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CO2 Utilities

Water Bill, Gas Bill, Electric Bill, and now... THE CO2 BILL.
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The most common public utilities in homes across America are water, gas, and electricity. Now there is one more to contend with- CO2. A carbon dioxide network will share ground under the streets with water, sewer, and gas. CO2 is great for extinguishing fires, dusting off computers and electronics among other things.

CO2 has so many great uses. When enough of it is released at one time it creates a rapid cooling effect so it would be great for cooling down your favorite beverages or freezing your summer vegetables and seafood instantly. Even make your own carbonated drinks right at home. You want sparkling cider? No problem! Need dry ice? You have all of the liquid CO2 you need.

You can clean out the dust bunnies and cob webs in the corners with a hose and a long blast attachement. Dust all over the house without using spray chemicals or having to handle dirty rags.

Because water based overhead sprinkler systems cause damage in homes and businesses, a CO2 jet on the ceiling would be a much smarter idea. If a fire breaks out, rather than soaking all of your posessions, the fire could be extinguished quickly without sustaining any other damage. With it being part of the public grid, there could also be CO2 fire hydrants on the curbside so that when a fire breaks out they can extinguish it with very little mess.

Jscotty, Sep 12 2005

Making dry ice at home http://www.ehow.com...e-dry-ice-home.html
Not quite the way i remembered it [nineteenthly, Jan 03 2011]


       Two flaws:   

       a) High pressure CO2 in every household would present too much danger of suffocation.   

       b) Fires are rare. Why install a fixed network at a huge cost when a CO2 extinguisher will do just as well?   

       Tell you what ... why not use pressurized air instead? It will do the same job of cooling and cleaning.   

       The thing is ... I wouldn't be surprised if it was cheaper to buy an electricl powered compressor than installing a compressed air infrastructure.
kinemojo, Sep 13 2005

       I think Dr. Kevorkian tried this. Most of his clients thought the bill was a real killer. People looking in on the situation thought it was a gas!
Salted Nuts, Feb 03 2007

       Yay! Lets pump poisonous gas into people's homes! (-)
Galbinus_Caeli, Feb 05 2007

       re Galbinus Caeli - CO2 is not poisonous; in any case, if we all had a small Stirling engine in our home, we could compress any gas; I suspect nitrogen would be most useful, although CO2 would benefit our house-plants
H K Boris, Jan 01 2011

       Carbon dioxide is poisonous. It isn't an issue of displacement or pressure-related narcosis. It triggers hyperventilation, changes the internal pH beyond physiological levels, causes cardiac arrhythmia, hypertension and various CNS problems, among other things, which do not occur with nitrogen or noble gases even at a partial pressure of one bar (which would, however, also be fatal but not due to toxicity).   

       I'd go for nitrogen, though it could also be hazardous.
nineteenthly, Jan 01 2011

       I've always wondered what other utilities there could be besides the typical electric, gas, TV/telecommunications, water, sewer, and steam.   

       City-wide central vacuum anyone!? :-p
EdwinBakery, Jan 01 2011

       City-wide hydraulic pressure? Actually, the CO2 would supply that.   

       I favor this idea, but would try to keep it out of the houses, just in case. People could carry containers of dry ice or CO2 extinguishers into their houses, of course, but keeping it out would simplify the infrastructure. I suggest CO2 hydrants with user-friendly taps.   

       This system would actually help keep CO2 sequestered (in its pipelines), and would encourage CO2 collection and permanent sequestration eleswhere.   

       And it would lead to a liquid-nitrogen system.
baconbrain, Jan 01 2011

       There used to be city-wide pneumatic facilities in some places to provide for hydraulic pressure and of course for postage.
nineteenthly, Jan 01 2011

       I'd like a CO2 line for carbonating drinks, but I had in mind a home air fractioner <moves one step closer to posting it>.
FlyingToaster, Jan 01 2011

       Something like that exists, [FT]. It works by compressing air and blowing it through a nozzle fast. The carbon dioxide freezes onto the inside of the nozzle. You can then put it in a bottle and close it and the carbon dioxide has to dissolve into the liquid (or make it explode if you get the wrong amount).
nineteenthly, Jan 01 2011

       Either outcome is acceptable.
FlyingToaster, Jan 01 2011

       [nineteenthly], can you give me a bit more info on that nozzle business, please?
baconbrain, Jan 01 2011

       Yes, particularly the bit where it explodes.
8th of 7, Jan 02 2011

       in the days before electricity, London was starting to build a hydraulic power system with cast iron pipes to power elevators and machinery and stuff. It became obsolete of course when electricity became available. But just a few years ago, those empty pipes were allowed by the city to be used by an internet-provider company or something to run fiber optic or something wires.
EdwinBakery, Jan 02 2011

       I like the idea of having it for carbonated drinks!
Jscotty, Jan 03 2011

       See link, [baconbrain]. I remembered it wrongly. It seems you tape a cloth bag shut over the nozzle of a carbon dioxide fire extinguisher and use it. The bag fills up with dry ice.
nineteenthly, Jan 03 2011

       [nineteenthly], thanks. I was hoping that wasn't the case.
baconbrain, Jan 03 2011

       I have tried to come up with a way of doing it because it's in the air around us and presumably collecting and filtering the updraft from a fire or exhalation, or maybe just gas from a carbonate and an acid, would provide quite a lot. Maybe a compressor and a similar nozzle and bag arrangement would do something.
nineteenthly, Jan 03 2011


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