Archive for the ‘Batteries’ Category

Power lines in Victoria, Australia [credit: Wikipedia]


Come the next potential blackout situation, the battery could give Victorians up to an hour to find a way out of trouble. But making the wind blow harder or the sun shine more won’t be among their options, of course.
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Australia is poised to construct one of the world’s largest batteries, using Tesla’s technology for lithium-ion batteries, reports TechXplore.

The football-field sized battery will provide up to 300 megawatts of power output and 450 megawatts-hours of storage in a country that has been struggling to meet energy demands during skyrocketing power usage triggered by record-breaking temperatures.

Last year, Australia suffered its hottest and driest year ever, with temperatures topping 121 degrees Fahrenheit last December.

The battery, known as the Victorian Big Battery Megapack, will be located in the state of Victoria, Australia’s second most populous region.

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Some extraordinary claims are being made, or at least suggested, here. The idea of charging a battery in a few seconds, especially a lithium one, using microwaves (not the kitchen version) sounds a bit hairy to say the least.
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A team of researchers from the Polytechnic University of Valencia and the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) has discovered a new method that makes it possible to transform electricity into hydrogen or chemical products solely using microwaves — without cables and without any type of contact with electrodes, reports TechXplore.

This represents a revolution in the field of energy research and a key development for the process of industrial decarbonisation, as well as for the future of the automotive sector and the chemical industry, among many others.

The study has been published in the latest edition of Nature Energy, where the discovery is explained.

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It’s much cheaper to cut off your electricity supply for a while than it is to provide adequate backup from supposedly ‘green’ sources like batteries. Who knew?

STOP THESE THINGS

Cough up, or the kid gets it!

So-called smart meters are a very dumb response to intermittent wind and solar, even dumber energy sources. Wherever governments attempt to run on sunshine and breezes, the push to control and micromanage household power use, quickly follows.

Over the last few Australian summers, we’ve been treated to power rationing on a grand scale – which the Market Operator euphemistically tags “demand management”.

‘Demand management’ is not about supplying power consumers with what they need, it simply means shutting off power to industry, businesses and households – and even forcing hospitals to switch their lights and air conditioners off – among other indignities, whenever the sun sets and/or calm weather sets in. That’s what our ‘inevitable transition’ looks like at the macro level.

At the micro level, there’s the push to have smart meters installed in every home or business premise, in order that…

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Typical electric car set-up


There may be trouble ahead, as the song goes. But are we ready to face the music of industrial-scale lithium battery volatility, brought to us by government edict? Below we look at the second part of a BBC News story.
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Batteries that power mobile phones and other devices are causing fires because they are not disposed of properly, says BBC News.

Lithium-ion batteries, which power mobile phones, tablets and toothbrushes, can be extremely volatile if damaged.

CCTV footage taken at several recycling centres shows explosions sending flames and debris shooting across sorting areas.

And those sorts of batteries are a growing menace.

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Risky business [image credit: safetysource.co.nz]


It’s the climate propaganda that’s mounting, not the concern about it, judging by opinion polls that put climate change last as an issue. But recycling of lithium batteries is considered to be uneconomic and can be dangerous.
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As concern mounts over the impacts of climate change, many experts are calling for greater use of electricity as a substitute for fossil fuels, asserts The Conversation (via TechXplore).

Powered by advancements in battery technology, the number of plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles on U.S. roads is increasing.

And utilities are generating a growing share of their power from renewable fuels, supported by large-scale battery storage systems.

These trends, coupled with a growing volume of battery-powered phones, watches, laptops, wearable devices and other consumer technologies, leave us wondering: What will happen to all these batteries once they wear out?

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The only viable option for carbophobes is significant degrowth (their term) according to this article. With present delusional plans to control global warming the numbers just don’t add up for ‘greenhouse gas’ obsessives, so even greater futile sacrifices are demanded.
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Shifting to electric vehicles while maintaining current travelling habits will not deliver emissions reductions required by the European Green Deal and Paris Agreement.

The European Green Deal sets ambitious targets for decarbonising the European economy.

This includes a European Commission proposal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55 percent by 2030, with the European Parliament’s Environment Committee demanding a more ambitious 60 percent cut.

The EGD also calls for the EU to become carbon-neutral by 2050.

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Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in Hybrid [image credit: greencarreports.com]


More evidence that a PHEV is often used as a device for getting a hefty government subsidy to buy a fuel-powered car. The report also begs the question: if plug-in hybrids need the engine for heating below about 14C, what can full electric vehicles offer drivers when it’s cool, or freezing – apart from battery drainage?
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Greenpeace and Transport and Environment have conducted a study of how owners of plug-in hybrid cars use them in real world driving and come to a startling conclusion — plug-in hybrids are no damn good at lowering emissions if drivers don’t plug them in.

This revelation is intended to convince UK regulators to include PHEVs in their proposed ban of gasoline and diesel powered cars by 2030, says CleanTechnica.

Whoa. Who’da thunk it, huh? A car with a plug needs to be plugged in! That is shocking news.

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Nikola Two truck model


Some critics say Nikola has been cheating by using gravity as a propulsion method when promoting its truck concepts — or they use words to that effect. Of course exaggerated claims are not unheard of in the world of supposedly ‘green’ engineering. The company has tried to defend itself, as the share price yo-yos with each new claim or attempted rebuttal. This is where the climate-crazed world is taking us, or trying to.
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With its electric and hydrogen-fueled trucks, the firm Nikola aims to revolutionize the future of the transportation sector, says Phys.org.

But with one investor claiming the group is running on empty, it has been having a rollercoaster ride on the stock exchange for the past week.

Founded in 2015 by Trevor Milton, the company is mainly working on the development of trucks and pick-ups powered by electric batteries or hydrogen fuel cells, as well as building out hydrogen recharging stations.

Although it has not yet built anything, it has forged strategic partnerships with several renowned industrial groups including the German engineering giant Bosch, the Italians CNH Industrial and, most recently, US car-maker General Motors.

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As the report below points out: ‘until we see some output figures the claims are still hazy, and until we see some proof, they are of course just claims’.
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California company NDB says its nano-diamond batteries will absolutely upend the energy equation, acting like tiny nuclear generators, reports New Atlas.

They will blow any energy density comparison out of the water, lasting anywhere from a decade to 28,000 years without ever needing a charge.

They will offer higher power density than lithium-ion. They will be nigh-on indestructible and totally safe in an electric car crash.

And in some applications, like electric cars, they stand to be considerably cheaper than current lithium-ion packs despite their huge advantages.

The heart of each cell is a small piece of recycled nuclear waste.

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E-truck test route [image credit: transport-online.de]


The bill for such a system would be massive and a lot of fuel duty revenue would be lost. What does it offer to anyone outside the haulage industry?
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Electrification of 7,500 km of the UK’s major road network would enable most lorries to be powered by overhead charging cables, resulting in dramatically reduced carbon emissions, a new report has found.

A team from the Centre for Sustainable Road Freight (SRF) – bringing together heavy vehicle engineering expertise from the Department of Engineering and logistics expertise from Heriot-Watt University and the University of Westminster and a consortium of industry partners—has proposed that building a so-called ‘electric road system’ could be used to decarbonise 65% of UK lorry kilometers traveled by 2040, says TechXplore.

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A self-induced shortage of reliable electricity generation is the real issue in California but its leaders can’t accept that, for mistaken ideological reasons supposedly related to the climate of the Earth. Instead they create their own problems due to unworkable energy policies, then discover they can’t solve them. Other leaders with similar ideas should take note and learn, but probably won’t, preferring to parrot ‘net zero’.

H/T The GWPF
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Problem is there aren’t enough of these massive batteries to go around right now, says Bloomberg Green.

As the threat of blackouts continues to plague California, officials are pointing to battery storage as a key to preventing future power shortfalls.

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Toyota’s Prius model


They say solid-state batteries – unlike lithium-ion ones – can’t catch fire, but on the other hand the electrolyte needs to be warmed up. Years of technical challenges still lie ahead, it seems.
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A team of researchers from Kyoto University and Toyota Motor is making solid progress developing next-generation battery technology that has the potential to cram far more energy into a small, lightweight package than today’s standard lithium-ion, or li-ion, batteries, says Nikkei Asian Review.

The new fluoride-ion battery the researchers are working on, which would hold about seven times as much energy per unit of weight as conventional li-ion batteries, could allow electric vehicles to run 1,000 km on a single charge.

The team has developed a prototype rechargeable battery based on fluoride, the anion — the negatively charged ion — of elemental fluorine.

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Green blob [credit: storybird.com]


The Manhattan Institute reckons: ‘By 2050, with current plans, the quantity of worn-out solar panels—much of it nonrecyclable—will constitute double the tonnage of all today’s global plastic waste, along with over 3 million tons per year of unrecyclable plastics from worn-out wind turbine blades. By 2030, more than 10 million tons per year of batteries will become garbage.’

Before then, all that future waste has to be manufactured, largely from mined materials. Is the world ready for this?
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You think those baby unicorns grow on trees? Better think again, says Michael Walsh @ The Pipeline.

“Green” energy, in fact, comes with a very high price tag as this report from the Manhattan Institute makes clear.

As policymakers have shifted focus from pandemic challenges to economic recovery, infrastructure plans are once more being actively discussed, including those relating to energy.

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Tesla plant [image credit: Steve Jurvetson @ Wikipedia]


H/T TechXplore

But Plan B includes putting heavy batteries in already heavy trucks, making them too heavy for hauling goods — or reducing their payloads. But at least the fact that there aren’t going to be anywhere near enough batteries to replace all fuel-powered vehicles with expensive EVs is out in the open, leaving climate obsessives with yet another headache. Wade through the usual paranoid propaganda to see how big the problem is.
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We need to change our transportation system, and we need to do it quickly, claims The Conversation.

Road transportation is a major consumer of fossil fuels, contributing 16 percent of all human-caused greenhouse gas emissions, which warm up the Earth’s atmosphere and cause changes to the climate.

It also pollutes the air, threatening health and costing taxpayers billions of dollars annually.

At the same time, electric vehicles are getting cheaper, and vehicle range and the availability of charging stations are improving.

This is exciting for many because it seems to suggest an easy and convenient answer to the problem of transportation emissions: if everyone swapped their fossil-fuelled vehicle for an electric equivalent, we could all keep driving, safe in the knowledge that we are no longer killing the planet by doing so—and all while enjoying a new car that is quiet, cheap to power and fun to drive.

Everybody wins, right? Unfortunately, it’s unlikely to be that simple.

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Experimental E-plane [image credit: Siemens]


If only batteries could lose some of their heavy weight during flight, matching the reductions achieved by burning fuel, he might be onto something. But as they can’t, this looks like more pie in the sky.
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Exclusive: Acting Liberal Democrat leader calls for green short haul flights to be UK’s next “moon landing mission”, reports i-news.

Liberal Democrat leader Ed Davey is calling for all domestic flights to be zero carbon by 2030, arguing the target must become the UK’s new “moon landing mission”.

Commercial planes run mainly on fossil fuels, and engineers are struggling to design a zero carbon passenger jet to replace them.

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VW ID.3 [image credit: Alexander Migl @ Wikipedia]


The car is about the same size as VW’s Golf model but weighs 200 kilograms more due to the battery, which has an 8 year guarantee. What is guaranteed is not clear. List prices for most versions are well in excess of 30,000 euros, but subsidies are on offer. Don’t all rush at once…
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Volkswagen ID.3 latest news

Even before the Volkswagen ID.3 goes on sale, it has managed to pick up an award – from carwow!

The ID.3 collected the Most Wanted award at the 2019 carwow Car of the Year awards, says Green Car Congress.

This award is given to the brand that has the most-read news story here on carwow – and the ID.3 scooped that accolade by some margin.

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Hydrogen-powered London bus


More hopeless than hope. But for those who want to put a lot of time, effort and money into looking for ‘solutions’ to the non-problem of supposedly human-caused climate change, it’s a topic for discussion. It may have some specific uses, but cost and practicality seem to be strongly against it as a general replacement for traditional fuels.
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Can hydrogen – a relatively clean source of fuel – help power the economy of the future? – asks the BBC.

In his speech on the planned economic recovery, the prime minister said hydrogen technology is an area where the UK leads the world. He hopes it’ll create clean jobs in the future.

But is the hydrogen revolution hope or hype?

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Avinor’s electric plane [image credit: inhabitat.com]


More ‘net zero’ tomfoolery. Batteries are heavy and unlike fuel don’t allow the plane to lose weight during flight, meaning harder landings or lower carrying capacity. Meanwhile biofuel still emits carbon dioxide, which is supposed to be what the climate obsession is about.
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Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has today announced a dual boost to the UK’s nascent low carbon aviation sector, confirming the formation of a new ‘Jet Zero Council’ and the award of fresh funding for green fuel specialist Velocsys, reports BusinessGreen.

Shapps used his appearance at the daily coronavirus press conference to announce the moves, which he said would support the government’s vision of a “greener transport future”.

Building on the recent confirmation the government is to invest £2bn in new active transport infrastructure, Shapps said the challenge was “to make transport – currently our biggest emitter of greenhouse gases – part of the solution, not the problem”.

He added that decarbonisation was particularly difficult for an aviation industry that has faced an “impossible few months” as a result of the coronavirus crisis.

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Not the latest model


Obviously bribery is thought to be the only way, short of coercion, to appeal to reluctant drivers who see clearly enough the various disadvantages and high cost of EVs they were never asked if they wanted to buy. Under cover of the virus situation they plan to pour more public money down their ideological drain to appease the greenblob.
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It has been reported that Boris Johnson is considering launching a car scrappage scheme to boost the automotive industry, says The Shropshire Star.

Motoring and environmental groups have welcomed the prospect of a new car scrappage scheme encouraging motorists to switch to electric vehicles.

The AA described it as “fantastic” while Greenpeace said it would be “moving in the right direction”.

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Hydrogen-powered Toyota Mirai [image credit: Nikkei Asian Review]


A tank of hydrogen is obviously lighter than an equivalent fixed-weight battery pack, and filling up is much quicker than any recharge, but in many ways hydrogen cars struggle to compete, according to The Conversation. Very few manufacturers are interested in them any more, and list prices look higher even than EVs.
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Hydrogen has long been touted as the future for passenger cars.

The hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV), which simply runs on pressurised hydrogen from a fuelling station, produces zero carbon emissions from its exhaust.

It can be filled as quickly as a fossil-fuel equivalent and offers a similar driving distance to petrol.

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