LENR electrolyzer powered jet planes?

  • Assuming a future where LENR is solved, understood, and controllable, what would be the engineering hurdles involved in powering a jet airplane using on-demand H2 from electrolysis?


    Water could potentially fuel the LENR reactor and provide the H2 for the jet engines. I assume a battery would be included to provide quick throttle response, and the LENR reactor would charge the battery. The reactor would have a mechanism of its own to ramp up/down the power to the battery to keep the battery from getting depleted/overcharged.


    To convert heat to electricity, I assume the use of either a solid-state converter or maybe a stirling-type heat engine, I suppose it depends a lot on how much heat we can generate, so let's just assume a best case scenario: That we can generate as much heat as we want.

  • Assuming a future where LENR is solved, understood, and controllable, what would be the engineering hurdles involved in powering a jet airplane using on-demand H2 from electrolysis?


    Water could potentially fuel the LENR reactor and provide the H2 for the jet engines. I assume a battery would be included to provide quick throttle response, and the LENR reactor would charge the battery. The reactor would have a mechanism of its own to ramp up/down the power to the battery to keep the battery from getting depleted/overcharged.


    To convert heat to electricity, I assume the use of either a solid-state converter or maybe a stirling-type heat engine, I suppose it depends a lot on how much heat we can generate, so let's just assume a best case scenario: That we can generate as much heat as we want.

    You may want to review some of the LENR related patent applications from Airbus and Boeing.

    I certainly Hope to see LENR helping humans to blossom, and I'm here to help it happen.

  • Rob


    There is more than one kind of jet plane, and the flight dynamics and power demand between them varies enormously. In the interview I filmed with Professor Iwamura he mentioned that they are beginning to look at future projects involving flight, though I know no more than that. I do suspect that the first application of civilian LENR might be to power the auxiliaries in passenger planes, things like cabin air conditioning, lighting and all the electronics. Going straight to full LENR powered aircraft is a big step.


    The first application of LENR - powered military aircraft might be drones, where the flight profile is predictable and there is little demand for combat manoeuvring, which is very energy intensive. The military will stick with kerosene for combat aircraft for a long time to come.


    You mention hydrogen-power, which might not be required. After all the primary purpose of kerosene jet fuel is to heat the air passing through the engine so that it expands and leaves the tail-pipe at a much higher velocity than when it entered, thus propelling the plane forward. There seems to be little point in adding the weight and complexity of an electrolyser and the water it would need, plus a loss of efficiency (electrolysers are 60% efficient at best) caused by running many subsidiary systems.


    Don't forget that water is only 11% hydrogen by weight, and while hydrogen has around 5 times the inherent energy of kerosene there is a lot of dead weight penalty on an aircraft for carrying the required water. It seems to me that it would be much more sensible to cut out all the intermediate processes and use LENR to directly heat the air as it passes through the engine. I think that this is possible for fan-jets as are used on passenger aircraft.


    There is a further problem with burning hydrogen in aircraft- it produces nitrous oxides during high temperature combustion, and it seems that these are becoming the number one pollutant that is attacking the ozone layer.


    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090827141344.htm#:~:text=About%20one%2Dthird%20of%20global,that%20trigger%20ozone%2Ddestroying%20reactions.


    There is a saying 'beware of unintended consequences. ;)


    ETA. An A380 airbus consumes 3 tone of fuel per hour at cruise speed. So not unreasonable to assume that it will require 20 tonnes of kerosene to fly London-New York. That is energy equivalent to around 4 tons of hydrogen which would require loading it with 44 tonnes of water. Electrolysing this would require 38kw/h per kilo,= 38 MWh/tonne. So 4x38 = 152 MWh over 6 hours, roughly 25MW constant demand. How big is a 25MW power plant? Think 3 truckloads...


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    See what I mean?

  • After all the primary purpose of kerosene jet fuel is to heat the air passing through the engine so that it expands and leaves the tail-pipe at a much higher velocity than when it entered, thus propelling the plane forward.

    This is exactly the perspective from which I understand LENR has been researched by aeronautic companies, as a direct heat source for the jet engines replacing the kerosene. At least the boeing patent application, which admitedly is not LENR per se, but many of us consider it within the field, does that.

    I certainly Hope to see LENR helping humans to blossom, and I'm here to help it happen.

  • The perfect adequation between Lenr and jet engines will be the ramjet.. Only a kind of divergent tube.

    Able to propel a plane up to the space.

    Currently this way isn' really relevant because maintly combustion duration remains too long at high mach level.

    Again because Lenr is able to heat directly air by UV rays it will simplify the engineering.

  • Yes, the A380 is no longer manufactured swept away by the 777.

    But almost all Airlines who had A380's decommissioned from service now recovering their "oldies"...

    See e.g. https://time.news/lufthansa-is…-380-back-into-the-fleet/


    Reason is a strong demand due to air travel now exceeding pre-corona numbers...

    Denmakr did shut down all Covid-related restrictions (Covid is like a flu), other countries expect to follow.

  • Starting to sound like ECW syndrome has infected the forum. Put a heater in my shed first, then talk about pie in the sky

    I find it odd that much of the LENR crowd was upset by the airbus patent application when it came out because it was just a pastiche of the LENR memes of the day, and now the worthless papers are a fond memory of LENR land.

  • As long as it isn't about a Rossi heater, dreaming is welcomed here!

    Don't get me wrong, I think in more practical terms. LENR in my opinion will turn manufacturing on its head with just a heat application. Heating manufacturing areas, vacuum forming, Metallurgy, the savings in energy is enormous. Then comes the future applications as in planes and jets. Maybe in 30 years but I guess you can dream

  • Well the regulation changed for bi reactors planes, gave them a decisive advantage.

    Shane D. could confirm that, i think.

    Because 4 reactors should be more reliable, they can cross oceans more directly.

    When the 2 reactors planes have to more turn around it.

    However for different reasons a softer regulation next alloyed to them the possibility to straight more directly.

    This change allowed to them to take more advantage of their lower consumption.

    Now between the 777, A350 or the 787 if think this later done the bigger technological breakthrought.

    Carbon frame, full electric engine start.. etc etc

    But almost all Airlines who had A380's decommissioned from service now recovering their "oldies"...

    See e.g. https://time.news/lufthansa-is…-380-back-into-the-fleet/


    Reason is a strong demand due to air travel now exceeding pre-corona numbers...

    Denmakr did shut down all Covid-related restrictions (Covid is like a flu), other countries expect to follow.

  • Yes, in the early twin-engine "Heavy" days, they were restricted to over ocean routes that kept them fairly close to land divert airports for emergency reasons. The 3 and 4 engine heavy airplanes such as the B747, and my old plane the Lockheed L1011, had no restrictions.


    The FAA and airlines developed a program called EROPS, or some referred to it as ETOPS, to strictly follow the engine performance parameters airborne of the twin engines. They were inspected more also, and completely overhauled on a shorter schedule.


    Over the years, the program worked so well, and the newer engines performed so reliably, they gradually extended the range from land the 2 engines could fly over the oceans. Back in my old TWA days, we were the first to fly the B-767 from JFK to Europe. It was kind of spooky being hundreds of miles from land knowing that you only had 2 engines. Yes, it was flyable on 1, but you had to hope it did not fail, and i eng flight required you fly to an emergency field at lower altitudes where you had more nasty weather to deal with.

  • Starting to sound like ECW syndrome has infected the forum. Put a heater in my shed first, then talk about pie in the sky

    The question was asked by one person, me. It’s rather illogical to cast this is as a trend throughout the whole community. Also, if you inspect the original question more closely, you’ll see that it was a question on engineering feasibility. Pretty much everyone replying gave well-grounded answers.