Tag Archives: power

Google goes Ga-Ga for Green!

9 Sep

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately, and that can’t be good…

My family is currently embarking on an expedition not unlike the origins of the materials that we’re using to build our new home…

We’re pondering the entry of that deep, dark water that is the unknown, in order to reach a new frontier… a frontier where we’ll find ourselves a nice, safe, efficient, and even cool home out of shipping containers. Yep! Shipping containers!

Our neighbors, and the local authorities call them ISBU’s, “Corten Coffins,” or even the “Cubicles of Death!” But we know better, because we ain’t from around here…

Now, we’re gonna couple those boxes with some other cool (and even recycled) stuff, to create a steel spire that shall evermore be known as “The Man of Steel’s House of Steel…” Okay, well, maybe not…

(I’m not really made of steel… My wife says my head is full of rocks… and some other stuff I’m just not gonna repeat, here… Well, I am actually “made of steel” sometimes, but only for about an hour or so at a whack… um… er… never mind!)

And, as you have probably guessed (if you’ve been reading along… you have, right?) we’re not the “best” of neighbors, by a long shot.

In fact, that’s the way I prefer my neighbors to be… a “long shot away…” And, I’ll be checking with my trusty 4x infrared scope, so you’d better mind those fences, or you’re gonna get a butt fulla um… er… never mind…

In keeping with this theme, we feel it’s best to insure our privacy by keeping everyone at bay… And because of that, one of our biggest problems seems to be not only power production, but power delivery. After all, your house has to eat, right? And, if you’re like me, you want to live “independently” of the usual suspects, i.e. utility companies.

Hey, I got enough problems feeding the mob I live with, I don’t need no stinkin’ extra mouths to feed!

But, where you live, dictates what you can get. For example, in Coastal Mississippi, there isn’t enough wind to justify a traditional windmill generator (unless you want to put it about 400 feet up in the air, and I bet the Air Force Base down the street wouldn’t like that too much).

We get a lot of “solar days,” and that’s a start, but what about at night, and on days that seem like weeks, where our access is diminished by cloud cover or continuous rain? Panels work on cloudy days, I know, but not “optimally.”

But, wait! I can see the beach from here. What if you used tidal action, to generate power from offshore, and then just ran a cable to your house? Hmmm?

Or what about if you ran some kind of generator just offshore of your boathouse, and then just ran it to your dock? You could easily reroute it from there, to your home, and your “outbuildings,” with ease. It would even work in a bay, because the tide still goes in, and out, right? You’d just need a way to store the power, for the “off-tide” times…

This sounds crazy, right? Well, Google doesn’t think so…

Google HQ (TGW) – Google has filed a patent for a system of floating data centers powered by the waves beneath it.

Although the patent was filed over a year ago, the patent was only recently published. It’s the way they do things over there at the patent office.

According to the patent, Google wanted to move “data centers” closer to users, but power generation would be too expensive to make that feasible. To solve that problem, Google came up with this idea:

Build “floating data centers” holding standard (ISBU) shipping containers housing computers powered by wave-power generators and wind turbines.

Google engineers calculated that these wave-driven generators spread over about half of a square mile could produce 30 megawatts of electricity, enough to operate a single “data center” system. That’s enough power to run about 7,500 homes, in Mississippi, folks.

A crew and operating staff would live aboard in living quarters, with a helipad for transportation.

I pulled the patent, to take a look at it. It took a little doing, because Firefox doesn’t like the patent office and the images they display, but Safari did the trick, without a hitch!

So, for your viewing pleasure, here’s what Google is thinking about doing…

Any thoughts? Hmmm?

(Think… downsized and compacted to produce about 1/2 megawatt… That’s still enough power for every powertool known to man, to run at the same time, in your garage! I guarantee!)

Stay tuned…