Is this idea impossible????

Discussion in 'Architecture & Engineering' started by Deathfromabove, Nov 5, 2007.

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  1. Deathfromabove Hopeless and Useless Registered Senior Member

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    Ok i have always wondered this, but have been a bit afraid to ask. Forgive me if this sounds completely stupid, impossible or unrealistic. Where there are regions affected with extreme drought e.g. Chad or Sudan, isn't possible to construct and build a massive underground water supply pipe or water supply network?????, so that these regions would be able to recieve water?


    I was thinking that a underground pipe could collect water from surrounding oceans or seas and this water could be cleaned whilst in the pipe and be turned into safe drinking water for the drought affected regions.

    Obviously this plan has some massive design or construction flaws or it would have already been builit. So what's wrong with this idea????
     
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  3. draqon Banned Banned

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    I have always thought of this exact same idea. And I believe the reason this has not been done is political/economical.
     
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  5. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    Let us say there is a underground water supply not to far away BUT it also

    is used to supply the town that it near its only fresh water supply. If they

    tap into it they would risk the towns water supply for the water would be

    going more toward the farmers than the townspeople. In time this could

    present a problem if the water were to start drying up underground and

    then what would happen? We see this very thing happening today in

    California where much of its water supply going to the farmers and wine

    growers comes from Nevada and the people in Nevada that need it don't

    receive what they need. There's an ongoing fight as to how much water is

    diverted into California every year. One day there's going to be a severe

    drought and both states are going to be in very bad trouble with no where

    to turn.
     
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  7. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

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    Yes, a VERY massive technical flaw. Water from oceans or seas is salt water, not fresh. And there's no such thing as "cleaning" sea water "while it's in the pipe."

    That requires a desalinization plant which in turn requires a very large amount of energy. There are basically two types of those plants. One involves boiling the water and condensing the steam for fresh water. It's just the process of distillation and takes the most energy of the two. The second type uses reverse osmosis to force water through a semi-permeable membrane and the waste water from the process now contains even more dissolved salts and has to be disposed of somewhere FAR away from any farming areas. Since the plants are located on the shores of oceans/seas, it simply dumped back in.

    So the short answer is there's no way to do it as you suggested. And to build and operate those plants I just described is very, very expensive - and then you'd still need a pipeline network on top of all that. Those countries can't afford it.
     
  8. Baron Max Registered Senior Member

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    Pipelines cost lots of money, millions of dollars per foot, who's gonna' pay for it? Do we just pick the money off the money trees?

    It would be a lot, A LOT, less expensive to move the people to where the water is plentiful. Why don't we do that? And at the same time, we could teach them not to fuck so much so they wouldn't have so fuckin' many kids!

    Baron Max
     
  9. kaneda Actual Cynic Registered Senior Member

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    What it really needs is a very deep well dug and then take all the leaders from these two countries and dump them in there and then check on them every year or so. The countries then may stand a chance without them.
     
  10. Donnal Registered Member

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    ahmm sum egyptians used to build catches in the hills or mmountains and wait for the rain and they had plenty when others were dying and eating their own kind
     
  11. Deathfromabove Hopeless and Useless Registered Senior Member

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    Thank you for clearing that up, i've always thought that this design/idea would have some massive flaw, but i could never figure what it was, soo thanks.
     
  12. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    Engineers Develop Revolutionary Nanotech Water Desalination Membrane
    ScienceDaily (Nov. 9, 2006) — Researchers at the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science have announced they have developed a new reverse osmosis (RO) membrane that promises to reduce the cost of seawater desalination and wastewater reclamation.

    Reverse osmosis desalination uses extremely high pressure to force saline or polluted waters through the pores of a semi-permeable membrane. Water molecules under pressure pass through these pores, but salt ions and other impurities cannot, resulting in highly purified water.

    The new membrane, developed by civil and environmental engineering assistant professor Eric Hoek and his research team, uses a uniquely cross-linked matrix of polymers and engineered nanoparticles designed to draw in water ions but repel nearly all contaminants. These new membranes are structured at the nanoscale (the width of human hair is approximately 100,000 nanometers) to create molecular tunnels through which water flows more easily than contaminants.

    Unlike the current class of commercial RO membranes, which simply filter water through a dense polymer film, Hoek’s membrane contains specially synthesized nanoparticles dispersed throughout the polymer — known as a nanocomposite material.

    “The nanoparticles are designed to attract water and are highly porous, soaking up water like a sponge, while repelling dissolved salts and other impurities,” Hoek said. “The water-loving nanoparticles embedded in our membrane also repel organics and bacteria, which tend to clog up conventional membranes over time.”

    With these improvements, less energy is needed to pump water through the membranes. Because they repel particles that might ordinarily stick to the surface, the new membranes foul more slowly than conventional ones. The result is a water purification process that is just as effective as current methods but more energy efficient and potentially much less expensive. Initial tests suggest the new membranes have up to twice the productivity — or consume 50 percent less energy — reducing the total expense of desalinated water by as much as 25 percent.

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/11/061106144813.htm
     
  13. Deathfromabove Hopeless and Useless Registered Senior Member

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    Well we could all chip in a bit.

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    That's a bit harsh. When you don't have a tv or many leisure activities, fucking is pretty much all you can do
     
  14. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    There's always the sheep!

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  15. Deathfromabove Hopeless and Useless Registered Senior Member

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    Haven't alll the sheep died from dehydration ?? or been eaten?? To minimise the number of those affected, i think they all need to embrace 'hand love' or condoms
     
  16. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

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    That's very interesting, CT, thank you.

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    But that 25% reduction in expense still puts the OP's idea far, far out of reach for those countries. And that's just for drinking water alone - they couldn't even begin thinking of starting to pay for water for agricultural purposes.
     
  17. spidergoat Valued Senior Member

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    Also the technical issues are just a part of it. Many African countries are already suffering from the debt incurred from large projects started by various dictators without the consent of the people. This debt is also used to exert political pressure on that country.
     
  18. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

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    True. And not only that, the debt incurred making those same dictators very wealthy.
     
  19. Stryder Keeper of "good" ideas. Valued Senior Member

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    One method I thought of was building a 'Salt Lake', making sure the lake itself isn't very deep means that it would evaporate over time. The problem with this is that the salt water has to be pumped to the lake bed, the amount in the lake bed has to be maintained as a low level and of course the land becomes polluted by the salt.

    No expensive Desalination plants necessary since you use 'Mother nature'. The evaporated water would of course be good for cloud seeding generating 'rain water'.

    The main problem with Water in third world countries however is a mixture of 'Corporate entities charging for water' (Do a search on Argentina for information on that one) and of course on-going tribal conflicts that can cause the destruction of equipment or killing of staff.
     
  20. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

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    Have you considered just how ineffective that would be? It would have to be a very HUGE lake and the pumping expense would be very costly. (Money they don't even have in the first place.) And in the long run, the possibility of any cloud formation in such a dry region would be extremely remote at best! The evaporated water would just vanish into the very dry air. To induce cloud formation and eventually rain also requires an overlying mass of cold air - something totally nonexistent in that part pf the world. Sorry, bad idea all around.
     
  21. Baron Max Registered Senior Member

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    When one dreams, nothing has to make sense!

    But when they post it on the sciforums, you'd think that they'd think a little bit more realistically about it, wouldn't you? Or is sciforums a place to post one's wildest, most idiotic ideas?

    Baron Max
     
  22. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

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    Correct on all points, Max!

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    As evidenced by thousands of posts in this place - good logic and thinking things through are very rare around here.
     
  23. Stryder Keeper of "good" ideas. Valued Senior Member

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    Admittedly I didn't clarify exactly what the problem was with pumping, that was my error but it wasn't about the Engineering feat. but the actual overall costs in both money and energy.

    As for water vanishing into dry air, that's nonsense have you ever boiled water at a high enough level to make it evaporate like that? and thats 'Boiling'. African temperatures (for examples sake) never get to the point of boiling water.
     
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