Cooling upgrade

We are progressing with the balloon filling, but it is still not going like planned. Hydrogen production seems to be fine, but heat dissipation is still a big problem. Practically we haven’t had a run longer then 40 minutes and that was achieved while treating the heat with ice cubes.

Theoretically – we know that Hydrogen production, like we are doing it, comes with 60%-70% efficiency only. That means that rest of the energy (30%-40%) dissipates as heat. In real numbers, we’ve constructed 300W-400W hot-water kettle, when running it on 1000 Watts. Obvious answer is to go industrial and come with H2SO4 electrolyte and Platinum electrodes. However that is above my budget so something needs to be done about cooling it down.

So this is the initial situation. I’ve even tried to put whole tray on the posts to create an air gap, but that actually seem to be even less effective. Current idea is to replace those tiny heat sinks with a bigger ones, add a thermal paste for better heat conductivity and also try to put a big cooler under the tray.

Bit of shopping in Altronics and I’ve come back with following box:

You can see there 2x Heat-Sink 128x100x36, 1 x Heavy-Duty Heat-Sink 120×100, new 150A Circuit Breaker (100A CB is currently malfunctioning – spinning 70A), Heatsink composite syringe 25ML and packet of 9V batteries (Shopping list updated accordingly).

… then asked Simon to do the work 😀

We did just a tiny run to show Simon that we are pretty confident now in what we are doing now and then let glue rest. Still, through that short run, I’ve noticed that having PSU too close to the generator exhaust causes quite excessive condensation on its fan and decided to re-arrange things a bit to avoid this from happening again. I’ve documented final setup on couple pictures.

On the picture above you can see “the biggie” cooler under the tray. Plan was that couple of fans will assist there with cooling it down.

Unfortunately, things didn’t go that well. We did couple more runs with Sebi and I couldn’t say that there is any improvement. All runs are still around 20 minutes maximum. I’m currently discussing all new cooling setup with Serge and Vlada, but it won’t be easy! 😛

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