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Topic Summary

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: October 09, 2019, 06:06:09 pm »

The Future of Tesla Batteries ✨: Here's What you can Expect
23,347 views•Oct 8, 2019

Two Bit da Vinci
83.7K subscribers

Tesla has quietly made some big acquisitions and has made it clear that they want to manufacture their own batteries in the very near future. Today we're going to look at the future of Tesla Batteries, and what you can expect!

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Category Education
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: August 26, 2019, 05:41:28 pm »

Take a tour inside Tesla’s first Gigafactory| CNBC Reports

CNBC International
Published on May 2, 2019
Tesla’s Gigafactory in Nevada is expected to be the largest building in the world by footprint once completed. CNBC’s Uptin Saiidi gets a rare look inside what Tesla founder Elon Musk calls, ‘the machine that builds the machine.’
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: August 21, 2019, 05:34:33 pm »

August 21, 2019

Norwegian battery startup with $4.5B plan envisions Nordic ⚡ hub

Freyr AS, a startup planning to build one of Europe’s first ⚡ battery gigafactories in Norway, has a bigger vision for the region: a “Nordic Battery Belt ✨.” 👍

> Read More
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: August 21, 2019, 05:24:39 pm »


Incentive carve-out for high fire-risk areas could boost uptake among customers most likely to want solar-storage systems.


Posted by: AGelbert
« on: August 21, 2019, 04:55:01 pm »

Energy Vault Lands $110M From SoftBank’s Vision Fund for Gravity Storage

The investment is large by the standards of most startups, but it’s in keeping with the capital costs Energy Vault will face in scaling up its technology.


Building toward the future.

Energy Vault, the Swiss-U.S. startup that says it can store and discharge electrical energy through a super-sized concrete-and-steel version of a child’s erector set, has landed a $110 million investment from Japan’s SoftBank Vision Fund to take its technology to commercial scale.

Energy Vault, a spinout of Pasadena-based incubator Idealab and co-founded by Idealab CEO and billionaire investor Bill Gross, unstealthed in November with its novel approach to using gravity to store energy.

Simply put, Energy Vault plans to build storage plants — dubbed “Evies” — consisting of a 35-story crane with six arms, surrounded by a tower consisting of thousands of concrete bricks, each weighing about 35 tons.

This plant will “store” energy by using electricity to run the cranes that lift bricks from the ground and stack them atop of the tower, and “discharge” energy by reversing that process. It’s a mechanical twist on the world’s most common energy storage technology, pumped hydro, which “stores” energy by pumping water uphill, and lets it fall to spin turbines when electricity is needed.

CEO and co-founder Robert Piconi said in a November interview with GTM that the standard array would deliver 4 megawatts/35 megawatt-hours of storage, which translates to nearly 9 hours of duration — the equivalent of building the tower to its height, and then reducing it to ground level. It can be built on-site in partnership with crane manufacturers and recycled concrete material, and can run fully automated for decades with little deterioration, he said.

And the cost, which Piconi pegged in the $200 to $250 per kilowatt-hour range, with room to decline further, is roughly 50 percent below the upfront price of the conventional storage market today, and 80 percent below it on levelized cost, he said.

The result, according to Wednesday’s statement, is a technology that could allow “renewables to deliver baseload power for less than the cost of fossil fuels 24 hours a day.”

Wednesday’s announcement builds on a recent investment from Mexico's Cemex Ventures, the corporate venture capital unit of building materials giant Cemex, along with a promise of deployment support from Cemex's strategic network. Piconi said in November that the company had sufficient investment from two funding rounds to carry it through initial customer deployments, though he declined to disclose figures.

This is the first energy storage investment for Vision Fund, the $100 billion venture fund set up by SoftBank founder Masayoshi Son. While large by startup standards, it’s in keeping with the capital costs that Energy Vault will face in scaling up its technology to meet its commitments. Those include a 35 megawatt-hour order with Tata Power Company, the energy-producing arm of the Indian industrial conglomerate, first unveiled in November, as well as plans to demonstrate its first storage tower in northern Italy in 2019.

For Vision Fund, it’s also an unusual choice for a storage investment, given that the vast majority of venture capital in the industry today is being directed toward lithium-ion batteries. Lithium-ion batteries are limited in terms of how many hours they can provide cost-effectively, with about 4 hours being seen as the limit today.

The search for long-duration energy storage has driven investment into flow batteries, compressed-air energy storage and variations on gravity-based storage, including a previous startup backed by Gross and Idealab, Energy Cache, whose idea of using a ski lift carrying buckets of gravel up a hill to store energy petered out with a 50-kilowatt pilot project.
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 20, 2019, 03:36:23 pm »

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June 20th, 2019 by Kyle Field

Image courtesy: Tesla
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 13, 2019, 03:35:22 pm »

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: April 29, 2019, 09:45:04 pm »

The Liquid Metal Battery: Innovation in stationary electricity storage

Energy Futures Lab

Published on Jan 18, 2019

On 29 November 2018 Energy Futures Lab and the Dyson School of Design Engineering hosted Professor Donald Sadoway of MIT to discuss the impact the liquid metal battery could have on the future of gridscale energy storage.


Massive-scale electricity storage would offer huge benefits to today’s grid, reducing price volatility, improving stability against loss of power, increasing utilization of generation assets by enabling us to design towards average demand instead of peak demand, and deferring the costs of upgrading existing transmission lines. When it comes to tomorrow’s grid, storage is key to widespread integration of renewables, i.e., solar and wind, which due to their inherent intermittency present challenges for contribution to base load.

Comprising two liquid metal electrodes and a molten salt electrolyte, the liquid metal battery offers colossal current capability and long service lifetime at very low cost, i.e., the price point of the electricity market. The round-trip efficiency of these batteries is greater than 80% under daily 4 h discharge (C/4). Fade rates of 0.00009%/cycle have been measured which means retention of of more tahn 99% of initial capacity after 10 years of daily cycling at full depth of discharge. There is much to be learned from the innovative process that led to the discovery of disruptive battery technology.


Donald R. Sadoway is the John F. Elliott Professor of Materials Chemistry in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His B.A.Sc. in Engineering Science, M.A.Sc. in Chemical Metallurgy, and Ph.D. in Chemical Metallurgy are all from the University of Toronto. He joined the MIT faculty in 1978. The author of over 170 scientific papers and holder of 28 U.S. patents, his research is directed towards the development of rechargeable batteries as well as environmentally sound technologies for metals extraction.

He is the founder of two companies, Ambri and Boston Metal. Online videos of his chemistry lectures hosted by MIT OpenCourseWare extend his impact on engineering education far beyond the lecture hall. Viewed 1,800,000 times, his TED talk is as much about inventing inventors as it is about inventing technology. In 2012 he was named by Time magazine as one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World.

Category Science & Technology
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: March 19, 2019, 01:09:58 pm »

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Energy Storage 2019

March 18th, 2019 by Sponsored Content

By Steve Hanley

Energy storage in the United States is expected to triple in 2019 according to Climate Action. That makes for a great headline, but what does it mean? Let’s begin by defining what energy storage is and why it’s important.

Types Of Energy Storage

Electricity is an enigma. We know what it can do, we know how to make it, we know how to control it, but there is not one person living today who can tell us what it is. Some scientists think it is a wave, some think it is made up of tiny particles, some think it is both.

What we do know is that unless it is stored in some fashion, it must be used as soon as it is created or it will be wasted. The oldest method of storing electricity is called pumped hydro. Here’s how it works.

Pumped Hydro

Excess electricity is used to pump a large quantity of water uphill into a holding pond. Later, the water is allowed to flow downhill to a reservoir below, spinning turbine blades to generate electricity along the way.

The process is about as high tech as a brick but it is simple and effective. It does require a lot of open territory with great deal of elevation change, so it is not suitable for use in many parts of the world.

Other Energy Storage Techniques

There are many other ways to store electricity ranging from the dead simple to the extremely complex. A California company proposes to build a railroad to nowhere. A train of electrically powered boxcars filled with cement would churn their way uphill in the day time using excess electrical energy. At night when the supply of solar power decreases, the train would roll back downhill. At that point, the electric motors that pushed it uphill during the day would reverse their role and generate electricity on the way down.

Other ideas include a tower that stacks concrete filled barrels on an elevated platform during the day. Later, lowering them back to ground level would generate more electricity.

Both systems use sound scientific principles that convert energy into work and then later reverse the process to make more electricity. Despite being possible, neither has shown itself to be price competitive with battery storage.

Concentrated solar power plants do not harvest the light of the sun. Instead, the capture the heat contained in sunlight and use it to warm a storage medium such as salt or silicon. Later, that heat is used to heat water to make steam that drives conventional generators that make electricity.

One experimental system heats silicon until it glows white hot. That light is then used to create electricity using solar panels. Once again, the so-called “sun in a box” concept is physically possible but not yet price competitive with battery storage.

Battery Storage

The most common form of electrical storage today is lithium ion batteries. While they may feature several different battery chemistries, they are essentially the same as the battery cells used in electric vehicles.

The driving factor that makes this type of storage preferred is that the cost of lithium ion battery cells continues to decrease as more and more of them are manufactured.

Another type of energy storage is known as a flow battery. It features two large tanks separated by a membrane. One liquid has a positive charge, the other a negative charge, Flow batteries have one advantage over lithium ion batteries — to add more capacity, simply make the tanks larger.

China is pushing forward with plans to install more flow batteries but in the US, lithium ion batteries are the storage medium of choice largely because they are the least expensive choice.

US Energy Storage Booming 

A new report from the Energy Storage Association and GTM Research says battery storage in the US grew by 27% in 2018 with 431 megawatt-hours installed.

But here’s where things get interesting. ESA and GTM Research predict 2019 will see triple that amount installed — 1,233 megawatt-hours with a combined value of more than $1 billion.

Things get even better from there. By 2023, they expect the US market for battery storage to soar to $3.8 billion helped by “falling costs and favorable policies” on the state level, according to Ravi Manghani at GTM Research.

Kelly Speakes-Backman, CEO of ESA says “policies and regulatory frameworks that level the playing field will further encourage energy storage deployment throughout 2018 and beyond as the industry builds toward a goal of realizing 35 GW by 2025.”

Graph from GTM, via Woods Mackenzie

Time Shifting

What makes battery storage so valuable is its ability to save electricity generated now to be used later. That’s a big deal because solar panels work best during the day but begin to lose power as the sun sets — just when people are getting home from work and starting turning on appliances like air conditioning and electronic devices.

If if were not for batteries, much of that solar energy would be wasted. The same goes for wind power. Often wind turbines generate more electricity than needed at some times of day. With batteries, that excess energy can be stored for use later.

Frequency Stabilization

Another important characteristic of battery storage is the ability to react in milliseconds to the tiny variations in the frequency of the electricity flowing through the electrical grid. In most of the US, the electricity supplied by utility companies oscillates 60 times a second.

Motors, computers, and other digital devices can be damaged if the frequency is allowed to vary by as little as 1%. Batteries can absorb excess frequency changes or supplement the grid if the frequency drops too low.

Falling Prices For Energy Storage

The cost of battery storage is accelerating the demand for battery storage. And that is driving a sea change in the utility industry. Unthinkable just a few years ago, building new wind and solar farms coupled with battery storage is now less expensive than constructing new generating facilities powered by natural gas. They are also less expensive that continuing to operate nuclear or coal powered plants.

In the utility industry, investments often take 3 to 4 decades to pay off. The idea of closing down existing facilities in favor of new renewable plus storage options means trillions of dollars in existing investments are at risk. No wonder there is strong resistance to renewables plus storage by some utility companies anxious to protect their existing 🦕🦖 facilities.

But price will win out and the lower the price of renewables plus storage gets, the sooner those existing 🦕🦖 facilities will be retired whether is is convenient for their owners or not.

This article is supported by InterSolar. Intersolar North America, North America’s premier exhibition and conference, is the perfect place to explore the megatrends driving the solar industry first. It’s the industry hotspot to discover the latest trends in photovoltaics, PV production technologies and solar heating and cooling. Co-located with ees North America, Intersolar North America sit at the cross-section of solar technology, energy storage, and smart renewable energy.

Agelbert NOTE: The comments section to the above article is quite lively. ;D  Some advocates of Hydrogen gas storage weighed in. Some fossil fuelers weighed in claiming "natural" (LOL!) fracked gas stored in caverns or whatever is "cheaper" than pumped hydro storage. That's a bold face lie simply because it fails to ADD to the costs of Fracked CH4 the subsidies we-the-people are coerced out of AND the pollution costs we-the-people get stuck with. All those costs are ABSENT with pumped storage.

As to Renewable Energy generated Hydrogen gas storage, though it is not polluting, it is not economically feasable on a large scale (which is how Renewable Energy energy storage MUST be scaled for a 100% plus Renwable Energy powered civilization), for reasons I outlined in a comment I made (see below).

freedomev > Matthew Young
No they haven't stored H2 underground. Why?
Please show examples?
And yes so much NG seeps away it's HG effect is as bad as coal.
And H2 is 100x smaller and even seeps through steel.
And why do you think there is no natural H2?
Because it is very reactive and bonds with many things. Thus why there is NG but no natural H2.
The H2 either became methane/HCs, water or rock.
Ed Golla > freedomev
Hydrogen is not very reactive at all at ambient temperatures. There is natural Hydrogen in the atmosphere. Of course it is only about 1/2 part per million. Hydrogen is not in the atmosphere to any great extent because it speed is so great that it is able to escape from the earth's gravity at the upper limits of the earth's atmosphere.

agelbert > Ed Golla

The reactivity of Hydrogen gas is not the main issue with the effective storage of hydrogen gas as a form of energy for quick use.

The main issue is that Hydrogen gas molecules are smaller than any molecules in the container they are stored in (unless you can lower the temperature so much that the H2 becomes liquid - which uses enormous amounts of energy to do).

At ambient temperatures, the Hydrogen gas will percolate through metal or salt or even the densest of soils. Metal containers (see Nuclear power plant Tritium woes) degrade from Hydrogen gas caused embrittlement within a few years.

Pumped storage is, at present, the cheapest and most reliable method of storing electrical energy.

If the following type of system I learned about (in a January 18, 2018 Spiegel article) was adopted worldwide, the 100% Renewable Energy economy, including transportation, would quickly become a reality:

German company plans large-scale power storage using massive rock block

Hydrogen gas, in liquid form, is the best type of rocket fuel. It has the highest energy density of any rocket fuel, but it can never compete with pumped storage for infrastructure energy demands.

Much progress is being made. Battery banks like the one Tesla is marketing will have their place in the 100% Renewable Energy economy, although I believe pumped storage, with giant rock pistons over a giant cylinder of water underground, as shown above, will be more prevalent. We need fossil fuels like a dog needs ticks, no matter what the denier naysayers say.

Here's a nice video one fellow posted showing Amory Lovins exploding Fossil Fuel Industry and Nuclear Power Industry Propagated Baloney (i.e. Myths - Amory is always polite :D) AND showing how quickly battery costs are going down.

Amory Lovins on Energy Efficiency Breakthroughs (real world 90% plus waste reduction) that seem hard to believe:
"Only puny secrets need protection; big discoveries are protected by public incredulity."
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: December 22, 2018, 03:40:27 pm »

Honda says that it can produce a cell that conducts Electricity ⚡ at room temperature by using a stable liquid fluoride electrolyte made of tetraalkylammonium fluoride salts dissolved in an organic, fluorinated ether solvent.

Honda Clarity Electric at Honda R&D Center, Tochigi, Japan, June 2017

Honda presents new battery chemistry that could succeed lithium-ion

 Eric C. Evarts

52 Comments Dec 21, 2018

Researchers from around the world are looking for the successor to the lithium-ion battery for electric cars, power tools, and electronics—one that will store more energy with less size and weight, charge more quickly, and have improved safety.

All battery chemistries come with tradeoffs. The challenge for researchers is to figure out how to mitigate the negatives while preserving the benefits of different chemistries. 👨‍🔬

Honda is the latest automaker investing in what it sees as the next big breakthrough in battery technology—not more advanced lithium-ion, such as solid-state lithium-ion cells—but entirely different battery chemistry.

DON'T MISS: GM, Honda partner on next-generation electric-car batteries

Along with researchers at CalTech and NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab in California, Honda published a report on new fluoride-ion batteries it is developing, in the journal Science.

Fluoride-ion batteries have long been a viable chemistry except for one thing: To get ions to flow through their solid electrolyte, they had to operate at more than 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Running that hot in a car or especially a mobile device could have disastrous implications.

Honda fluoride-ion battery

Honda says that by using a stable liquid fluoride electrolyte made of tetraalkylammonium fluoride salts dissolved in an organic, fluorinated ether solvent, it can produce a cell that conducts electricity at room temperature to provide power and to recharge. The cathode is a nano-structure made of copper, lanthanum, and fluorine that resists the kind of dendrite growth 👍 that can lead to premature failure and even thermal runaway in a lithium-ion cell.

CHECK OUT: Chinese company begins production of solid-state batteries, possibly for cars

The researchers say that the cell can operate over a wide range of voltages. 👍

Honda says that the cells don't pose a safety risk from overheating and believes that they can reach energy densities up to 10 times higher than the theoretical limits of lithium-ion batteries. Higher energy densities could allow automakers to build cars with 300 miles of range or more with smaller, lighter, and cheaper battery packs.

READ MORE: Panasonic says solid-state batteries are still 10 years off

Another advantage, the automaker says, is that the batteries rely on easier materials to obtain 👍 than lithium and cobalt, which would do less environmental damage in mining and refining them.

Japanese automakers, in particular, (with the notable exception of Nissan) have been skeptical of using lithium-ion technology and have focused instead on fuel cells. Several executives and engineers at Japanese automakers have said that they are waiting for the next big breakthrough in batteries beyond lithium-ion before beginning the transition to electric cars.

Rechargeable fluoride-ion batteries could be one such breakthrough.
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: November 30, 2018, 08:44:55 pm »

Common battery types used in solar+storage

By Kelly Pickerel | November 27, 2018


Incorporating energy storage into a solar array is not as easy as just picking a battery off the shelf. Certain chemistries work better in certain environments, and storage capabilities are influenced by the solar application.
Credit: EIA

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) released a trends report on the U.S. storage market in May 2018. The report found that lithium-ion batteries represented more than 80% of the installed power and energy capacity of large-scale energy storage applications. Nickel- and sodium-based batteries represented around 10% while lead-acid and other chemistries rounded out large-scale battery representation.

Within small-scale battery installations (where commercial and industrial installs make up 90% of capacity), EIA was unable to pinpoint specific chemistry data, but it can be assumed that lithium-based batteries still reign supreme. Lead-acid batteries have been popular within off-grid installations for decades, but lithium-ion’s longer cycle life, lighter weight and decreased maintenance have made it the preferred choice for large-scale, EV and residential applications.

But lithium-ion is not the only—or best—choice out there for batteries used in solar+storage installations. 👀 Here’s a brief rundown of the common storage technologies used in the industry, and which chemistries some popular brand names use.

Full  article:
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: November 09, 2018, 02:55:45 pm »

What Is A Solid-State Battery and Will They Solve Our Battery Life Problems?

MICHAEL CRIDER  @michaelcrider

NOVEMBER 9, 2018, 6:40AM EDT


Solid-state batteries promise a few distinct advantages over their liquid-filled cousins: better battery life, faster charging times, and a safer experience.

Solid-state batteries compress the anode, cathode, and electrolyte into three flat layers instead of suspending the electrodes in a liquid electrolyte. That means you can make them smaller—or at least, flatter—while holding as much energy as a larger liquid-based battery. So, if you replaced the lithium-ion or lithium-polymer battery in your phone or laptop with a solid-state battery the same size, it would get a much longer charge. Alternatively, you can make a device that holds the same charge much smaller or thinner.

Solid-state batteries are also safer, since there’s no toxic, flammable liquid to spill, and they don’t output as much heat as conventional rechargeable batteries. When applied to batteries that power current electronics or even electric cars, they might recharge much faster, too—ions could move much more quickly from the cathode to the anode.

According to the latest research, a solid-state battery could outperform conventional rechargeable batteries by 500% or more in terms of capacity, and charge ⚡ up in a tenth of the time. 👍

Read more:
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: October 18, 2018, 02:03:09 pm »

Tabuchi Eco Intelligent Battery System (EIBS) 💫

Learn more:

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: October 01, 2018, 06:32:16 pm »

September 30th, 2018 by Zachary Shahan

Batteries for electric cars and other light-duty electric vehicles grew from an output of 1 GWh in 2011 to an output of 37 GWh in 2017. Furthermore, batteries for electric buses hit another 26 GWh in 2017. 😎

Read More;

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: September 24, 2018, 01:25:02 pm »

Michigan utility unveils new battery at university

Sep. 22, 2018

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan utility has unveiled a new battery to store renewable energy at Western Michigan University.

The battery can store enough solar and wind energy to supply about 1,000 homes with an hour of power  , said Consumers Energy Project Manager Nathan Washburn. The battery will be used to keep energy output stable even when there’s cloud coverage, he said.

“This battery is a big step forward for Consumers,”  Washburn said.

Consumers Energy partnered with the university in 2016 to create an 8.5-acre solar power plant. The new battery will store power from the plant and provide energy to residents in the region, said Tim Sparks, vice president of electric grid integration for Consumers Energy.

“In the future we do believe that these will be one of the main sources of electricity for our toolbox,” Sparks said.   

The company and Michigan State University consultants will study the facility to determine how battery storage could be used around Michigan. Western Michigan University will also be able to work with the utility on electric battery research and operations.

“With the solar array and now the first battery, we have this rare combination to both generate solar power and then think about how to store it and use it for consumers,” WMU President Edward Montgomery said. “For meeting peak-load demands, meeting those times during cloudy days. How do you solve those problems? And we can be at the forefront of that.”

U.S. Rep. Fred Upton said more than 40 percent of the state’s electricity will be from renewable energy sources by 2040. 👍

“To do that you have to have battery storage for when the wind doesn’t blow and the sun doesn’t shine,” he said.

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: August 31, 2018, 05:52:22 pm »

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Tesla “Big Battery” Responds To “Power System Emergency” In Australia 

August 29th, 2018 by Steve Hanley

Last Saturday afternoon, lighting strikes in Australia temporarily interrupted transmission lines that interconnect the electrical grids in the eastern part of the country. For a time, the grids in Queensland and South Australia were turned into energy islands, cut off from the national grid infrastructure. The Australian Energy Market Operator termed the incident a “power system emergency.”

Tesla big battery in South Australia

Customers in New South Wales and Victoria experienced widespread power outages while those in in Queensland and South Australia noticed little more than a momentary flicker of their lights. In Queensland, that happy circumstance was due to an abundance of renewable energy available to meet that state’s energy needs. Some of the excess was being shared with NSW before the transmission line between the two was put out of commission.

South Australia was largely unaffected, thanks to the Hornsdale Power Reserve, known affectionately in SA as the “Tesla Big Battery.” It kicked in immediately to add 84 MW of power to the state’s electrical grid and stabilize the frequency of the local grid, which was disturbed when the link to neighboring Victoria was disrupted.

The success of the “Big Battery” was a silent rebuke to new Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, a Donald Trump wannabe who channeled US senator James Inhofe when he brought a lump of coal onto the floor of parliament earlier this year to demonstrate his love of coal. In July, Morrison uttered these sage words to demonstrate his vast storehouse of knowledge about energy policies:

“I mean, honestly, by all means have the world’s biggest battery, have the world’s biggest banana, have the world’s biggest prawn like we have on the roadside around the country, but that is not solving the problem.” The Big Banana is an amusement park located in Coffs Harbor in northern NSW.

Big Banana NSW

Last year, Morrison went out of his way to mock the Tesla battery installation in South Australia. “I don’t care if it’s wind, coal, the world’s biggest battery, but you’ve got to measure it on its contribution, and it doesn’t measure up to a big solution. 30,000 SA households could not get through watching one episode of Australia’s Ninja Warrior with this big battery. So let’s not pretend it is a solution.”

As RenewEconomy so cogently points out, “The Tesla big battery, also known as the Hornsdale Power Reserve, was able to play a key role in helping keep the grid stable and the lights on in South Australia on Saturday, in its biggest threat since the 2016 blackout. It did solve a problem. Morrison’s Big Banana, on the other hand, wasn’t able to lift a finger to help customers in NSW. Such a shame they didn’t have a battery to help them.” It also noted that people in SA were able to watch their tellies uninterrupted by the crisis.

The outage occurred on the first day of Morrison’s term in office after ousting Malcolm Turnbull last week. Compounding the ignorance of his administration, Matt Canavan, the country’s new resources minister, told The Australian after the event, “The system has heightened vulnerability because of the reliance on interstate and unreliable power. More investment in coal, gas or hydro would firm up the system, create more supply and bring down prices.”

That’s a lie. When the interstate transmission lines went down, NSW was forced to shed 724 MW of load and Victoria 280 MW. In South Australia, no load was shed. None. As in, not any. AEMO said after the event the outages had nothing to do with any loss of generation. In fact, no generator — whether coal, gas, wind or solar — tripped off as a result of the transmission failure. So, sorry, Matt Canavan — no amount of extra generating capability would have helped the situation.

Morrison has appointed Angus Taylor, a fierce critic of renewable energy policies, as his new energy minister, leading the Australian Clean Energy Council to declare that is is now up to the individual states to move the renewable energy revolution forward with no expectation of assistance from the federal government, according to a report by Energy Matters.

If you think it is merely a coincidence that Australia and the US are both now hostages to fossil fuel advocates 🐉🦕🦖 , you are simply not paying attention.
Despite some recent efforts to greenwash themselves, the fossil fuel interests are busy committing crimes against humanity in the background while they continue to stuff their pockets with oil-soaked cash and coal-polished coins, and then use some of that money to buy influence at the highest levels.

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: August 20, 2018, 04:54:48 pm »


The Truth About Tesla Model 3 Batteries: Part 2

Published on Aug 18, 2018  89,024 views  :o ;D

Two Bit da Vinci

Go HERE to view Part 1.  8)
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: August 12, 2018, 03:47:45 pm »

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Volt meter image by Thomas Kelley on Unsplash; container storage image from company

How to Understand Battery Life

August 12th, 2018 by Sponsored Content

The idea that batteries have a ‘life’ is familiar. We’ve all experienced a ‘dying’ cell phone battery with its charge draining, usually at the most inconvenient time. And you might be curious about how this affects long-duration energy storage. To fully understand battery life, let’s start with a few fundamentals.

How to Understand Battery Life

Battery Fundamentals

A battery stores energy in chemical form, then converts it into electrical energy. Battery ‘life’ refers to three characteristics: performance, longevity, and capacity.

Let’s explain the semantics of these words a bit further:

Performance life is the run time of a battery on full charge.

Longevity refers to the number of charge cycles a battery can take before it no longer charges.

Capacity means that a new battery will charge up to 100% but an older battery will charge possibly up to 70%. For example, the Tesla Powerwall has a warranty of ten years at 70% capacity. Tesla recognizes that the battery will lose 30% or more in capacity over time. High DoD also affects capacity negatively.

Rechargeable batteries have a finite life. Every time you charge your phone, for example, small (and detrimental) changes occur to the battery’s electrodes. Eventually, these changes will kill the battery, preventing it from being able to charge or store energy.

Why ‘Depth of Discharge’ Affects Battery Life

The number of times you charge a battery affects its lifespan, but so does the depth of discharge (DoD) – how much energy of the total battery capacity is drawn off at a time.

You may have received instructions about your cell phone telling you to recharge the battery before it completely ‘dies.’ That’s because a 100% depth of discharge puts stress on a battery and shortens its lifespan. Think of it like driving an older car and letting the engine oil run out. You may be able to drive for several hundred (or thousand) miles, but eventually, the engine will stop working. A battery responds similarly. Consistently drawing a high level of energy per use disrupts the interior of the battery and affects performance.

When purchasing rechargeable batteries, especially those for solar power storage, the depth of discharge becomes an essential qualifier of performance. You may see battery labeling showing a range of lifecycle options such as 25,000 cycles at 30% DoD or 1,000 cycles at 75% DoD.

Cost Implications of Depth of Discharge for Solar Storage

When you shift to stored solar power for your home or business, you’ll likely want the option of a deeper discharge. Why? Because you’ll need access to as much stored energy as possible to keep lights, appliances, and other devices fully functioning. But remember, drawing down the battery deeply in the short run will reduce the number of cycles the battery operate effectively.

The result is a higher cost per kWh over the shortened lifespan of the battery. For example:

Let’s say your 10-kWh lithium-ion battery costs $6,000 and promises 1,000 cycles at 80% DoD. That means you’ll have 8,000 kWh across its life (10 kWh x 1,000 cycles x .8 ), and you’ll pay $0.75 per kWh ($6,000 / 8,000).
If you run the same battery at 20% DoD, you may see 10,000 cycles or 20,000 kWh across its life – and only pay $0.30 per kWh. Unfortunately, you may not be able to power all your appliances or lights when you need them.

The Vanadium Advantage

Vanadium flow batteries and battery life are different than traditional lithium-ion batteries. A vanadium battery uses a liquid, non-flammable electrolyte solution to store energy, enabling it to deliver at 100% depth of discharge without degrading capacity over time. This means a StorEn* vanadium battery provides the full power you need for thousands of cycles and many years – keeping the cost per kWh for solar storage lower than other options. Furthermore, the electrolyte is 100% reusable in a new battery, which means there is no need to mine new vanadium.

You can find out more about StorEn’s products and invest in their reliable, cost-effective technology by visiting their investment campaign.

*Full disclosure: This post is supported by StorEn Technologies. CleanTechnica does not provide investment advice of any kind. Please consult an investment professional or use your own independent judgement on investment matters.


A big difference that I've found is cells vs. pouches.

Pouches suck. They're structurally weak, prone to thermal runaway, and are harder to control at a fine software level.

Flow batteries will be great in places that need massive energy dumps and influxes, like smelting aluminum and steel. Or sitting on a large distribution center. Flow batteries are annoying because they are super heavy and big, you typically need a large crane to get them installed, which is spendy.
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: August 09, 2018, 02:38:52 pm »


August 9, 2018

Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Tesla Batteries 🕵️

You have questions, Two Bit da Vinci has answers.  ;D

One of the main reasons Tesla is where it is today is because of batteries. They attacked the problem of electric vehicle range — the traditional weak point of EVs — by choosing the most energy-dense cell available and then developed the battery pack to suit its needs. The result was a more than 200 miles of range and all the power needed to not only turn heads, but to turn an entire industry on its ear.

Read more:

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 27, 2018, 08:33:16 pm »

World’s First Battery For Offshore Wind Completed At Floating Offshore Wind Farm

June 27th, 2018 by Joshua S Hill

Norwegian energy company Equinor announced this week that it has completed the installation of the world’s first battery for an offshore wind farm at its 30 megawatt (MW) Hywind Scotland floating offshore wind farm, which is the world’s first floating wind farm.

Hywind Scotland - World's First Floating Wind FarmFirst approved by the Scottish Government back in late 2015, Hywind Scotland began generating electricity in October of last year and, in February, Equinor (then known as Statoil) revealed that not only has the project been a success, but that the project is outperforming expectations and generating electricity at levels consistently above that of its seabound offshore cousins, wind turbines that are built into the seafloor.

Even before Hywind was completed and operational, however, the two companies behind the project — Statoil/Equinor and Masdar — conceived of plans to add a battery storage option to the project, which would be the first time a battery storage project has been attached to an offshore wind energy project. The project was given the go-ahead, and earlier this year the two companies announced they would use the project, known as Batwind, to further study the potential of integrating battery systems with wind and solar.

Announced on Wednesday, Equinor revealed that Batwind has been completed and the 1 MW battery provided by Younicos, and located at an onshore substation, will now be able to dynamically balance power from the offshore wind farm.

#Batwind, which stores energy ⚡ from the floating wind farm #Hywind, was opened in Peterhead, Scotland today.

— Equinor (@Equinor) June 27, 2018

“The variability of renewable energy can to a certain extent be managed by the grid,” said Sebastian Bringsvaerd, Development Manager for Hywind and Batwind. “But to make renewable energy more competitive and integrate even more renewables to the grid, we will need to find new, smart solutions for energy storage to provide firm power. How to do this in a smart and value creating way is what we are aiming to learn from Batwind.”

“We’re very proud to partner with Equinor and provide our expertise from over 200 megawatts of storage projects to this pioneering project,” added Karim Wazni, Managing Director of Younicos. “By adding energy storage capabilities to another world “first” – the world’s first floating wind farm – we hope to demonstrate the essential role that storage plays as we continue pushing the frontier in producing sustainable energy. Specifically, we’ve equipped Batwind with our intelligent Y.Q software, which ensures that the battery ’learns’ the optimal storage conditions. Our software tells the battery when to store electricity and for how long, and when and how much to inject back onto the grid.”
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 20, 2018, 06:57:14 pm »


Residential Batteries Almost Beat Out Utility-Scale Deployments Last Quarter

Home energy storage projects rivaled utility-scale deployments for the first time, according to GTM Research’s latest Energy Storage Monitor.


Residential storage has been growing in popularity and prominence.

The historically tiny residential energy storage segment won big in Q1 2018, according to the latest deployment data.

Utility-scale projects, the usual workhorse of the energy storage industry, dropped massively compared to last year’s Q1, when the Aliso Canyon procurements came online and set a record for energy capacity. What saved the quarter from historically low performance turned out to be the aggregate growth of all the little systems popping up in customers' homes.

"Residential storage has been growing in popularity and prominence," said Brett Simon, senior analyst at GTM Research. "It’s getting cheaper. Folks are more aware of it and are asking for it. Solar installers are doubling down on it as a new business model." 

Residential deployments beat commercial deployments, 15.9 megawatts to 11.7 megawatts, according to the latest Energy Storage Monitor from GTM Research and the Energy Storage Association. Even more impressively, home batteries rivaled utility-scale deployments, which only clocked in at 16 megawatts.

That’s an unprecedented and jolting development that is worth emphasizing.

Ever since GTM Research began tracking storage deployments in 2013, residential batteries appeared as the faintest of slivers on the industrywide bar graph, nonzero but totally insubstantial.

Now, for the first time, the smattering of a few kilowatts here and there has nearly overtaken the giants of grid-scale mega-projects. That's a result both of the mega-projects not showing up this quarter and the micro-projects swarming into action.

The historically tiny residential energy storage segment won big in Q1 2018, according to the latest deployment data.

Utility-scale projects, the usual workhorse of the energy storage industry, dropped massively compared to last year’s Q1, when the Aliso Canyon procurements came online and set a record for energy capacity. What saved the quarter from historically low performance turned out to be the aggregate growth of all the little systems popping up in customers' homes.

"Residential storage has been growing in popularity and prominence," said Brett Simon, senior analyst at GTM Research. "It’s getting cheaper. Folks are more aware of it and are asking for it. Solar installers are doubling down on it as a new business model."

Dialing into the numbers, it’s clear that California and Hawaii drove this newfound strength with state-level growth that merits no less than the technical designation: "bonkers."

California’s resi sector rose 3,833 percent year-over-year in terms of megawatts, 4,324 percent in terms of megawatt-hours. The fact that energy capacity grew more reflects that these systems are sizing up to hold more duration.

Those two states accounted for 74 percent of the home systems deployed.

Notably, there wasn't any extreme, one-off event driving the surge in residential deployments in the way that the Aliso Canyon procurements did for big projects a year ago. That means that the forces that produced this quarter's outcome — transitions away from solar net metering, new business models with low upfront costs, newfound interest in resilience — will likely continue through the year.

In fact, the first two quarters of storage installations tend to be smaller than the last two, based on how the industry has operated historically. Such a large opening quarter hints at an even bigger second half.

"The residential market this year is going to be over five times the size of the market last year, in megawatt terms," Simon said.

The future looks even brighter, thanks to the California Energy Commission’s newly passed solar PV mandate for new homes starting in 2020. GTM Research calculates that this policy will cause a 26 percent upside in its base-case residential storage projection for 2020 onward.

Bigger doesn't always mean better

Meanwhile, the utterly California-dominated commercial sector continued its zig-zaggy volatility, dropping 53 percent from its record high last quarter. California giveth and California taketh away.

The nature of utility-scale construction lends itself to even more lumpiness in its quarterly swings.

Last quarter, only five projects hit the wires. That said, they managed to deliver the third-highest energy capacity of any quarter, because each new project delivered 4-hour duration.

The only two quarters with more energy deployed included the Aliso Canyon rollout, when Southern California delivered a massive, fast-tracked procurement to deal with a regional gas constraint.

Though quarterly deployments dropped compared to last year, the pipeline for front-of-the-meter storage increased 76 percent in a year, from 9,217 megawatts to 16,196 megawatts.

Overall, the industry is on track to deliver 557 megawatts this year, and GTM expects the annual deployments will hit 3,688 megawatts in 2023, the final year of its projection. That’s up 12 percent or 909 megawatts from the projection last quarter, due to promising developments since that time.

Miscellaneous signs o’ the times:

California has officially pulled ahead of PJM as the largest cumulative storage market. This actually happened before the last quarterly report, but hasn’t gotten a ton of play. PJM kicked off the utility-scale storage industry, but its frequency regulation market has essentially stopped growing. Thus, the baton has passed to California, where a much wider menu of services and market products promise more robust long-term growth. (In the apples-to-apples comparison of just utility-scale, PJM still leads by 100 megawatts.)

All of the utility-scale projects in Q1 had 4-hour duration. So long frequency reg, with your short-duration systems.
Front-of-the-meter battery deployments happened in Florida and Arizona. Texas and California, which led the previous quarter, didn't show up this time.

In the weeds but indicative of a broader trend, the researchers added two new states to the roster that they track quarterly: Colorado and Nevada. Both had promising new policy developments and utility activities to presage a more active storage market in the years ahead.

Download the free executive summary of the U.S. Energy Storage Monitor here.

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 20, 2018, 05:55:29 pm »

I can't ever see running any device straight off the panels without a batt system of some sort to have a power buffer while working.  What if the clouds come out right when you are in the middle of ripping some plywood?  One old 12V Car Batt in decent shape will do for a buffer in most cases I would say, however brand spanking new a deep cycle marine batt isn't that expensive.  I just bought a new one for the old Bugout Machine at Batteries & Bulbs for $90.  Duracell, good brand.

In terms of power to do your chores, as I mentioned my 1000W 36V DC motors would turn just about anything including a concrete saw.  You can get bigger than that though if you want to run a **** sawmill or something.  I looked at buying this 5000W motor to soup up my Ewz and make it into a towing powerhouse and/or Cripple Racing Machine.  You can get different models operating at 48V, 72V or 96V.


Yup. That is the scale we are talking about. Mini, Micro scale sawmill. Something like a band saw. Enough to buck up coppice wood... or run a wheat grinder. If the job gets called by cloud... it's done. Do do something else. C5 rule of survival. If all else fails, lower your expectations.

I do seem to recall, back in the old days, there were DC motors long before we switched to AC. I am guessing there are some sitting in some old barns as antiques. But it is like searching for the secrets of the pyramids or the arc of the covenant.

I know its there. I hope it is there. It just takes some Gandolf to step in and say, "Ya the P37 R2D2 jack motor. My granddad used to pump the well with it". I'm looking for "the holy grail"

I have found the best source for variable dc motors to be treadmills. I have a few of them in my pile of interesting things. They would work on any panel from 12 volt to 100 volts combined voltage. They would work for pumps, bandsaws etc. For shits and giggles take a look at this guy.
He makes homemade 12 volt batteries. a rack of these would act as the passthrough battery i mentioned above. my point is just that we always talk about the batteries but from a construction point of view they are the simplest component to recreate in a scaled down world. Much easier then a motor.

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 20, 2018, 05:49:18 pm »

I have been meaning to get back to this.... but I have been behind the ball lately. I stick with my CORDED power tools for resilience, position....

But since we clearly have some Electrical guys here...and me being a luddite, I see an opportunity.

I have a decent solar system... but that only lasts until the batteries die. Some people have solar that feeds into the grid. No grid, no batteries, done.

But here is a question I have to reach out to electrical guys for.

Can someone tell me about a practical DC motor that I can get some work out of by directly  tying it into the solar panels. Only works when sun is available.

Give me your thoughts guys. Can it be turned into, say, a wood saw.... or.... something that turns a reworked  generator for sunny day, power tool use.

That should give you folks something to chat about or share your knowledge of where to look for someone doing similar.

There is no easy way to run directly off the solar panels being marketed today at insanely cheap prices. the charge controllers that are charging batteries today are using panel strings of 70-200 volts and converting it down to 12-48 and are referred to as MPPT chargers. They absolutely need a battery to feed to or they won't feed out. The older charge controllers that were just a complicated switch were operating panels that matched the voltage of the battery banks and are called PWM controllers. those ones will sometimes feed out without a battery but its iffy. As RE mentioned it would technically be possible to run a 36 volt motor off of the 60 cell 200-300 watt panels. They output in full sun at about 32-40 volts at 6-8 amps. It would be tricky though. Say you wanted to run a table saw you would want to re jig it to incorporate a flywheel of some sort or have 2 or 3 panels hooked up in parallel to have 2 or 3 times the amps of the motor to draw from in case the sun goes away or you bog down. To me that is a waste of resources since if batteries are toast panels which are way more complicated will fetch a premium and weird voltage dc motors would be almost non existent. BUT... Even an almost dead battery bank as long as the cells have not shorted out can be the buffer you need to run the controllers and act as a pass through for the power from the panels. The trick would be to start treating your batteries as irreplaceable. In times of crisis think of them as delicate senior citizens. You eliminate all the shocks we inflict on them daily. In that scenario you wait for the sun to be out and charging at more then what you need and start turning on devices to match the sun; freezer/fridge conversion, well pump with an insanely large pressure tank, maybe some electric chainsaw work etc. All of these are usually inverter functions. You aim to use almost all the solar in passthrough and DO things with it and dribble a little to your geriatric batteries to keep them charged and as alive as they can be. When the sun goes away you power down all the ac, turn off the inverter and coast on a few dc led lights. You've stored the energy as cold, pressurized water and sawn wood instead of chemical potential energy. In that kind of scenario the 2000 cycle battery bank can be pushed into the 8000 cycles realm and if we have not figured out something different within 20 years we are already dead anyways since that is the lifespan of the inverters charge controllers etc,,, Its more complicated then that and would require beer a sketch pad, a pencil and me waving my hands a lot but that is the jist of it. Its easy enough to experiment with if you want; find a poor old battery bank from a recycler at the same voltage as your existing one and switch over to model a battery of much diminished capabilities and practice using power directly.I know a nice old lady in the woods who lasted 14 years on her original undersized batteries with very minor lifestyle hacks let alone the hard core alterations proposed above. Food for thought. Back to work...
Cheers,  David

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 14, 2018, 09:34:20 pm »

Regulators Approve Five Grid-Scale Lithium-Ion Battery Projects 💫 for Southern California

June 8, 2018

By Renewable Energy World Editors

Regulators in California gave San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) approval to move forward with development of five grid-scale lithium-ion battery projects in San Diego and Orange counties.

The five projects will deliver a total of 83.5 MW/334 MWh to SDG&E’s energy storage portfolio. SDG&E submitted the projects to the California Public Utilities Commission (PUC) in April 2017.

According to SDG&E, the projects include:

֍ A 30-MW/120-MWh lithium-ion battery storage facility in San Diego, Calif., that will be built by Renewable Energy Systems (RES) America and will be completed by December 2019

֍ A 4-MW/16-MWh lithium-ion battery storage facility in San Juan Capistrano, Calif, that will be built by Advanced Microgrid Solutions and will be completed by December 2019

֍ A 40-MW/160-MWh lithium-ion battery facility in Fallbrook, Calif., that will be built by Fluence and will be completed by March 2021

֍ A 6.5-MW/26-MWh lithium-ion battery storage facility in Escondido, Calif., that will be built by Powin Energy and will be completed by June 2021

֍ A 3-MW/12-MWh lithium-ion battery storage facility in Poway, Calif., that will be built by Enel Green Power and will be completed by December 2021

The PUC also approved a demand response program equaling 4.5 MW. OhmConnect will provide the demand response service.

Lead image credit: San Diego Gas & Electric
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: June 08, 2018, 08:19:32 pm »

Unpacking the Energy Storage Opportunity in America

June 6, 2018

By Philip Mihlmester and Ken Collison

energy storage
Storage is rightfully one of the hottest topics in the energy industry right now. The potential benefits and profitability has prompted plenty of excitement — and questions — among industry leaders. And for good reason. Widespread deployment of energy storage, especially batteries, will increase substantially in the next few years. In fact, analysts project an annual market of 2,600 MW by 2022 — that’s nearly 12 times the size of the 2016 market.

There are three underlying trends driving this growth:

֍ Favorable federal and state regulations on energy storage;

֍ Falling costs for batteries due to advances in technologies;

֍ A developing ability by energy storage owners to tap into multiple revenue streams.

Storage is in a league of its own despite being a core element of distributed energy resources (DER) increasingly connecting to traditional grids with new sources of energy. In practice, storage improves grid reliability and resiliency while potentially delivering environmental benefits that surpass that of traditional grids. It’s hybrid in the sense that energy storage shares some features in common with generating facilities and other features in common with transmission assets and load. Theoretically, this means it should be able to provide a broader range of services than other energy assets. However, as with any novel technology, the array of opportunities for storage brings new types of risks that project developers and investors need to understand so they can plan for contingencies and mitigation approaches.

Knowing Where to Start

According to energy sector analysis ICF conducted in partnership with law firm Norton Rose Fulbright, a key challenge storage faces in trying to participate in wholesale energy markets today is that the rules were developed for power plants and demand response companies — which may unnecessarily limit the scope (and therefore compensation) of storage services. However, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) is currently working to clear a path to wholesale market participation for storage providers. In fact, the FERC has issued four orders in recent years that help energy storage. In November 2016, FERC issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NOPR) introducing transparent market rules for energy storage facilities to participate in organized markets run by regional transmission organizations (RTO) and independent system operators (ISO). In February 2018, FERC issued its final rule (Order 841) requiring ISO and RTO markets to establish market rules that properly recognize the physical, operational and capacity characteristics of electric storage resources.

FERC’s recent moves aim squarely at removing market barriers to participation and laying the regulatory groundwork for offering strong incentives tied to storage resource development. However, a mountain of work still remains to be done to realize the full potential of energy storage throughout the country. Here’s where America’s key energy stakeholders should begin.

Take steps to resolve uncertainty.

Heed industry advice and don’t be afraid to ask for interpretive guidance or a declaratory order from FERC stating how the commission will apply its regulations to a certain set of facts. These options typically require both time and filing fees, but they could help settle important questions. Further, some state regulators also offer a procedural option of requesting declaratory relief or an advisory opinion on regulatory matters. For example, Tesla obtained an advisory ruling from the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities in September 2017 that said certain small-scale batteries paired with solar generating facilities are eligible for net metering. The ruling was issued less than four months after Tesla filed a petition that prompted Massachusetts to open a general docket on eligibility of energy storage for net metering.

Draft storage contracts to address potential changes in the regulatory regime.

A key takeaway from our analysis with Norton Rose Fulbright: this could mean including a mechanism to revisit pricing in the event of a change in law. Alternatively, the parties could be required to enter into good-faith negotiations to restore the benefit of each party’s bargain after a change in law.

Combine energy storage with other generating assets.

For example, many rooftop solar companies are deploying storage alongside solar installations. Combining storage with generating assets with stable revenue and well-defined market participation rules helps mitigate the risk that changes in market rules may reduce or eliminate revenues from a specific storage service.

It is also important for storage stakeholders to understand that an investment tax credit (ITC) can be claimed on the cost of a storage facility — with regulators taking stock of how the mix of electricity stored changes over the first five years when the credit is exposed to full or partial recapture. In fact, the IRS requires no more than 25 percent of the energy stored to come from other sources than the solar or wind facility tied to the energy storage asset, and then the percentage of other energy storage determines the amount of investment tax credit that can be claimed. For example, if 10 percent of the storage energy is from other sources the first year, then only 90 percent of the full ITC can be claimed. If the percentage of other energy stored increases in any of the next four years, the credit is subject to partial recapture.

The best way for owners to mitigate this type of risk is thorough and accurate modeling of system operation under the full range of operating conditions, and with the system providing all anticipated energy services. To the extent the offtaker has a right to control charging, the asset owner may want to build in a right to recover any ITC-related recapture or losses. A complete picture is needed for owners, utilities and regulators to estimate the fraction of charging energy supplied by a linked, or nearby, solar or wind project — depending on each case.

Understanding Performance Risks — and Preparing for Their Possibility

New technology carries obvious performance risks. As our report points out, poor performance jeopardizes contracts and could subject developers to heavy non-performance penalties in certain wholesale markets. That remains true in the energy storage world.

In practice, manufacturer warranties and other performance guarantees and even insurance policies can help. They currently exist for rooftop solar, for example. They need to be developed for storage as well. Developers should make sure that adding storage to other forms of generation will not invalidate any performance guarantees attached to the generating facility.

Developers usually buy batteries directly from the manufacturer and focus primarily on system integration. If the developer does not have a comprehensive understanding of battery capabilities and limitations, such as maximum charge and discharge rates, thermal requirements and cycle life, there is a strong possibility that the control room will mismanage the battery, and the overall system will be unable to satisfy power purchase agreement performance expectations, with the potential for adverse financial impacts or litigation. Ultimately, performance risk should be considered both in terms of initial system performance risk and long-term performance risk.

It’s crucial for energy storage owners to come up with an appropriate O&M plan based on a thorough understanding of how the battery will work. In addition to periodic battery replacement, that plan includes having spare power conditioning equipment (inverters, voltage converters) and service technicians available to address unplanned outages or degraded capabilities. Most energy storage systems have continuous monitoring, and, to an increasing degree, developers are providing this service in-house. This enables faster detection and resolution of system performance. Independent engineers evaluating system design usually also evaluate the O&M plan.

Getting Utilities Up to Speed

Relatively few utilities have significant experience with energy storage. Consequently, developers proposing novel storage projects to utilities should expect that the interconnection process will take time. In addition, if a proposed project provides any service that may require on-peak charging, the utility might need costly network upgrades that would otherwise not be necessary. As more utilities gain experience with storage, the duration of the interconnection agreement process will decline.

Until then, developers can minimize delays by:

֍ Ensuring that their interconnection applications are clear and complete;

֍ Responding rapidly to utility information requests;

֍ Maintaining frequent communication with utility personnel.

The cost of interconnection network upgrades may be reduced by avoiding services that will require on-peak charging, but the value of such services may exceed the incremental cost of the network upgrades. To get in front of this, developers can help identify the least expensive interconnection location by asking the utility to do an interconnection feasibility assessment early in the process. In general, it’s advisable for all stakeholders to get ahead of procedural, logistical and connectivity issues tied to storage.

Embracing an Energy Storage Future

The lack of clarity about regulatory treatment at the federal level is the biggest challenge ahead for government, utility and industry players exploring energy storage futures. The importance for all parties involved to understand regulatory implications of incorporating energy storage into the mix is increasingly vital as retail sales-generating projects that combine energy storage with renewable power generation enter the market.

Further, stakeholders will need to navigate around existing U.S. law that does not explicitly clarify whether energy storage units qualify for regulatory exemptions typically claimed by small-scale renewable energy generators, or how adding storage to a small power plant affects the generator’s own regulatory exemptions. Storage owners will need to understand where regulatory and utility boundaries are — and how operations fit into them.
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: May 04, 2018, 01:49:55 pm »

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Tesla Plans To Triple Energy Storage Business This Year

May 3rd, 2018 by Steve Hanley


As we remind people frequently, Tesla is not a car company that also makes batteries, it is a battery company that also makes cars. (Note Google’s description in the screenshot below.) The cars get all the media attention, but the energy storage component may ultimately be more important to its stated mission of breaking the world of its fossil fuel addiction. 

Full article with eye opening grid battery response graphics:

Posted by: AGelbert
« on: April 02, 2018, 06:55:19 pm »

Is Sion Power’s Licerion Lithium Battery What The Electric Aviation World Has Been Waiting For?

April 2nd, 2018 by Nicolas Zart

It sounds as if the electric aviation news industry has somewhat tapered down, giving a chance for other competing electric mobility industries to make it into the limelight. But that doesn’t mean that the electric aviation industry is sitting idly either. In fact, Sion Power just announced a “breakthrough” in its Licerion lithium battery chemistry.

Licerion Lithium Battery Takes A Shot At Electric Aviation
Sion Power Licerion rechargeable lithiumSion Power made quite a stir when it announced it was ready for the production of its patented Licerion rechargeable lithium metal battery by late 2018 in its Tucson, Arizona facility. As to what a Licerion rechargeable lithium battery is, that’s a good question. Sion Power claims that it is 60% lighter than conventional Li-ion batteries, which could seriously boost the potential of electric aviation and the company’s unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) products. It supposedly offers a mouthwatering 500 Wh/kg, 1,000 Wh/L, and 450 cycle battery. And the best part is that if these numbers are good enough for the electric aviation industry, they surely are even better for road-bound electric vehicle (EV) markets.

Still, we need more details. This isn’t an April 1 joke, but it’s also unclear how good the offer is and what might be missing. Individually, the Licerion cells measure 10 cm x 10 cm x 1 cm (roughly 4″ x 4″ by .3″) and offer 20 Ah for the highest energy density combination currently available. At the core, a metallic lithium thin-film anode was designed with a host of physical and chemical levels of protection to enhance the safety and the lifespan of its lithium batteries. By combining these anodes with traditional lithium-ion intercalation cathodes, the company hopes to not only reach these high-energy-density numbers but to have them manufactured by year-end.

Sion Power Licerion rechargeable lithium

Tracy Kelley, Chief Executive Officer of Sion Power, recently stated, “Over the last decade Sion Power, and our research partner BASF, have strategically focused on meticulous research and development of a next-generation lithium battery. … The result of our team’s efforts will be seen in a safe lithium metal battery that is in a class by itself. We are on track to deliver product to a select group of partners by the end of 2018.”

The Never-Ending Quest For High-Energy-Density Batteries 👨‍🔬

Over the past decade, we’ve seen a few prospective battery chemistries vie for the lucrative newly budding EV market — from lithium-air, to sulfur, to mysterious solid-state batteries. Although each has their pros and cons, the results have always been decidedly better than what the current generation of batteries could offer. Once ironing out the last technological hurdles, mass manufacturing needs to be solved and eventually begin. This is where the wheat is separated from the chaff.

With various new batteries demonstrating what seems to be excellent performance for EVs, once thing is becoming more and more clear — there isn’t a silver-bullet approach that is a perfect solution for EVs, not even a silver buckshot. On the contrary, there are and will continue to be many good approaches.

If it is to work out as dreamed and pitched, though, the Sion Power Licerion battery could be one of the first to bring commercial electric flight to the mass market. Maybe. Perhaps. We’ll see.
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: March 15, 2018, 04:56:13 pm »

Like almost everything in RE :" It depends"
If they are cycling its bank say to a 10 percent depth and using it as some kind of peaker plant to replace building a NG facility or back up wind or account for brownout which is what the press releases say then they could easily see 10000 cycles or more. If the local grid is in more trouble and they regularly have to dip down to 70 percent or more then yes the 5000 cycles could happen. I'm no lithium expert and Tesla is extremely guarded about releasing real engineering data versus press releases. Also Lithium ages weirdly. Just because it does not meet its initial specs does not mean it's toast. You could reconfigure it for a less demanding application and/or cycle in new components. In that way its no different then rebuilding a generator in a multi generator grid. One of its challenges is you need to control its temperature, cell by cell voltage etc or else when it goes wrong it really really goes wrong. That adds a lot of complexity and fail points. All that is justified in cars, for stationary... We will see how it rolls out and ages.

Thank you for your well reasoned and informative answer. I will continue monitoring the situation in Australia. I believe the Australians made a sound decision in buying this massive battery system from Musk. Furthermore, I continue to believe the use of the adjective "unsuitable" by Palloy to describe the Australian battery bank sold to them by Musk is deliberately disingenuous disparaging of the value of a system that has already avoided brown-outs with its 4 second (or less) response time. Battery technology aside, the cost savings in electrical appliance repair and replacement due to the superior smoothing effect over fossil fuel peaker plants, that this battery bank has already demonstrated, constitutes a significant amount of money NOT spent. That is a plus for the Australian battery system that must be part of the cost/benefit analysis.

Thanks again for the information about that system I posted about in Puerto Rico. I'll pass that on to some people I know down there.

Blue Planet Energy Supplies Energy Storage & Training In Puerto Rico

March 14th, 2018 by Jake Richardson

The energy storage provider Blue Planet Energy recently deployed its Blue Ion energy storage systems to support the electrification efforts in Puerto Rico.

Image Credit: Blue Planet Energy

These deployments took place in areas where there has not been reliable electricity since September of 2017, when Hurricane Maria struck. One site is a volunteer housing facility in the Isabela municipality and the other is located in the Corozal municipality to provide electricity to a clean water pumping system. Blue Planet Energy is also providing support through training and education sessions.

Too many of Puerto Rico’s residents have not had a functioning electric grid since Hurricane Maria’s landfall in September. Our Blue Ion units will provide critical sites with reliable, safe and self-sustained power to ensure they can continue providing essential services to their communities. We’re proud to be able to lend our support to Puerto Rico and to contribute to its mission of rebuilding with stronger, cleaner and more reliable energy infrastructure,” said Henk Rogers, Blue Planet Energy CEO and founder.

A 16 kilowatt-hour (kWh) Blue Ion 2.0 battery unit was installed at the well pumping system in Corozal. The energy storage technology is working with a 7 kW solar power system in a remote neighborhood called Palos Blanco. This area was experiencing a lack of both clean water and reliable electricity, so the solar power and energy storage system is helping to produce both.

“Our mission on the ground in Puerto Rico is to coordinate with the EPA and FEMA to install safe drinking water stations and solar-powered pumping systems to service those that need it most, ” explained Mark Baker, Director of Disaster Response for Water Mission. This organization is working to address water safety in many rural communities in Puerto Rico.

Another 16 kWh Blue Ion system was deployed at the Las Dunas volunteer center. This facility supports aid workers who are installing solar power kits by providing them with housing and assistance. Up to 15 volunteers can be housed there, but the structure was without power until the new system was deployed.

“Partnering with Blue Planet Energy has helped to supply reliable power for our base operations, allowing us to meet our mission of deploying solar kits to areas hardest hit by Maria,” explained Walter Meyer-Rodriguez the Coastal Marine Resource Center project lead.

In fact, CMRC has plans to add over 100 more solar power + energy storage systems in under-served areas of Puerto Rico.

Blue Planet Energy also sponsored the Puerto Rico Solar Energy Industries Association’s inaugural Clean Energy Summit in San Juan in February to address how energy storage could help in the island’s recovery.

“Being on the ground in Puerto Rico and speaking with people from communities impacted by Hurricane Maria, we’ve seen firsthand the risk that centralized power systems pose and the hardship they can leave in the wake of a devastating weather event. The Blue Planet Energy team is thrilled to pass on the knowledge and tools for reliable, well-designed off-grid power so that Puerto Ricans can rebuild their communities,” stated Blue Planet Energy’s Vice President of Engineering Kyle Bolger.

The Blue Ion off-grid ferrous phosphate battery system has products at 8 kWh, 16 kWh, and a much larger option that can be scaled up to 450 kWh.

Agelbert COMMENT: I applaud storage techology. This will help Puerto Ricans get off the profit over planet treadmill of fossil fuel 😈 energy price gouging for good!
It really is a great product.  We are a dealer for them. The lithium iron phosphate cell has great potential...
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: March 15, 2018, 02:45:27 pm »

Solar Batteries: Lithium Iron Phosphate vs Lead Acid

comparing lithium ion phosphate batteries to lead acid batteries

8 Reasons Lithium is Better for Solar Energy Storage
Sometimes newer isn’t better. But in the case of solar battery technology, the newer lithium iron phosphate batteries (LiFePO4, or LFP) defeat the older lead acid varieties in almost every way.

Without getting too technical, here are 8 reasons lithium squashes lead if you’re looking to buy and install a solar energy system in your home or business:

1. Safe enough for Grandma to use

LFP solar batteries will not explode or catch fire. They use very stable chemical compounds. They are stable even at high temperatures. And if you’re wondering about those exploding laptops and cell phones from a few years ago, those were lithium-cobalt batteries. Not the same thing.

In contrast, lead batteries have all sorts of stuff that can go wrong without proper maintenance, like spilled or leaking acid. Which leads to reason #2.

2. No need for a “solar-sitter” while you’re on vacation

Your dog might need help while you’re gone, but your lithium iron solar battery will be just fine on its own. It needs no ongoing maintenance like voltage monitoring or refills.

In contrast, lead acid requires a lot of monitoring and upkeep. Otherwise, lots of things can go wrong, including leakage, loss of power, and a big hole in your wallet. Some varieties need more work than others, like refilling the electrolyte solution with fresh water and checking specific gravity. But all of them require more technical skill and attention. See this article for all the specialized work you have to do with lead acid solar batteries.

If you have lithium iron batteries, you avoid all that maintenance and risk.

3. This is a marathon, not a sprint. LFP lasts way longer.

Again, specific data varies by brand and type. But a typical lithium iron phosphate battery will last for 8-10 years and for thousands of cycles. The sonnenbatterie, a lithium iron phosphate solar storage battery used by Coastal Solar uses, is guaranteed for a minimum of 10 years and 10,000 cycles.

How much worse are lead acid batteries? They usually last less than 3 years, and the best ones might make it to 1000 cycles. So while lead batteries cost less up front, they won’t last nearly as long, and you’ll pay for multiple replacements before the LFP would have run out.

What’s a cycle? Think of your phone. When the battery light flashes, that means you’ve ‘discharged’ the battery. Once you ‘recharge’ it back to full power, that’s one cycle. How long a cycle lasts depends on a lot of factors, such as how far down you discharge it each time and the local temperature.

4. Solar batteries care about their weight too.

Lithium batteries generally weigh less than half of what comparable lead acid batteries weigh. This means lower shipping costs, less stress during installation, and less strain on your walls, or wherever you end up installing it.

lithium iron phosphate solar batteries beat lead acid batteries

5. Lithium is “green,” even if you’re not.

You’ll have to discard your battery eventually. The chemicals in the LFP solar batteries are non-toxic and cause no harm to the environment. They contain no rare metals or what is commonly referred to as battery acid – which is very dangerous.

Lead batteries, on the other hand, use dangerous chemicals that are harmful – to you and to the fish. So even if you maintain it properly, disposing of a lead battery is environmentally problematic. Regardless of whether you consider yourself an ‘environmentalist,’ choosing lithium over lead is an easy way to help the planet and impress your friends.

6. Versatility, thy name is lithium iron phosphate

A stable battery is a huge advantage. It means you can orient it however is most convenient, and put it wherever you want. Lithium solar batteries like the sonnenbatterie can be installed indoors or outdoors, in any room of your house, and on the walls or on the floor.

While some lead acid batteries also offer some flexibility as far as not requiring it to sit a certain way, they do not offer the range of installation options of the LFPs.

7. Holding nothing back – full discharge ⚡

Remember the cycles? Lithium batteries can be fully discharged without risk and without loss of future capacity. That means longer cycles, and fewer of them.

Lead batteries can only be about 80% discharged, or they risk being damaged – this is another thing you have to monitor.

8. Stable in the face of boredom

Do batteries get bored when they aren’t being used? With LFP solar batteries, it doesn’t matter. Their capacity barely budges even when not in use, and they have minimal self-discharge. This is a huge advantage, because if you’re gone for a while or don’t need the battery for certain times of day, it will be at full capacity when you return.

But lead batteries do self-discharge and lose a lot more capacity even when not in continuous use. So you get less out of it when you need it.

There’s another battery issue called the “memory effect.” This problem actually doesn’t occur with either lithium iron phosphate or lead acid batteries, so in our little contest, they tie on this point. But it’s still good to know that the LFP holds its own on this issue.

What’s the memory effect? It’s when your battery seems to lose capacity over time at a faster rate than it should. Over time, all batteries wear out and don’t recharge as much, but this should happen at a slow rate. But some batteries have a peculiar habit of resetting their maximum based on how much you discharge it.

For example, some phones have this problem. If you only use half the capacity and then recharge it, the battery “remembers” a lower maximum capacity as a result. Thus, it stays charged for much less time in the future.

Lithium iron phosphate solar batteries do not suffer from the memory effect.
All battery makers how shall we put it... talk up their qualities and remain quiet on their drawbacks. I won't get into a peeing match with you on this but lithium is not the end all beat all for stationary uses... At least not yet. Here are some challenges to consider and understand I'm a believer:

1) Lithium batteries are still too new and are not recycled to any great degree. That will change as volume increases.

2)they require a sophisticated battery management system without which they are a brick

3)you either get several thousand cycles or 80-90 percent discharge rates... not both

So partial truths from above:
1)lead acid maintenance, I add water to mine twice a year, sealed versions are just that sealed and require nothing for their entire lifespan

2)recyclability: I cannot force people to recycle their batteries but in this part of the world every scrap yard will pay you money for them. Lead is recycled commercially and the cost is built into the cost of purchase. Sulphuric acid is also recycled and it is a fairly easy manufactured chemical we have been making since the industrial revolution.

3) the memory effect usually only applies to nickel chemistries. in lead acid maybe sulphating could be considered memory but that is bad charging and takes continued neglect to occur.
Again, for discussion only not to pee in your sandbox.
Cheers,  David

Sure. I'm just saying that arbitrarily trashing Lithium, like Palloy wants to do, lacks objectivity. In welcome contrast, you weigh the pros and cons objectively. I respect you for that. 

As an expert, could you inform me as to what the actual number of cycles the 129MWh set up in Australia is limited by? Do you agree with the "5,000" CORRECTION  :-[ "8,000" cycle limitation Palloy claims they have?
Posted by: AGelbert
« on: March 15, 2018, 02:08:44 pm »

Oops, dumb question. I didn't get it the way I wanted. The battery question on strings was for my off-grid set-up at the farm. I know you need to know the power usage to figure out how big a bank, but I was just hoping for an off-the-cuff idea about what would be typical for my 4800 watts of panel I have waiting to be installed. Just a ballpark.

I probably won't battery back up the house.

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