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Directory: Hidro -- Water Pressures Energy Conversion (WAPEC)

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by Sterling D. Allan
Pure Energy Systems News
Oct. 19, 2010

New South Wales, Australian inventor, James Kwok, has designed, patented, and built a free energy machine that allegedly could provide 24/7 base-load power in an economical way. The alleged "proven" machine is said to use principles of gravity, buoyancy, gas density differences and a pressure gradient to harness inexhaustible energy freely from the environment in such a way that the system produces 30% more power than what is required to run it, providing energy left over for use. [1]

Kwok's profile posted on their site portrays him as a professional engineer from the established energy sector, having designed and built coal fire powered plants, gasification processes, as well as large-scale renewable energy facilities. As you read through his posted biography, his credentials strike you as one who you would least expect to come up with a fringe technology like this, as mainstream engineers typically do not dabble in such heretical concepts.

He said he was driven to this technology in considering the inefficiencies, liabilities, and affordability issues with conventional methods, including fossil fuel power and mainstream renewable generation technologies. He wanted to see a system that optimized principles of efficiency, reliability, availability, and affordability – which he said Hidro achieves.

He has even garnered some mainstream scientific acknowledgement. According to Today's Engineer (of IEEE),

"This Australian company uses a 15m water column with counterbalanced buoys to drive a linear generator. Compressed air is injected into a buoy, which floats to the top of the column. The air is released at the top, causing it to fall. The buoys are connected mechanically to a weight, and the up-and-down motion drives a linear generator as well as a piston or flywheel to generate electricity. The founders envision this as a distributed, base-load system. A set of 13 towers has approximately 1MW capacity." [2] (Dec. 12, 2009)

The Hidro promotional video has been up at YouTube since December of 2008 -- nearly two years. The time stamp in the video showing the prototype in operation is Oct. 24, 2008. [3] Watching their video and seeing the expertise reflected in their prototype, is like taking a 5 or 10 year leap into the future after these "fringe" modalities are finally acknowledged by the mainstream renewable sector; yet this video is two years old.

Perhaps it got lost, looking too much like a mainstream technology, so people in the free energy sector overlooked it; and people in the mainstream sector ignored it, thinking it must be some free energy crank. As of today, the video only has just 4,039 visits. Fitting this paradox, in the close of his video, Kwok says: "Hidro is indeed the solution to clean energy security of tomorrow, today."

By the way, speaking of timing and synchronicity, as I was working on this page, about to get on a plane coming back from the Next Gen Expo in Florida, Glen Davis, called me up saying he had another idea for a free energy device. He had approached me a couple of weeks ago about open sourcing his working gravity motor technology (he wants to file a provisional patent first). His new idea involved a system using balloons and buoyancy that actually is a close match to this Hidro system. Had I not spent the time I have looking at Kwok's system, I would have dismissed his idea as not plausible. But it just so happened that I had my computer open and was working on this write-up when he called, so instead I was able to say that not only was the idea plausible, but someone had apparently built a working prototype based on that concept, and I was looking at it as we spoke. So that's a kudo to Glen's inventive intuition. You'll be hearing more about that soon, I hope.

Is Hidro real? Or is it another case of inaccurate measurement, or worse yet, a hoax? Has anyone witnessed it running? The company says there have been many witnesses, and tireless effort on the part of the inventor and associates to move the technology forward for the sake of the planet.

I sent an email to a few associates to see if they've heard of Hidro before and what they might know about it. Two associates in Australia responded quickly and their assessments were very unfavorable. One of them pointed out that according to, in February of 2007, Kwok "was jailed for dishonestly using his position as a director of a listed Sydney-based company." [4] This morning, the company responded to these negative assessments, which I've posted below.

My assessment at this point is that there are too many things about this that don't fit the profile of a fraud: the expense and quality of workmanship their prototype, their patents, the professionalism of their video, Kwok's credentials, their having exhibited at the UN's Conference on Climate Change last year, a review of their exhibit published by IEEE.

Maybe some of you have looked into this already and can give us some additional info about it. Are they in production? Have they built additional plants? How much energy does it produce? What is the cost of one of these plants? How do their energy generation costs compare to other modalities such as solar or natural gas?


Official Website


Free Energy - HIDRO- The Renewable Energy

  • "Hidro, the affortable clean energy solution, presented by James Kwok, Engineer & Inventor. Hidro is a emission free, high capacity, continuous generator, providing the much needed transition for renewable energies to become high sustainable and economical, through harnessing the free, unchanging, constant we have in this world, in the unique, patented and proven Water Pressures Energy Conversion (WAPEC) technology. The world's first Hidro electricity generator has been completed, proving Hidro is a scalable technology, which can reach the markets quickly and provide a clear & economic implementation strategy in both the developed and developing countries." (YouTube; December 13, 2008)

Panacea Fundraiser

One Pissed Off Inventor

  • YouTube - Oct 19, 2010 6:14 AM Mountain time, James Kwok, the inventor of the Hidro Water Pressures Energy Conversion machine, left a voice message for me, complaining about our coverage of their technology, which actually was amply friendly. [Archive copy of the page as it appeared at that time.] See video description for full story.

How it Works

"There is no magic trick with Hidro."

A low pressure air chamber will sink in water due to gravity if the chamber is heavier than the air chamber will buoy. If the air pressure increases (more air) in the chamber, then it will rise in the water due to buoyancy.

At the top and bottom of a water chamber are stationary air chambers. There are two moving air chambers that go up and down in the water column, depending on the concentration of air in their chamber.

At the top, the movable chamber is depressurized into the top fixed chamber, at which point it now descends. At the bottom, the movable chamber is pressurized, causing it to rise.

There are three ways the mechanism harvests energy in the process:

A) The moving chambers are arranged as a Linear Electric Generator (“LEG”) so that the movement of their magnets along the coils in the shaft generates electricity.

B) The connecting cables impart their movement via rack and pinion gearing into a flywheel to run an electric generator.

C) Pneumatic/hydraulic cylinders are pressurized for storage, to be released into a turbo generator.

The claim is that despite the losses from friction of the cylinders moving through water and the other moving parts, that more energy is generated to keep the pressurization/depressurization cycle going; and that there is a net energy gain.

The company says that the footprint area of a 1 megawatt Hidro+ plant is approximately 600m2 x 19m High (~2,000 square feet at 62 feet high). [5]

Prototype Photos

Image:Hidro prototype w 400h.jpg Image:Hidro_prototype_a_300.jpg Image:Hidro_prototype_c_300.jpg Image:Hidro_prototype_d_300.jpg Image:Hidro_prototype_h_300.jpg Image:Hidro_prototype_k_300.jpg Image:Hidro_prototype_m_300.jpg Image:Hidro_prototype_v_300.jpg

Profile: James Kwok

Quoting from

CPEng; FIEAust; MCMechE; FAIM; NPER1; Chartered Professional Engineer and Fellow Institution of Engineers Australia

James Kwok is a Member of the Australian College of Mechanical Engineers, the Panel of the Australian National Registered Professional Engineers and on the panel of Charted Assessment with the Institution of Engineers Australia.

Profile: Professor Ion Boldea

In 2008 Professor Ion Boldea of Politehnica University, Romania joined as a co-developer in Hidro+’s multi-module tower linear electric generator (MTLEG) technology, currently world patent pending the Hidro+ MTLEG is a joint patent between James Kwok and Professor Ion Boldea.

Profile: Etergen Limited

A NSW, Australian company


Quoting from

Hidro+™ technology has wide applications including fixed large scale localized-land land based or mobile generator, in automobiles, land and sea transportation vehicles and vessels and many others.

  • Distributed/ localized Load Generator- enabling the avoidance of transmission losses.

(pictured below)

  • Mobilized land generator
  • Automobiles and land transportation vehicles
  • Sea Transportation vessels


Quoting from

Hidro+™ is economic on scale. Commercial cost for 1MW Hidro Tower are from approximately US$3.75 million. Hidro+™ including maintenance & capital replacement will cost approximately 1 cent/KW Hr to operate.


  • base load power capable, providing energy continuously, regardless of weather or time of day

Independent Testing

  • Clean Power Generation - QUT is actively helping to validate, demonstrate and improve the original Hidro+ technology. (CleanTech News / Queensland University of Technology; March, 2011)


Hidro+™ technology world patents protection: PCT-AU2007/906961; AU2008/902488; AU2008/001888; AUS-PATENT2008/338258. HidroLinear Patents are published by World Intellectual Property Organisation [WIPO-Geneva] Publication number WO2009/0876727.

The Patented “Reverse Thruster Pressure Equalizer Chamber (RETPEC) and its “operations” in HidroLinear-System is key to the technology commercial utilization. [6]


Hank Mills points out that this technology might not have anything to do with gravity and buoyancy in terms of that being the energy source. But it may be a matter of harnessing the ambient heat latent in air that is being pulled into the system. This may be an air engine. (May 27, 2011)


In the News

  • Gravity Motors > Hidro >
    The Hidro Buoyancy Machine 2013 Review - A European free energy researcher has given another update, providing his view of a scientific explanation about how the Hidro device works by essentially harnessing thermal energy from the environment. He also expresses his opinion that the device is not likely to succeed because of the difficulty of maintenance and cost of construction. (PureEnergyBlog; July 16, 2013)
  • Featured / Best Exotic FE: Hidro >
    Hidro+ Unveils 1 MW Plant Design - Inventor, James Kwok claims that a one megawatt plant is under construction in Jakarta by the newly formed Indonesian company called Inter Pacific Energy Ltd. Also, a global master license has been purchased by Centium Electric Ltd. (PESN and BeforeItsNews; March 12, 2012)
  • Best Exotic FE: Gravity Motors > Hidro >
    Hidro+ Power to the People [link broken] (video) - A brief documentary promo produced three months ago gives an overview of the Hidro+ technology, interviewing the inventor, James Qwok, and others, including personnel from Queensland University Technology who tested the device. They also show many angles of the machine in assembly and operation. (Vimeo / Steven Lyons; June, 2011)
  • Featured: Hydro > Gravity Motors >
    Hidro claims free energy device that harnesses gravity, buoyancy and water pressure - An Asian inventor in Australia has built and patented a free energy technology he calls "Hidro" for short. He calls the process "Water Pressures Energy Conversion (WAPEC)". He says it can provide clean, affordable, reliable energy. (PESWiki; Oct. 19, 2010)
Photo by IEEE reporter.
Photo by IEEE reporter.
  • This is an IEEE blog, so... – Hidro+ Linear Generator. This Australian company uses a 15m water column with counterbalanced bouys to drive a linear generator. Compressed air is injected into a buoy, which floats to the top of the column. The air is released at the top, causing it to fall. The buoys are connected mechanically to a weight, and the up-and-down motion drives a linear generator as well as a piston or flywheel to generate electricity. The founders envision this as a distributed, base-load system. A set of 13 towers has approximately 1MW capacity. (Today's Engineer; Dec. 12, 2009)


Hydro+ had a booth at the United Nations Climate Change Conference 2009 in Copenhagen. Their exhibit can be found on p. 90-91 of the UNCCC Cop 15 brochure.
A scientist from the IEEE took a photo of their display and wrote a brief blurb in their blog [as shown/mentioned above].

Other Coverage


Hidro is no Fraud

On October 19, 2010 7:02 AM, Vanessa Nixon from Hidro wrote:
(excerpt, slightly edited)

Dear Sterling D Allan,

Before you make any comments for the public without any concrete evidence you are exposing yourself for serious defamation of character and legal action.

HidroLinear Patents are published by World Intellectual Property Organisation [WIPO-Geneva] Publication number WO2009/0876727.

Alleging jail terms with ASICS, contact ASICS get the facts and truth of the matter from ASICS and publish it you are exposing yourself for fraud.

Do you not think that the United Nations would have undergone vigorous checks before they approved exhibits and for Hidro+ to exhibit at the UNFCCC Cop15? You obviously did not attend because then you would have had the chance to view the Hidro+ technology.

Official UNFCCC Cop15 Side Events and exhibits
Hidro+ Page 90

Blog from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers [IEEE] USA who attended the UNFCCC Cop15

Do you think the UNFCCC and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers USA would allow themselves to be involved in a fraudulent technology?

What you have written is extremely upsetting to a team of professional engineers- mechanical, civil and electrical, our families who haven't seen us because we work so hard, the manufacturers who have made the parts, the governments and delegates who have flown in to see the plant and most of all especially Mr James Kwok to undermine his hard work of who has done nothing but dedicate many years of his life and his extensive career to give something to the world that will truly benefit all people. Once more you obviously have not taken the time to check Mr Kwok's credential's to find they are all correct.


On October 19, 2010 4:14 PM Mountain, anonymous wrote:

Vanessa is wrong in her reply. There is no peer review or even endorsement of entries in the “references” she cites.

Additional Info Requires NDA

On October 20, 2010 12:30 AM mountain, in response to my question for more information about their present status, Vanessa of Hidro wrote:

"Information is provided to appropriate companies and governments, all with the requirement of legal confidentiality agreements."

Buoyancy and Density

On October 19, 2010 4:47 PM Mountain, Congress:Member:Ian Soutar wrote:

Before we get too excited lets look at basic chemistry and physics. ...

Below are the basic principles presented ... but I would disagree with them.

The first line has serious flaws ...

A low pressure air chamber will sink in water due to gravity if the chamber is heavier than the air chamber will buoy. If the air pressure increases (more air) in the chamber, then it will rise in the water due to buoyancy.

But if an air chamber sinks due to too much weight then adding air under pressure will add more weight to the chamber than say if it was a vacuum. The air molecules to not equate to more buoyancy. The density of the air chamber and its total weight goes up as air is added. Avogagro's number and basic gas laws say that the density of the chamber increase with more air molecules added.

If the density of the air chamber is 1.0 grams / cc then the chamber suspends in the water and goes neither up nor down. Say you increase the pressure, then more air is present and the chamber down to a lower depth in the water ... not up as the first statement says.

Adding air will make it sink ... so I cannot read further in the description if it says that the chamber will go up.


Postal address:
Etergen Limited
PO Box 1443
Chatswood NSW Australia 2067


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