Saturday, March 28, 2009

Hot air Oscars nomination: most useless invention

Nick Cook has nominated the EDF Energy ideal home show, Alex Hort, and the University of Plymouth for a Hot air Oscar for "An ingenious idea that recovers useful energy from a drain pipe". "Rain water descending a down pipe is captured and stored behind an internal 'dam'... Each rush of water turns a small, plastic turbine... providing electricity which is stored in rechargeable batteries."
The raw power of rainwater on a roof of area 40 square metres, rainfall 584 mm per year, with a drainpipe of length 6 metres, is 0.001 kWh per day. This is less than one ten-thousandth of the average British person's electricity consumption. The economic value of the power captured by this contraption is roughly 5 pence per year. The energy cost of making the system and inserting it into a drainpipe must be many times greater than the energy it would ever give back.


Arno said...

What if it only drizzles? probably that generates Zero energy?

Joe said...

Hahaha love it.

sandeen said...

Ah, at first I thought this was going to be about drain water heat recovery; those things, I think, may have some merit. But I agree, this thing? Yeesh.