nav-left cat-right
cat-right

Electric vehicle batteries may get much more valua...

A new study shows they can help the grid without being degraded. One of the hottest questions among energy nerds these days has to do with the interaction of electric vehicles and the electricity grid. Will EVs remain passive consumers of electricity, like toasters or refrigerators, the way they are now? Or will they be able to communicate with the grid and send power back to it when needed? The answer depends on both...

Toyota says it’s on the cusp of a major electric v...

The automaker revealed last week that it had achieved a sought-after improvement in existing lithium-ion technology by developing a “solid state” battery. Solid-state batteries — which, as you may have guessed, have solid electrolytes rather than the usual liquid — are more expensive than traditional lithium-ion cells, but they can charge incredibly quickly and store a lot more power. (Plus, they’re less likely to explode.)...

Lithium-ion batteries finally have a rechargeable ...

The rise of electric vehicles and the quest to find solutions to energy storage for the renewables industry have created a breeding ground for tech experts to develop battery technologies. Last week, Sun Microsystems co-founder Bill Joy and the company he currently backs, Ionic Materials, unveiled a solid-state alkaline battery design that they claim would be cheaper and safer than the lithium-ion battery. “What people...

Indiana’s governor just (May, 2017) signed a law t...

Gov. Eric Holcomb just slashed incentives for rooftop solar. In Indiana, solar employs nearly three times as many people as natural gas, according to the Department of Energy. You might think, given the numbers, that legislators would want to protect the state’s nascent solar industry. You would be wrong. On Tuesday, Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb (R) signed a bill that shreds incentives for rooftop solar, delivering a blow to...

Low interest energy loans would be repaid along wi...

CLEVELAND — A Connecticut-based private finance company has expanded into Ohio to offer commercial building owners up to 30-year loans to pay for energy efficiency upgrades such as heating, cooling and lighting, as well as renewable energy projects such as solar or geothermal. Greenworks Lending is looking for owners of medium and small buildings who want to cut their energy bills without having to pony up a down...

Utilities fighting against rooftop solar are only ...

Batteries are going to make rooftop solar invulnerable Several of the big trends in clean electricity depend, in one way or another, on batteries. How fast batteries get better and cheaper will help determine how fast renewable energy grows, how fast fossil fuel power plants get shut down, and how fast the vehicle fleet electrifies.  The consulting firm McKinsey & Company recently released an analysis noting that...

Rooftop Solar Dims Under Pressure From Utility Lob...

Over the past six years, rooftop solar panel installations have seen explosive growth — as much as 900 percent by one estimate. That growth has come to a shuddering stop this year, with a projected decline in new installations of 2 percent, according to projections from Bloomberg New Energy Finance. A number of factors are driving the reversal, from saturation in markets like California to financial woes at several top solar...

Pile On The Payoff = When Battery Energy Storage S...

Utility executives may be calling battery energy storage (BES) systems the holy grail of renewables integration and other industry challenges, but here’s an ironic reality: Most organizations keep that holy grail half full or even close to empty. That’s because most organizations target few value streams from battery systems, damaging the profitability of the investment. Learn how storage investments can provide value along...

How Much Does a Rooftop Solar System With Batterie...

Backup power or self-consumption? The cost of a solar-plus-storage system depends on how it’s used, say analysts from RMI and NREL. Back in April 2015, Rocky Mountain Institute and partners including Global X and HOMER Energy published a study, The Economics of Load Defection, that examined how grid-connected solar-plus-battery systems will compete with traditional electric service. The findings showed that declining costs...

Australian Electric Grid Operator Predicts Half It...

Could a combination of PV and storage cut Australian blackouts? The boss of Australia’s fifth-largest electricity distributor has hinted that residential solar-plus-storage could help prevent blackouts like the one that rocked South Australia last September. SA Power Networks CEO Rob Stobbe predicted that 50 percent of his company’s customers would have home battery storage by 2035, and 30 percent would have electric...

The Hidden Risks of Batteries: Child Labor, Modern...

With demand for cobalt and lithium surging, companies need to be aware of where they’re sourcing from.  The meteoric rise of lithium-ion batteries in the transport and IT sectors has been spurred by demand for technologies that reduce carbon emissions and decrease energy use. While this sounds like a win for everyone, there’s a darker side that could alter the perceptions of ethically minded consumers and create significant...

Tesvolt Pulls Millions of Euros to Scale the World...

“We are not low-cost engineering. Our systems are a little bit more expensive than Tesla’s, but our cycle life is quite higher.” A German state-backed venture capital fund this week invested “several million euros” in Tesvolt, a startup that is claiming the world’s longest-lasting lithium-ion battery. IBG Risikokapitalfonds III, a Sachsen-Anhalt state fund managed by Berlin-based venture capital investment house bmp...

New report shines light on installed costs and dep...

Researchers from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) are making available the most detailed component and system-level cost breakdowns to date for residential photovoltaic (PV) solar systems equipped with energy storage-and quantifying previously unknown soft costs for the first time. The report, titled “Installed Cost Benchmarks and Deployment Barriers for Residential Solar...

Tesla battery packs power the Hawaiian island of K...

Tesla battery packs power the Hawaiian island of Kauai after dark  Phil LeBeau  |  @Lebeaucarnews CNBC | 2017-03-08T17:06:08-0500 While investors on Wall Street debate whether Tesla‘s ambitious transformation from electric car maker to sustainable energy company will pay off, its industrial power packs are already having an impact on at least one state. In Hawaii, the Kauai Island Utility Cooperative (KIUC) is now...

Why home solar power should not be stored

For homes with solar power it might seem like a good idea to store the energy collected that isn’t needed for later use. However, a new report finds that storing solar energy for night-time use increases both energy consumption and emissions. Instead of a house fitted with solar panels collecting up the energy from the daytime for use during the night, this stored energy should be passed onto a national gird. This is the...