Okay, so... let's get this show on the road.
My name is Neil. And I make things up.
I'm an inventor, a thinker, a ponderer, a storyteller, a narrative junkie. And this here, well this is my place to let things out...
The oddities, the random thoughts, the bits that just don't fit. The stuff that hasn't got a story, or wont fit in a script. The things that ricochet around my brain but never quite find a conversation to express themselves.
More than likely it will consist of books and movie related stuff... that's what I spend most of my time doing. Watching and making, reading and writing. But it'lll have other things too. Because i just can't switch my head off. And it has a tendency to fly at tangents. So a laymans grasp of how thigns work, and too many random thoughts and ideas bumping up against each other causing sparks and what happens? You stumble on an idea that you've no clue how to get to the right people, but which you are convinced would make an enormous difference to the wasteful use of energy in Britain.
But who to tell? Well, I think I might just tell it here, and hope there's someone listening.
My idea? Lamposts. Streetlights.
They're everywhere. Every, what, thirty yards or so, on every street in Britain.
And let's be honest, for most of the time that they are on, there's no one under them to benefit. Once the sun goes down, there's really not that many people on the streets. Even on a Friday and Saturday, once the pubs and clubs kick out... it goes quiet. And Motorways? Come on... the lights are there for when the lonely truck drivers come by, but really they're glowing in the dark alone.
So here's my thinking. They need to be there, I'm not disputing that (apart from anything else I've always got a thrill when travelling by night as you come out of the countryside and closer to built up areas, at the sight of the amber dots strung like christmas lights across the country). But they're a hell of a waste. So, what if we could take them off the National Grid? What if we could make them self sufficient?
There are a lot of wind generators out there, that DONT look like windmills. They're tubular/conical or tear shaped, and upright. So, we make a wider hood to shade the light (less light polution spilling up) which will give us a greater area to cover with cells that can generate power from the sun, use LED lights because they use less energy, and add an upright wind generator because we're a bloody windy country and it will look nice and neat, and not at all dangerously like it might chop your head off if it came loose (see I think about these things). Now, hopefully that combo might mean they could generate enough electric to power themselves (store it in the bit near the bottom of the post where the electrics are already, the bit were it's slightly wider). If so, great. A huge amount of electric switched off the grid. Massive savings for councils up and down the country.
And no one to complain about windfarms spoiling the countryside, because they're fitted really quite discreetly to existing posts, of which there are millions up and down the country...
Which lead me to a further thought. If it really works well (and i think it could) they might even generate an excess of energy. And they're already connected to the grid. So, couldn't they be made to send energy/electric BACK to the grid?
From different angle: if my laymans thinking is wrong about the above (though even if it's a five percent saving in energy, that's five percent of millions of pounds - so it's economically worth it to the govt), then scratch the self sufficient part. Lets just think of it as a means of introducing wind farming ona country wide scale, without major impact on the environment. If nothing else, the sheer number of lamposts in the country all sticking way up in the air, provide a perfect place to mount vertical generators that will fit atop without too much fiddling, so that every lampost is earning its place. It's not just a drain, it becaomes a generator. That's millions of wind generators, that could be created with minimal visual impact on the environment. Infact there'd be fewer in the countryside, because there's fewer lights. The lamposts predominate in towns and cities - built up areas. Concievably they could help creat power for ever town and city in the country if they were efficient enough.
Am I way off base here?
It's laymans thinking I know. I'm not an engineer, nor very well versed in electrics. But it just seems like this huge gaping hole in the thinking of how to tackle energy production...
Just a thought of course. Just saying...
That's the kind of thing that rolls around my head sometimes.
There's a similar one floating round it now about all the water that comes in and out of our houses, and couldn't it somehow be made to generate electric when we turn the tap on, or flush the toilet? Like a series of flapping paddles, or teeny tiny (or not so teeny tiny) water mills, that turn or move when water flows through/past it ie: every time we turn the taps on, or flush water away. Have them on the main pipe in and the main one out. If nothing else, the houshold energy saving might at least equal and so cancel out our water bills...
Like I say, just thinking. Just a thought. Incase anybody who can do something more with it is listening.
I'm not looking for money (although that would be nice, since I'm skint), just so long as you don't forget to mention that it was me who thought it. Me: Neil Snowdon. Random thinker extraordinaire.
See you all again sometime soon.