Earth's Spinning - Perfect Energy Source

This first occurred to me in 1990, modified Dec. 2009

But it may require too large a structure, beyond the capabilities of humans, to become the asset that it might become.

There is a "perfectly green" energy source that is essentially inexhaustible (billions of times as large as all the oil and natural gas and nuclear that we might ever find)! It involves NO global warming, NO pollution, and it would not use up natural resources. It might even turn out to be completely free to use! Yet no one seems to be even trying to investigate it! (An exception was the Soviet Union, in extremely secret research beginning around 1970, and me, some years later! Both of those approaches were based on building a gyroscope, which always attempts to maintain its direction of its spin axis, and then rely on the fact that the Earth would rotate beneath it to create resulting difference in motion and therefore be captured by mechanical means. The Soviets apparently built around two hundred devices over those years, but all failed miserably. I learned that their approach always involved extremely high speed spinning of a relatively small gyroscope, and also massive gear ratios to multiply the resulting axis motion, only one revolution per day, by around a factor of a million to one. The enormous gear trains necessary to increase the axis rotation speed by a factor of a million was instrumental in their failures, and they never really got anywhere. My research was entirely different from theirs, where I early on conceded that such high rotor spin speeds and such enormous gear ratios were too wasteful of energy, due to friction. And so my approach was extremely different, involving devices where nothing rotated faster than about 35 rpm maximum and nothing inside ever needed to move faster than walking speed. With such slow speeds, air friction and bearing friction were nearly insignificant. My approach and my devices is based on the fact that when a gyroscope axis is forced to turn, it CREATES a new type of mechanical energy called Precession. In early 2004, I (scientifically) measured an energy production of around 0.001 watt in each of four tabletop-sized devices I designed and built. That was not much, but it WAS larger than ANY experiment done by anyone else, ever, even the Soviets!

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The first concept regarding capturing energy from the rotating Earth first occurred to me late in 1990, when I did extensive calculations and Engineering regarding confirming the validity of the concept. It's presentation was first placed on the Internet in November 2002. This alternative concept of capturing that energy source arose in December 2009.

The good news is that it certainly worked as I had calculated. The bad news is that there are PRACTICAL (mathematical) limitations on how much power can be captured. This news, sadly, also applies to the parallel efforts of some Ukrainian researchers who are continuing Soviet efforts which began around 1970, where there is probably no realistic future that their approach can ever succeed on any practical basis. My approach is a variant which has some advantages, where my approach could realistically provide a few hundred watts of electric power, but from a device that would be significantly large and probably expensive. Disappointing!

This new (2009) approach to the matter is entirely different! No gyroscopes are involved at all. Whether human efforts are capable of building the devices required is questionable, as they must be truly monumental in size and weight! But there is no doubt whatever that it would work. It involves using the MOON as a mechanical device!

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This concept also uses the rotation of the Earth to extract mechanical power. But it relies on the existence of the Moon to extract that power. The existence of the Moon, and its gravitational effect on the Earth already extracts spectacular amounts of power from the rotation of the Earth in creating the oceans' tides. The power extracted from the Earth's rotation by the Moon in creating the ocean tides actually DOES already slow the Earth's spinning down! But rather minimally. Each year, the extraction of some of the Earth's rotational energy in causing the Tides causes our days to get longer by about 0.000022 second. The Moon does that! I just think there might be a way to use this effect of the Moon by building a really large and massive device which could extract some more of the Earth's spin energy to produce electricity or the other kinds of energy that our societies use.

This is a very peculiar idea! I seriously doubt that humans are capable of actually building the enormous devices required!

I imagine building an extremely strong and rigid "platform" of maybe one mile square, and placing it up on top of quite a few billion very tall but very strong vertical (compression) coil SPRINGS. Then, a hundred million truckloads of granite or limestone would be obtained to stack on top of that platform. Maybe a thousand feet tall! That is actually nearly all there is to it! (The technical aspect of Spring Constants is a REAL problem, though.)

So the Moon goes overhead at some point during any 24.5 hours, as the Earth rotates. If it passed DIRECTLY overhead, the gravitation of the Moon would cause a NET REDUCTION in the gravity that we experience there. You actually become LESS HEAVY at that moment! But not by much! By only one part in 8,700,000, or around 0.01 gram.

But with this mass of around 2 billion tons sitting on that platform, the net reduction of weight due to the Moon passing directly overhead would be around 200 tons weight. So the springs would expand (by a very tiny part of their length, REALLY long springs!), pushing the whole thing UP by just over one foot (max). So now, there would be 2 billion tons of material that was LIFTED about one foot vertically (over a period of six hours). This is EXACTLY what happens to the waters in the ocean due to the Moon and the tides it causes. The platform would then probably have to be supported on jacks for several hours. There is now an additional 4 trillion foot-pounds of new POTENTIAL ENERGY, which has been added due to the gravitational attraction of the Moon! If mechanisms could be set up to capture that energy as the platform and mass was allowed to sink back down, my premise is that might mean that the 4 trillion foot-pounds of Potential Energy might be capturable over maybe an hour (3,600 seconds), six hours later when the full gravitational force of the Earth was again acting there. (This would be when the Moon was on the horizon.) This implies that over 1 billion foot-pounds per second would become available for that hour. A kilowatt is about 737 ft-lb/sec. That seems to imply that MAYBE a constant 1.3 million kiloWatts of power (possibly electricity) might be available from it, during that hour. That 1,300 MegaWatts is greater than the output of most nuclear power plants, or a bunch of coal-fired plants!

You can't get any more GREEN than that!

This effect is essentially identical to what happens as the Moon causes tides. An entire ocean of water is more than a foot higher due to the passage of the tide which the Moon's gravitation causes. The general CONCEPT certainly will work!

Building a MOVABLE platform which was rigid and strong enough to support a hundred million semi-truckloads of solid rock? I doubt that humans could do that! Making springs that could support it all? Maybe not!

But IF it was built and worked as described, the net effect would be to alter the revolution of the Moon and the rotation of the Earth, essentially identically to what happens naturally due to the tide creation. However, this effect is incredibly tiny when compared to the mass involved in adding an additional foot of water on the entire Pacific Ocean! So the well-known effects of tides would occur, but in infinitesimal ways, where even a million years of such massive use of such things, would not cause any noticeable changes in either the Earth or Moon. Over a million years of all the Earth tides frictionally dragging on the Earth's rotation, our day will only increase in length by about 22 second! Even really massive use of this concept would certainly not even increase that to 23 seconds over that million years!

This represents a possible energy source which needs no fossil fuels, and has no environmental effects at all.

There MIGHT be a similar method which might be a lot easier to build! What if an area of ocean maybe ten miles square was surrounded by conventional concrete breakwater walls. The ocean would obviously have to not be very deep to minimize the height of such walls!

But then there would be automatic movable sections of some parts of those walls. As a tide was coming in, those sections would be opened in order to allow the rising ocean to enter into the enclosed area. Once the tide reached its highest level, the movable wall sections would be closed, which would then HOLD that high water level as the tide ebbed over the following six hours. Do you see that we would now have an immense amount of RAISED WATER which could then be allowed to fall through turbines to produce electricity.

A similar system has long been in use where electric companies PUMP water from a river up onto a mountaintop artificial reservoir (during the night when there is minimal need for electricity by their customers) and they then allow that water to fall back down to the river, through turbines, to supply significant amounts of electricity during the daytime. But instead of PUMPING water hundreds of feet up a mountain, we are describing simply TRAPPING natural tidal water inside an immense ocean-based reservoir, where we would then only have a few feet of head to extract energy and electricity from.

Still, there have long been smaller efforts similar to what is described here, which have only ever been built in the very few locations where ocean tides are extremely high. The significant difference in what is being described here is to enclose HUGE areas of ocean, in order to have truly massive amounts of water to work with. Since this concept is totally based on Potential Energy, and that potential energy is directly proportional to both the WEIGHT of the water and the DIFFERENTIAL HEIGHT, my proposal here is to enclose such huge areas of the ocean that the minimal tidal height change still can provide a lot of electricity.

Where locations like the end of the Bay of Fundy have tidal differential heights of around 50 feet, most coastal areas commonly have tides which only change by two feet or three feet or six feet, rising and falling approximately twice each day. Some simple calculations, regarding our ten-mile-square enclosed area, and assuming a local tidal range of exactly two vertical feet: That area of water would be just under three billion square feet. When we trap two vertical feet of water inside our enclosure, that is about 5.5 billion cubic feet of water. Each cubic foot of seawater weighs about 64 pounds, so we are describing about 350 billion pounds of water. Once we wait until the natural tide is lowest, that mass of water can fall an AVERAGE of half the tidal range, or one foot for our example. Therefore, we would have 350 billion foot-pounds of Potential Energy, which we could capture about twice each day.

Now say that we decide to USE this energy over a period of one hour (or 3600 seconds) at low tide. We then would have a POWER of about 100 million foot-pounds per second to use to produce electricity. (For the record, since 550 ft-lb/sec is equal to one horsepower, we are talking about 180,000 horsepower which would be available for that entire hour! This is the same as about 135,000 KiloWatts, continuously for that entire hour! This is MORE than most coal-fired electric power plants can produce (although it IS for just that single hour out of each twelve hours).

I trust that you see that ANY city or community might choose to build such a set of concrete breakwaters to create such an enclosure. True, they would not get ALL their electricity from this source, but a city of 150,000 people could get ALL their electricity for two specific hours each day, which would be both GREEN and FREE for them!

Clearly, a much larger enclosure might be built, depending on how deep the ocean is regarding whether concrete walls might be built. Do you see the theme being presented here? There seems to be a universaly ASSUMPTION that society must burn thousands of tons of coal every hour or consume significant amounts of Uranium, to be able to make significant amounts of electricity. I am trying to show here that there are actually MANY NATURAL PROCESSES which might be used instead. Processes which do NOT send more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, and which do not use up natural resources at amazing rates. In these two examples, the simple effect of the Moon's gravitational attraction, per Isaac Newton, is used to collect and save Potential Energy consequences, to then produce impressive amounts of electricity! There are MANY MORE natural processes which might be similarly examined, although it seems that virtually no one seems to have put serious interest in such directions.

Yes, there have been a FEW demonstrations of the general concept of using tidal energy, but only at a handful of locations around the Earth where tidal range is extremely high. In the 1930s, there were some experimental attempts to try to capture energy from ocean waves, which all WORKED but which all quickly became destroyed. Ditto for hundreds of other potential approaches, where people have made TINY devices which have shown apparent potential for creating electricity or other power. Virtually none have ever scaled-up enough to be successful toward actually being beneficial to other than a few individuals who happened to live in a favorable location! The presentations in this Domain are generally meant to be somewhat UNIVERSAL where MANY people might benefit from the natural processes which clearly contain impressive amounts of energy and power.

The huge multi-National oil companies employ tens of thousands of researchers whose sole function is to find new locations to drill oilwells. However, it is reasonably well established that, assuming that we find it all, we humans will manage to use it all up by around the year 2050, in less than 50 years. (That petroleum took hundreds of millions of years to form.) Actually, official government and industry records of oil and other energy supplies (presented in the first link at the end of this page) shows that at current usage rates of petroleum, there appear to be around 43 years supply for the world (at current consumption rates), but frighteningly, only around FOUR years supply of petroleum actually in or near the United States!

A natural side effect of the formation of that oil is that massive accumulations of natural gas (mostly methane) also exist underground, and we are using that all up at an amazing rate, too. It appears that the world (at current consumption rates) may not use it all up for around 70 years or so, although the U.S. would use up all the supplies in and near our country in around 8 years ( without importing the massive amounts of natural gas which we already do).

We use these irreplaceable natural resources in some pretty disappointing and wasteful ways. Enormous numbers of barrels of oil get used up to make the plastic bags we bring everything home in (and then immediately throw away). Ditto for the packaging of almost every modern product. As as to vehicle fuel, we insist on driving to the store, taking several thousand pounds of a vehicle along with us, an immensely wasteful attitude. Our attitude seems to be "It's here, so why not use it all up. I won't be alive when it runs out!" But, hopefully, other people will be! "There will be smart people around. THEY will figure out what to do!"

Few people are aware that the FINAL 40 Uranium mines in the U.S. closed down in the early 1990s because they ran out of Uranium to mine! (Uranium in Reactors currently supplies about 1/5 of all the U.S. electricity, with essentially all of that Uranium having to be imported.)

Around 1990, I realized an interesting situation, which seems to show promise of being a source of electricity and mechanical energy billions and possibly trillions of times the total available energy in all existing oil, gas and coal! I am bemused that so many tens of thousands of researchers struggle to find oil supplies while exactly zero are even exploring this far more vast potential source of energy!

Technically, this concept is a "mechanism" or "coupling". There are countless such mechanisms that use shafts, pulleys, gears, levers, etc, to convert some form of energy into some other form. There are also mechanisms based on magnetism or electricity to do similar things. The premise described here is a "coupling" which is based on mechanical concepts closely related to the cause of the ocean tides.

And the "energy source"? It is from the rotational spinning of the Earth! Weird, huh?

Let's first look at the demand for energy

Say that an average American family/home uses around 800 kWh per month (around an $120 electric bill). That's around 10,000 kWh per year. There are almost 100,000,000 families in America, so collectively, they use (the product of these two numbers) around 1012 kWh per year. Figures provided in the World Almanac indicate that the entire electric consumption of all of America, including all residential, industrial, commercial, municipal and governmental usages, and waste, total around four times that amount (3.857 * 1012 kWh in 2003). Now say all those 100,000,000 families continue to use (and waste) electricity at that same rate for, say, the next 1000 years! (Some of them might die during that time, I concede!) And, yes, I said a THOUSAND YEARS! During that thousand years, they would collectively use up 1 * 1015 kWh. (This is also equal to 3.6 * 1021 watt-seconds.)

We will refer back to this amount of energy soon!

A unique supply of an unimaginable amount of energy

Now, consider that the Earth is rotating. When I was a small child, I was quite impressed at a giant pendulum in the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago. While I would watch, the direction of the pendulum was obviously seen to very slowly change! The Museum even had the numbers of a clock face on the floor under it. When I later learned Physics, I realized that the pendulum was actually not rotating like that, as Newton's Laws clearly show that the pendulum should maintain its original plane of motion. The apparent change in that pendulum was ACTUALLY due to the Earth (and Museum floor) rotating beneath the pendulum!

It has dawned on me that the Moon also maintains its location in space (somewhat), while the Earth rotates beneath it. I was "slow" on that since it was known for centuries! In fact, for those centuries, it has been known that the Moon's presence causes the tides in the world's oceans! And the amount of energy provided to those tides is enormous beyond imagination! Maybe there is some way to duplicate that effect!

There certainly is!

This concept is to CAPTURE energy in an equivalent to an "Earth tide"!

But it would necessarily be big, probably beyond anything that humanity is capable of building.

Warning! Technical Info Here!

We will discuss a location that is relatively near the Earth's equator. The concept will work at most Latitudes, but there is an angle effect that reduces its effectiveness and increases the complexity of the math!

As the rotation of the Earth occurs each day, there is one time when the Moon is relatively high in your sky. We are going to simplify here and say that the Moon passes directly overhead. The gravitational pull of the Moon then affects even you! Each time the Moon is overhead, YOU are being gravitationally attracted UPWARD by the Moon, as well as downward by the Earth. It actually changes your weight! But by only by a really, really tiny amount! (around one part in nine million, one one-hundredth of a gram!)

Around six and a quarter hours before and after that moment, the effect disappears, and it reappears after another six and a quarter hours. These are just the standard effects of the Moon on the Earth's oceans which causes the tides. See Ocean Tides - The Physics and Logic Mathematical Explanation of Tides for the details.

Those calculations give a result for the relative acceleration due to the Moon of anything on the Earth's (equatorial) surface as being 1.129 * 10-6 m/s2, if directly overhead. We know that the acceleration due to gravity of the Earth is around 9.8 m/s2. So the actual downward acceleration on us and water and land is reduced by about 1/8,700,000, when the Moon is overhead and at its average distance. If you happen to weigh 200 lbs (90 kg), your scale would show you lighter by about 1/2500 ounce (or 0.01 gram), when the Moon was overhead as compared to six hours earlier or later. (Your scale is NOT that accurate!)

You might note that we are limited in finding any mechanism that represents a relatively fixed orientation in space, except for pendulums, gyroscopes, the Moon and the Sun. We discussed gyroscopes in the earlier presentation, and pendulums are not efficient enough regarding this conversion of energy from one form to another. The Sun's effect is similar to that of the Moon, but it is smaller (about 45%) and therefore certainly is available but not as much a possible energy source as the Moon represents. So this discussion will be exclusively about the Moon.

So now consider making a really enormous structure, either a platform (for solid materials) or a tank (for water). A REALLY enormous structure, where maybe two billion tons of material is placed upon it, as described above. An important aspect is to SUPPORT the whole thing on springs or something similar which can be compressed.

When the Moon is on the horizon, the springs get compressed by the (normal) weight of the material to some compressed length. Around six hours later, that mass has a REDUCED weight due to the Moon being overhead, and the springs are therefore expanded slightly! Not much! By only one part in around 9 million. However, with the mechanism described above, that would represent around 200 tons of weight that would be lifted off those springs, and they WOULD expand in length. This would RAISE the entire structure, by the strength of the springs!

The calculations in the Tides presentation indicate that the equilibrium radius R therefore has to change in the proportion of 1.0000000576. Knowing that the radius of the Earth is 6.378 * 106 meters, we can see that the new equilibrium radius would be 0.367 meter higher! (about one foot).

Real springs would not have perfect resiliency, so that could not actually completely occur, but we will continue the calculations as though they were perfect springs.

Notice the net effect here. We have 2 billion tons of material that was lifted up about a foot due to the gravitation of the Moon, in an application of the well-known and proven phenomena of an "earth tide", which, by the way, has been MEASURED to be about this distance. So we then find a way to connect some mechanism to this thing, to try to capture the potential energy as that enormous weight drops back down as the Moon sets in the west! How much energy is involved? Well, the Potential energy is 2 billion tons or 4 * 1012 pounds falling down through one vertical foot. That is 4 * 1012 foot-pounds. This would probably be done about the time when the Moon was setting in the west, and possibly over an interval of an hour. The resulting rate of release of the Potential Energy would then represent about 1.3 * 106 kiloWatts of power.

The net result is that this enormous concept (which mankind has absolutely no possible way of actually building) would have a maximum amount of power capability to about one nuclear power plant, for about an hour (twice each day).

It WOULD work, but it would require building things that we cannot do! And for a potential benefit that might seem minimal as long as there are cheaper sources of power available to us, specifically fossil fuels!

I find this all very interesting!

Different Subject!

People have pursued "perpetual motion" for centuries. Actual perpetual motion is impossible, because it would violate a number of scientific laws that are known not to be able to be violated.

However, a mechanism such as the hypothetical one described would certainly give the APPEARANCE of perpetual motion! It would be able to run apparently forever, and even produce usable power in the process! Exactly like the tides do! It is NOT perpetual motion, though! What would be happening is that Kinetic Energy of the rotation of the Earth and the motion of the Moon would just be being CONVERTED into a different form of energy, such as electricity or shaft mechanical energy. This is therefore a confirmation that the Conservation of Energy, which is also called the First Law of Thermodynamics. is still absolutely valid! No violation of any law would be happening! Actually, if the Earth ever completely stopped rotating, this device would THEN stop working! (The tides would no longer exist either!)

My point here is that an unbelievably huge supply of energy is available to us and that there would be no pollution and no depletion of natural resources involved in using it. No global warming would result either!

Such people would probably be interested to know that the device just described would qualify for their "perpetual motion" device, even though it actually isn't! After a MILLION YEARS of EVERYONE on Earth using such devices, the Earth would have really slightly slowed down in rotation, so that the day would then be a fraction of a second longer! But it turns out that the Moon's interaction with the Earth's ocean waters, as the tides, has a much larger effect! In that million years, the Moon and its natural tidal effects will have slowed the Earth's rotation enough to make the day longer by around 22 seconds.

How much Rotational Kinetic Energy does the Earth have?

(Some math, but none too especially nasty.)

The Earth certainly has kinetic energy of rotation. An unimaginable amount! The Earth is known to have a Rotational Inertia (called I) of 8.070 * 1037 kg-m2. It rotates once a day, so it turns at the rate of 6.2832/86164.09 radians/sec (called ω). The Earth's kinetic energy of rotation is 1/2 * (I) [that Rotational Inertia * the square of this rate. Doing this math gives us 2.145619327 * 1029 kg-m2/s2 (or newton-meters). A published value is 2.137 * 1029, essentially the same. That unit of energy is also called a Joule or watt-second. I would point out here that this amount of "spinning energy" of the Earth is around 60 thousand million times that TOTAL ELECTRIC USAGE of all Americans for an entire year! And at least a billion times ALL the energy that has EVER been created and used by humans!

Now say that, over a period of 1,000 years, the Earth's rotation somehow SLOWED by 0.0007 SECOND per day (and NOT due to the effect of the Moon and the ocean tides). Instead of a day being the current 86164.09 seconds, it would then be 86164.0907 seconds long, an absolutely unnoticeable effect. (Especially if it only occurred so slowly that it took a thousand years!) The kinetic energy of the Earth's spinning calculation above would be the same except we would now use 86164.0907 and the Earth's rotational kinetic energy would be 2.145619292 * 1029 kg-m2/s2 (after that thousand years).

A basic law of Physics is that Energy must be Conserved. By gradually slowing down by just that fraction of a second, an unnoticeable effect, and one with no consequences whatever, the Earth would have had to have given up the difference in those two energy totals, which is 3.6 * 1021 kg-m2/s2, or 3.6 * 1021 Joules. A Joule is a watt-second. To convert this into kWh, just divide by 3600 seconds/hour and 1000 watts/kW or 3.6 million, and get 1.0 * 1015 kWh.

This is identical to the total electric use of all Americans for one thousand years as calculated above! So, if we could just figure out how to insignificantly slow the Earth's rotation, to make the length of the day longer by less than a thousandth of a single second, we could have essentially limitless electricity for all of us for a thousand years! Interesting?

This amount of energy is the same as if a large 50-megawatt electric power generating plant operated constantly for 2 * 108 hours, or around 23,000 years! Or the total of the hundreds of such giant electric generating plants which operate continuously now (always using up enormous amounts of conventional power sources such as the fossil fuels oil, gas, coal, and also nuclear or hydroelectric).

See my reason for fascination? If someone could figure out how to SIMPLY tap into this enormous energy of rotation of the Earth, to somehow convert a tiny part of it into electricity, we could totally supply all the electricity needed for all American homes for a thousand years while only making the day 0.0007 second longer. No burning of any coal, oil or natural gas to deplete those supplies or pollute the atmosphere with their waste products and their global warming. There would also be no reason to use nuclear power generation to create electricity, and so there would not be all the environmental hazards there. Countries wouldn't even have political reasons to wage war over sources of petroleum or other energy supply natural resources! All the known supplies of oil, coal and natural gas together will probably be used up in well under 100 years. And then what? IF somebody can figure out how to convert a tiny bit of that rotational energy of the Earth, WOW! Even a conservative view makes clear that there are billions of times as much energy present as we could ever hope to discover in all the coal and gas and oil and nuclear we will ever find.

Actually, such a nearly unlimited source of electric power could provide power to drive electrolysis of water to create hydrogen, for possible fuel for future vehicles. (I personally feel that trying to produce enough hydrogen to be a commercially valid energy source is foolish, but it would be possible.) Even more interesting is that this energy capture process does not figure to have all the wastages of our conventional methods. Most people do not seem to realize that the actual energy in coal or oil or natural gas burned in our (distant) giant electric generation stations is nearly all wasted! Only something like 13% of it actually gets to our homes to be used as electricity! The rest goes into various forms of wasted heat, dumped by "cooling towers" and assorted other methods of designed wastage and unintended wastage.

People have ripped into me for many years regarding this statement, that 60% of the electricity put INTO the power-grid at the power plants, is LOST, and that only 40% of the electricity makes it through the power-grid. So it is refreshing to see that IBM has started running TV commercials in Jan 2009 that start off announcing that "more than half" of electricity is lost in the power-grid! Maybe people will be willing to believe IBM about such statements!

Most people also do not realize that most modern cars are only around 21% efficient, regarding the energy that was in the gasoline, and even less when considering the original energy that was in the crude petroleum. (But that is a lot better than the average 15% automobile efficiency of the 1970s!)

This concept of simply converting a tiny portion of the Earth's rotational energy into mechanical energy, seems to have very little possible inefficiency or wastage. It IS true that then converting it into electricity would have some conversion losses, but they are still a lot better than 13% or 21% energy usage!

There is actually another aspect of this that seems even more attractive to me, for several reasons. First, here is an example of the current "silly thinking". California has so many people that it is in urgent and even desperate need for electricity. As I understand it, Southern California is funding research in North Dakota, around 1500 miles away, regarding generating electricity with giant windmills. That technology would have some environmental implications of its own, if really extensive use was made (wind patterns and weather patterns would be altered for everywhere downwind, east, of the wind farms, for example), but that is not the silliest part. If you ask ANY knowledgeable Electrical Engineer, he can explain that the "power grid" that we rely on has a problem. Even when those high-tension power lines are operated at high voltages, they are DESIGNED so that roughly 90% of the electric power put in at one end of a 60 mile long stretch, gets to the other end! The other 10% is LOST as resistive heating (by the wires into the surrounding air). So, 60 miles away from ANY central electric generation station, only about 90% of the made electricity is still available. (This is why virtually all such generating stations are pretty close to large cities where the electricity is needed.) So, go another 60 miles, and we lose 10% of that remaining electric power (or 9% of the original, so we have 81% still going. After 180 miles, there is only 72.9% left available.

If you continue with these "transmission line losses", which ALL Electrical Engineers can easily calculate, for a 1500 mile stretch to California, it is easy to see that (0.9025) only around 7.2% of the electricity created in North Dakota would actually arrive in California! And worse, the other 93% of it would all be WASTED heat of the hot wires heating up the air along the way, contributing to effects related to global warming. A good idea? Who is doing this thinking?

I guess it sounds impressive to politicians and executives of giant corporations! They figure they are seen as "green" by spending money on researching such things! I do not argue that a MODERATE usage of wind power is a good idea, as long as the electricity created was to be used fairly locally. Maybe there should be a "Ministry of Common Sense" to oversee such things?

I admit that California seems to have an impossible situation. They keep needing to use more and more electricity, and they have started building electric power plants that will not be operational for ten years. California also relies very heavily on electricity generated by hydroelectric power plants at Hoover Dam and other dams, and drought has lowered the reservoirs more than a hundred feet below normal. They have spectacular problems. But spending money to research making wind electricity in North Dakota??? Wow!

It actually turns out that the Earth is slowing down anyway! The effect of the Moon's and Sun's gravitation on the waters of the oceans causes the tides, and there is a frictional loss due to the drag of the ocean tides along the bottom of the ocean and against the continents. That process that is occurring now act to slow the Earth's rotation by around 0.022 seconds over the next thousand years. Essentially, the effect of the massive usage of energy described above (providing ALL the electricity that all of us use), would make this a little less than one thousandth of a second longer. Instead of naturally increasing by 0.022 seconds, the day would increase by 0.023 seconds over that thousand years. Doesn't seem like much of a downside to me!

I realize that you do NOT believe any of this! It sounds completely crazy and impossible! However, please realize that I was educated (very well) in Nuclear Physics at the University of Chicago, and I actually know what I am talking about!

These comments and calculations above are to show that this concept certainly works, and that we have available an unbelievably huge source of power, which has NO pollution or global warming or any of the other bad side effects of current energy production approaches.

Absolutely no one seems to even be aware of this theoretical resource! (I recently (early 2006) learned that the Soviets had known about it even before I did and that they had spent decades trying to develop some gyroscope-based mechanism to capture it. Their efforts were nearly always along the lines of the "crude" concept described in my gyroscope-based web-page, but with massive and complex geartrains that they tried to use to get useful energy. They never really got far, and apparently there are still some researchers working on the concept (now in the Ukraine). But their high speeds and gear trains certainly cause amounts of frictional losses that keep them from ever really accomplishing much with that approach. But it was reassuring to learn that they were trying, and the Soviet Union had spent a lot of Rubles for research, for all those years to confirm that I actually have a credible and potentially valuable concept!)

A Violation of the Law of Conservation of Angular Momentum

In my earlier research regarding the gyroscope approach, I discovered an amazing fact. Every toy gyroscope Violates the Law of Conservation of Angular Momentum! But only for a moment! When you FIRST RELEASE a toy gyroscope on its little pedestal, it has NO rotational energy or angular momentum around that pedestal. But it immediately STARTS PRECESSING around it! How come no one seems to have ever even thought about that? (The answer to this is that it turns out that the Euler Equations show that the brief acceleration of the precession motion causes the entire body of the gyroscope to lower a VERY small fraction of an inch. The [Kinetic] energy of the precessional motion actually CAME FROM the [Potential] energy of the height of the gyroscope weight in the Earth's gravitational field!) (I realize that was WAY more information than you wanted!) (However, that effect certainly complies with the Law of Conservation of Energy but happens to violate a very basic Law of science, called the Law of Conservation of Angular Momentum, a troubling fact!) Obviously, I have other web-pages on that subject!

The gyroscope-based concept first occurred to me in early 1990.
This earth-tide-based concept first occurred to me in December 2009.
This presentation was first placed on the Internet in December 2009.
Research and calculations continue!

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C Johnson, Theoretical Physicist, Physics Degree from Univ of Chicago