OTEC facts

OTEC runs on warm and cold sea-water instead of burning a fuel.
OTEC can only work in the Tropics because it is there that the largest natural temperature differences can be found.

The quoted minimum temperature difference required is 20 degrees but a little less could be possible.
The warmer the surface water and the colder the deep water the better the system can run per unit of water pumped.

The cold water must be taken from 750-1000 meters below the sea-surface if the system is to work ‘naturally”.
OTEC requires around 2.5 litres per second of deep-sea-cold-water to produce around 1 kw of electricity.


 

SWAC facts

SWAC is more flexible than OTEC.
Cold water source cooling is working in Canada for example, it could also work in the mountains.

SWAC can be made to work on smaller scales than OTEC.
SWAC is not limited in the same way OTEC is by the laws of thermodynamics.

This means that SWAC installations can be far cheaper per KW of cooling than OTEC can be per Kw of net power.


 

Pumping and plumbing facts

The faster you pump the water the more energy is required to pump.
The slower you pump the water the less energy is used to pump.
Slower pumping speeds means larger diameter hoses are required, but that much less energy is taken by pump motors.

Larger hoses are more expensive.
However, larger hoses are better value for money than small ones.
This is because if you double the diameter of the hose, you quadruple the volume but only double the hose area.

In fact, smaller hoses also warm up due to the surface temperature and friction faster, meaning that they must be insulated and are potentially an impossible means of making OTEC or SWAC work well.
Hoses over around 30 cm in diameter begin to lose the insulation requirement even over fairly long distances, though insulation may still be desirable.

The more dilated and relaxed you can make the OTEC or SWAC system the better it would work.
Hoses are very attractive because they can mean that very large diameters are affordable and easy to install.


 

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