The Anonymous Widower

A Rusting Battery In Minnesota Could Unlock The Electric Grid Of The Future

The title of this post is the same as that of this article on the West Central Tribune.

This is the first paragraph.

A pilot project between Minnesota’s second largest supplier of electricity, Great River Energy, and a Massachusetts start-up claims to have a breakthrough in battery technology that would allow for vast expansions of renewable energy on the power grid.

The article goes on to describe Form Energy’s batteries and gives a couple of pictures.

I’m not sure, but it looks like the battery can supply 1 MW for a hundred hours.

Form Energy have impressive backers and have been secretive in the past, but the concept of using iron oxide (rust) as an energy storage medium sounds to me, to be a challenging idea.

March 19, 2022 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , | 2 Comments

Green Ships Ahoy Along Vital Corridors

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on 7 News Australia.

These are the first two paragraphs.

Australia’s biggest miners are preparing for a day of reckoning.

Shipping accounts for two to three per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions so manufacturers and retailers are no longer just considering what appears in national targets.

The article then goes on to explain how the big mining companies are cutting their emissions.

This paragraph illustrates how important mining and shipping is to Australia.

Resources and energy earnings passed $300 billion for the first time in 2020-21 and will surge towards $400 billion in 2021-22, according to December figures.

Hence the big need for ships fuelled by lower carbon fuels.

January 2, 2022 Posted by | Hydrogen, Transport/Travel, World | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Form Energy’s New Low-Cost, Iron-Air Battery Runs For 100 Hours

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on the Singularity Hub.

This paragraph sums up the genesis of the battery.

A secretive startup backed by Bill Gates’ Breakthrough Energy Ventures thinks it may have the answer, though. Form Energy, which was co-founded by the creator of Tesla’s Powerwall battery, Mateo Jaramillo, and MIT battery guru Yet-Ming Chiang, has unveiled a new battery design that essentially relies on a process of “reversible rusting” to provide multi-day energy storage at ultra-low costs.

And this paragraph describes the operation of the battery.

The company’s batteries are each about the size of a washing machine, and are filled with iron pellets and a water-based electrolyte similar to that used in AA batteries. To discharge, the battery breathes in oxygen from the air, converting the pellets to iron oxide, or rust, and producing electricity in the process. To charge, the application of a current converts the rust back into iron and expels the oxygen.

It’s all very fascinating and leads to a battery made from very affordable materials.

The article quotes between $50 to $80 per kilowatt-hour for lithium-ion batteries and around $20 per kilowatt-hour for Form Energy’s battery.

Conclusion

The article is definitely a must-read.

I feel that Form Energy should be added to my list of viable batteries.

August 3, 2021 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , , | 2 Comments