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ArtInRuins

A Compilation of Good Ideas

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This is interesting:

Ramp creates power as cars pass

I'd like to know ho wmuch power is required of the cars to move the ramp. I could see this being used as cars are slowing down anyway, as if at a traffic stop, when they are dispelling energy. Otherwise my guess is that you will use about 30 kW of engine power to supply the 10kW of ramp power.

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I'd like to know ho wmuch power is required of the cars to move the ramp. I could see this being used as cars are slowing down anyway, as if at a traffic stop, when they are dispelling energy. Otherwise my guess is that you will use about 30 kW of engine power to supply the 10kW of ramp power.

Would that matter though? I mean the cars would be driving anyway, may as well capture that. At least that was how I saw the reasoning behind the invention.

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Would that matter though? I mean the cars would be driving anyway, may as well capture that. At least that was how I saw the reasoning behind the invention.

Energy isn't free.

If you use the car as it is driving to power this device, then the car needs to make it up. mostly, it will do this through extra gas in the throttle. Thus, you are using four different energy transfers to create the 10 kW.

Energy 1: Gas to combustion providing movement of the piston

Energy 2: Movement of piston contributing to movement of crankshaft

Energy 3: Energy of crankshaft converted through the transmission to the wheels

Energy 4: Transfer of energy from the wheels to this device

Even this is simplified but each of these transfers has energy loss and there are imperfections with the delivery of the energy. You would be better off spending whatever it costs to deliever 10 kW of electricity through the power grid than generating it this way. The only difference is that you are transferring the cost of the energy to people driving cars through increased gas usage. One way to think of this might be to think of the amount of energy it takes to ride a bike even on a small uphill grade compared to a flat surface. The same principles are at work.

If it were used when cars are slowing to a stop, then it would actually help a bit with stopping as well as re-using some of the energy, much in the same way that hybrid cars do when they brake.

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okay. The article was scant on details. I dont purport to be well versed in energy transfer. My mental model of how it would work is that it would not cause the car to expel more energy to activate that mechanism.

I am sure a lot of people reading that article would also think of it that way. That a car going 35mph or whatever just goes right over it. The mechanism does not really have enough resistance to cause the car to slow down at all.

Thanks for the info.

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Here's the related link from the BBC article to the manufacturer.

At a quick glance, it appears the weight of the car is what is transfering the energy, not the motion of the car.

I wonder how it does in snowy climes, especially ones with pisspoor snow removal.

Edited by Cotuit

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Here's the related link from the BBC article to the manufacturer.

At a quick glance, it appears the weight of the car is what is transfering the energy, not the motion of the car.

I wonder how it does in snowy climes, especially ones with pisspoor snow removal.

doesn't matter. The car's motion still has to make it rise. and in fact this adds to the inefficiency of the system as the suspension will use a lot the energy loading and unloading. In order to use the positive impact of lowering the cars gravitational potential, you have to expend energy getting up there in the first place.

I just don't buy that it's any more efficient than just supplying power. What it does do that would be attractive to towns is transfer the burden of the energy cost to the drivers, in the form of increased gas usage. And since gas is taxed, it's like a double dip for the government. For each person, it would be a minute difference but that's not the same as no difference.

Again, if you use it during stopping, it's all good. The energy is being transferred off of the vehicle anyway. It save a minute portion of brake wear instead of costing extra gas. What would actually be cool is if they could somehow make it so that there was little or no storage and therefore no power would be wasted lighting lights that aren't being used because there is no traffic around. I'm not sure how traffic safety people would feel about that, though.

On a side note, one of the "hidden costs" of this system is the fact that it will likely need regular maintanence. This seems like an ok idea but will need a lot of thought and good planning to be implemented correctly. My fear is that town manager types will not see the downsides and think that it is an abundant free energy source or something.

Edited by brick

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Well one of the applications where they showed it being used was a toll booth, so I think they're looking at using it at intersections and places where people slow or stop.

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Since we live in New England... I would like to see a big plow doing 50mph run over a set of these things.

Finding ways to harness the energy used in bringing cars to a halt would be much better than just heating up cars' brakes. I like that folks are thinking about this kind of thing. My real concern with ideas like this is that they be applied where their use is more efficient than delivering power in more traditional ways. Like Brick said, they should not be used to just transfer a higher overall cost to the drivers. Using them in remote areas thus removing the need to extend the power grid to that location could work. I also like the Brick's idea of using them to turn on lights and signs as needed instead of having them on all of the time.

Edited by markOne

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Interesting, although not very detailed, article on the recevelopment of a toxic lot into a pedestrian/sculpture park in Seattle. The concept seems rather suited to Providence, around the port area, or the new land freed up by the I-195 project. Plus we have a lot of sculptures hanging aorund, and it would be nice for additional space for this.

http://www.cnn.com/2006/TRAVEL/02/13/seatt...k.ap/index.html

Edited by basachs

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It's been way too long since I've lurked and commented on the goings-on here on the board... what can I say, been busy and I dont have internet at home anymore. It's a wonder I can still survive.

Anyway, here's one of the projects I have been working on... maybe there are some people here who might like to rent space in a concept like this:

The Grant: A Collaborative Design and Retail Space

The Grant will be redeveloped as a mixed-use business incubator for design and arts-related businesses. The Grant will be a place where small business owners can collaborate, share resources and knowledge, and meet with their clients in a comfortable, professional atmosphere – a reinvented former W.T. Grant department store (est. 1906) built at the turn of the century and complete with its own character, such as high stamped tin ceilings, steel columns, wood floors, atrium-style skylights, and wrought iron staircases. Its amenities will be modern and suited for the small business owner, with a shared conference area available to all tenants, shared large format (11 x 17") color networked printer/copier, shared kitchen area, and broadband wireless/10 Base T internet connections. Design professionals will be able to collaborate in the conference area or atrium space, or close their doors to work in private.

Actively seeking design business tenants, a retail (streetfront) tenant, and/or a cafe or pub/restaurant tenant.

Later, as the process develops, I can share my thoughts on how the whole permitting and zoning process works in Pawtucket... so far so good.

Edited by ArtInRuins

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I happen to be a partner in this little project...

if it gets its own thread, definitely mark it as PROPOSED, though we hope to make progress on that soon!

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What a cool looking project! BTW, does anyone know anything about plans for the bank bldg two doors down from Grant? If you look at the photo you can see that this building has a beautiful copper dome but then a bland front. Did they cover up a nice historic facade to put up that front or did they destroy it?

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What a cool looking project! BTW, does anyone know anything about plans for the bank bldg two doors down from Grant? If you look at the photo you can see that this building has a beautiful copper dome but then a bland front. Did they cover up a nice historic facade to put up that front or did they destroy it?

An antiques dealer from Wash. DC is renovating it and will have his store on the first floor and living space above. The dome is amazing...apparantly, it was concealed for years on the interior, and when they removed the dropped ceiling, it was in essentially original condition! I'm not sure about the facade...hopefully its like the dome and something good remains under the aluminum.

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So what's happening with the POAM? I thought they were doing pretty well? Did they find a new space?

Also, right around the corner, the beautiful old Elks building was recently sold. Any word on plans for that?

(maybe there is a better place for these questions, where's that Pawtucket subforum :) )

Edited by brick

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So what's happening with the POAM? I thought they were doing pretty well? Did they find a new space?

Also, right around the corner, the beautiful old Elks building was recently sold. Any word on plans for that?

The POAM guys closed shop and I am not sure if they reopened somewhere else. The barber shop moved, and a few of the other tenants found space elsewhere.

As far as the Elks building, I am interested too. There is a PADS meeting (Pawtucket *something* Downtown *something*) coming up on the 14th at the Blackstone Valley Visitiors center that I will be attending, so maybe I can find the people in the know. I'll also try to remember what that acronym means.

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The rebirth of Valley St. and the buzz about Pawtucket's revitalization has me thinking about a few things. Is Providence becoming complacent with so many mill renovations in the Promenade that developers will look first to Pawtucket, where prospective investors have been receiving the VIP treatment?

http://local.live.com/?v=2&sp=adr.750%20Br...2c%20RI%2002904

Take a look at this property. The Wanskuck neighborhood could really use a shot in the arm, and this location offers accessibility and convenience.

Could this be Providence's next urban mixed-use development?

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Could this be Providence's next urban mixed-use development?

I thought that building was already re-done into condos about 6 years ago?

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Take a look at this property. The Wanskuck neighborhood could really use a shot in the arm, and this location offers accessibility and convenience.

Could this be Providence's next urban mixed-use development?

Awesome mill--Civil War vintage. Probably the most intact mill complex in Providence--down to the Social Hall and brick worker housing across Branch Ave.

The Wanskuck Mill has a lot of tenants. I have a friend who was looking at studio space there and opted to go to Mineral Spring in Pawtucket instead cause the rents at Wanskuck were pretty high.

As for more projects, I wish there would be but I bet that doubts about the tax credit are going to slow things down.

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As for more projects, I wish there would be but I bet that doubts about the tax credit are going to slow things down.

Politics! The credits will remain and then Carcieri will point to his plan to consolidate the DMV in Cranston.

The problem there is that most Rhode Islanders would rather save $3 in gas on a trip they will make once a year than have a centrally located DMV and save the tax credits. I can see it now...

"Death before inconvenience! Keep the DMV local!"

:rolleyes: God save the State of Rhode Island and its #1 employer, the State of Rhode Island.

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