Stacking Concrete Blocks is a Surprisingly Efficient Way to Store Energy

By Akshat Rathi – Re-Blogged From Quartz

Thanks to the modern electric grid, you have access to electricity whenever you want. But the grid only works when electricity is generated in the same amounts as it is consumed. That said, it’s impossible to get the balance right all the time. So operators make grids more flexible by adding ways to store excess electricity for when production drops or consumption rises.

About 96% of the world’s energy-storage capacity comes in the form of one technology: pumped hydro. Whenever generation exceeds demand, the excess electricity is used to pump water up a dam. When demand exceeds generation, that water is allowed to fall—thanks to gravity—and the potential energy turns turbines to produce electricity.

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100 Percent Renewables—Poor Policy for Ratepayers

By Steve Goreham – Re-Blogged From Master Resource

Two states and more than 80 cities and counties have now announced a goal of receiving 100 percent of their electricity from renewable sources. Wind, solar, and biofuels are proposed to replace electricity from coal, natural gas, and nuclear power plants. But evidence is mounting that 100 percent renewables is poor policy for US households and businesses.

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How China Is Muscling In on Lithium-Ion Batteries

Re-Blogged From Stratfor

Highlights

  • In spite of potential global pushback against Beijing’s investments, Chinese companies will acquire control of a majority of the lithium-ion battery market, giving the country a significant advantage in a sector of growing geopolitical importance.
  • The United States will exploit economies of scale and focus on finding domestic sources of materials as it attempts to carve out a market share amid China’s growing dominance.
  • Japan and Korea will have the most success penetrating markets in which there is significant pushback against Chinese investment, such as in North America, Australia and parts of Europe.
  • Europe will likely fall behind because its battery manufacturing capacity does not have the ability to meet its demand.
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Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #320

Brought to You by www.SEPP.org The Science and Environmental Policy Project

By Ken Haapala, President

Sea Level Rise – What is Measured? Last week’s TWTW had an interview with Richard Lindzen a with statement questioned by some readers. The paragraph with the statement is:

“Since 1979 we have been able to measure sea level itself with satellites. However, the accuracy of such measurements depends critically on such factors as the precise shape of the earth. While the satellites show slightly greater rates of sea level rise, the inaccuracy of the measurement renders the difference uncertain. What the proponents of alarm have done is to accept the tide gauge data until 1979, but assume that the satellite data is correct after that date, and that the difference in rates constitutes ‘acceleration.’ They then assume acceleration will continue leading to large sea level rises by the end of this century. It is hard to imagine that such illogical arguments would be tolerated in other fields.” [Boldface added]

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New Batteries Use “Rust” for Power Storage

By Anthony Watts – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

Renaissance of the Iron–Air Battery

Jülich researchers show charging and discharging reactions during operation with nanometre precision

Jülich, 3 November 2017 – Iron–air batteries promise a considerably higher energy density than present-day lithium-ion batteries. In addition, their main constituent – iron – is an abundant and therefore cheap material. Scientists from Forschungszentrum Jülich are among the driving forces in the renewed research into this concept, which was discovered in the 1970s. Together with American Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), they successfully observed with nanometre precision how deposits form at the iron electrode during operation. A deeper understanding of the charging and discharging reactions is viewed as the key for the further development of this type of rechargeable battery to market maturity. The results were published in the renowned journal Nano Energy.

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Electric Cars Could ‘Power Our Lives’

By Anthony Watts – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

Energy from electric cars could power our lives — but only if we improve the system
Two apparently contradictory studies come together with recommendations

Oxford, November 22, 2017 – Power stored in electric cars could be sent back to the grid – thereby supporting the grid and acting as a potential storage for clean energy – but it will only be economically viable if we upgrade the system first. In a new paper in Energy Policy, two scientists show how their seemingly contradictory findings actually point to the same outcome and recommendations: that pumping energy back into the grid using today’s technology can damage car batteries, but with improvements in the system it has the potential to provide valuable clean energy – and improve battery life in the process.

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Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #293

By Ken Haapala, President,Science and Environmental Policy Project

Brought to You by www.SEPP.org

Hypothesis Testing: Following up on work by the late Bob Carter, retired Australian chemist Ian Flanigan tests the hypothesis that the observed warming since the onset of industrialization is entirely natural against the alternative that it is due to anthropogenic carbon-dioxide emissions. Note, that due to differences in training, there are differences in terminology used between the Australians and Americans, but not in procedure. The testing of hypotheses is critical if one is to assert, as the leaders of NASA-GISS (Goddard Institute for Space Studies) asserted: CO2 is the control knob of the earth’s temperatures.

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