Wednesday, 23 October 2013 11:00

Bush fire

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The 2013 bush fire crisis in NSW lead to public debate on fuel build up problem within residential and national park of bush land. According to NSW rural fire service website, on 7th November, there are still 40+ of fire incidents in NSW. So far all the fires are under controlled. As many people finger pointing to who should be blamed for such intense fire, Blue Energy wishes to jump to the bandwagon to present future technologies that might be helpful in problems solving.

1. The fire bugs

firebugHow to catch those arsonists responsible for deliberately starting a fire? In the future transport system, it might give authority some big brother's vision to monitor whoever be responsible for a fire hazard by the transport system intelligent software. Here is the potential development with Blue Energy innovation. Because most of fire bugs try hard to avoid being caught, they do need to drive to the locations to set fire and flee away as quick as they can. Future cars need your ID to use a vehicle because car engine requires association of the driver of any trip for the purpose of energy consumption and emission data storage. Also any travel would be stored by the GPS system for your path and distance of travel. All for the reasons of being a SoBEIT member because using Blue Energy technologies will save you far more money due to energy efficient, to a point. So it is not free completely. Of course, it is so cheap, people NOW would love to see it happens ASAP instead of paying too much at the moment. Any fire location will be traced back to vehicles that have passed the fire incident during certain time frame. This would help police to scale down the suspects. If you don't sign in with your car energy system, your car won't work. That is part of conditions of enjoy energy efficiency, and social responsibility.

2. Take the fuel out of the bush

Lock the carbon, carbon offset, de-carbonising, carbon capture and storage, these are the phrases or ideas from climate change debate. In nature, energy being stored in fuel will reduce carbon dioxide content within the atmosphere. There was a great study in 1977 by FORESTRY COMMISSION OF NEW SOUTH WALES, SYDNEY. Here is the link. I highly recommend everyone to read this research. According to the study: "It can be seen that in the first 6 to 7 years after fire the mean annual increase in weight of the litterlayer is in the order of 1.7 tonnes per hectare, after which the mean annual increase declines to about 0.3 tonnes per hectare." In this 2013 bush fire season, according to AAP, as much as 120,000 hectares of bush land was burned by 24th of October. Much of the intense fire claimed to be the consequence for fewer fire hazard reduction in recent year, as per conclusion of some sector of social group, most likely they are firmly in denial of climate change theory. On the contrary, climate change believers take the opportunity to pertain their view things will be worse off in the future if we don't take action on the issue of climate change. Clearly a balance must be found to accommodate both sides of arguments. We need find solutions for this frequently happening natural hazard without jeopardizing the effort to reduce build-up of green house gases in the long term. Encourage people to take fuel along the roadway, to establish business of energy harvesting from dense bush land, regulation on natural conservation and fuel harvesting balance, This would be a win-win solutions.

3. Lifting the fighting power

Currently in Australia, what the authority can do to extinguish bush fire is limited by the scale of fire conditions and access to the site of fire by the equipment and team of fire frigate and volunteers. Conventional fire fighting vehicles are mostly used for property protection and hazard reduction. Aerial water bombings are mainly done by helicopters or fixed wing aircraft. Helicopters have the advantage of precision water dropping and fast turn around time. Payload of water it can carry vary from 2000 liters, such as Air Tractor AT 602S to 3,800 liters by Sikorsky water bomber.** The same manufacturer Silorsky Aircraft also sold its manufacturing right to Erickson Air-crane in 1992 who improve S-64 Aircranes so it can be fitted with 10 tons of retardant tank for bush fire function.

We think aerial water bombing can be greatly enhanced by much large payload VTOL, from a few hundred to tens or even hundred of thousand tons. Such large payload to transfer water can be the solution against drought issue happens very frequently in Australia. In time of serious bush fire, we must have such mega water carrying VTOL to overpower fire hazard. 1,000 tons of water will cover 10,000 square meters of area similar to 100 mm of rain fall. What is the point to have 100,000 tons mega payload VTOL? Such transport vehicles can be used for fuel and water conveying in commercial purposes, for example, goods, fuel and waste dispatch, even for mineral products, which in conventional practice, mining companies would have to built rail and road for mining project. With mega payload VTOL, it is especially important to improve productivity for nations such as Australia because our labor cost is high.

4. Mitigate the wind energy

Bush fire in a windy day will be a "perfect" combination for worsening disaster. It is not coincident that hot and dry weather conditions will result in bush fire. As humidity gets lower, fuel in bush, grassland and forest tend to be dried over the time of high temperature condition. Nature can do the initial work through lighting in a thunder storm, or due to human activities that cause the flame of fire. Wind can provide fresh oxygen that intensify the fire. To reduce wind condition in a large scale of arranged wind energy harvesting effort can be a hurdle of wind energy delivery in a controlled manner. It is possible that future energy network to harvest wind energy can be a combined wind tower of geographically fixed location with tower height toward hundreds meters altitude. Mobile wind energy harvesting vehicles also can be deployed into location that maximizes the energy harvesting result. Such level of wind energy network can be inland or offshore, which targeting localized wind energy or ocean seasonal wind energy.

5. Off-grid electricity for every rural town or village

According to Regulatory Impact Statement Electricity Safety (Bush fire Mitigation) Regulations 2013 : "Above ground electricity lines are a significant contributor to bush fire risk. While only a relatively small proportion of bush fires are ignited by electricity asset failure, these ignitions tend to occur when fire conditions are worst, so that fires ignited by electricity assets are responsible for a substantial proportion of the overall damage caused by bush fire. Around half of the fires occurring during each of the last four major fire events in Victoria - those of 1969, 1977, 1983 and 2009 - were ignited by electricity asset failures. Based on estimates of the long-term incidence of major bush fires in Victoria and the costs of these fires, it is estimated that the average annual cost to Victoria of major bush fires ignited due to electricity asset failures is around $60 million. These costs are incurred despite the considerable risk reduction expenditures undertaken by electricity transmission and distribution businesses, particularly in pruning trees and other vegetation to prevent contact with electricity infrastructure and in conducting targeted maintenance to prevent asset failure."

Going off-grid for these communities, first of all, is a great way to reduce energy cost. As we know, power transmission cost is a significant portion in total retail electricity cost. It is hard to find the real cost in electricity transmission business. I have found a very good report for you to digest how such business operate and the cost structure in a power lines business. The report is done by The Institution of Engineering and Technology. This is the link to the Report: Electricity Transmission Costing Study, An independent Report Endorsed by the Institution of Engineering & Technology, In.

The cost and bush fire reduction benefit, if these communities live off-grid, it makes sense to see such disruptive energy supply technology will happen in the future for regional retail and business. People can completely bypass electricity grid and embrace off-grid energy hubs, with the help of Blue Energy Thermal Engine.

6. Mobile CO2 tanks.

One function of creating carbon loop of energy consumption and harvesting in Blue Energy is to give "food" to the vegetation after carbohydrate fuel is used. We see the benefit to air drop large containers of CO2 into bush land using VTOL. Under normal situation the tanks will release CO2 during day time when win is slow. This will increase bush land CO2 concentration in the landscape, which the vegetation in bush can absorb CO2 for its photosynthesis. In major fire hazardous condition, CO2 can be potential fire extinguishing gas to mitigate O2 level in surrounding area as optional defense mechanism.

7. VTOL to give a last life line to help resident to flee when thing do get out of hand.

We have seen tragic incidents in some major bush fire when human lives were lost. Most cases were due to last minutes decision to evacuate. People who did so realized it is impossible because the fire had blocked the land passages, or the smoke by the fire blind their vision during escaping. Quite often, in the panic of life threatening environment, vehicles collide into each other and immobilized traffic. Human live could be killed in the accident. Some later being killed by fire. VTOL, or flying cars, can be the solution to help people who would solely depends on land routes to travel, with an alternative live saving method, if future vehicles can fly. Blue energy is working on such vehicle with cutting edge innovation in thermal engine and buoyancy engine designs. It is not the fictional prediction. With enough R&D funding, we are only a few years away. Flying cars of the future can change the fate of many human lives for the better outcome.

Conclusion:

We need to consider our living is part of organic energy evolution of carbon cycle. Lock carbon in the forest is a simlicity idea from the green. It is a desperate and wishful thinking to fight the potential threat of climate change. It will not work. Under the condition of 5 yearly bush fire cycles, the fuel build up is tremendously high for a 500 K hectares of bush land, which is about 60,000 of nuclear bomb little boy dropped in Hiroshima in Japan in WWII. While nature will continue its way to store energy in fuel, we need find a balance for the emission reduction, and safe living for the communities.

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Blue Energy

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