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Jul 22, 2021

New molten salt battery for grid-scale storage runs at low temp and cost

Posted by in categories: energy, sustainability

As renewable forms of power like wind and solar continue to gain prominence, there will be a need for creative solutions when it comes to storing energy from sources that are intermittent by nature. One potential solution is known as a molten salt battery, which offers advantages that lithium batteries do not, but have their share of kinks to iron out, too. Scientists at Sandia National Laboratories have come up with a new design that addresses a number of these shortcomings, and demonstrated a working molten salt battery that can be constructed far more cheaply, while storing more energy, than currently available versions.

Storing vast amounts of energy in a cheap and efficient manner is the name of the game when it comes to powering whole cities with renewable energy, and despite its many strengths, this is where expensive lithium battery technology falls short. Molten salt batteries shape as a more cost-effective solution, which use electrodes kept in a molten state with the help of high temperatures. This is something that the Sandia scientists have been working to change.

“We’ve been working to bring the operating temperature of molten sodium batteries down as low as physically possible,” says Leo Small, the lead researcher on the project. “There’s a whole cascading cost savings that comes along with lowering the battery temperature. You can use less expensive materials. The batteries need less insulation and the wiring that connects all the batteries can be a lot thinner.”

Jul 21, 2021

Helion Energy Achieves Key Fusion Milestone

Posted by in category: energy

Helion Energy said that its latest fusion generator prototype has exceeded 100 million degrees Celsius. The company has developed a unique pulsed fusion system.

Jul 21, 2021

Tesla Launches Megapack Order Page & Pricing

Posted by in categories: energy, sustainability

According to the order page, the price in California starts at $1235, 890, and Tesla requires $5000 down. This doesn’t include taxes or annual maintenance. Prices do vary by state. Customers can order up to 1000 Megapacks, and if they do, the costs per unit decline with each additional Megapack order.

On its website, Tesla said that it took everything it knew about battery technology to enable the world’s largest energy projects. For these giga-scale projects, a 1 gigawatt-hour (GWh) project provides enough energy storage capacity to power every home in San Francisco for 6 hours.

For those ordering the Tesla Megapack, the earliest deliveries will occur in 2022, but not for all states. California, Nevada, and Texas have 2022 delivery estimates, while others, including my own state of Louisiana, have 2023 estimated delivery dates. The price of the Megapack for Louisiana is $1252, 810.

Jul 20, 2021

Exploring Massless Energy Battery Breakthrough

Posted by in categories: energy, information science, sustainability, transportation

Get Surfshark VPN at https://surfshark.deals/undecided and enter promo code UNDECIDED for 83% off and 3 extra months for free! What if we could take a battery pack’s weight out of the equation? Imagine a car that has no battery pack because the car’s structural battery is the pack? Let’s explore massless energy storage and how a recent breakthrough could be a dramatic shift in how we can store energy in phones, planes, cars… you name it. Watch Exploring When Solid State Batteries Will Arrive: https://youtu.be/3PyXQ0UXk9w?list=PLnTSM-ORSgi7UWp64ZlOKUPNXePMTdU4dSimulation from FLOW-3D®, developed by Flow Science, Inc. (www.flow3d.com).Video script and citations:
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Jul 20, 2021

Crypto Miners Are Buying Up Entire Power Plants

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, energy

Bitcoin miners are setting up shop to take advantage of existing, unused energy infrastructure.

Jul 17, 2021

Batteries that “drink” seawater could power long-range underwater vehicles

Posted by in categories: energy, mapping, military

Circa 2017


MIT spinout Open Water Power, founded by alumni Ian McKay and Tom Milnes, has developed an aluminum-based power source that will extend the range of unpiloted underwater vehicles (UUVs) tenfold for military, research, mapping, oil drilling, and other applications.

Jul 17, 2021

New tech can get oxygen, fuel from Mars’ salty water

Posted by in categories: energy, space

Circa 2020


A new electrolysis system that makes use of briny water could provide astronauts on Mars with life-supporting oxygen and fuel for the ride home, according to engineers at the McKelvey School of Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis, who developed the system.

Jul 16, 2021

Fossil fuel electricity generation has peaked worldwide

Posted by in categories: economics, energy, finance

“Emerging markets have no need to build up huge electrical infrastructure based on fossil fuels. Instead, they are leapfrogging this stage and meeting growth in demand by deploying clean energy systems — such as wind and solar — with huge potential to boost economic development and bring electricity to millions more people.”


Fossil fuel electricity generation has peaked worldwide as emerging markets seize the opportunities of low-cost renewables, according to a report published this week by India’s Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW) and the financial think tank Carbon Tracker.

Renewables are already the cheapest source of new electricity additions in 90% of the world, the report notes. Emerging markets (non-OECD nations plus Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Costa Rica) therefore have no need to build up huge electrical infrastructure based on fossil fuels. Instead, they are leapfrogging this stage and meeting growth in demand by deploying clean energy systems – such as wind and solar – with huge potential to boost economic development and bring electricity to millions more people.

Continue reading “Fossil fuel electricity generation has peaked worldwide” »

Jul 14, 2021

New wearable device uses human sweat to power electronics

Posted by in categories: energy, space, wearables

Engineers at the University of California San Diego developed a new wearable device that turns the touch of a finger into a source of power for small electronics and sensors. The device is a thin, flexible strip worn on a fingertip and generates small amounts of electricity when a person’s finger sweats or presses on it.

More interestingly, this sweat-powered device is capable of generating power even when the wearer is asleep or sitting still. This could open up some very interesting possibilities in the wearable space, as the researchers have now figured out how to harness the energy that can be extracted from human sweat even when a person is not moving.

Continue reading “New wearable device uses human sweat to power electronics” »

Jul 14, 2021

New evidence of an anomalous phase of matter brings energy-efficient technologies closer

Posted by in categories: energy, quantum physics

Researchers have found evidence for an anomalous phase of matter that was predicted to exist in the 1960s. Harnessing its properties could pave the way to new technologies able to share information without energy losses. These results are reported in the journal Science Advances.

While investigating a quantum material, the researchers from the University of Cambridge who led the study observed the presence of unexpectedly fast waves of energy rippling through the material when they exposed it to short and intense laser pulses. They were able to make these observations by using a microscopic speed camera that can track small and very fast movement on a scale that is challenging with many other techniques. This technique probes the material with two light pulses: the first one disturbs it and creates waves—or oscillations—propagating outward in concentric circles, in the same way as dropping a rock into a pond; the second light pulse takes a snapshot of these waves at various times. Put together, these images allowed them to look at how these waves behave, and to understand their ‘speed limit.’

“At , these waves move at a hundredth of the speed of light, much faster than we would expect in a normal material. But when we go to higher temperatures, it is as if the pond has frozen,” explained first author Hope Bretscher, who carried out this research at Cambridge’s Cavendish Laboratory. “We don’t see these waves moving away from the rock at all. We spent a long time searching for why such bizarre behavior could occur.”

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