternatively one could maybe just seperate the gases, and then recombine them in an enormous fuel cell... which ever way you suggest using it I don't reckon any power companies (or off-grid enthusiasts, for that matter) will be bothering.

On a note of foreign gas imports, part of the privatisation of the CEGB (following on from British Gas/our North Sea reserves) was to remove the limits on gas-firing power stations. Then we had the inevitable 'dash for gas', and now unsurprisingly our reserves are all but gone.

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Offline peppercorn

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I quite like the idea of welding with it though!  [:)]

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Offline CliffordK

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Electrolysis of water can be used to either make mixed gas, or pure Hydrogen & Oxygen.  If you were delivering it to houses to replace natural gas (or perhaps mixed with the natural gas), then it would be best to just release the oxygen, or use the Oxygen for other uses, and only deliver the hydrogen. 

It isn't a bad idea to generate hydrogen during off-peak electricity generation from renewable resources (solar, wind, hydroelectricity). 

You can buy small jewelry welders that use mixed gas (hydrogen/oxygen), generally also using some acetone to dry the mix a bit.

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Offline CliffordK

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As far as using "HHO" in automobiles.  It certainly is a controversial subject.  Certainly one can't expect it to provide 100% of the power for the vehicle in a self generating fashion. 

One of the fallacies that people often fall into is that an alternator may seem to turn freely at low RPM, and no load.  However, under load, it takes more energy, and one can often hear the difference in engine performance when doing something like jump starting another car.

Some people have used water injection systems (without electrolysis) which can cool the engine slightly, provide more "gas" for expansion, and better engine cleaning.  And, of course, is an extremely simple system.

As far as the electrolysis based HHO systems, theoretically it should be inefficient due to energy losses in the generation/fuel process.  However, some people have suggested that it does in fact work because it improves the fuel combustion in the vehicles.  One of the reasons for the catalytic converter is to reduce the unburnt hydrocarbons.

However, this may also be dependent on the target vehicle.  Using a 20 or 30 year old vehicle with a carburetor and no catalytic converter may well be different than some of the newer fuel injected vehicles.

Anyway, I've decided to order one of the HHO systems off of E-Bay so I can try it out myself...  paying a little less than "retail" price.  Unfortunately I don't drive a lot, but perhaps I'll have a chance to use it on a longer trip that I have planned, or fix up a system to do more accurate calculations on smaller amounts of fuel than a full tank.

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Offline peppercorn

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It isn't a bad idea to generate hydrogen during off-peak electricity generation from renewable resources (solar, wind, hydroelectricity).

This may well make more sense when the 'always just around the corner' hydrogen economy finally arrives (for what it'll be worth if it ever does). But, as you point out, just making straight hydrogen (and liquefying it) is the only method which looks halfway sensible (the huge static FC suggestion was rather tongue in cheek).

I have seen video of a guy welding a car with HHO/Brown's gas but I figure he had constructed himself a pretty serious bank of cells to get the gas throughput.

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Offline peppercorn

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Water injection is shown to have fairly good results on many direct-injection diesels - mainly because most DI diesels are much happier running on cool air.  As more petrol/gas cars adopt DI as well it may follow that similar economy advantages can be seen.  Water/methanol is a common additive for highly boosted petrol engines to keep the charge cool and prevent pinking/detonation - the mixture has shown further fuel saving over straight distilled water on diesels too, though I'm not 100% sure why the methanol helps in this case.

All properly controlled HHO tests run on well tuned fuel injected vehicles have shown negative results on fuel saving. The idea that Catalytic converter will have less 'cleaning up' to do is a bit of a misnomer as a 3-way cat actually requires incompletely oxidised fuel (COs and HCs) to remain in trace amounts in the exhaust to keep the cat' lit and drive the reduction of oxides of nitrogen.

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Offline alancalverd

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A flame? In a house? ... Are you suggesting generating it using, what, Economy 7 electric? And then storing it until you want to cook or have a shower in the daytime? Something like that?
I did have to grin at the thought of this 'fuel' in a 'confined space' - a large tank of low pressure hydrogen and oxygen somewhere in your house ... it sounds like an excellent way to demolish a house to me!

Have you never lived in a city, or been to a restaurant? Cooking, and heating water with gas, has been going on for a couple of centuries, using a low-pressure grid to distribute the stuff.

The joy of supplying HHO rather than pure hydrogen is that it arrives in the optimum mix for controlled combustion and, unlike town gas, LPG or any other gaseous fuel, you don't need additional ventilation to burn it safely.   

And as I said earlier, the sensible use of windmills is to generate gas whenever the wind is available, and store the energy as gas until you need it. There being no shortage of water, and no objection to returing it to the atmopsphere when you have finished with it, what cleaner and more sustainable form of controlled power could here be?

Quote
As an alternative to pumped storage and other grid balancing strategies, again why do it?  It will be more lossy than pumping water uphill, and probably cost nearly as much as a battery bank does.

Loss doesn't matter much if the source is free, which wind-generated electricity would be if we could use it whenever it was available. Pumped storage requires an enormous capital investment and actually stores only a tiny amount of energy in a vast tract of land: it's not used for grid balancing but for plugging acute gaps while conventional  stations are ramped up to meet peak demand. Dinorwig could operate the UK railway system for about 20 minutes: its real importance is that it can run up to full power in 12 seconds.

There's no significant cost involved in my proposal, since the gas grid already exists, with both high and low pressure storage and distribution systems installed. Town gas was about 50% hydrogen until the 1960s - the technology is already fullly installed in homes and businesses!
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Offline CliffordK

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The joy of supplying HHO rather than pure hydrogen is that it arrives in the optimum mix for controlled combustion and, unlike town gas, LPG or any other gaseous fuel, you don't need additional ventilation to burn it safely.   
And, without proper flashback arresting, you could loose your entire grid, and perhaps the entire city in a matter of seconds.

It would also be a tempting target for terrorists.

When you use just the reducing component of the fuel, then an explosion is generally limited to where the fuel exits the pipeline, and gets access to oxygen, and can generally be extinguished by removing the oxidizing agent. 

A mixed gas fire would be much more difficult to fight, and the explosion would have a greater propensity to travel up the pipes.

A jeweler's welder is reasonably safe because it generates a very small quantity of mixed gas at the point of use.  Firing up your gas furnace requires a much larger pipeline and greater overall supply.

One would also note that the current municipal grids are designed for a reducing only fuel.  A mixed fuel would likely require larger pipelines, greater pressure, and new appliances.

You could use distributed generation, but for peak hours, it is cheapest to just use direct electricity for the heat.  There may be a slight advantage of distributed storage of gas generated with off-peak electricity, but again, it would be much safer to just store the hydrogen.

Consider this.  A good high pressure hydrogen cylinder may be able to survive a house fire.  Undoubtedly, even at relatively low pressures, a mixed gas cylinder could self-ignite with heat alone, and explode.

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Offline peppercorn

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Cooking, and heating water with gas, has been going on for a couple of centuries, using a low-pressure grid to distribute the stuff.
That was kinda my point.

Hydrogen though will leak out all over the place when transferred in gas-tight (N.G. being the gas) pipelines.
Hydrogen is small. It also embrittles metal.

You don't need additional ventilation to burn it safely.
Unless you don't want a room full of damp air of course.

generate Brown's gas whenever the wind is available, and store the energy until you need it. ... what more sustainable form of controlled power could here be?
A more efficient one - like pumped storage. What volume of HHO is needed to match the reservoir half way up the side of Snowden for instance?
If hydrogen cars ever become practical then making -just- H2 would probably look worthwhile, but I won't be holding my breath for that one.

I forgot to mention that the mixed gas if stored will tend to recombine over time (due to some chemistry I don't properly remember).

Loss doesn't matter much if the source is free, which wind-generated electricity would be if we could use it whenever it was available. Pumped storage requires an enormous capital investment and actually stores only a tiny amount of energy in a vast tract of land
I suggest we need some like-for-like figures here. The idea of 'free' electricity from renewables (as I think you have alluded to several times yourself) is a bit misleading. The fuel source might be free but everything else isn't (I realise I'm stating the obvious here) ... What it means it that whether or the government or whoever is offsetting generation is some way or other, the national grid or leccy companies will still pick the tech that offers them the best return on investment. - So I can't quite see how this tech is going to compete.

A mixed fuel would likely require larger pipelines, greater pressure, and new appliances.
Yes. A lot larger I think. Al those O2s swimming about in the pipe (with their much larger molar mass) will take a lot of energy (plus the pipe drag) to pump around.

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Offline chiralSPO

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I would not want to store or transport a mixture of H2 and O2. Just a matter of time before.....KABOOM! Static discharge, cosmic ray, contact with an impurity that catalyzes recombination (like Ni, Co, Pd or Pt), any of these would cause real problems.

As mentioned above, H2 leaks out of plastic and metal pipes (it actually dissolves in steel, so it goes right through and changes the physical properties of the metal for the worse...)

However, I think that an electrolyzer/fuel cell couple could be a very good way of smoothing energy output from sources like wind and solar capture devices. You only have to store a relatively small amount of hydrogen for a short period (likely no longer than 24 for solar).

Splitting one liter of water can store about 16 MJ of energy (1300 L of H2 at stp or 13 L at 100 atm [470 psi]). Using the gravity method, you would need to elevate that liter of water into orbit to store the same amount of energy (or lift 1600 L of water one km)

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Offline alancalverd

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This is a most interesting forum. I have just learned that the entire gas grid, established by our Victorian forbears and still in use, cannot work and will explode if anyone sneezes. Either that, or town gas never contained any hydrogen and all the textbooks, O-level examinations, gas fitters' certificates and my childhood recollections, were wrong. The films of hydrogen burning quietly after London gasholders were strafed by the Luftwaffe are fakes. Please don't tell the energy companies, or the millions of homes and businesses that use their product, or the economy will collapse.
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Offline peppercorn

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This is a most interesting forum. I have just learned that ...

What's 'interesting' is the things you have 'learned' are completely at odds with what other contributors have done their best to explain above.  The problems/risks are those of oxygen being transported/stored with the fuel (H2) and the leakiness/reactivity (with metals esp.) of -Elemental- hydrogen.

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Offline peppercorn

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Splitting one liter of water can store about 16 MJ of energy (1300 L of H2 at stp or 13 L at 100 atm [470 psi]). Using the gravity method, you would need to elevate that liter of water into orbit to store the same amount of energy (or lift 1600 L of water one km)

It still leaves the, uhum, burning question of round-trip efficiency in the storage process. I believe it will still be somewhat worse than pumped storage is. ... If you want the H2 to power a fuel cell vehicle on the other hand that might not be such a bad solution (when their day comes).

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Offline alancalverd

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Right now, a considerable proportion of the actual and potential output of windmills is wasted. You, the taxpayer, hand out subsidies to the owners when the wind is blowing but there is no demand for electricity, and at other times you pay over the odds for windmill watts because "they" have shut  down a cheaper, reliable source to allow the windfarmers to take your money, and when the wind is not blowing, you pay a subsidy to the greedy speculator to offset his capital depreciation.

Since the product is inherently free of revenue costs, it makes more sense to run the windmills whenever wind is available and store the energy in any useful form, regardless of the efficiency of that process - any number larger than zero will do, and if it makes use of an existing infrastructure, so much the better. Then maybe we can get rid of subsidies and make windfarming into a viable business rather than a burden on the poor.
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Offline CliffordK

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Yes, off-peak power generation may be a problem, especially variable output off-peak power generation.  So, one may choose to use some of it to generate hydrogen.  I have mentioned in the past that hydroelectric facilities should be designed to reduce flow at night during offpeak demand levels, and they may be able to compensate somewhat for variable winds.

Mixing some pure Hydrogen gas with the Methane/Ethane natural gas is probably safe enough.

Mixing just a little pure oxygen into the mix may be ok (the equivalent of being below the LEL), but if one got anywhere close to 33% oxygen, 66% hydrogen (by volume), and it would be extremely dangerous to send through your pipeline network (for reasons mentioned above).

Assuming your natural gas is mostly methane, with a fairly fixed methane/ethane/Other mix:

CH4 + 2O2 --> 2H2O + CO2

2H2 + O2 --> 2H2O

In the first equation, one uses a 1:2 mix of methane:oxygen.
In the second equation, one has a 2:1 mix of hydrogen:oxygen. 

Thus, if you add a lot of hydrogen, the appliances would be designed to add too much oxygen, and it would not burn well.

So, even if you could reasonably safely add a few percent of hydrogen gas, and one or two percent of oxygen gas, your problem is that the stock appliances already would be adding too much oxygen to the mix.  Adding more oxygen would be more of a problem than a help.

Moisture in the air would be little different between burning hydrogen and methane, although, of course, the risk of carbon monoxide from an appliance would be eliminated by using hydrogen as a fuel (carbon monoxide risk still comes from smoldering fires as part of house fires.

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Offline CliffordK

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Thinking a bit more about the HHO and automobiles.

I've seen descriptions of the system generating a lot of gas. 

To put it in perspective.  Say the system generates 1 gallon per minute of low pressure mixed hydrogen/oxygen gas.

A basic 2L, four stroke auto engine, running at 2000 RPM, one uses about 1L air per crank revolution.  That means that the auto engine is using about 500 Gallons of air a minute.  Thus, at about 1 GPM, the hydrogen generator is supplying only about 0.2 % of the fuel supply of the vehicle.

(oops, I wrote down the wrong numbers).
« Last Edit: 11/10/2013 21:38:23 by CliffordK »

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Offline peppercorn

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Thus, at about 1 GPM, the hydrogen generator is supplying only about 0.02 % of the fuel supply of the vehicle.

Hmm. 0.02% eh? - Almost sounds like homoeopathy for cars! [;)]

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Offline syhprum

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If I see any more correspondence on using Water/Hydrogen in IC engines I will scream, water injection was popular in the early 1900's when the petrol octane rating was only sufficient to allow expansion ratios of 5 to 1 but now modern fuels and computer control of timing etc allows up to 11 to 1 so the complexity of water injection is no longer justified.
When I drive thru France where at least 80% of the power comes from nuclear stations and see all the wind mills I often wonder if they are used as fans to dissipate some of the power when they have shovelled in too many atoms ?
« Last Edit: 11/10/2013 20:00:49 by syhprum »
syhprum

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Offline CliffordK

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Oops, I meant 0.2% rather than 0.02%.  Still, the hydrogen is a very small portion of the overall fuel.  Perhaps not enough to either detect a significant battery drain, nor give a significant boost from the hydrogen alone. 

Could it aid combustion? 

Not everyone drives the latest model of car. 

However, when I was considering a CAT for my Fiat 500, it required also adding a complex O2 sensor/air injection feedback system to reduce the hydrocarbons to a level manageable by the CAT.  So, you are right that modern cars should have many of the controls required for a clean burning, and presumably efficient engine.

Nothing substitutes for empirical testing.  I'm still waiting for my HHO system to arrive.  I think it was supposed to be a $1000 system, but I managed to snag it off of e-bay for a mere 99 cents (plus shipping).

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Offline peppercorn

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Nothing substitutes for empirical testing.  I'm still waiting for my HHO system to arrive.  I think it was supposed to be a $1000 system, but I managed to snag it off of e-bay for a mere 99 cents (plus shipping).

That's one hellava saving (though it would take a real mug to pay a grand for one!). I just hope the shipping cost isn't $999 [;)]

I look forward to your empirical test results also... which should take the form A-B-A (A- No HHO, B-HHO fitted; 3 identical journeys).  What's the age and mileage of the vehicle you are going to test it on btw?  The possible incremental decoking effect (again, probably no different from injection a little water) might give you an initial jump in mpg... which should continue on removing the electrolyser.

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Offline peppercorn

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However, when I was considering a CAT for my Fiat 500, it required also adding a complex O2 sensor/air injection feedback system to reduce the hydrocarbons to a level manageable by the CAT.  So, you are right that modern cars should have many of the controls required for a clean burning, and presumably efficient engine.

I assume you are talking about a '60s Fiat 500 then [:)]
What prompted you to even consider such a retrofit? ... I could understand it on something with a hefty V8 that chucked out tons of pollutants per mile... but a tiddly 500cc! - ??
I'd imagine anything not using electronic fuel injection and ignition timing is quite a challenge to operate a Cat' with anyway.
« Last Edit: 12/10/2013 15:13:04 by peppercorn »

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Offline homebrewer

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Does "Browns Gas" fed to a petrol engine improve performance? NO 
Can "Browns Gas" be stored? NO

Can "Browns Gas" be used for welding? YES
Can "Browns Gas" be used to clean flue gas in coal fired power stations ? YES

Will the installation of "Browns Gas" generators in your car void your car insurance ? YES

Industrial "Browns Gas" generators are produced in South Korea and in Germany.

In my professional opinion non-industrial "Browns Gas" generators present a considerable danger
outside a tight "Health and Safety" regime such as the one provided and monitored by the UK HSE.
« Last Edit: 17/11/2013 01:23:56 by homebrewer »

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Offline peppercorn

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Can "Browns Gas" be used to clean flue gas in coal fired power stations ? YES
Can you expand on this?  Can you say a little about why "Browns Gas" would be used as opposed to other methods?

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Offline homebrewer

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I have stopped manufacturing 3 kwh prototype "Browns Gas Generators"
back in 1998 here in the UK, and my expertise is limited to the building of
such apparatus and their control systems.

From discussion with endusers I understand the following :

That "Browns Gas" is used in the stack to :
----------------------------------------------

A) To control the stack and SO2 catalyst temperature
B) To reduce dustloading
C) To reduce the carbon particulate
D) To markedly reduce NOx
E) To gain extra heat from the burning process.


The choice for "Browns Gas" is the low cost of electricity at source,
combined with the ability to control the stack and catalyst temperature,
whilst gaining extra energy through the burning of the carbon particulate
and reduction of the NOx. The additional energy might be used to generate
more electricity.

I am afraid this is all I am able to add to this discussion and I am
sorry  English is not my first language.

If you wish you might view the now leading company
[spam / questionable link removed as per forum rules]




« Last Edit: 20/11/2013 16:54:58 by peppercorn »

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Offline homebrewer

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For your information I have enclosed an image of a 215 mm dia, 316 SS, charge electrode of my own design.
______________________________________________________________________________________________

SAFETY WARNING UK
This article or picture is no invitation to build or experiment with "Browns Gas". Please contact a trained lecturer or university professor before undertaking any research or experiments, identify current working practices and risks involved, which could result in serious injury or the loss of live. DO NOT DO THIS AT HOME.

 







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Offline CliffordK

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Will the installation of "Browns Gas" generators in your car void your car insurance ? YES
Perhaps it is a translation issue.  It may affect the warranty on newer cars, but anything over a few years old would be out of warranty anyway.  Certainly any carbureted car in the USA would be long out of warranty. 

Insurance, on the other hand should be unaffected, although some insurance companies don't like "modified" cars.  Others don't make the distinction.

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Offline peppercorn

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That "Browns Gas" is used in the stack to :
----------------------------------------------
A) To control the stack and SO2 catalyst temperature
B) To reduce dustloading
C) To reduce the carbon particulate
D) To markedly reduce NOx
E) To gain extra heat from the burning process.

The choice for "Browns Gas" is the low cost of electricity at source, combined with the ability to control the stack and catalyst temperature,  whilst gaining extra energy through the burning of the carbon particulate and reduction of the NOx. The additional energy might be used to generate more electricity.

"Gaining extra heat" from burning HHO makes no sense. And no matter how cheap the electricity is 'at source', electrolyzing water and then burning it again will result in a net loss of recoverable energy and certainly can't be 'used to generate more electricity'.
Steam injection may make some sense, especially if they are having trouble regulating the stack and catalyst temperature. But this Brown's Gas business sounds like a non-starter to me.

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Offline homebrewer

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Will the installation of "Browns Gas" generators in your car void your car insurance ? YES
Perhaps it is a translation issue.  It may affect the warranty on newer cars, but anything over a few years old would be out of warranty anyway.  Certainly any carbureted car in the USA would be long out of warranty. 

Insurance, on the other hand should be unaffected, although some insurance companies don't like "modified" cars.  Others don't make the distinction.


Thank you for your consideration.

I have no experience with the insurance  market in the US, but my research carried out on the London insurance market indicated that  no syndicate was willing to underwrite cars fitted with "Brows Gas generators".  Hence my assertion, as nobody was willing to underwrite the insurance risk, fitting of "Browns Gas" generators would void insurance policies issued by LLOYDS of LONDON.

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Offline homebrewer

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That "Browns Gas" is used in the stack to :
----------------------------------------------
A) To control the stack and SO2 catalyst temperature
B) To reduce dustloading
C) To reduce the carbon particulate
D) To markedly reduce NOx
E) To gain extra heat from the burning process.

The choice for "Browns Gas" is the low cost of electricity at source, combined with the ability to control the stack and catalyst temperature,  whilst gaining extra energy through the burning of the carbon particulate and reduction of the NOx. The additional energy might be used to generate more electricity.

"Gaining extra heat" from burning HHO makes no sense. And no matter how cheap the electricity is 'at source', electrolyzing water and then burning it again will result in a net loss of recoverable energy and certainly can't be 'used to generate more electricity'.
Steam injection may make some sense, especially if they are having trouble regulating the stack and catalyst temperature. But this Brown's Gas business sounds like a non-starter to me.

It was  never suggested that HHO electrolyzing water will result in a net gain of energy.  But it was stated that additional energy would be released during burning of the "Browns Gas", from combustable materials which will only combust at elevated temperatures such as dust and carbon particulates.

I am sorry if I have not made my point too clear - sorry.

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Offline peppercorn

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I am sorry if I have not made my point too clear - sorry.

Fair enough. I was just puzzled (still am, rather) - especially when you claimed that, "The additional energy might be used to generate more electricity".  Still, I expect it's simply a case of getting lost in translation, eh!

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Offline peppercorn

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Anyway, I've decided to order one of the HHO systems off of E-Bay so I can try it out myself...
I meant to ask, did you ever fit this 'magical' device in the end? And did you run any before after tests?

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Offline homebrewer

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I am sorry if I have not made my point too clear - sorry.

Fair enough. I was just puzzled (still am, rather) - especially when you claimed that, "The additional energy might be used to generate more electricity".  Still, I expect it's simply a case of getting lost in translation, eh!

I try very hard to improve on my English technical writing skills, and I am very grateful for any comments made.

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Offline homebrewer

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Anyway, I've decided to order one of the HHO systems off of E-Bay so I can try it out myself...
I meant to ask, did you ever fit this 'magical' device in the end? And did you run any before after tests?

The device had been shippped to South America on approval and was returned as a heap of scrap,
because the clients had to modify the "Brown Gas Generator", instead of running it with HHO and
3 % Azeton, they had used HHO, 25% Azeton plus 3 % Ether.


So when you have a look at the previous picture of my electrode, you will find a part circle which I call
a "Chimney" it was designed in case of blow outs, but not for this level of abuse. Here the "Chimney"
could not cope with the reaction in the containment vessel and ruptured.

This was the end of my final "Browns Gas" generator.
« Last Edit: 21/11/2013 17:37:38 by homebrewer »

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Offline Ethos_

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The energy required to separate these two elements from the water that contains them can not be fully extracted again by burning them in an engine. That would be equivalent to perpetual motion. However, the octane rating of Hydrogen is much higher than petrol and when mixed together, the compression ratio of an engine may be raised. Increasing the compression ratio of an engine will allow more horsepower to be extracted from it. This of course will necessitate installing different pistons and or milling the heads which requires dissemble and labor costs. And remember, if this work is preformed, using available pump gasoline without the addition of sufficient Hydrogen would then damage the engine thru detonation or pre-ignition.

Assuming one could generate enough Hydrogen to make this conversion worthwhile, it could have benefits, but if and only if compression is also raised to a point where pump gas would no longer work by itself.
« Last Edit: 21/11/2013 17:59:24 by Ethos_ »
"The more things change, the more they remain the same."

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Offline homebrewer

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will allow more horsepower to be extracted from it.

Food for thought :

The detonation velocity for the reaction :

2H2 + O2  => 2H2O

is  2820 m/sec

 
« Last Edit: 21/11/2013 20:46:25 by homebrewer »

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Offline CliffordK

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As far as my device, I have it here, but I haven't gotten it installed yet.  I should be able to alternate between running it with it on vs off once installed.  However, I don't drive that much, so the tests would have to be done with partial tanks of gas over time.

The energy required to separate these two elements from the water that contains them can not be fully extracted again by burning them in an engine.

Ideally, that would be true, but on the generation side, there are losses with the battery/alternator circuit, and heat is generated during electrolysis which is wasted energy.

On the consumption side, energy efficiency of most vehicle engines is somewhere around 30%, and again, burning gas generates heat which is lost through the exhaust and the cooling system.

So, theoretically, the system should have a significant net loss.  However, combustion efficiency gains are still possible.

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Offline peppercorn

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The detonation velocity for the reaction : 2H2 + O2  => 2H2O is  2820 m/sec
A couple of things... Detonation in a petrol engine is bad news, and can damage it.  Second, all HHO systems, by their nature, only represent a tiny fraction of the fuel being burnt (hence the arguments that the flame speed is somehow the 'secret weapon' of these snake-oil systems), so the idea that H2s and O2s are neatly 'buddied up' all the way until the point of ignition is not realistic.  Detonation velocity in air for H2 is given at about 1500 m/s - which is the best you will see in reality.

Basically, there is quite good evidence that fumigating diesel engines with up to about 15% propane can, for some engines, improve their overall fuel consumption.  Similarly, adding a gaseous "fuel" (ie. something already burnable without splitting; so not H20), mixed into the intake air on a petrol engine might improve the combustion conditions in cylinder - in some circumstances.

There is a separate situation for 'boosted' gas' motors. That's all tied up with octane - ie. stopping that nasty detonation under high load or compression.  Injecting methanol/water mixtures is a proven means of limiting detonation under high boost.  This has little or nothing to do with fuel saving though.
« Last Edit: 22/11/2013 19:54:48 by peppercorn »

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Offline homebrewer

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I totally agree with your theories and findings.

You might have been wondering why I have posted the formula, this was not to upset anybody but to create a " pause in time........... " as the philosophers would say.

And you have responded, and I wished more learned friends would have done the same.

THANK YOU.






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Offline syhprum

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Compression ratio is not really correct when the engine is compressing the fuel/air mixture power is being adsorbed it is when the burning mixture expands for a longer time that there is a gain in power so the correct term is expansion ratio 
syhprum

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Offline CliffordK

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Compression ratio is not really correct when the engine is compressing the fuel/air mixture power is being adsorbed it is when the burning mixture expands for a longer time that there is a gain in power so the correct term is expansion ratio 

Compression ratio is simply the volume when the piston is down (uncompressed) divided by the volume in the cylinder when the piston is up (compressed).

I believe power increases somewhat with higher compression ratios.  However, the risk of high compression ratios in a gasoline engine is compression ignition, or "dieseling" & "knocking".  Higher octane ratings help prevent the dieseling and knocking.

Diesel engines, of course, work based on compression ignition.  However, they use direct cylinder injection at high compression. 

Since the internal combustion engines have the piston attached to the crank, the "time" would be the same for the compression and expansion strokes.  The volume is also essentially the same, but with the ideal gas law, PV=nRT, expansion volume & pressure are essentially interchangeable.

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Offline SimpleEngineer

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I feel something has been lost in the discussions.

For an engine to work, it needs fuel, air and a source of ignition, ignition is nice and easy (petrol sparks, diesel heats), there is much talk over the increasing fuel/changing fuel etc. but what is lost is the requirement for air, now pumping a stoichiometric amount of HHO into ta cylinder will work fine on its own, but doing it with the other fuel in there would limit the amount of air for that reaction and limit the return on that fuel.

the whole fuel/air ratio would need to be addressed way in advance of strapping any HHO generator to car.

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Offline Bored chemist

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"the whole fuel/air ratio would need to be addressed way in advance of strapping any HHO generator to car."
I thought most modern engine management systems already did that by measuring the O2 in the exhaust gases.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oxygen_sensor
If a little of the air were replaced by a mixture of H2 and O2  the engine system could compensate by adding slightly more air or equivalently, slightly less petrol.
Please disregard all previous signatures.

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Offline peppercorn

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modern engine management systems already did that by measuring the O2 in the exhaust gases.
If a little of the air were replaced by a mixture of H2 and O2  the engine system could compensate by adding slightly more air or equivalently, slightly less petrol.
Quite so. No matter what claims the HHO (snake oil) salesmen make for their devices, none of them should (seriously) be expecting customers to believe such a device makes up any more than the tiniest fraction of mass flow into an engine... the small adjustment to keep at stoichiometric ratio is well within the parameters of the car's ECU anyway.

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Offline CycleGuy

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Compressing HHO is a big no-no. It tends to explosively recombine. The end result may be just water, but that explosion tends to make a mess. There's a guy in southern California who was experimenting with compressing HHO... he blew the building he was in apart and deaded himself.