Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain. Maybe Max the Magnificent would say this. When I saw the story title, I thought it was related to a colleague's idea for generating electricity from the skin to ambient temperature differential (which can go either way in Texas). His approach can generate microwatts from reasonable surface area (e.g. Samsung watch and band). But it uses the laws of physics, it doesn't make up new ones.
For those who read The Drifters (my dad gave it to me in high school), remember that a really bad thing happened in Morocco.
Aren't there laws against bad engineering analysis leading to poorly chosen investments of otherwise well intentioned charitors? For far less than $200K, they could hire a consultant like Mr. Ashton to debunk this! ;-)
IRIS?... because of an operational similarity to the iris of a human eye?
Well.. I'll bet you can, at least, say it five times fast without verbally stalling or laughing out loud. Just try that with a Wankel Rotary Engine!
... anyway, you can't blame the guy for trying something different.
But, as for the QEG... oh, no no no no!
It's...... yet another bunch of "Nullpunkt" people ( a future variant of "Steampunk", perhaps? ) invoking Zero-Point-Energy. And all in the name of Nikola Tesla? Please, no!
All ZPE means is that nothing in the whole-wide Universe, not even a vacuum, can ever have absolutely ZERO energy... intuitively, this all sounds very sensible and desirable... and, that this fact is iron-clad guaranteed from those residual quivering droplets of energy, at the bottom of the potential well, that are being produced as a by-product of the Uncertainty Principle.
( It's too bad that the money in our bank accounts doesn't work according to an equivalent principle. )
... however... what it doesn't mean is that there is, or ever will be, any practical way of getting a handle on all that energy, because it's everywhere.
And... at least we had all better hope that there are no DIY-accessible methods for producing Free-Unlimited-Energy!...... lest the outer crust of our planet should end up very soon joining the mantle and the core in assuming a nice-and-toasty glowing rosy-red color!
Sorry, Nullpunkers... but no thank you anyway. Utilization of a conveniently situated black-hole remains as my favorite grandiose energy-extraction scheme.
There are many suckers, apparently. One example I'll not forget is a radio interview program I heard, maybe 4 years ago now, about this internal combustion engine called the "iris engine." You can find several articles online, but it's much the same thing as your quantum generator.
Don't you know, it's 70 percent efficient, as opposed to 25 to 30 percent efficient. Why haven't we seen it in vehicles? Because of the petroleum lobby. Why is it so efficient? Here, this is also what the interviewee described in the interview (the two paragraphs below in italics are a direct quote):
The key element of the IRIS engine design (the brainchild of the IRIS executives' father, Timber Dick, who died in 2008) is a system of valves and vents that allows the combustion chamber to expand in diameter, rather than length. IRIS claims this expanding diameter means 70 percent of the surface area of the engine chamber can "react productively" to combustion, which is to say, by moving.
In a conventional engine, the company claims only about a quarter of the chamber's surface area is productive — the rest is passive.
So the guest on the show concluded that the iris engine would be 70 percent efficient. And horrors of horrors, the interviewer just drank the coolaid. Aaargh!
The obvious question SHOULD have been, "What is the maximum compression ratio you can achieve? Who says that 'working area' has anything to do with efficiency of a heat engine?" In fact, there is nothing in the Carnot cycle, in Boyle's law (P1V1=P2V2), in the gas equation (PV=nRT), all of which would be used to derive the max theoretical efficiency of a heat engine, that hints at "working area" playing a part.
On the other hand, compression ratio is the key. Given that pistons are great at compression, given that conventional ICEs already operate close to or at detonation, it seems unlikely that attempting to improve efficiency of an ICE by fussing with an irrelevant parameter. Not to mention, the iris design seems inherently less effective than pistons, at simple compression.
So, similar to your quantum generator. The obvious questions are never asked, and the hoax is allowed to perpetuate.
NASA's Orion Flight Software Production Systems Manager Darrel G. Raines joins Planet Analog Editor Steve Taranovich and Embedded.com Editor Max Maxfield to talk about embedded flight software used in Orion Spacecraft, part of NASA's Mars mission. Live radio show and live chat. Get your questions ready.
Brought to you by