Monday, January 13, 2014
Rhubarb Batteries for the Future!
Well, not exactly rhubarb batteries, but something pretty close.
Observers of battery technology – which is absolutely critical for electrification of the transportation system – tend to be divided into optimists and pessimists. I think it’s hard not be an optimist if you follow science and engineering news at all.
One of the latest developments, from a group of scientists and engineers at Harvard, working in conjunction with Sustainable Innovations of Glastonbury CT, is an experimental “organic mega flow” battery, which stores electrical energy in a sort of soup of organic chemicals, in this case based on organic molecules similar to those found in rhubarb! (story here) This type of battery, according to the study group, could provide a safe, economically viable solution to the problem of storing energy from renewable sources such as wind and solar. Imagine a tank of rhubarb soup next to (or instead of) your tank of home heating oil that stores all the energy you can collect from the solar panels on your roof, heating and lighting your home while charging up your electric vehicle.
Future energy solutions could be surprisingly simple in application!