Tide (E) Generation

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This design intends to leverage gravity, by converting the rising and falling tide(s) into electrical power. The tides are an enormous source of energy available at local lakes, rivers, and ocean. The flow of water turning a turbine to produce electrical power is not new. However, valves to control and use the flow into and out of a reservoir, has been given little or no consideration - so far. Power, flow, (construction, operation), cost calculations are pending.

The combined effects of gravity of the sun and moon on bodies of water is shown in the graph below. Two rises and two drops are typical of the “Mixed” tide cycle.

The design requires
A.The water reservoir, (ReserV),
B.Electrical Turbine, with flexible wiring, main switch, circuit components, including protection
C.Manifold , piping, valves (programmable / manual, check), and filters
D. A set of telescopic legs with (buoyant) pneumatic and hydraulic components and controls;
(An alternate frame equivalent to an elevator shaft may be considered.)

Items B and C connect as a set; one or more sets can be connected to each ReserV.

A sinking ReserV generates power from flow “in”.

A draining ReserV generates power from flow “out”.

Once built, the system
It would cycle as follows, (arbitrarily starting at “0”:
0.Float the empty ReserV, with valves closed.
1.At high tide
1.1.Un-lock legs
1.2.Open “FILL” valve(s). ReserV sinks
1.3.Close valves / Lock legs trapping water, as tide falls.
1.4.Open “DRAIN” valves.
2.At low tide
2.1.Lock legs
2.2.Drain ReserV, then close valves.
2.3.Un-lock legs
2.4.ReserV floats as tide rises.

Leg controls can un-lock the legs, allowing the ReserV to float or sink accordingly.
An empty or nearly empty ReserV will float as the tide rises. It can begin to fill before the next tide peak.

Leg controls can lock the legs, holding the ReserV at a given elevation, typically as the tide falls below the ReserV’s water level

The manifold, associated valves, piping and electrical turbine are connected to turn the turbine whenever water flows, (filling or draining the ReserV). Fill and drain ports are at low points in the ReserV. The| co-responding inlet and outlet ports are at elevations below the fill and drain ports. Filters, (not shown) at the inlet, fill, outlet, and drain ports are periodically cleaned and replaced, to protect the turbine and keep out debris, fish, sea-weed, etc.

Control and check valves are configured so that “fill”, and “drain” flows, turn the turbine in one direction. Ideally flow pairs, two “fill” / two “drains” are balanced and opposed for the optimum performance of the turbine. The drawing below illustrates the concept with the turbine turning clock-wise. Controlled and normally open, N. O., check valves permit flow from the inlet when the “fill” valves are opened; these check valves will close by drain flow / pressure.


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  • Name:
    Victor Velez
  • Type of entry:
  • Profession:
  • Victor is inspired by:
    Personal interest and challenges.
    Continual improvement, personally, and the world.
    It would be awesome to tap a part of the enourmous (and majestic) power of nature. In this case gravity and the tides.
  • Software used for this entry:
  • Patent status: