paul wheaton wrote:
I am presenting on rocket mass heaters tonight. Somebody from the county emailed me to remind me that firing something like that up at the library would be illegal. I called him and told him that I was merely showing videos. And then I asked him if we fired one up in a completely legal fashion, if he could measure the output.
He told me that the contraption to such measuring costs something like $20,000, so there are only a few in the US.
I think it would be really helpful to get some comparative numbers in this space. Does anyone know of anything?
Are you only concerned with CO2 emissions or are you interested in other gases as well? I'm wondering if an automotive exhaust analyzer would do the trick?
Professor Rich wrote:
No sir, it might get a few heads to turn, but we science types like real expensive toys that allow us to be completely anal in our research and results from such a testing instrument would be totally discounted as typical expectations when employing substandard testing devices.
If you remember high school science, hypothesize, procedures, conclusions. We spec out our equipment as part of the procedures and even pounce on each other being critical of the recording of the data process.
For example, if you drove your car 200 miles and reported you got 30 MPG in 3.5 hours at X speed using X energy at X efficiency, it would be torn apart. Not listing the tire type, inflation rate, friction coefficient, calibration methods and equipment for the speedo, type and calibration for the timing device, oil type in the motor, measurement of exact actual distance traveled, bla bla bla, it would be dismissed, if you included it but failed to identify measuring process of the gas added it would be dismissed, if you had all your ducks in a row on all of that someone else would come along and say because you used gallons instead of weight and English units instead of SI it is impossible to calculate the entropy to the tenth decimal point etc. When all is said and done, the differences would amount to perhaps a half pint of gas and be completely irrelevant to 95% of the population, but unfortunately, you are dealing with that other 5% and the whole project would be considered nothing more than bad science lacking proper procedures.
Fair?, Smart?, Productive?, those answers do not matter. Reality? a resounding YES and simply knowing that hurdle exist can prevent you from wasting energies on methods that will not result in you reaching your goal.
paul wheaton wrote:
Do I remember correctly that you might be holding a ruler up to this soon? You might have the equipment to report what a rocket mass heater spits out?