Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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All-weather battery charging

Batteries recharged by weather phenomena
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A battery that has recharging devices for all weathers. Combine all the various unreliable power sources to get one pretty reliable one. For your car battery, or the garden lights, or anything else that doesn't absolutely require continuous 100% reliable power supply.

Sunny: solar panel on top

Windy: wind turbine

Rainy: waterwheel

Link them all together, and add a battery to even out the fluctuations. Gives you a reasonably reliable source of power for no running costs.

I'm sure you can get something out of cold weather too, but I can't quite yet see how. Temperature differential between something and something else that cools faster?

herilane, Mar 25 2002


       and a little cuckoo that pops out and sings just for UnaBubba
po, Mar 25 2002

       gherkin power
thumbwax, Mar 25 2002

       For cold weather: link to herilane's vibrating jaws.
neelandan, Mar 26 2002

       (Digging into memory banks) didn't we already have an inexhaustable power supply lined up for the flocking road cones? Or am I just flocking crazy?   

       [herilane] forgot the perpetual motion generator that's powered by the earth's rotation. Sorry, but this sounds suspiciously like a WIBNI.
Canuck, Mar 26 2002

       Dr. Martin Uman eloquently explains the reason this cannot be done and is false in his book, All About Lightning. He makes two points: it is impractical to intercept a sufficient number of the lightning strikes occurring in the world, and most of the energy in a lightning strike is converted to thunder, heat, light, and radio waves. He notes, "If its total energy were available, a single lightning flash would run an ordinary household light bulb for only a few months."
In answer to herilane's last sentence - Cold fusion, perhaps.
Seriously, I've often pondered the same thought - I now live where it rarely - if ever - freezes, but such has not always been the case. Where I spent my formative years, it did freeze during winter - therefore, energy in many forms was expended in order to warm homes - as well as Orange and other Citrus Crops - so much so that it sounded like a blitzkrieg - what with all the wind machines blowing over the groves. Between rows were canisters called "smudge pots" - canisters with a bit of diesel fuel alighted. The two would help somewhat to keep temps down, and at the same time there were sprinklers running which served 2 purposes - one would be to keep the waterlines from bursting - the other was by the very fact the water being pumped out was above freezing temp, where it landed would stay above freezing level. All used energy.
Else, the only saving grace of otherwise foul weather known as Tule Fog (quite deadly) - was that it formed only at above freezing temperatures.<R.I.P.>numerous friends died on roadways day or night</R.I.P>
Tangent: Human bodies in such conditions shiver and so forth and oftentimes, though optional - require some form of headwear to keep body heat in to keep that last refuge of heat warm. With that Tangent in mind, do any ideas spring to mind?
thumbwax, Mar 26 2002

       Solar, wind and water power are all baked (but separately and without a battery). How can this be a WIBNI?
herilane, Mar 27 2002

       The county I'm from is smackdab in the middle of the breadbasket of the world, with 3 Billion dollars in agricultural commodities. Winter’s cool air helps produce the sweetest oranges on the planet, and are unique to this area. That's the good part about the fog. A few freezes won't do in a crop - a whole bunch early in winter can have catastrophic effects on crop almost ready to be picked. If after picking - on the next seasons. It's also top milk producing county in the United States. International Farm Equipment Show is also the largest show of it’s kind worldwide. In early spring the countryside is alive and vibrant with blossoming fruit trees and wildflowers and the sweet aroma of orange blossoms - fills - and I do mean - fills - the air. And I don't miss those shit-kicking rednecks one bit.
thumbwax, Mar 28 2002

       That would be Tulare County, then?
angel, Mar 28 2002

       That is correct, angel - you now have control of the bottle - Spin!
thumbwax, Mar 28 2002


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