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Alcohol removed at 75C heats remaining water-wine to run steam engine
Wine heated to 75C.
The Alcohol (Ethanol, mixed with water vapor) boils and
leaves the container through a pipe (the alcohol pipe) from
This pipe then twists below and mixed with air, burns
heating a second pipe in which the remaining fluid after
the alcohol evaporation, is now flowing.
This fluid turns to steam and runs a regular steam engine.
For recovery of energy from excess wine dumped in large
quantities into the sewage system.
Low cost, few parts, simple - no distilling needed, and
The steam can then be sent to an underground cooler,
where it is retrieved as clean water.
The remaining organic residue from the grapes will
probably be good as plant feed.
Ah, alcohol enthusiasm ... [normzone, Dec 22 2016]
||//excess wine dumped in large quantities into the sewage system// There is no such thing as "excess wine" - there is merely wine in the wrong place.
||[Max] you obviously were never the recipient of a gift bottle of my grandmother's neighbour's carrot wine.
||And you have obviously never tried home distillation.
||A perpetual motion machine fueled by alcoholic beverages? I think there's a law about that - something conservation oriented, I think.
||I've been looking for excuses to fire up the still again - the three legs of the tripod are:
||Time - no getting around that one
||Energy - This idea attempts to address that, but the amount of alcohol obtained will not be enough sustain the secondary heating function
||Feedstock - Carrots ? Use what ever is available, I guess - in some parts of the world strange beverages are made from necessity
||[normzone] raises a valid point. It is obvious that the
alcohol contained in a glass of wine does not have enough
energy to vaporize all of the liquid in the glass. If so,
wine would be flammable. A more relevant question for
this idea is does the alcohol contain enough energy to
separate out the alcohol from the water.
||I suspect that with careful application of counter-flow heat
exchangers water could be heated enough to vaporize the
alcohol, then most of the heat could be recovered from
the alcohol depleted waste. Once started up using some
external energy source (or stored alcohol from the
previous time it ran) the heat from the alcohol could heat
the preheated water from the heat exchanger with enough
left over to vaporize a small amount of water for the steam
||The problem is that counter-flow heat exchangers are good
but not perfect, so if you have a 95% percent efficient
heat exchanger, you still have to provide 5% of the energy
for heating. For a rough estimate, I've heard that 100
proof (50%) alcohol will burn completely. If you have
some wine with 12.5%, you have a quarter of the energy
per volume, so you'd need a 75% efficient heat exchanger
to make up for that. So if you use an exchanger that's
90%+ efficient, that should cover a few other inefficiencies
in the system and maybe leave a little bit of heat for
running the steam engine.
||The only significant problem I see with this idea as written
is that it's being used on the wine after it goes into the
sewage system. Assuming it's only diluted down to 1%
alcohol, you only have 1/50th (2%) of the energy needed
to vaporize the water. That means you need a 98%
efficient heat exchanger. Getting a practical heat
exchanger that good and expecting 1% or more alcohol
concentration in the sewer both sound a little optimistic to
||If you can find some way to keep the alcoholic beverages
separate from other waste liquids, this might work.