Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Toys Idle

An RC Car That Runs On Soda Can Rings 135

Posted by timothy
from the compatible-with-classic-pull-tabs dept.
polyp2000 writes with an Engadget excerpt to inspire instant toy envy: "A pair of Spanish engineers have recently unveiled the dAlH2Orean (see what they did there?), a R/C car that runs on aluminum. Dropping a few soda can tabs into a tank of sodium hydroxide produces enough hydrogen to power the little speedster for 40 minutes — at almost 20mph."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

An RC Car That Runs On Soda Can Rings

Comments Filter:
  • Interesting... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Tuesday April 19, 2011 @10:27PM (#35876750) Journal
    Just on an intuitive level, I'm a touch surprised that they managed to get that much running time out of the system.

    On consideration, of course, the energy required to coax aluminum out of whatever compound it has formed this time and into a bulk metallic state is pretty heroic. That does suggest that(while the aluminum oxide layer passivates it nicely under normal circumstances) bulk aluminum has some serious potential energy.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Here is a page on the projects website, which provides at least some explanation of how it works. Depending on how recently you took chemistry, you can get at least some of the general picture of it all. I have to imagine that they are hiding at least some side effect, like potential cost in extracting the Aluminium from aluminium hydroxide. I don't really know any of the specifics to say though.

      http://www.dalh2orean.com/dAlH2Orean/Blog/Entradas/2011/4/15_Press_Conference.html [dalh2orean.com]

      • Re:Interesting... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by compro01 (777531) on Tuesday April 19, 2011 @11:33PM (#35877092)

        Extracting aluminum from aluminum hydroxide is the standard method (the Bayer process [wikipedia.org]) for refining aluminum from bauxite.

        • Re:Interesting... (Score:4, Insightful)

          by EasyTarget (43516) on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @04:14AM (#35878158) Journal

          Err.. that will be the Bayer process followed by the Hall–Héroult [wikipedia.org] process.

          Hall–Héroult process is the one where a vast amount of electrical energy is used to extract the Metallic Aluminium from the Alumina that is the end product of the Bayer process.. Typically plants doing this have their own power station (often Hydroelectric.. but Nuclear is used too) due to the energy required.

          Not really very green huh.. it just displaces where the energy is input by several chemical steps.. The energy poured into making aluminium, is basically being extracted later on.

          Essentially the Aluminium is being used like a battery.. not a fuel.

          • Essentially the Aluminium is being used like a battery.. not a fuel.

            The is a very valid point, but if you take any fuel to its extreme you will find that it is just a battery for energy that was released from the sun. Arguably fossil fuels are a storage medium for energy collected from dinosaurs eating plants. Aluminum is at least relatively inert as a battery compared to gasoline, hydrogen or lead-acid.

            • by EasyTarget (43516)

              Sorry; I meant 'A very inefficient battery'.

              Completely get your point, but I guess if pushed I'd reserve 'battery' for something that is deliberately created and energized or charged up in one location for later release of the energy elsewhere.. It's different from a fuel where the energy is inherent and not added by a human agency, even if it all comes from the Sun originally (entropy, like pedantry. is a terrible thing).

            • Aluminum may be relatively inert as a battery, but the sodium hydroxide is anything but chemically inert. Much like the acid in the lead-acid battery you mention.

            • by geekoid (135745)

              "but if you take any fuel to its extreme you will find that it is just a battery for energy that was released from the sun."

              Gravity.
              And you don't need a sun to have aluminum on a rock.

              • by arisvega (1414195)

                So we better give birth to our offspring in an altitude, to set them up to be able to extract the maximum possible potential energy.

                It is going to be all downhill from there.

                And technically, you DO need a sun [wikipedia.org] to have aluminum, on the rocks or otherwise

          • Several important points about this technology.

            1. It is just a battery. Many people read about hydrogen and snicker "EROI EROI it's just a battery not a source of energy it's worthless Nah Nah." But that isn't true. We need a battery system, and hydrogen and aluminum have a lot more energy density than most other batteries. There is no theoretical reason why making hydrogen or aluminum with electricity should be less efficient than charging and discharging batteries. There are practical reasons.

            2. It
    • Re:Interesting... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by joocemann (1273720) on Tuesday April 19, 2011 @11:13PM (#35877000)

      producing aluminum from boxite is extremely energy intensive. requires loads of electricity.

      we recycle aluminum not because it is of scarcity, but rather because the energy invested to produce it from boxite is 'saved'.

    • Aluminium as fuel has been proposed quite often for some truly insane concepts. One of my favourites was as an extremely dense energy source for long range supercavitating torpedoes - the idea was to use a quasiturbine engine that would ignite a seawater/aluminium foil mixture by compression of the combustion chamber. Essentially a hybrid of diesel engine and rocket, burning metal at white heat.

      There was also a rather wonderful spaceplane design, proposed back in the 30s I think, that would have used alu
    • by RockDoctor (15477)

      bulk aluminum has some serious potential energy.

      Well, you're correct in working that out from the data provided in the summary (or even in TFA ; I'm not bothered to read it).

      But, wouldn't it have been quicker to have paid attention to your chemistry teacher when you were 13 or so? Standard enthalpy of formation? Remember? The standard enthalpy of formation of aluminium oxide is about 5 times that of water.

      Or alternatively, when you were reading your textbooks on explosive manufacture, you might have notic

    • by arisvega (1414195)
      I think you are underestimating the power of NaOH.
  • I'm no chemist, but doesn't this also consume the sodium hydroxide? Isn't that the actual source of the hydrogen atoms?

    • I'm pretty sure it mostly consumes the sodium hydroxide. At any rate, the aluminum is not the 'fuel source' so the way it's written is definitely wrong. As one of the posters down below said, this is as accurate as saying that my car runs on oxygen.
      • 2 Al + 2 NaOH + 2 H2O 2 NaAlO2 + 3 H2

        Aluminium uses massive amounts of electricity to produce, Sodium Hydroxide production uses massive amounts of energy .... and this process is quite inefficient ...

        New fuel, no ....

        • by geekoid (135745)

          well, the aluminum was waste. That production cost is sunk.

          Of course it won't be a major fuel supply, but still interesting.

    • Re:Only aluminum? (Score:5, Informative)

      by demonlapin (527802) on Tuesday April 19, 2011 @11:05PM (#35876984) Homepage Journal
      Hehe, this gives me the opportunity to pass along an old favorite to a much younger generation. We were doing this around the time that today's college students were being born. The best part is that you can still get all the pieces for this (unlike many stories 20 years before my youth, which centered around things like large gunpowder fireworks and F-size model rocket engines).

      If you were to take a square of aluminum foil, fold it diagonally in half to create a crease, fill the crease with lye (available as Red Devil drain cleaner, among others), and the roll the whole thing up like a... uh... hand-rolled cigarette, and then to fill a (preferably small, 500 mL or less) bottle with a fair amount of water, into which you then place the Drano Reefer before quickly (but firmly) closing the cap and throwing it far, far away, you'd get the Drano Reefer bomb.

      The hydrogen comes from the water; the NaOH is merely a catalyst preventing the 2Al + 6H2O -> 2Al(OH)3 + 3H2 reaction from getting stopped by aluminum oxide films, etc. Done right, the gas pressure will rupture the bottle, while the hydrogen produced will add to any flame. For obvious reasons, not recommended for glass bottles.

      For an encore, take a metal can (soup, tomato, soda, whatever) and add roughly 1:1 ratio by volume of brake fluid and pool chlorinator (the "shock treatment" is preferred for its high free chlorine content). Adding fluid to chlorinator produces a delayed reaction; adding chlorinator to fluid produces a much faster reaction. Work with the proportions to produce the desired effect - if done properly, you can reliably produce any effect from smoke-only to rapid bonfire. Once you're comfortable with that, you can start working with paper or styrofoam cups to produce a self-immolating container.
      • Hehe, this gives me the opportunity to pass along an old favorite to a much younger generation.

        The rest snipped. This is (Hehe) a terrible idea. Don't do it. Besides the real risk of chemical burns, you risk jail and prison. Police and prosecutors have, and will, come after people that make these for making "destructive devices". You risk ruining (Hehe) your life for making a loud bang. I agree, this is little more than popping a balloon, but I'm not (and the parent poster) a cop with something to prove (or is he?).

        • It must suck to live in suburbia. I could probably set off a few sticks of dynamite and no one would be the wiser. If anyone actually heard they would assume they noise came from one of the handful of gravel quarries within jogging distance of my house.
        • by geekoid (135745)

          hehe, it's a great idea.

          I set off far worse, and I will teach my kids how to safely do this sort of thing, through example.

          It's a great experience and example of science in action.
          so, hehe, suck it.

      • I did this when I was a kid. Besides the ka-boom it produced a nice ring of dead grass about 8 feet in diameter that only disappeared once I graduated highschool (~4 years). If you care at all about the environment please don't do this.

      • by cvtan (752695)
        So the OH comes from water and not from the more available OH in NaOH? That's hard to take. It's more likely the NaOH gets used up by this process.
        • You're unclear on what a catalyst is, and how it works, and you definitely didn't think about the effect of the reaction you're describing.

          Al(s) + 3NaOH(aq) -> Al(OH)3(aq) + 3Na(s)
          However, you just formed solid sodium in the midst of water, and so you will immediately get the follow-on reaction:
          2Na(s) + 2H2O(l) -> 2NaOH + H2

          The total reaction series is:
          2Al + 6NaOH -> 2Al(OH)3 + 6Na, followed by
          6Na + 6H2O -> 6NaOH + 3H2

          ... the net of which is what I put in my post. The Na and NaOH cancel out.
      • Well if you are into things that go boom fill a hard glass container (a beer or soda bottle with a screw top is good) with sugar and then add battery acid. You might not even have to put the screw top on as the resulting reaction produces gas and black sugar ash which will clog the bottle and let the pressure build up until it reaches the bursting point of the the bottle. Not a safe idea as this will throw acid and bits of glass over a sizable area. The acid/sugar reaction is a popular science experimen

      • by jasno (124830)

        Just the other day our local newspaper had a story of a kid who's facing felony charges for making foil/drain cleaner "bombs". Hopefully the future engineer gets off without a criminal record.

        Remember kids - don't get caught! This isn't the same world your grandparent grew up in. We screwed it up, and now you get to grow up in a prison-state.

  • Real power (Score:5, Interesting)

    by MrQuacker (1938262) on Tuesday April 19, 2011 @10:38PM (#35876814)
    The real power comes from aluminum batteries though.

    FTA: There may be another way to transport electricity, using the Aluminum battery as a medium. Each kilogram of Aluminum produced represents about 14 KWh of electricity, used to produce the ingots. This means that if we ship 20,000 Tons of Aluminum to Europe, we would be transporting the equivalent of 20,000,000 * 14 KWh of electricity. This is 280 GWh of electricity, enough to power 500,000 households in Europe for a year. The question, of course, is how can we free this electricity from the Aluminum transported. Here comes the Aluminum battery. Using Aluminum electrodes in a simple electrochemical cell, filled with seawater or Sodium Hydroxide solution and using a Nickel-Manganese counter electrode, the Aluminum will be oxidized to Aluminum Hydroxide and give off 3 electrons per Al atom used up in the reaction. A large part of the electricity stored in the above 20,000 tons of Aluminum can in this way be released, generating about 280 GWh of electricity and about 60,000 tons of Al(OH)3 sludge. This sludge could be recycled back to Iceland to generate again 20,000 tons of Aluminum to start the process of electricity generation anew. http://www.zpenergy.com/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=717 [zpenergy.com]

  • Just like my car runs on oxygen.
    • by TheLink (130905)
      But your car does ;).

      The difference is that in your car's normal operating environment oxygen is easily available and doesn't need to be stored.
  • now we need bigger cars / trains that can run on this.

  • Does this digesting bits of aluminum cans: clean up the environment; cause greenhouse gases; or generate a toxic pollutants that will cause birth defects in our future children?

    • by compro01 (777531)

      None of the above. This is already done all the time. Dissolving bauxite in sodium hydroxide is the first step in the standard method for refining aluminum.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    It doesn't run on aluminium, it runs on aluminium _and_ sodium hydroxide.

    • by v1 (525388)

      But is the aluminum even a source of energy in this reaction, or is it acting more like a catalyst? (consumed or otherwise)

      Isn't the sodium hydroxide the chief provider of energy? I'm not certain on this, I'm not chemist, but I know it takes a lot of energy to manufacture aluminum (in the form of electricity) but does this reaction recover any of that energy?

      • by compro01 (777531)

        The massive amount of energy is in the smelting. This doesn't require refined aluminum. What they're doing here is basically step 1 in the Bayer process for refining aluminum from bauxite. Just take the "waste" (tetrahydroxoaluminate) from this, crystallize it, and bake at 1050C to get Aluminum oxide.

  • Next they will work on a R/C car that runs on the tears of orphans. Renewable energy FTW!
  • This happens much, much too often on Slashdot.

    Aluminum takes a terrible lot of energy to refine from ore. The one good thing about that is that it's really easily recycled, so those aluminum cans sometimes get to be part of something again. But when you dissolve it in draino, and then, inevitably, dispose of the result in your landfill or sewer, you lose all of that energy and make some nasty pollution. What you get back in energy isn't a tiny fraction of what went in.

    But they got a patent. Because the patent office doesn't care if your work is good, only that it's original. So, a lot of ignorant people will be impressed by their "innovation".

    This would have been cool for a high-school science-fair project. Much too much bad science runs here.

    • by BitterOak (537666)

      This happens much, much too often on Slashdot.

      Aluminum takes a terrible lot of energy to refine from ore. The one good thing about that is that it's really easily recycled, so those aluminum cans sometimes get to be part of something again. But when you dissolve it in draino, and then, inevitably, dispose of the result in your landfill or sewer, you lose all of that energy and make some nasty pollution. What you get back in energy isn't a tiny fraction of what went in.

      But they got a patent. Because the patent office doesn't care if your work is good, only that it's original. So, a lot of ignorant people will be impressed by their "innovation".

      This would have been cool for a high-school science-fair project. Much too much bad science runs here.

      But given the fact that most people don't get paid for dumping their aluminum in the recycle bin, this could be a good invention. You get to extract energy from the aluminum in your cans and use it yourself, rather than give it away to someone else for free.

      • by osu-neko (2604)

        But given the fact that most people don't get paid for dumping their aluminum in the recycle bin, this could be a good invention. You get to extract energy from the aluminum in your cans and use it yourself, rather than give it away to someone else for free.

        Is it really costing you that much to power all your RC toys? Or are you taking an article about a toy car way too seriously? (Granted, so was Mr. Perens...)

        • It's about 12 cent a kwh where I am, and considering my entire 1500 milliamp hour 7.2 volt pack takes a whole 10.8 watt hours of energy to charge, that's roughly 0.12 cents for each charge.
      • by Kazymyr (190114) on Tuesday April 19, 2011 @11:30PM (#35877072) Journal

        Sure. Let's all do this. Let's power up our cars by improvised H2 generators using discarded aluminum cans. Ignore practical considerations such as: does the average household generate enough alumionum waste to cover its energy requirements, prioce and safe handling of sodium hydroxide, disposal of aluminum sodium oxide etc.

        Fast forward 1 year. Most people who had started using the aluminum powered cars have abandoned the system.
        Why? Not enough waste aluminum generated by the household.
        Why? The price of canned soda has skyrocketed.
        Why? The deposit on cans has suddenly gone up from 5-10cents per can to %1.50 per can
        Why? Canners can't get cheap aluminum anymore
        Why? Aluminum doesn't get recycled anymore because it gets burned instead. So canners need to buy "new" aluminum, which costs a lot more. Why? It takes a lot of electricity to refine from ore.

        • by compro01 (777531)

          disposal of the waste (tetrahydroxoaluminate) would be "sell it to the smelters". This is the first step of the Bayer process for refining aluminum from bauxite.

    • Because the patent office doesn't care if your work is good, only that it's original

      They do?
      ;)

    • by compro01 (777531)

      This doesn't need refined aluminum. Dissolving bauxite in sodium hydroxide is the first step of the Bayer process for refining aluminum.

      • And I'm sure that refiners have recovered the hydrogen from that process. This isn't inventing new chemistry, just a new application. And IMO, not a very good one.
    • by dmomo (256005)

      But they got a patent. Because the patent office doesn't care if your work is good, only that it's original. So, a lot of ignorant people will be impressed by their "innovation".

      That's very true and something I never really considered. As odd as it seems, I suppose that's a good thing!

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      You're too quick to dismiss this. As a chemist I'm able to appreciate the simplicity and energy density of aluminum metal. The problem with this and other powerful reducing agents (fuels) is that they are dangerously flammable under the wrong conditions. Nevermind the energy demands associated with producing it - the key is really to heat the aluminium oxide/fluoride ore bauxite up and get it good and melting in a big iron container which serves as the cathode for the electrochemical cell. The anode of

    • If only we had a way to produce plentiful amounts of cheap energy, all our problems would be solved.
    • Pbbfft... Name me one thing, ONE, that is better than RC cars. Go ahead, I can wait. Now don't you think powering such inventions should be humanity's sole purpose on this planet?

      Thought so.
    • They got a patent on this???? TFA is really short, but this is BASIC chem shit.

      "Strong bases attack aluminium. Sodium hydroxide reacts with aluminium and water to release hydrogen gas. The aluminium takes the oxygen atom from sodium hydroxide (NaOH), which in turn takes the oxygen atom from the water, and releases the two hydrogen atoms. In this reaction, sodium hydroxide acts as an agent to make the solution alkaline, which aluminium can dissolve in. "

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sodium_hydroxide#Reactions [wikipedia.org]

      • Here's a paper [nationalhy...dation.org] on the reaction, by different people at the same university, and there's also this 2003 patent [justia.com] by two people named Erling Andersen, who don't seem to be at Barcelona, and a corresponding European patent EP1301433. The Andersen patent is cited in the Barcelona paper. I didn't find a patent on the battery application by the folks who made the model car. It looks like there's abundant prior art for the Andersen patent. This whole thing reads like a parody of patent abuse.

    • by Coren22 (1625475)

      That picture of you on wikipedia is awful, you should offer them a better one :)

  • Lye (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Fnord666 (889225) on Tuesday April 19, 2011 @10:50PM (#35876894) Journal
    For those who don't recognize it, sodium hydroxide is more commonly known as lye. Not sure I would want to be in an accident in a full size vehicle powered by lye.
    • by osu-neko (2604)

      For those who don't recognize it, sodium hydroxide is more commonly known as lye. Not sure I would want to be in an accident in a full size vehicle powered by lye.

      Yeah... most children's toys would not make good full size vehicles.

    • by bane2571 (1024309)
      On the plus side, roadkill would be so much easy to clean up...
  • If I had this engine, I could use all of my empty energy drink cans to power everything in my room!
  • Since when is this a place to so drastically misrepresent something that the readers only think it's cool because they don't understand it? This happens all the time now. Sensationalism is growing threat to society's collective scientific comprehension.
  • AND !

    With all that left over lye, you can open a few clogged drains!

    • by h4rr4r (612664)

      Or make pretzels.

      To make real pretzels you must dip them in a lye solution before baking. A very close approximation can be made by dipping them in a saturated water baking soda solution that is boiling. It is a toss up which is more of a pain to handle safely.

  • Self-powered, self-recycling cars made of.... aluminum?
  • Such negative comments by supposedly gadget-loving geeks. I suppose you've never heard of the Chem-E-Car Competition [aiche.org]. Although this is an RC car and the Chem-E-Car rules don't allow that.
    • by gl4ss (559668)

      the negative comments are because it's so boring because it's stuff that's been done for .. about a century? perhaps more? plenty of other material pairs you could use for the same effect, with all of them being about as boring and non-feasible for large scale with current energy prices(prices of materials).

    • by geekoid (135745)

      /. has become filled with people who equate gadgets with shiny.

  • I remember reading (years ago) in a popular science magazine that someone was proposing using iron filings and steam to generate H2 on-board for use in fuel cells. Iron oxide is a heck of a lot easier to re-form back into iron than any Aluminum salt or oxide is, I'm sure. (You could use electricity, or better yet, coal, which would make the "clean" coal people throw money at the idea).

    (Fe + 3H20 = FeO3 +3H2 I believe)

    Of course, getting H2 out of reacting a metal with an acid or a base is not necessarily

  • Seriously? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Arancaytar (966377) <arancaytar.ilyaran@gmail.com> on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @01:07AM (#35877496) Homepage

    Aluminium takes about 15kWh per kilogram to produce. Even if a larger car consumes only half as much mass relative to its own mass, a 1kg RC car using 10g of aluminium would scale up to a 1 ton car using 5kg, or 75kWh, for 20*2/3 miles, or approximately 20 kilomaters traveled, or 325kWh/100km.
    For comparison. a Tesla Roadster uses 17kWh per 100km.

    • by rgviza (1303161)

      That works out to around 1kg Al per 5km.

      Aluminum is around $2.65 USD per kg, wholesale, on the metal exchanges.(http://www.metalprices.com/pubcharts/Public/Aluminum_Price_Charts.asp?WeightSelect=KG&SizeSelect=M&ccs=1011&cid=0)

      Gasoline is $3.75 per gallon USD.

      My car gets ~61km per gallon on a flat open highway cruising at 55mph with properly inflated tires.
      Operating costs:
      Gasoline: $.06/km
      Aluminum: $.53/km (just for the aluminum, assuming my car is one ton, which it's not, it's heavier)

      Given the

  • How much energy does it take to make the aluminum? Considering that 2/3 of the electricity in the US is coal that could be an issue.
    How environmentally friendly is the production of lye?
    Same question for the vinegar.
    How will the waste products be collected and refined considering that it will be mostly water?

    This process focuses on one "green" section of the chain and shows how simple it is. It neglects the other steps because they will be shown to be not green. It is the same thing for plug in electric car

    • While electric cars just seem to move the 'pollution' and greenhouse gases from the automobile to the power plant, you over look the matter of scale. A single well maintained large power plant can be more efficient than thousands of smaller internal combustion engines in various stages of poor adjustment. It's easier to control pollution at a single point then at thousands of points.

      • by Coren22 (1625475)

        Also, as the power generation moves to cleaner sources (hydro, nuclear, whatever), the electric car automatically gets cleaner, while the gasoline car stays just as dirty...

        • by jklovanc (1603149)

          I agree that electricity is cleaner but it is not zero emission which is what is being touted by the electric car manufacturers. Tell it like it is; an electric car is only as clean as the technology used to generate the electricity. Vehicle manufacturers will not do that because it makes their products look less green. There are high mileage compact cars that emit less greenhouse gasses than some hybrids and I bet in some areas, such as the north east of the US where power is mostly coal, even better than

          • by Coren22 (1625475)

            This argument assumes that those coal power plants will always be there. You don't think there will ever be cleaner technologies used? If you base your buying decision for a car that will last you hopefully around 10 years on the power generation currently in use, than you are missing the improvements that will happen to power generation over time. What is to say that you couldn't just cover that electric car with solar panels and just leave it charge while you are in work?

            • by jklovanc (1603149)

              Lets look at a few holes in your argument.
              1. Since 2/3 of the electricity in the US is currently coal based to make electricity clean and meet you goal you would have to replace that capacity in the next ten years. That is not going to happen as new plants are barely keeping up with rising demand. Some of that demand being driven by supplying electric cars.
              2. The top surface area of a small car is about 24sq-ft. A solar cell I looked up created 13W/sq-ft. That mean that the cells on a car could produce 312W

  • Don't worry so much over this. As soon as this is refined to pose a legitimate threat to petroleum fuel engines General Motors will purchase the patent for ungodly amounts of money and lock it away with the vegetable oil engine patent and the dawn dish washing liquid engine patent to make sure they keep their stock holders' investments in petroleum nice and inflated.
  • The video wasn't too clear on just HOW the car runs on hydrogen, but it looks like there is a fuel cell that converts the H2 into electrical power to run the RC cars' electric motors. I suppose they could have converted a 4 cycle gasoline RC engine to run on H2 (normal RC engines using glow plugs run on Alcohol on a semi diesel principle).

  • Considering the (almost) free availabilty of aluminium cans, and the inexpense of sodium hydroxide, and there's a lot of energy locked up in metallic Aluminum, would this be a useful source of hydrogen for some kind of practical DIY purpose that you might need a flammable gas for (power generation, a lamp, cooking, small motor like a lawnmower etc). Does it produce enough gas and assuming cheap NaOH and free aluminum cans, is it a cheap enough energy hack?

The more cordial the buyer's secretary, the greater the odds that the competition already has the order.

Working...