Saturday, 27 September 2008

Australia (Brisbane) Has Huge Personal Carbon Footprints!

Whilst I have been over here in Brisbane Australia it has shocked me seeing the blatant waste of fossil fuel, Not just electricity waste but also petrol and diesel. The current price of 1 litre of petrol in Brisbane is around $1.39 AUS or £0.70 GBP which is almost half the price of what you expect to pay in the UK. Everyone drives 3.0, 3.5 4.0 4.5 or 6.0 Litre automatic cars and Utes (Vans) it scares me to think how the global cost of fossil fuels will impact Australia in the next 2-3 years.

Another thing that stands out a mile is that the Sunshine is here, most days, all day, yet in my 2 weeks so far I have seen 1 Solar PV installation and 2 Solar Hot water installations! From the picture above taken from Southbank on the River Brisbane one evening ALL the city is illuminated through the night! EVERY night is the same.

It seems to me I was extremely naive in thinking only the US was power abusive, far from it.

Kind regards

Andy Mahoney
Home Brew Power
Off-Grid Power Installer - UK)

Mobile: 07504 50 50 89
HomeBrewPower Yahoo Group On Carbon Neutral Power

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Wednesday, 10 September 2008


I would like to let everyone who has supported me through looking and learning about Renewable Energy via that I am going to Australia this Saturday.

The last 10 years of my life have been life changing, I have had some great times learning all about Lister CS engines as CHP units, Heat exchangers, Water to Water heat exchangers, Solar PV, Wind Turbines, Geo thermal, Off-Grid Power, Babington Atomising Burners, Turk Burners, Gasifiers, Wood Gas, SELV, IMAG Motors, PMDC Motors, PWM Motor control, Carbon Neutral Energy Sources and a million more subjects that I have whizzing around my head. Each and every one of them I have enjoyed and revelled in the wonder of it all. I have tried to build some kind of website to document what and how I have managed with each project. Not the best place on the web I know but I am not a web designer but more so an inventor and entrepreneur.

I will be gone for 5 weeks to see what the world has to offer for me. What the future holds I have no idea but what I know is this is something I need to do.

I doubt that HomeBrewPower will continue in the future as I now have new challenges and ideas to work on but if it does I will be bringing it back as a whole new concept..................

I will be dropping some posts in from Australia (Brisbane) to let all my friends and global associates know what I am learning over there and then again some final posts when I get back to the UK some time after October 20th 2008

I hope that you have all picked up something of interest from my ramblings and that one day we can converse once more.

I thank you all for your friendship

Kind regards
Andy Mahoney (10th September 2008 21:58 - The Big Bang Never Happened!!!!) Home Brew Power! (Off-Grid Power Installer - UK) Mobile: 07504 50 50 89
HomeBrewPower Yahoo Group On Carbon Neutral Power


Solar-Electric Panels AKA: solar-electric modules, photovoltaic (PV) panels

PV arrays can increase the system’s daily energy output by 25 to 40 percent. PV panels are a solar-electric system’s defining component, where sunlight is used to make direct current (DC) electricity. Behind a PV panel’s shimmering facade, wafers of semiconductor material work their magic,using light (photons) to generate electricity—what’s known as the photovoltaic effect.Other components in your system enable the electricity from your solar-electric panels to safely power your electric loads like lights,computers, and refrigerators.

PV panels are assigned a rating in watts based on the maximum power they can produce under ideal sun and temperature conditions.You can use the rated output to help determine how many panels you’ll need to meet your electrical needs. Multiple modules combined together are called an array.Although rigid panels are the most common form of solar electricity collector, PV technology also has been integrated into roofing shingles and tiles, and even peel and-stick laminates (for metal standing-seam roofs). PV modules are very durable and long lasting


Backup Generator AKA: The gas guzzler

Off-grid solar-electric systems can be sized to provide electricity during cloudy periods when the sun doesn’t shine. But sizing a system to cover a worst-case scenario, like several cloudy weeks during the winter, can result in a very large, expensive system that will rarely get used to its capacity. To spare your pocket, size the system moderately but include a backup generator to get through those occasional sunless stretches.Engine generators can be fueled with bio diesel, waste oils (Including WVO, WMO, Gear Oil) petroleum diesel,gasoline, or propane, depending on the design. These generators produce AC electricity that a battery charger (either stand-alone or incorporated into an inverter) converts to DC energy, which is combustion engines, generators tend to be loud and stinky but a well-designed solar-electric system will require running them only 20 to 100 hours a year.

Monday, 8 September 2008


Air Bubbler Oil Lifts are a great way to regulate various fuel supplies for Waste Oil burners, some great examples are the Turk Burner and the Babington Atomizing Burner.

The schematic above shows you hot to construct one from simple materials.

The principle is as follows: Air is supplied at approximately 6 PSI from a simple low pressure air pump (A fish tank air pump is commonly used in home made devises) down a copper tube to a tee piece, the arrangement is submersed in the oil tank / reservoir to allow the bubbles to rise up the outlet tube, as the bubbles rise up the oil filled tube they push up an amount of fuel oil above them. The more air you supply the more oil is driven up with it.

The above principle can be used in so many different burner applications and situations where a controlled and constant amount of oil is required at the burner nozzle / jet. the oil once passed over the burner nozzle that remains unburned can be easily channeled back into the oil sump / tank and recycled.

Note to consider!

As oils become warmer, as they would in the above setup, they become much thinner (Less Viscous) best practise an such a system would be to monitor the fuel oil until your system is up to a stable running temperature i.e. the oil temperature ceases to rise and then set your running air pressure. A Hasty setup on such a system could cost money and indeed lives (Play safe)

Thursday, 4 September 2008


A Solar Water Heater with a nominal capacity of 100 Litres/day costs about US$ 400 in India. The Govt gives this US $ 400 as a loan at 2% per annum interest( normal loan interest is 14%)

I saw an interesting web site which describes a demonstration plant for producing power from Solar Heat