Saturday, April 27, 2013

Flow batteries might stabilize unstable energy sources

New article out in which the technology that maybe could make solar and wind energy better for times when the sun don't shine and the wind don't blow is described.  I.e., storage technology.  Batteries are good but very inefficient energy storage devices.   But if you make a better battery, the world might be interested.

"Among the most promising batteries for intermittent grid storage today are "flow" batteries, because it's relatively simple to scale their tanks, pumps and pipes to the sizes needed to handle large capacities of energy. The new flow battery developed by Cui's group has a simplified, less expensive design that presents a potentially viable solution for large-scale production."  [ It uses lithium and sulfur rather than expensive elements, like vanadium. ]
Might just work.  I still think there are other reasons to prefer nuclear energy to wind and solar, but everything we do to reduce our burning of fossil fuels is good for the long-term.

New battery design could help solar and wind power the grid

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