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Just a crazy idea I had.

  1. May 2, 2008 #1
    First of all, I'm sorry if this is posted in the wrong sub-topic but I didn't know which would be correct.

    Anyway, so we're having this horrible lightning storm here at my house, and it got me thinking about the power that a lightning strike contains.

    Would it be feasible to have a lightning rod that runs to a container of water underground. When the lightning rod would be struck, the heat would transfer into the water, hopefully producing steam which can then drive a turbine. Hell, maybe I'm just not understanding my E&M class, but it may be possible?
  2. jcsd
  3. May 2, 2008 #2
    Might be, sure. The only problem is thunder storms don't happen often enough to warrant any real effort put into it.
  4. May 2, 2008 #3
    Yeah, that's true. But I'm just wondering about proof of concept in this. If there were ways to maximize the energy provided through the turbine it would be worth just looking into for me. I understand how infrequently they happen, but must also understand how much power they hold.
  5. May 2, 2008 #4
    You can't control it well enough to make it worthwhile. It's very unpredictable how much energy exactly a lightning strike will have as far as I know. But, even if you didn't mind severe overkill, all of your water would evaporate at once to try and go through the turbines. So where would you store all of this immense current?

    Or, if you attempt to do it slowly, a lot of the heat would just transfer to the surrounding areas and you'd just lose it before you could use it all up.
  6. May 2, 2008 #5
    That's true too. Oh well, at least I know not to spend anymore time thinking about it.
  7. May 2, 2008 #6
    Thinking is free. Go ahead and think all you want. :smile:
  8. May 2, 2008 #7
    Use a flux capacitor.

    1.21 Jigga-watts!!
  9. May 2, 2008 #8
    sounds good to me....wish my central heating ran on ur idea....hell id be crispy dry and warm!! BRING ON UK WEATHER!!

  10. May 2, 2008 #9


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    :rofl: Yay! I think we can keep you! :biggrin: We like people who realize their crazy ideas are too crazy to work. :smile:
  11. May 12, 2008 #10
    I give you the conductor "the end of the pipe" w/ a fresh bolt of L coming out. how are you going to convert that voltage into Water vapor ? What if I delivered 27 doses of L randomly in a 27 min. window, could you convert all that energy (or most of it) into Water vapor? How much energy is in 27 lightning bolts? If you can tell me how to short-circuit that surge in a column of water so as to vaporize it , I'll tell you how to deliver the bolts to the conductor frequently.
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