Not directly, for several reasons:
1. Brown’s Gas should be considered to be an ‘electrical’ flame, not a BTU flame. It’s dominant energy is electrical, not thermal, in nature. Brown’s Gas does not efficiently heat air or water, such mediums dissipate the electrical energy with minimal temperature rise.
2. Brown’s Gas also burns MUCH faster than regular furnace gasses like natural gas or propane and would result in furnaces, designed for slower burning fuels, to explode.
3. BG takes more energy to make than you get back from it (burning it directly and alone as a fuel).
4. Lots of people try heating a secondary material (like copper or magnesium oxide) with Brown’s Gas, and then having that material heat the air or water (there’s even patents for this technique).
While this technique is more efficient at heating than the ‘bare’ flame, I have not yet seen any proof that this ‘Rube Goldberg’ and expensive technique is more efficient than simply putting the electricity (needed to make the Brown’s Gas anyway) directly into a simple, efficient and inexpensive off-the-shelf resistive element.
There are scam plans on the internet that use BG (HHO) to heat copper pipes… YES, BG will heat copper pipes and a fan blowing through the pipes will blow the heat into the room; BUT does it really take only 300 watts of energy to make 6000 watts of heat? No one has yet proven that to me and I haven’t had time to verify the rumors myself.
So NO… Brown’s Gas isn’t practical to use as a ‘stand alone’ fuel in regular gas furnaces. BUT
The EXCEPTION is that Brown’s Gas acts like a catalyst to increase the efficiency of hydrocarbon-fuel combustion. If you use Brown’s Gas IN ADDITION TO a hydrocarbon fuel, then good things happen.
Here is proof that BG assists carbon-fuel combustion, download PDF
We have been with using Brown’s Gas to increase the efficiency of internal combustion and then add water to compensate for the fuel mass that we have reduced (water replaces the volume of fuel normally used as the combustion ‘cooling’ fluid). We have the world’s best such technology and we describe it in our ‘Brown’s Gas’, ‘HyZor Technology’, ‘Water Injection’ and ‘Super Gas Saver Secrets’ books. This is in ADDITION to the gains you can achieve by burning fuel efficiently.
The catalytic effect works at the molecular level, helping the fuel’s atomic bonds to break with less energy input. I call it ‘lowering the combustion self-propagating endothermic energy requirement’. Thus, when the fuel burns, the combustion requires less of the heat energy produced to keep the combustion happening. This allows (for the same fuel mass) more (exothermic) energy to be released as heat. The quantity of additional heat energy released is far greater than the energy we use to make the Brown’s Gas. Of course, less efficient technologies than ours have less gain.
Note: The actual energy put in (to make Brown’s Gas) is 98% recovered in the combustion process; that’s another reason why the catalytic enhancement shows up as a significant ‘free energy’ gain as heat.
Our research so far indicates that this catalytic effect is much more effective on long chain hydrocarbons. So Methane (and Compressed Natural Gas) has the least gain, Gasoline (Petrol) has a greater gain, Diesel has a very good gain (around 50%) and heavy oils (like the crude used to fuel ocean going ships) get the greatest gain (can replace up to 90% of fuel with water). Coal combustion is enhanced too. All this assumes, of course, proper implementation of the technology.
This data is based on our own internal combustion research and on data acquired from various other sources that add hydrogen to assist carbon-fuel combustion. Our research has been done at ratios from about 5,000:1 carbon-fuel:Brown’s Gas. It is true that higher concentrations of Brown’s Gas result in even more fuel savings, but there is an optimum ratio for any given application (we are still researching to find that ratio). After the volume of BG required for the catalytic effect is optimized, any additional BG results in mileage lost (in internal combustion applications) and reduction in combustion temperature (in external combustion applications).
Because we were initially researching with increasing the efficiency of internal combustion in mobile applications, we were limited in by the vehicle’s electrical input. Stationary applications are not so limited. Since the actual energy put in (to make Brown’s Gas) is recovered in the combustion process, and the electricity didn’t come at such a dear price as in vehicle applications (up to 14 watts of fuel burned to make 1 watt of BG), there is a much greater potential for profitable efficiency gains in stationary applications (where the electricity to make the BG comes from the Grid).
I’m able to replace 50% of my Natural Gas in my shop with Brown’s Gas and still retain all the original equipment. By measuring the temperature of the air coming out of the furnace, I find the actual heating value of the mixture is exactly the same as the original NG alone (even though, by volume, BG has only 1/3 the ‘BTU’ value of NG; about 10 BTU per liter for BG and 30 BTU per liter for NG). Putting in more BG than 50% changes the combustion flame too much and the gas becomes incompatible with the furnace (can cause explosions).
Because of the cost of my electricity, water and Natural Gas, BG costs me only 10% of the NG. Every liter of gas I replace with BG saves me 90% of the cost of the NG. My electricity is $0.06 per kilowatthour. Water is $2 per 18 liters (about 5 gallons). Our WaterTorches make 1860 liters of gas for every liter of water put into them. Our WaterTorches use less than 2 watthours (convert to MMW) to make each liter of gas.
I see absolutely no reason that the same setup couldn’t be used with propane. We simply plumb the BG (out from the WaterTorch) into the furnace-gas flow just before the furnace-gas burner shutoff switch (I also add a special bubbler (to prevent backfire and gather excess moisture), a check valve (to prevent furnace-gas from escaping if the BG is disconnected) and a shutoff valve (normal for any gas appliance)). The BG then mixes with the furnace-gas before it goes into the burner, both enhancing the combustion of the furnace-gas and partially replacing it.
The WaterTorch is easily set for producing an exact volume of gas, and the pressure will rise to just above the furnace-gas pressure (coming from the final stage regulator) automatically, so a precise balance (and ratio) of BG to furnace-gas is simple and automatic. The WaterTorch is slightly modified (easily done) for automatic shutoff when your furnace shuts off and for automatic water fill.
I’m doing it. It’s simple. I see no reason that would prevent anyone from doing it (besides perhaps officials getting concerned because they don’t know what’s happening safety wise and the utility might change your meter, thinking the old one went bad (they did that with mine). This next Winter I’ll have it in my home as well as my shop.
On the subject of safety. In every way, BG is safer than NG, or Propane. It is lighter than air, it simply cannot build up a combustible concentration in a room that has even the simplest ventilation (cracks allowing air to move). BG is produced on demand, there is no stored gas. Our WaterTorches (electrolyzers) are designed extremely strong, well able to contain any internal explosions, usually without damage.