Author Topic: digital electricity  (Read 28574 times)

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Offline StillTrying

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #25 on: June 07, 2018, 04:11:11 pm »
A friend (a journalist) just sent me the Vox piece to comment on and honestly, I was flabbergasted.

If you need anymore flabbergasting, have a quick look at any of the YT vids in reply#9.
https://www.eevblog.com/forum/dodgy-technology/digital-electricity/msg1591180/#msg1591180
 :bullshit:
CML+  That took much longer than I thought it would.
 

Offline james_s

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #26 on: June 07, 2018, 04:19:08 pm »
Well as the old saying goes, "people want to believe", and "there's a sucker born every minute."

Products like this get created by two types of people, one type is the investment scammer, who knows their product can't do what is claimed but they will ride the wave for as long as they can. The other is the ignorant person who genuinely believes their device works, usually due to improper measurement techniques like using an averaging DMM to measure something that is not a mains frequency sine wave, or making flawed assumptions.
 

Online JohnnyMalaria

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #27 on: June 07, 2018, 04:21:53 pm »
Can someone with the right expertise take a look at the patent?

https://patents.google.com/patent/US9178354B2/en?oq=9%2c178%2c354

Like any patent, it has to teach someone everything necessary to reproduce a functioning device. It is interesting that one of the inventors has others in the electronics field.
 

Offline madires

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #28 on: June 07, 2018, 06:27:51 pm »
I mean, if a data center has a power factor problem, then fine, condensers are your friend, not some box of magic computers.

Servers and network elements got active PFC and the only source of reactive power could be the AC. The real problem are factories with tons of large electric motors.
 

Offline djacobow

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #29 on: June 07, 2018, 06:59:04 pm »
I mean, if a data center has a power factor problem, then fine, condensers are your friend, not some box of magic computers.

Servers and network elements got active PFC and the only source of reactive power could be the AC. The real problem are factories with tons of large electric motors.

Agreed. But factories that consume lots of VARs are a known thing, and people have been dealing with it for a long time. How old is the synchronous condenser? More modern solutions are STATCOM or SVC. (synchronous VAR compensator)

And, as your say, PSUs in modern servers are quite well behaved regarding power factor. It /might/ be more efficient or cheaper overall to use PSUs without PFC and instead have some kind of site-level PFC, but I don't think I've heard of anyone doing that. Could make sense in very large facilities with all the same custom servers, like a Facebook or Google.
 

Online JohnnyMalaria

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #30 on: June 07, 2018, 06:59:12 pm »
Can someone with the right expertise take a look at the patent?

https://patents.google.com/patent/US9178354B2/en?oq=9%2c178%2c354

Like any patent, it has to teach someone everything necessary to reproduce a functioning device. It is interesting that one of the inventors has others in the electronics field.

Yeah, you guys are using one of them right now.  :-DD


My suggestion was in your favor. Why the shitty reply?  :-//
 
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Offline jmelson

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #31 on: June 07, 2018, 08:00:04 pm »
Can someone with the right expertise take a look at the patent?

https://patents.google.com/patent/US9178354B2/en?oq=9%2c178%2c354

Like any patent, it has to teach someone everything necessary to reproduce a functioning device. It is interesting that one of the inventors has others in the electronics field.
HAH!  You couldn't build ANYTHING from that patent application.  It was incredibly vague.  Also, the claims, as far as I could see, NEVER mentioned anything about energy saving.  It is a UPS with harmonic filtering/power factor correction.

Jon
 

Offline djacobow

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #32 on: June 07, 2018, 08:07:06 pm »
HAH!  You couldn't build ANYTHING from that patent application.  It was incredibly vague.  Also, the claims, as far as I could see, NEVER mentioned anything about energy saving.  It is a UPS with harmonic filtering/power factor correction.

Jon

Agreed. Let's take a few bog-standard pieces of equipment and put them in one box and call it an invention. Not utterly useless, but, please.
 

Offline dmills

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #33 on: June 07, 2018, 09:21:17 pm »
I have actually had a few situations where I would have killed for a reasonably compact, efficient box that could inject current to cancel the current harmonics (but it would have to manage to cancel hundreds of A to be useful)....

The classic case being a rig full of old school Martin lighting with the early switching ballasts, 700W (and about 1400VA) each with massive triplen harmonics, nightmare for both overheating neutral bars and cooking delta-star transformer windings. Phase angle dimming can cause much the same issue and you can have the three phase neutral current actually EXCEED the current in any one phase by nearly a factor of two.

Unfortunately this is not that box, and selling to users who don't pay for VAR anyway?

Regards, Dan.

 
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Offline StillTrying

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #34 on: June 07, 2018, 09:42:27 pm »
I suspect this forum will not age well.  :-+

It's the strangest elinkedin I've ever see anyone write.
« Last Edit: June 07, 2018, 09:46:19 pm by StillTrying »
CML+  That took much longer than I thought it would.
 

Offline StillTrying

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #35 on: June 07, 2018, 09:45:15 pm »
As we can see, these things do absolutely nothing to the supply, just waste 100W.
CML+  That took much longer than I thought it would.
 

Online JohnnyMalaria

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #36 on: June 07, 2018, 09:49:30 pm »
I suspect this forum will not age well.  :-+

So, I'm on the fence on this and I'm trying to figure this out.

Some people are dismissing your device outright as snake oil.
Some are saying, "yeah, nothing new here."
Some are saying, "yeah, anyone could throw these components together and do this."

But...since it is patented...what exactly is the inventive, non-obvious aspect of it? There must be at least one and maybe that's what isn't clear to others about your device. I know how much it costs to file a patent via the PCT process and to maintain it so it isn't something you do lightly. Your priority date is 2011 so I know you must have paid the maintenance fees or let the patent expire. Did your application get granted in non-US terrorities?

You have entered a lions' den seemingly to initially promote and now defend your product. The onus really is on you to explain the novelty of your invention and demonstrate that it is being used successfully in the real world, e.g, by testimonials.

I think this forum will age very well together with the very poor impression your product has because you haven't offered convincing information. Anyone curious about your product would almost certainly do a Google search and this thread will definitely come up near the top of the list of hits.
« Last Edit: June 07, 2018, 09:52:25 pm by JohnnyMalaria »
 
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Offline ArthurDent

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #37 on: June 07, 2018, 10:43:46 pm »
One thing mentioned at minute 6:08 in the first video that touted how great the invention was is that you will no longer need that external power supply for your laptop or other devices. When the company founder plugs his laptop directly into the line I might take notice.

I also need to know how one of these great inventions at the breaker box can optimize the power to many differing reactive loads that are connected to all the branch circuits in a house. Maybe they should make mini versions of the invention to be used at each outlet. Oh wait, the reason I have so many different supplies/chargers is that every device I own has a different voltage/power requirement.
 
A final thing: if the device saves so much energy and makes everything run so efficiently, why the two fans? Maybe they need to put another of these inventions before the first invention to increase its efficiency. Just a thought.

I believe this is a video describing their first model. 

 
 

Online JohnnyMalaria

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #38 on: June 07, 2018, 10:52:51 pm »
Oh, that's FUNNY.

I love how it gets more and more ridiculous as it progresses. And serious props to the presenter - he certainly had a mouthful of gibberish to deliver and, boy, did he.
 

Offline extralifedisco

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #39 on: June 07, 2018, 11:48:58 pm »
Fascinated by this company and their weird PR approach. In principle, this is probably something that would benefit certain industrial applications like datacenters. If you have a bunch of rack servers on the same circuit as noisy AC loads like air conditioners, you'll have a bunch of line noise and phase issues that have to get dealt with somewhere, and the PC power supplies are dealing with most of it. I don't know all that much about server power supply design but presumably that filtering results in a heat loss in some switchmode supply somewhere, and shortens component lives, etc.

What the company is claiming is threefold:
 - one, that those losses can be recognized/analyzed in real-time via the supply side of power line
 - two, that they can compensate for them in-real time with their device's inductive loading
 - three, those savings are significant enough to warrant a $700,000 installation

Those first two claims are impressive, but I guess they're plausible. Everyone knows power noise is a thing, but the company is claiming their fancy measurements reveal it's more of a problem than previously known. Maybe they're right! But if it can optimize a wall of servers to the tune of 120W savings to justify their always-on supercomputer and it's hefty price tag, I'd be, uh, very surprised.

Then there's the stuff in their videos and marketing wank. "Server temperature dropped by twenty degrees" (fahrenheit?) "Double the lifespan of your laptop battery." "100% accurate prediction of component failure." Come on.

The charitable assumption is that some excitable marketing people and their media friends have gotten their hands on this interesting niche industrial project and are attempting to raise funding by spinning it out to ridiculous extremes "'The use cases are endless,' Heuberger marveled to me. 'They’re freaking endless. It’s amazing.'" I'm sure we've all worked somewhere where it felt like marketing was actively working against engineering, but you have to draw the line somewhere. I'm sure it does something, but if it really works as well as is claimed, why all the snake oil claims? You don't need to market this to individual consumers, you need to sell it to datacenter engineers!
 

Offline james_s

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #40 on: June 08, 2018, 12:05:43 am »
I want to see measured results under controlled conditions. Right now I fail to see the advantage over existing systems that have active PFC incorporated into the power supplies. Large industrial customers with motors are easily remedied through the use of passive PFC capacitors and even that is less of an issue these days with VFDs becoming common. There is simply not much waste to reduce, it's not as if the wiring in buildings gets particularly warm, and if the waste is not dissipated in the wires then where is it going? For this device to result in any savings, it has to result in less total heat released inside the structure. Power consumption and heat are both things that are easily measured, we can easily account for essentially all of the energy that goes into a building.
 

Offline madires

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Offline madires

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #42 on: June 08, 2018, 11:36:38 am »
Doesn't the charging/discharging of the inductive or capacitive system at the microsecond level cause losses (in form of heat) too? The typical residential building connection over here is 3-phase 35 or 63A.
 

Offline Circlotron

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #43 on: June 08, 2018, 11:40:49 am »
I don't think anyone here is suggesting that this device doesn't work, producing cleaner AC power. What is not so believable is claims that somewhat cleaner power makes electrical devices fed by this cleaner power amazingly more efficient.
 

Offline Ian.M

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #44 on: June 08, 2018, 11:52:52 am »
 I suspect that 3DFS have designed themselves into a dying niche market.  As national and regional energy efficiency standards become more and more stringent, the cost to build in high efficiency PFC in a PSU is falling in relative terms due to the increased market for it.

They now need to re-target their product to attempt to get a return on the investment so-far.   IMHO their best option would be to ditch the bulls--t efficiency claims and market it with a significant markup to audiophools who will pay through the nose for cleaner power even if it doesn't make a perceptible difference.  8)
 

Offline GeorgeOfTheJungle

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #45 on: June 08, 2018, 12:31:27 pm »
Digital electricity is a flow of ones and zeroes instead of electrons?
The further a society drifts from truth, the more it will hate those who speak it.
 

Offline djacobow

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #46 on: June 08, 2018, 03:23:39 pm »
Digital electricity is a flow of ones and zeroes instead of electrons?

It's electricity with fingers.
 

Offline nmart

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #47 on: June 08, 2018, 03:28:18 pm »
Chris D., sounds like you've built an active harmonics filter. The tech sounds decent for power quality but too many people confuse this product with power factor correction to understand how well this may work for its intended purpose. I'm not in marketing (I'm an EE at an electrical utility) but from reading the Vox article I'm guessing it's difficult to target non-technical people and still maintain scientific accuracy.

Here's a marketing strategy that would help me and might appeal to other audiences. The start of your sales pitch could define the current state of harmonic filtering devices. Then display some charts (ideally produced by an independent lab) with the reduction in harmonic distortion performed by your device compared to competitors' harmonic filtering devices (or the absence of them) that include heat comparisons (a direct relation to efficiency that most people can understand). When I'm looking to buy a truck I want to see the horsepower/torque curves. :) If the device does help with power factor or phase balancing, be clear about how those additional benefits are different than power quality (more explaining that science and current technology is required) and how well they perform compared to existing devices. And just try and delete the Vox article if possible.
 

Offline StillTrying

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #48 on: June 08, 2018, 06:18:10 pm »
 :horse: :popcorn:
CML+  That took much longer than I thought it would.
 

Offline james_s

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Re: digital electricity
« Reply #49 on: June 08, 2018, 06:48:39 pm »
How many people care about harmonics? If there was a significant amount of power wasted then wires and equipment would be running hot. While I try to maintain a power factor reasonably close to unity to avoid wasting circuit capacity, I don't really care about harmonics. Neither the power factor nor the harmonics affect my utility bill in any measurable way.
 


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