In the UK, there has been a lot of discussion about we should site WindTurbines. Some people thhink that they are ugly, particularly as many windy areas are often very beautiful.

One problem here, is that WindPower is fairly low Density, so you need a lot of Turbines. This multiplicity exacerbates the suggested ugliness.

One solution to this is the use of OffShoreWindFarms.

One thing that I don't understand about this is why we have been so parsimonious about this. OffShoreWindFarms are great. Why not take it too a more logical extreme? Rather than have a permanently sited Turbine, what about a boat?

Diagram of a TankerGenerator
Diagram of a TankerGenerator

A boat causes a number of problems; they key one of which is how do you get power back to however wants it. I think that there are a number of solutions here. Firstly, we make a big boat with lots of storage area. An obvious idea is to use an old OilTanker, which has many of these attributes. You then convert energy to Hydrogen, via Electrolysis, and store it in the holders. The TankerGenerator then returns to a base station either on shore, or with a pipe to shore, to releasse it's load. Alternatively, if a developed HydrogenBalloonNetwork is available, Fuel could be returned this way.

Hydrogens low density is still a real problem. A TankerGenerator full of Hydrogen carries relatively little energy compared to the equivalent OilTanker. It might make sense, therefore, to use a BioFuelGenerator to convert the Hydrogen to BioFuel, probably an AlgaeCake. This would mean far fewer trips back to shore.

Of course, a WindTurbine on a boat is likely to much less efficient that one in a fixed OffShore location as the boat bobs up and down. You have to use Fuel to move the boat to the base station. The flip side, of course, is that you can move the WindTurbine to areas where there is lots of Wind, which may well offset this problem.

Incidentally, a simple WindTurbine is not the only way a TankerGenerator might generate Fuel at sea. WindKites seem feasible, as do HeatPumps, WaveGenerators, or any of the many different SolarPower gnerations.

I think that this sort of Renewable Energy could make a major contribution. There is an awful lot of ocean space out there. It's very windy.

I noticed the other day that other people have come up with a similar idea to this. I think, in many ways, their idea is nicer than mine. Having a purpose built floating platform makes good sense. However, their system is based on cabling back to shore. I think my HydrogenBalloonNetwork and BioFuelGenerator are a significant addition. You could have thousands of these floating around the under used parts of the sea.

Updated: 06-05-08
Home / Index