by Michael Ho

Filed Under:
batteries, flywheel, ice, mit, moore's law, taiwan

beacon power, google

DailyDirt: Storing Up Energy For A Rainy Day...

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Battery technologies haven't quite achieved the same kind of Moore's Law progress as other kinds of electronics. Being able to store energy is still incredibly important, so there are plenty of projects trying to figure out better ways to store up electricity efficiently. No one has a complete solution, but here are some interesting attempts to manage energy-use fluctuations. As always, StumbleUpon can also recommend some good Techdirt articles, too.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. icon
    Atkray (profile), Apr 17th, 2012 @ 10:20pm

    IP will save the US

    from the Beacon power article

    "Government attorneys also are criticizing what they said were early estimates by the Massachusetts-based company that its New York plant was worth $68 million and its so-called “flywheel intellectual property” held a value of $28 million to $47 million."

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 18th, 2012 @ 1:13am

    There are some interesting liquid-sodium heat sink ideas floating around for high-energy solar, too. Works better in some climates than others, I gather.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. icon
    Hanno (profile), Apr 18th, 2012 @ 1:44am

    Hydrogen and Methane

    What's currently gaining a lot of attention in Germany is the technology to transform electricity into hydrogen or methane.

    The advantage: It can be put into the natural gas grid which is already there with lots of storage facilities. It can take up to 5 percent hydrogen (and there are discussions if it could be much more with slight technology changes). Methane can be put into the grid in an unlimited amount.

    The disadvantage: It's relatively expensive and inefficient.

    Enertrag, one of the companies engaged in it, has some english info:

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. identicon
    Call me Al, Apr 18th, 2012 @ 2:49am

    I read about another one recently. Essentially they use any excess energy from wind turbines to pump water behind a dam. Then on those occasions when the wind is insufficient they release the water through turbines and so generate power that way.

    I'm sure its inefficient but it seems a sensible solution to the problem of how to make batteries big enough.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. icon
    A Guy (profile), Apr 18th, 2012 @ 4:35am


    Actually, those are some of the most efficient energy storage schemes available today. The only problem is that not many sites has suitable resources to handle a large volume of stored water and viable renewable energy sources close enough to each other.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. icon
    Michael Ho (profile), Apr 18th, 2012 @ 12:58pm

    Re: Hydrogen and Methane

    The electrolysis of water to get hydrogen doesn't seem like a great way to store surplus energy.... and storing hydrogen isn't exactly a fun task either.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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