Scientists at the University of California, Santa Barbara who are working with sodium-ion batteries have found that the unintended presence of hydrogen is to blame for many of the technology’s shortcomings in terms of degradation and performance loss. Keeping hydrogen out of the materials throughout production could allow sodium-ion batteries to achieve performance levels competing with their lithium-ion counterparts.
… and it will be quite an effort. The U.K.’s grid operator, National Grid, released a new report on possible energy system transformation pathways, amidst growing public concern over climate change. Ramping carbon emissions reduction targets up from 80% to 100% prompts technical challenges. These can be overcome but will require full alignment of policy effort and individual awareness and decision making.
Japanese materials company Toray has announced plans to open a facility for manufacturing battery separator films for use in lithium-ion batteries. The factory is expected to begin operations in July 2021 and will increase Toray’s production material for the component by around 20%.
While it is often stated only 5% of lithium-ion batteries are recycled, a review of research into the second life and recycling of lithium-ion batteries suggests that is a gross understatement. A new study found almost 100,000 tons of waste batteries were recycled last year – about half of what reached end-of-life.
The car will be road tested at Toyota City in Japan. Solar charging technology for the vehicle will then be further optimized before the vehicle goes on sale.
A new report by the Energy Information Administration projects U.S. installed battery storage capacity will reach 2.5 GW by 2023. Florida and New York are set to pave the way as massive projects in each state will account for almost half the coming capacity.
The head of Mercom Capital says solar has a long way to go before it can stand without policy support. Effective grid parity will only be achieved when the cost of PV electricity factors in the expense of grid upgrades and the storage systems its intermittent nature requires, says Raj Prabhu.
Increased storage and strategic transmission development will be needed to ensure the most economic and lowest risk transition of Australia’s energy system, the Australian Energy Market Operator said in its latest study. In 20 years’ time, the need for storage will be at a scale not seen before in the national electricity market, and pumped hydro and distributed storage are set to play major roles in lowering electricity prices and building a reliable and resilient power system.
With a glut of solar capacity having come online this year, cheaper financing would help keep some of that momentum but policymakers cannot be persuaded of the economic benefits of clean energy unless state-owned utility EVN opens up.
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