# Capacitor to store lightning?

Discussion in 'General Science & Technology' started by cato, Sep 21, 2004.

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1. ### Captain KremmenAll aboard, me Hearties!Valued Senior Member

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Nasor isn't around at the moment, so I'll attempt the calculation myself.

A Terawatt is 1,000,000,000,000 Watts.
1 microsecond is 1/1,000,000 of a second.

There are 3600 seconds in an hour.

So the number of kilowatt hours in 1millisecond of the lightning is
(1,000,000,000,000)/ (3600 times 1,000,000)
= 277.8 Kwh

and in 30 milliseconds
=8333 Kwh

Even if you cut that down to allow for the Terawatt being peak wattage, say we half it, making 4150 Kwh, that's considerably more than was calculated before.

Benny, your calculations would be right if the life of a lightning bolt wasn't so short.
If it lasted for an hour, and you could capture the energy, you would have a tremendous store of power.
But it doesn't. It lasts for 30 microseconds.

If a lightning bolt contained as much energy as you think it does, it wouldn't just blow trees apart by turning their sap to steam, it would vaporise them.

Also, look at a typical lightning conductor. Do you think that a half inch thick copper wire could carry the current you are talking about?
Here's a table of wire gauges: http://www.powerstream.com/Wire_Size.htm

Carry on if you wish, but I think that people are losing patience with you.

Last edited: Mar 28, 2010

3. ### Billy TUse Sugar Cane Alcohol car FuelValued Senior Member

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23,198
Occasionally a lightning bolt will blast a piece of a tree free from the trunk and it does so as you state. I.e. it heats a few ounces of sap (basically water) up to the boiling point or a little higher. Also if it hits a brick chimney which has soaked up a few ounces of rain water inside the bricks they too can be exploded by internal steam pressure.

It takes very little energy to do this as both bricks and trees are quite weak against forces of tension. - They have great compressive strength but cannot withstand much "hoop stress" transverse to the direction of their strength. This is why a well swung axe can split up fire wood if the fibers of the wood are all parallel, as in tulip popular, but if there is considerable internal crossing of fiber direction as in oak, then there is no easy splitting direction. Oak trees rarely if ever explode out a piece when hit by lightning - The required energy is just not there.

------------------------------

BennyF has two very obvious problems which he ignores:
(1) There is a most $10 worth* of electric energy in a lighting bolt and they come to his extremely expensive (hundreds of millions of dollars for the high voltage capacitor string that could store even 1% of the energy in a lightning bolt ) apparatus infrequently. I.e. not attractive economically even if it would work. (2) The lightning bolt is the discharge thru air dielectric of the natural cloud/ earth electrode capacitor. If Benny F were to immerse his high voltage capacitor storage system in high strength dielectric oil, then the separation between his zero potential plate / wires and his very high voltage plate /wires could be perhaps 10 to 20 times smaller than the separation between the earth and the clouds (which was not enough to avoid dielectric breakdown – i.e. the lightning bolt.) As BennyF intends to step up the voltage to be much greater that the voltage of the lightning bolt, his high voltage terminal or plate would need to be outside the atmosphere where the low earth orbit satellites pass. SUMMARY: Benny F has no understanding of the electric break down problems of voltage differences associated with his 100 billion volt storage system. (I am not sure as I have not attempted to calculate and one needs to understand field emission capacity of the moon’s non-metallic surface, but I suspect that it is adequate when Solar UV is shining on it to cause self expanding leader that would allow 100 billion volts to arc between the Earth and the Moon. Certainly 100 billion volts could arc from earth to a low orbit satellite when its metal surface is in sunlight. - Photo electric effect starts the arc leader.) Benny F also has no understanding of how little value is the energy in a very strong lightning bolt or that his high voltage storage system (at voltage V) is more expensive than the low voltage (at voltage v) storing the same energy by the ratio of V/v. (Actually much more when the cost of the required dielectric oil is included.) For example a 12v system storing the same energy as only a 120 million (not billion) V system is ten million times cheaper. Benny is speaking of a 100 BILLION volt system which if compared to a 10v storage system is 10 billion times more expensive. (This is not counting the huge volume of dielectric oil it would require.) He has no idea how big that oil tank would be to avoid electrical break down – roughly speaking, the base would be larger than Manhattan Island and the altitude would be more than 10,000 meters tall. – That is a lot of very pure, highly-refined (or synthetic) very expensive oil (at least$50/ gallon, if it can be bought in railroad tank car volumes).

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*Benny intends to compete with power companies - undersell them so people would disconnect from the grid. Thus the relevant value is that which the power company will sell the same energy for. When BennyF understands how huge his system must be, just the cost of the real estate it sits on near a city would put him out of business, even if every thing else were free. (BennyF's system has very low energy density compared to a conventional power plant.)

Last edited by a moderator: Mar 28, 2010

5. ### MacGyver1968Fixin' Shit that Ain't BrokeValued Senior Member

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BillyT,

It's amazing the things you can learn here... Just so I'm clear on what dielectric breakdown is:

Let's imagine we have two electrodes, separated by a few inches of air. One is connected to a variable voltage source, the other to ground. We start out with 0v and slowly increase the voltage. As the voltage increases and gets into the kV range, it will eventually reach a point where the potential is great enough arc across the few inches air, and ZAP! it discharges. Is that what dielectric breakdown is?

That's the reason they use a whole stack of bell insulators to suspend HV power lines from their towers...to keep the HV from arcing from the line to the tower. Is what you are saying in #82 is you would need a stack of bell insulators that extend out into space in order to prevent accidental arcing to ground with 100 billion volts?

7. ### Billy TUse Sugar Cane Alcohol car FuelValued Senior Member

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23,198
Yes, in this case the dielectric is air. The voltage at which break down occurs, for a fixed air gap will depend on the impurities in the air, normally the moisture (water vapor), the temperature and the pressure. There is a minimum voltage called the Pashion voltage (not sure of spelling and think it is for a 1cm gap) for each gas when the pressure is at the Pashion pressure (much lower than atmospheric). Here it the physics of why:

There are always a few free electrons in any gas. They are accelerated by the electric field between the plates. At high pressures like atmospheric the travel tiny fraction of a mm be for hitting a molecule, and losing most of the energy they gained by "falling thru" a little part of the field. Then they accelerate again (if they did not attach to the molecule they hit, making it into an ion which being much heavier hardly gets any energy from the field)

When the pressure is lower, these electron travel greater distances before they make a collision so gain more energy from the field. For an arc to form, the number of electrons that gain enough energy to impact ionize a neutral molecule prior to their next collision must slightly exceed the number that get attached to the molecule they hit. When this is the case, the number of free electrons rapidly increases and the gas becomes a plasma, which being a good conductor of electricity "shorts out" the voltage between the plates.

If the pressure gets quite low, then the typical free electron will travel all the way from where it was to the positive plate and not ionizes any gas molecules on the way. Thus it is lost and the number of electrons does not increase to make a plasma /arc. That is why for each gas and electrode separation there is one pressure where the arc can form with the least voltage applied - I.e. the Pashion pressure for that gas.
basically yes, but note the surface path over the "bell insulators"is by design much greater than the only in the air path as these surfaces get wet and dirty and when dirty are better conductors than air.

If you are dealing with very high voltages, this simple approach probably will fail because part of the long Bell insulator structure will be a better conductor than the rest. The tiny "trickle" or "leakage " current passing over that section with less resistance will have less voltage drop so more of the voltage total drop will appear across the remaining section of the long bell insulator. Imagine there are two section to it with leakage current I passing thru both of course: V---Ir ----IR --- 0 volts. Most of the full voltage V will appear across the greater resistance, R, section and arc around it or thru it. To solve this problem, one uses a little of the energy to establish a "voltage divider current" which makes the voltage drop per unit length of insulator nearly uniform. In BennyF's miles long insulators supporting the huge voltage difference he would need to constantly be draining some energy in this voltage divider to keep all 100 meter sections with approximate the same voltage drop along their length.

Also there is a very serious problem for him at the atmospheric altitude where the ambient pressure is equal to the Pashion pressure. Breakdown will easily start there and rapidly spread thru the entire separation of his voltage shorting out his "stored voltage." He has many other fatal problems, but the two I listed are easier to understand. One important other is the corona discharge, which never grows into a full arc. Even power lines lose energy to it at voltage a million times lower than BennyF is talking about. If you can look at a high voltage power line on a dark moonless night with little wind you may see the faint bluish glow of their corona discharge. Corona loses is the reason why most high voltage power lines have four parallel, closely spaced, wires. They fight the corona discharge losses, as it is the electric field that is reduced by four wires. This field is what starts the corona.

Last edited by a moderator: Mar 28, 2010
8. ### Captain KremmenAll aboard, me Hearties!Valued Senior Member

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I can't see lightning replacing power stations, but neither is the energy negligible.

Heres another quote from wiki

The largest-scale sparks are those produced naturally by lightning. An average bolt of negative lightning carries a current of 30 to 50 kiloamperes, transfers a charge of 5 coulombs, and dissipates 500 megajoules of energy (enough to light a 100 watt light bulb for 2 months). However, an average bolt of positive lightning (from the top of a thunderstorm) may carry a current of 300 to 500 kiloamperes, transfer a charge of up to 300 coulombs, have a potential difference up to 1 gigavolt (a billion volts), and may dissipate enough energy to light a 100 watt light bulb for up to 95 years. A negative lightning stroke typically lasts for only tens of microseconds, but multiple strikes are common. A positive lightning stroke is typically a single event. However, the larger peak current may flow for hundreds of milliseconds, making it considerably hotter and more dangerous than negative lightning.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_voltage#Lightning

I may work this out in Kwh later.
I bet it's different again

9. ### Billy TUse Sugar Cane Alcohol car FuelValued Senior Member

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23,198
The energy in the 100 meters near the ground is only a tiny fraction of the total. If you had a 100 meter tall high voltage capacitor sitting on the ground, it would not get any significant charge even if there is a ten meter copper rod sticking up from the top AND the lightning bolt hits top of that rod. When it reaches the bottom of the rod, the lighting current path will just jump back into the air, by passing the condenser. Here is proof:

It is a very boring job with little to do, but read a book, but I often would watch lightning hit one of WCHS's three towers. It would typically invisibly travel down a section of guy wire but arc over the insulators that keep the total guy wire length much shorter that the radiated radiation. Quite often, after it had jumped an insulating spacer, it would continue in the air for many feet before getting back onto the wire.

If lighting, once in the air plasma it has made, will often not even return to a nearby parallel wire,* there is no way any of its current would flow into the capacitor with dielectric spacers between the plates instead of a conducting wire.

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*the plasma can be a better conductor once formed.

Last edited by a moderator: Mar 28, 2010
10. ### Captain KremmenAll aboard, me Hearties!Valued Senior Member

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There are some scam companies offering this as an investment.
Look at this:

Lucky me, I just got an email about an investment opportunity in some renewable energy!

DEAR SIR
GREETINGS
LOGIC-CO IS AN ENVIRONMENTAL COMPANY HAS RENEWABLE ENERGY: ELECTRICITY.EXTRACTED FROM THE LIGHTNING:
THE RATE OF LIGHTNING IS 100 FLASH PER SECOND ALLOVER THE GLOBE. IF USA HAS 1% OF THE TOTAL FLASHES THIS MEANS 1 FLASH PER SECOND. FOR YOUR KNOWLEDGE, ONE FLASH = 4 STROKES. EACH STROKE HAS (10)^12 WATT.
THIS MEANS : WHEN LOGIC-CO SUCCEEDS TO GET ONE FLASH ,AND TRANSFORM IT TO ELECTRICITY == THAT IS EQUAL TO A POWER STATION 0F 20 MW WORKS FOR 50 HOURS CONTINOUSELY. IMAGEN IF WE COULD TRANSFORM ONE FLASH PER MINIUTE ALLOVER USA.
IN THAT TIME NO NEED FOR ANY FUEL COMBUSTION THAT POLLUTES THE ENVIRONMENT. NOW LOGIC-CO IS SEEKING A PARTENER IN USA TO CLEAN THE ENVIRONMENT, PRODUCING FRIENDLY ENVIRO-ELECTRICITY.

DEAR SIR,
IF YOU ARE INTERESTING, PLEASE, DON’T HESITATE TO E-MAIL LOGIC- CO:
E-MAIL: XXXXX@hotmail.com
XXXXXX@yahoo.ca
MAIN OFFICE:
6TH B BAHST BADIA ST(SAUDIA BUILDINGS)
SHOBRA 11241
CAIRO
EGYPT

http://www.thegoodhuman.com/2007/12...y-inelectricity-extracted-from-the-lightning/

Benny. Be Quick. This could be a lifetime opportunity.

11. ### NasorValued Senior Member

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6,231
Please tell us how long (in minutes, hours, whatever) you think one bolt will power your office, and explain how you arrived at your figure. I'm don't want any details on how your system works, I just want to know how much energy you think you will capture and how long you think it will let you power an office. How many kw hours does your office currently use in a month? Or, if you don't actually have an office yet, how many kw hours would you anticipate it using?
Again, what is the advantage of raising the voltage so high? That's waaaaay more voltage than it takes to operate any sort of office equipment or run an electrolysizer. I asked you about this before, but you never answered.

12. ### BennyFRegistered Senior Member

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448
Folks, it was never my intention to compete with established electric utilities for their customers. I simply know that the DC electricity I can collect from an average lightning bolt will be enough to allow me to disconnect my own office from the grid.

The reason why I'm not trying to compete with the utllity companies is because there are better profits to be made from the sale of hydrogen and oxygen than from being a regulated utility company, especially in these times, when my uncle is getting vicarious thrills from looking over my shoulder way too often.

I've given the reasons why I'm pursuing my goals. I've given some facts and figures on the voltage and current, both measured at the ground. I've told you that I won't be violating any laws, including Ohm's. I've told you that my storage system will be capacitor-based. Finally, I've told you that my diagrams are so simple, the Patent Examiners will be able to understand them quite quickly.

In spite of all this, I'm still amazed by two things:

1. Nobody (I said NOBODY) has been able to generate a single volt, using a lightning bolt as his source, and

2. The DOE, which spends a lot of money keeping track of current research in energy sources and uses, doesn't even try to sponsor basic research into turning hundreds of millions of volts of DC electricity (per lightning bolt) into something useful.

Believe me, I've searched the relevant patent literature (at the USPTO website), looking hard for any sign of a method of converting lightning bolts into any other form of energy. I haven't found it yet.

13. ### NasorValued Senior Member

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6,231
Sure, but if lightning delivered as much energy as BennyF seems to think, it would cause fantastic damage when it struck. 500 MJ is equivalent to about 100 kg of TNT. It wouldn't just be blowing chunks off trees and damaging chimneys, it would be leveling houses and leaving big smoking craters in the ground where it struck.

14. ### NasorValued Senior Member

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6,231
One of your main goals seems to be increasing the voltage from hundreds of millions of volts up to many billions of volts, and so far as I know you have not explained why you want to do that. The voltage is already far more than is necessary to power anything. Why raise it even higher? You'll just need to bring it back down again before you actually use it for anything.

15. ### MacGyver1968Fixin' Shit that Ain't BrokeValued Senior Member

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7,028
Just for reference....my tiny studio apt. uses about 500kw/h a month.

I read somewhere that 90% of the energy contained in a lightning bolt is converted to heat.

Let's see if I can figure the math:

1 joule= 1 watt/sec

500MJ = 500MW/sec = 138.8Kw/h

Assuming my 90% figure is right: 138.8KW/h X .1 = 13.8 KW/h

So it would take something like 36 500MJ lightning strikes a month to power my apt.

That also assumes an "ideal" circuit with no losses.

Is my math right?

16. ### BennyFRegistered Senior Member

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448
Nasor, this is in reply to your specific questions, and some specific questions/concerns of others.

First, the physics. According to Ohm's law, if the voltage level in a circuit is raised by a factor of 2, the value of either the current or the resistance must be halved. Okay so far? As a practical example, I said I could multiply the voltage collected from a lightning bolt. I can't change the voltage in the bolt, but I can multiply the STORED voltage if I decrease the current or the resistance in my collection and storage equipment, and that's exactly what I intend to do, all using the strict principles of Ohm's Law, which I respect and will not violate. THAT is what will allow me to store a hundred billion volts of DC electricity.

Second, I haven't applied for my patent yet, and I won't set up an office until I get one, assuming that the Patent Office decides that my application is good enough.

Third, I don't trust any statistic that comes from a website like Wiki, which allows the public to edit an entry themselves. Once the sci forums webmasters allow me to post links (I'm still a newbie, on probation), I'll show you the websites where I got my lightning voltage and current levels from.

Fourth, the economics are better than some people realize. Bloomberg has a website that reports daily on the market prices for electricity. The current market price is $30-$40 per megawatt-hour. The cost of the electiricity is the primary reason why few people are turning water into hydrogen and oxygen now. but a hundred billion volts of stored DC can turn a lot of water into a lot of hydrogen and a lot of oxygen. Those are the economic stats that I love seeing.

Fifth, the question was raised about the electricity usage in my (future) office. The high-wattage DC-AC inverters I plan on using aren't 100% efficient. I expect to lose some of the voltage in the conversion process. I haven't seen any estimates of the efficiency, but I expect to modify the circuit anyway, because I will be inputting a voltage level somewhat higher than the 12v they expect. Not a hundred billion volts, either, but something inbetween. I know how to step down the voltage before I send it into the inverter anyway. Nevertheless, a hundred million volts (one tenth of one percent of what I store) would still produce tens of millions of volts of AC electricity, and that should be plenty for any office I need.

Finally, some of you seem to be surprised at the extremely high voltage levels I intend to store and work with. There will be safeguards to prevent accidental discharges and electric shock to the technicians. The equipment isn't a building-sized capacitor anyway, and I'll have my chief engineer have a long talk with the local inspectors before I buy the equipment.

To answer a specific question that a number of people have asked, the reason why I want to store a large amount of voltage in one place is simply because it would take hundreds of millions of two-volt one-farad "supercapacitors" to store all the voltage in one bolt, never mind the voltage that I can get if I apply Ohm's Law the right way.

I just wanted you to know that I'm still working on this problem, even if I'm not posting.

My best to all,

Benny

Last edited: Mar 29, 2010
17. ### MacGyver1968Fixin' Shit that Ain't BrokeValued Senior Member

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7,028
This is what is confusing everyone. Why would you increase the incoming voltage, only to turn around and step it back down? P=IV. Power stays the same. By doing this you would only increase the loss by performing a completely unnecessary step. Please explain why you would want to take a 100 MV charge, (which is hard enough to work with) and step it up to 100 GV, (which would be even harder to work with) only to turn around and step it down to 12/24v? That doesn't make any sense to me.

Just post the URL as text, and change the "http:" part to "htt" or something like that, and I will repost the link for you.

Last edited: Mar 29, 2010
18. ### BennyFRegistered Senior Member

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448
MacGyver, the current levels I've seen for lightning are very high, and the equipment I want to use, including the basic wiring for the circuits, may not be able to handle it, so when I was designing my circuits, I decided to bring down the current by increasing the voltage. Ohm's Law.

Here are some websites, modified as you suggested, with "htt":

Georgia State University
(lightning voltage, current, event sequence, and destructive ability)
htt://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/electric/lightning2.html

DOE's list of energy sources (no mention of lightning)
htt://www.doe.gov/energysources/index.htm

DOE's mission statement on Hydrogen:

"Hydrogen is a clean energy carrier (like electricity) made from diverse domestic resources such as renewable energy (e.g. solar, wind, geothermal), nuclear energy, and fossil energy (combined with carbon capture/sequestration). Hydrogen in the long-term will simultaneously reduce dependence on foreign oil and emissions of greenhouse gases and criteria pollutants."

htt://www.doe.gov/energysources/hydrogen.htm

Georgia State University, on electrolysis and fuel cells:
htt://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/Hbase/thermo/electrol.html

A 2004 NREL study on H2 generation by water electrolysis:
htt://www1.eere.energy.gov/hydrogenandfuelcells/pdfs/euiw_3_doe_utility.pdf

Bloomberg prices for electricity:
htt://www.bloomberg.com/energy/

The Weather Channel, looking continuously for lightning all around the country:
(HTML format)
htt://www.weather.com/maps/activity/golf/uslightningstrikes_large.html
(graphic only)
htt://image.weather.com/images/maps/severe/map_light_ltst_4namus_enus_600x405.jpg

A specialized radar-type scan of the area around Jacksonville, Florida, looking specifically and continuously for lightning strikes:
(Note: This web page is limited to the graphic only. That's how I look at it, and that's how I save it on my home computer.)
htt://arlingtonweather.net/weather/lightning.png

This is a start. The idea for storing voltage from lightning came to me well over three years ago, and I've been researching it ever since.

Last edited: Mar 29, 2010
19. ### MacGyver1968Fixin' Shit that Ain't BrokeValued Senior Member

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7,028

http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/electric/lightning2.html

http://www.doe.gov/energysources/index.htm

http://www.doe.gov/energysources/hydrogen.htm

http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/Hbase/thermo/electrol.html

http://www1.eere.energy.gov/hydrogenandfuelcells/pdfs/euiw_3_doe_utility.pdf

http://www.bloomberg.com/energy/

http://www.weather.com/maps/activity/golf/uslightningstrikes_large.html

http://image.weather.com/images/maps/severe/map_light_ltst_4namus_enus_600x405.jpg

http://arlingtonweather.net/weather/lightning.png

20. ### BennyFRegistered Senior Member

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448
Thanks, MacGyver. Here are some more links.

The National Weather Service, saying that lightning is "An underrated killer".
htt://www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov/overview.htm

The National Weather Service, giving some scientific facts on lightning.
htt://www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov/science.htm

Medical statistics on lightning injuries from the NWS.
htt://www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov/medical.htm

Lightning killed a Florida man last June as he was mowing his lawn.
htt://www.gainesville.com/article/20090609/ARTICLES/906099989?Title=South-Florida-landscaper-killed-by-lightning

Lightning killed a 12-year-old boy playing Little League Baseball in Virginia.
htt://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,525144,00.html

Brief stories about lightning deaths and injuries from the National Lightning Safety Institute.
http://www.lightningsafety.com/nlsi_lls/incidents.html

Photo of a (used) 100 KV capacitor for sale to the public. Note the 3,700 Joule rating, probably only rated this much when it was brand-new.
htt://theelectrostore.com/shopsite_sc/store/html/capacitor-energy-discharge-px480d60.html

The United States Geological Survey, saying that wildfires are a "growing national threat". Some wildfires are caused by lightning, you know, including one in June 2008 that severely damaged a National Wildlife Reserve in North Carolina.
htt://www.usgs.gov/hazards/wildfires/

Like I said, I've been researching this for well over three years.

Benny

21. ### MacGyver1968Fixin' Shit that Ain't BrokeValued Senior Member

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7,028

Well...if high current is the only reason your are stepping up the voltage, then you are solving a minor problem by creating a major one...if it even solves it at all. You still have to bring that voltage back down to power your inverters, so you're back square one with your current. Plus, there are far easier ways of handling high current...like a current divider.

High voltage is much much harder, and more expensive to work with than high current, because of arcing. Trying to keep a circuit isolated with the voltages you are talking about would require vastly more engineering and cost. High current only requires beefier components and wire, or multiple parallel branches of components to spread the current out.

Edit:
You would need 135,000 of those to store 500MJ. That's \$26 million. For the same money you could by 50,000 500W solar panels. That's 25 MW on any sunny day! You could run not only your own business, but everyone else's for miles around.

Last edited: Mar 29, 2010
22. ### BennyFRegistered Senior Member

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448
MacGyver, I don't trust any of the methods of preserving my invention until it's been patented. I've seen too many courtroom surprises with my own eyes.

I've heard that the best way to keep a secret is to not tell anybody what it is. Please forgive me if I don't tell an online message board how I intend to deal with 100-500 million peak volts and 100,000 peak amps.

Vaya con Dios,

Benny

23. ### NasorValued Senior Member

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6,231
See, statements like these are the reason people here keep saying you don't seem to know the difference between energy and voltage. Simply knowing a voltage doesn't tell you ANYTHING about how much water you can turn into hydrogen and oxygen. If you have a hundred billion volt power source to work with, you might be able to turn an entire ocean into hydrogen and oxygen, or you might not be able to turn a single drop of water into hydrogen and oxygen. Simply stating a voltage doesn't tell you anything.
Well, 100 billion volts is enough to jump a spark through something like 300 miles of air...Do you understand how to calculate what dielectric thickness will be needed for a given voltage? You say that your storage mechanism won't be the size of buildings, but unless your invention includes a new material with a dielectric constant far, far higher than anything currently known, it's not clear to me how you could avoid such enormous storage devices.