Hydrogen bubbles forming on the negative terminal of a battery in a glass of salt water. The process is horrendously inefficient, most of the energy in the battery is wasted. Do not try this at home - if you do this for more than a few seconds, things can get very messy, as the battery package can rapidly corrode and rupture, and spill chemical nasties. The salt contaminated battery is also a fire hazard.

China Promises Massively Cheaper Energy Storage

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

The CCP has decreed that five years from now, batteries and compressed air energy storage prices will drop by 30%. But even if these promises are more than hot air, a 30% reduction is nowhere near enough.

Climate Change: China to slash costs of energy-storage systems for industry to leapfrog the world by 2030, according to five-year plan

The production cost of large chemicals-based energy-storage systems will be cut by 30 per cent by 2025, putting the industry on path to leapfrog the world by 2030Compressed air energy-storage technology would realise “engineering applications” in units with 100 megawatts of capacity, according to the government’s plan

Eric Ng+ FOLLOW
Published: 8:30am, 24 Feb, 2022

China’s government plans to cut the cost of energy storage systems by 2025 to help local industries leapfrog the world as the vanguard of novel energy storage technology five years later.

The production cost of large chemicals-based systems will be cut by 30 per cent by 2025, while compressed air energy-storage technology would realise “engineering applications” in units with 100 megawatts of capacity, according to a five-year plan drafted by the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) and the National Energy Administration (NEA). The document has been sent to local government and central government-administered enterprises for implementation.

“By 2030, China’s new energy storage should see well-rounded market-based development, with proprietary technology, world leading innovation and manufacturing capabilities,” said the industry development plan for 2021-25.

Energy storage is a key part of the Chinese government strategy to decarbonise the energy system and put the world’s second-largest economy on the path to achieve carbon neutrality by 2060. Affordable energy storage is vital in turning solar and wind energy into commercially viable substitutes of fossil-fuel energy, helping to compensate for the industry’s volatility and reliance on weather patterns.

Read more: https://www.scmp.com/business/article/3168078/climate-change-china-slash-costs-energy-storage-systems-industry-leapfrog

In my opinion there is a very obvious tell that these promises were drafted by politicians rather than engineers.

Compressed air energy storage suffers a fatal thermodynamic flaw.

When you compress a gas, the gas heats up. When you decompress the gas, to withdraw energy from your storage unit, the gas sucks heat out of the environment. Ice starts rapidly forming around the decompression system.

Ice is a good heat insulator. This is a big problem, especially in winter, because unless the decompressed air heats up to ambient temperature before it is used to drive a turbine, you lose an unacceptable amount of the energy you tried to store. So you either have to severely limit decompression / energy withdrawal rates, to minimise ice formation, or you have to chip away and physically remove the ice as it forms.

A serious compressed air storage system would produce a lot of ice.

Maybe China has a solution – they have some pretty clever engineers. But in my opinion, compressed air storage is a technology which appeals more to accountants and politicians than to engineers. Looks great on paper, awful in practice.

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Tom Halla
February 24, 2022 2:06 pm

Compressed air might even be worse than hydrogen for energy storage.

Reply to  Tom Halla
February 24, 2022 2:12 pm

Hard to imagine anything worse than Hydrogen. Air does not burn.

AndyHce
Reply to  nicholas tesdorf
February 24, 2022 2:57 pm

I don’t know how economical, or uneconomical, this is but a large Japanese company seems to be moving forward on implementing it now, not at some tenuous future date. Possibly it is a way to make wide spread hydrogen use practical. for thermal plants or fuel cells. Certainly it markedly changes the safety and storage dynamics.
https://www.chiyodacorp.com/en/service/spera-hydrogen/innovations/

Bryan A
Reply to  AndyHce
February 24, 2022 3:23 pm

CHINA PROMISES CHEAP ENERGY STORAGE…
Pretty much EVERYTHING China delivers is “CHEAP” and I’m not talking Inexpensive…rather poorly made and doomed to failure

mikee
Reply to  Bryan A
February 24, 2022 6:29 pm

Hence the saying – Chinese junk!!

AndyHce
Reply to  Bryan A
February 24, 2022 9:31 pm

By the way, this is a Japanese company

Reply to  Bryan A
February 27, 2022 1:00 pm

Rubbish (referring to your comment; not to Chinese manufacture.)

BobM
Reply to  AndyHce
February 24, 2022 7:15 pm

Looks like an interesting industrial solution.

Patrick Hrushowy
Reply to  AndyHce
February 25, 2022 9:05 am

Hmmm, looks a little bit of a perpetual energy machine.

DMacKenzie
Reply to  AndyHce
February 25, 2022 9:15 am

Hahaha, ask any refinery how cheap a hydrgenation plant is….

Craig from Oz
Reply to  nicholas tesdorf
February 24, 2022 3:47 pm

Correct me, but ‘Oxygen Embrittlement’ is also not considered a concern by most professionals.

On the other hand, you can burn hydrogen, which is mostly the point of it being an energy source.

As industrial methods of storing and later transferring energy both are pretty unicorn.

G Mawer
Reply to  Craig from Oz
February 24, 2022 4:12 pm

I always thought hydrogen is a battery not an energy source……..

Marty Cornell
Reply to  G Mawer
February 24, 2022 6:06 pm

Hydrogen can indeed be viewed as a battery. That stored energy is the key ingredient in a fuel cell. But hydrogen can also be burned. As far back as 2002, BMW had both fuel cell electric vehicles as well as hydrogen powered internal combustion engines. Both remain a long way from commercial viability.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Marty Cornell
February 24, 2022 7:08 pm

“At the time of the concept’s unveiling, nuclear technology was relatively new, and it was believed that nuclear fission technology could be made compact and affordable, such that nuclear fuel would become the primary energy source in the U.S., and gasoline would become obsolete.[3] Ford envisioned a future where gas stations would be replaced with full service recharging stations, and that the vehicle would get 5000 miles before the reactor would have to be exchanged for a new one. These would be scaled-down versions of the nuclear reactors that military submarines used at the time, utilizing uranium as the fissile material. Because the entire reactor would be replaced, Ford hypothesized that the owner would have multiple choices for reactors, such as a fuel-efficient model or a high-performance model, at each reactor change. Ultimately, the reactor would use heat to convert water into steam and the power train would be steam-driven.[4]
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ford_Nucleon

Now, what does this remind me of?

AndyHce
Reply to  Marty Cornell
February 24, 2022 7:46 pm

Except elemental hydrogen doesn’t exist in any quantity on the surface of the earth unless energy is put into producing it. Burning it is only utilizing the energy that was used to make pure hydrogen from some hydrogen compound. So, burning it or using it in some kind of fuel cell is no different than getting energy from a charged battery.

The process reference above, by Chiyoda, is way to store the electricity that all the wind and solar produce when the grid can’t use it. Could it be a cheaper, better method than other batteries?

Reply to  AndyHce
February 27, 2022 11:51 am

The hydrogen burns in the air. 2H2 + O2 > 2H2O. No one is remotely wanting to create and store atomic H.

Mark B.
Reply to  Marty Cornell
February 26, 2022 2:08 pm

The point being that hydrogen has to be created by using other energy sources. No mass supplies can be created that generate more energy than used to create them. Thus it is not a source but a rather a means to make energy mobile.

tommyboy
Reply to  nicholas tesdorf
February 24, 2022 4:18 pm

Although it isn’t flammable compressed air can explosively decompress.

ATheoK
Reply to  tommyboy
February 24, 2022 5:55 pm

Far more than tank failures are coupling or line failures.

A torn hose or a slipped coupling causes the hose to whip about, often with deadly consequences.

The only other equivalent are hoses carrying water at fire hose pressures; only water hoses whip much slower than the compressed air hoses.

Shutting off the air supply and waiting for the hose to stop whipping is the safe solution.

Many planes use compressed air to turn over their engines when starting.
As before, compressors run to keep the air pressure at maximum.

diggs
Reply to  tommyboy
February 25, 2022 2:11 am

That would be my concern as I have seen pressurised air cylinders suddenly “decompress” i.e fail. Even small ones can do a lot of damage. A failure of a pressurised vessel is an instant release of all that stored energy. I am sure there will be safety systems, but if 100 megawatt unit suddenly failed and dumped all the energy in one hit, that would be the similar energy as 100 ton of TNT if my calculations are correct.

dodgy geezer
Reply to  nicholas tesdorf
February 25, 2022 1:26 am

Hydrogen burns upwards -away from the ground.

Compressed air explodes sideways – along the ground….

ResourceGuy
February 24, 2022 2:06 pm
ATheoK
Reply to  ResourceGuy
February 24, 2022 6:00 pm

From the link:

“Carlsbad company enters a manufacturing agreement that will allow its SafeCore system to be deployed in certain batteries used for consumer electronics.”

It’s a thermal shutdown for batteries in consumer electronics, not industrial battery storage solutions.

Which means phones and laptops with this installed will shut down when warm.

Since many of the fires are when the batteries are charging, I presume they shut down the charging circuit.
Meaning dead uncharged device.

Vuk
February 24, 2022 2:06 pm

Compressed air is here and works well, it goes under name of LNG

George V
February 24, 2022 2:09 pm

Merrily into the past we go. The compressed air systems will be developed “according to a five-year plan”. The communists of yore in the Soviet Union and China loved their 5 year plans. As I recall, they were not particularly successful.

RexAlan
Reply to  George V
February 24, 2022 3:14 pm

I can’t see the NetZero by 2050 plans being very successful either.

Dean
Reply to  RexAlan
February 24, 2022 9:30 pm

It might be net zero by 2150.

2050 is starting to get uncomfortably close where people will be able to remember predictions when it actually gets to 2050.

By far the best predictions to make are ones which will be well and truly after the death of the prognosticator.

Hans
February 24, 2022 2:17 pm

I believe everything these tyrants from Peking Duck
promise; just as they did not deliver the imports
agreement they made with The Donald.

Thomas E.
February 24, 2022 2:21 pm

I think what Ambri is doing seems pretty darn cool; well hot, pardon the pun.

Worth looking up. But I think their first killer app will be to allow server farms and other large energy users to do some arbitrage farming.

Reply to  Thomas E.
February 24, 2022 3:24 pm

Maybe interesting..couldn’t tell from the website how far away these are from being commercialized.

Thomas E.
Reply to  David Foster
February 24, 2022 3:54 pm

From this podcast the founder is suggesting they are in the final push for commercialization. They have units in the wild, and are building the factory.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Thomas E.
February 24, 2022 7:32 pm

The website says it uses liquid metal. The battery is inert until internal heaters melt a calcium compound and this it is ready to store or release energy.
What powers the internal heaters? Do they need to continuously supply heat to keep the metal liquid?

rbabcock
Reply to  Gunga Din
February 25, 2022 7:08 am

According to the website, once it is heated up the internal chemical reactions keep it operating at the correct temps. The only issue is it needs to be charged/recharged fairly regularly to maintain the temps. No issue for solar.. the Sun sets every night.

This is a realistic approach to storing energy from unreliable reliables. I’m not sure what the efficiency of this is, but who ever said solar and wind has to be efficient?

Last edited 5 months ago by rbabcock
Thomas E.
Reply to  Gunga Din
February 25, 2022 7:26 am

What rbabcock said.

I was really curious and looked. For the most part if there is a discharge/charge cycle ever 24 to 48 hours the chemical reactions are enough, with the uber-insulated enclosure, to keep it in its operating range.

And there is no such thing as too warm. And too cold just means to electrons come squirting out.

Where Li-ion batteries, there is a too warm, and too cold. And in most environments you have to actively cool and monitor the internal temperature of li-ion batteries.

David Kamakaris
February 24, 2022 2:24 pm

I’d be happy with a 30% reduction in energy prices such as we had while Trump was President

Derg
Reply to  David Kamakaris
February 24, 2022 2:37 pm

No kidding, the Obama Biden regime has done nothing for Americans. I am still trying to figure out what they were doing with all that taxpayer money in Ukraine.

Big Al
Reply to  Derg
February 24, 2022 3:15 pm

Ukraine is Deep State Laundry Mat for US tax dollars. Example; George Soros received 1.5 billion washed by his bank. Biden had prosecutor fired investigating. Some returned to Democrats for election scam. President Putin say NWO worship Satan. It is important to understand what his statement means. Slaves or Freedom. I hope Putin cleaning house. General Washington used Durham boat to defeat the Cabal once. Looking for repeat.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Big Al
February 25, 2022 5:26 am

If Republicans take the U.S. House, this should be one of the things they investigate. What did Obama and Biden and their cronies do in Ukraine while they were in charge?

We know Hunter made a lot of money, but there’s so much more than that.

Maybe some of this will come out in the Durham investigation.

H B
Reply to  Derg
February 24, 2022 3:26 pm

secret bio labs for starters

Robert W Turner
Reply to  Derg
February 24, 2022 4:03 pm

A certain faction has been accusing others of colluding with Russia while embezzling tax dollars through Ukraine. Trump calls this out and they try to impeach him for it, but the Ukrainian president doesn’t go along with the scam and supports Trump – even meeting with him during the scam impeachment.

Then coincidently Russia is invading Ukraine one year after this faction takes control of D.C. Sanctions are worthless with China et al. able to support Russia, and when asked if he had been pressuring China to condemn Russia, Biden responded that he wasn’t prepared to answer that question.

Derg
Reply to  Robert W Turner
February 24, 2022 4:09 pm

Let’s face it, China and Russia know that America is weak and is more worried about climate change. I blame this squarely on the CIA and Obama. Biden is just carrying water for that administrations players.

beng135
Reply to  Derg
February 26, 2022 5:06 am

I am still trying to figure out what they were doing with all that taxpayer money in Ukraine.

Money laundered out from there to all the progressive/neo-marxist interests worldwide. Ukraine was just a washing station.

Mr.
February 24, 2022 2:41 pm

Is this one of those developments where somewhere in the project plan we see the phrase
“and then a miracle happens”

Rud Istvan
February 24, 2022 2:43 pm

Compressed air energy storage (CAES) has been done. First in Germany at 42% net efficiency with no waste heat recapture, then in McIntosh AL. That facility provides 2860MWh of storage at a cost of $23/KWh at (using waste heat recapture) 54% round trip (power in-power out) efficiency. A disaster even the Chinese know they cannot fix. Maybe just trying to get gullible California to buy more Chinese solar panels.

And, if they plan on reducing chemical storage costs by 25%, it sure isn’t LiIon because cobalt and lithium prices are up sharply from growing EV demand. And every other chemical storage electricity system I am aware of (flow batteries, hydrogen, various Germany exotic renewable based systems) simply have not worked either at all or for more than a short period.

Reply to  Rud Istvan
February 24, 2022 3:23 pm

Moreover a 25% cost reduction in batteries would have no impact on the enormous cost of making wind and solar reliable. The back of my envelope estimates that 200,000 MWh or more of storage are required to make 1,000 MW of solar reliable, wherever you can occasionally get five dark cloudy days, which is most places. Wind is worse because you can get seven low wind days almost everywhere. The cost is so huge that cutting it 90% would still make it in feasible.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  David Wojick
February 24, 2022 3:55 pm

Agree. Storage cannot overcome intermitency even conceptually, let alone economically.

Tom.1
Reply to  Rud Istvan
February 24, 2022 5:00 pm

There is no conceptual issue. There isn’t even a technical issue. It’s all economics.

AndyHce
Reply to  Rud Istvan
February 24, 2022 7:59 pm

There are various efforts to convert “excess” electricity into a chemical hydrocarbon or hydrogen form that can be used in a thermal plant. When millions of $ are being paid to other jurisdictions to take the excess electricity off someone’s hands, or paid to wind and solar generators to stop producing the excess, then the economics change markedly. That isn’t to say that having a primary system that doesn’t use intermittence generation to begin with would not be better but right now that seems to be a losing battle, no matter how much we scream and stamp.

DMacKenzie
Reply to  David Wojick
February 24, 2022 3:57 pm

Probably batteries have to drop to 1/4 of their present price to hit the next level of public “unreliability acceptance” though….a drop by 25% in battery price is just not going to excite any more people than now into buying an EV second car for their grocery runs.

Dean
Reply to  DMacKenzie
February 25, 2022 12:16 am

That is simply not going to happen because the raw materials for batteries will never be there at those implied prices. Battery cost is determined by raw material prices.

Dave Andrews
Reply to  DMacKenzie
February 25, 2022 6:28 am

Well the IEA says that in 2021 the price of lithium carbonate for use in EV batteries rose by 150% compared to 2020 so don’t see battery prices dropping much in the near future.

commieBob
Reply to  Rud Istvan
February 24, 2022 6:23 pm

For quite a while now, a company has been touting an automobile powered by compressed air. As far as I can tell, and after many grandiose announcements, no practical vehicle has emerged onto the consumer market.

I usually provide a link but I was floored by the amount of bs I encountered. The Wikipedia pages on the subject seemed to be particularly egregious. Given the amount of online bs and given Brandolini’s Law, I gave up trying to find a credible link. Mind you, the observation, that no practical vehicle has emerged onto the commercial market, seems to be quite telling and should stand on its own merits.

Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7
Reply to  commieBob
February 25, 2022 6:22 am

The original Whitehead torpedo produced from 1866 to around 1904 used compressed air to drive a piston engine. Early models operated at 400 psi or so and had a range of just 200 yards at around 7 knots. By 1904 this had been improved using much higher pressures, but the icing problem limited further advances using just compressed air. Those torpedos had a range of roughly 1,000 yards at 35 knots.

To overcome icing, ambient sea water was used to heat the air and some fuel (kerosene) was injected into the cylinder and combusted, providing both heat to maintain pressure in the tank and much more energy in the engine cylinders.

By 1905 the development of compressed air only Whitehead torpedos had ceased. All further improvements on torpedo propulsion used combustion engines.

AndyHce
Reply to  Rud Istvan
February 24, 2022 7:52 pm

Chiyoda is going into commercial production (hydrogen storage and recovery) now. I don’t now if that is with government subsidies or if it is really just commercial.

Jim Berry
Reply to  Rud Istvan
February 24, 2022 7:59 pm

I think you mean $23/MWHR.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Rud Istvan
February 25, 2022 6:16 am

“Maybe just trying to get gullible California to buy more Chinese solar panels.”

That’s what I was thinking.

They want to keep the West thinking windmills and solar are viable alternatives to fossil fuels so the West will continue to destroy their economies while enhancing the economies of the windmill and solar manufacturers.

TallDave
February 24, 2022 2:43 pm

Maybe China has a solution – they have some pretty clever engineers

well they certainly have very clever reverse engineers

innovation… not so much

poured tens of billions on chip research but are still dependent on Taiwan SMC

meanwhile the housing market is collapsing even as they continue to pour several times the OECD average concrete

credit deteriorating, less room for research

my bet is the great north-south water boondoggle will fail next

pumping a river uphill is monstrously expensive

Last edited 5 months ago by TallDave
Robert W Turner
Reply to  TallDave
February 24, 2022 4:10 pm

The last time a country in Europe and a country in Asia became desperate because of a collapsing economy and then became allies was in the 1920-30s.

TallDave
Reply to  Robert W Turner
February 25, 2022 4:33 pm

yep, ironically US cronyism (political favors to silver miners) drove up the price of silver, crashing the silver-standard Chinese economy and creating the conditions for Communists to take over

also didn’t help that feckless US advisers repeatedly advised China not to finish off Mao when they had him cornered

Mr.
February 24, 2022 2:45 pm

Way off topic here, but is anyone else having trouble with their browser’s ‘back’ function working properly on just this site since some time last week?

DMacKenzie
Reply to  Mr.
February 24, 2022 3:49 pm

Yes, its a PIA only happening for me on WUWT….

DMacKenzie
Reply to  DMacKenzie
February 24, 2022 4:57 pm

…..a couple of hours later….the “disable backbutton” box has been unchecked….

tommyboy
Reply to  Mr.
February 24, 2022 4:26 pm

Right click the link and select open link in a new tab.

Smart Rock
Reply to  tommyboy
February 24, 2022 5:12 pm

And if you use Firefox you can change the settings so when you “open in new tab” the new tab opens on your screen (can’t seem to do that in Chrome, you have to click on the new tab to see it). Then close the tab when you want to go “back”. I barely use the Back button these days.

Lloyd L. Hatch
Reply to  Mr.
February 24, 2022 4:34 pm

Works for me in Chrome.

Mr.
Reply to  Lloyd L. Hatch
February 24, 2022 10:19 pm

My Android phone also has a glitch with the back button only with WUWT.

Doonman
February 24, 2022 2:47 pm

Whenever I order Chinese food takeout, I look to make sure the order is complete before leaving. People make mistakes. But when it’s only the shrimp that is missing three times, it goes beyond coincidence. Ditto for the lead in dog food, sulfur in drywall, screws without threads, capacitors that self ignite…. the list goes on.

Bob
February 24, 2022 3:37 pm

I suspect that China has a Department of Distraction, whose primary job is to publish plausible but meaningless papers like this. These papers are meant to distract the west from the fact that China is using more fossil fuel and nuclear not less. Second they need to keep the west following the pipe dream of wind and solar until China squeezes the last buck out of us buying their wind and solar products.

February 24, 2022 3:38 pm

The obvious storage for baseline power is gravity.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  ferdberple
February 24, 2022 3:58 pm

Except the world has mostly used up good hydro dam sites— unless you want to dam Yosemite like CA did Hetch Hetchy. Or, as in China, you brute force move millions for 3 Gorges.

Barry Anthony
Reply to  Rud Istvan
February 24, 2022 4:51 pm

>>Except the world has mostly used up good hydro dam sites— unless you want to dam Yosemite like CA did Hetch Hetchy. Or, as in China, you brute force move millions for 3 Gorges.<<  https://www.sciencealert.com/scientists-spot-530-000-potential-pumped-hydro-sites-to-meet-all-our-renewable-energy-needs?fbclid=IwAR02bXlu12CzaciCCnB2p_un88tjYEaKjCwB3oWgYuek_T-i9NJPuFprkcM

ATheoK
Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 24, 2022 6:49 pm

Are you claiming that these alleged scientists studied the geology, hydrology, earthquake histories, people living in the valley and simultaneously ensure downstream communities are not endangered?

Assuming that these sites are fed by water sources sufficient to the task of filling and maintaining the reservoirs. That a dam and reservoir do not impede spawning or the upstream/downstream movement of creatures that live in the water nor flood out creatures requiring highly oxygenated water?

Such amazing alleged scientists to intensely research 500,000 separate sites… NOT!

Lil-Mike
Reply to  ATheoK
February 24, 2022 10:04 pm

I lately came to the realization that damming salmon rivers is fantastically damaging to the ecosystem upstream of the dam. Consider the American River Drainage of the Sierra Nevada Range in California. In 1955, suddenly, millions of spring & fall run salmon didn’t swim up to the Sierra to spawn, die, and provide untold energy to the predators and scavengers with the carcasses. Next, many critters feed off the developing egg masses and fry. Later, these juveniles provided a food source for countless birds, snakes, small predators, etc.

Think about the loss of life caused by damming the American River in 1955.

ATheoK
Reply to  Lil-Mike
February 28, 2022 7:55 pm

On the east coast, the Delaware River used to have abundant salmon returning to spawn.

George Washington wrote about both the salmon and shad runs.

Clear cutting the forests surrounding the river and feed streams warmed the water.
Dams were built, not on the Delaware, but on many of the feeder streams.

Pennsylvania tried to restore salmon to the Delaware in the mid 20th Century, but the salmon were unable to pass by the Delaware pollution block ranging from Trenton to well south of Philadelphia.

Outside of the suburban homes, a lot of the forests have regrown
That has been mostly cleaned up, but I haven’t heard anything about them trying again.

Water is a huge problem in the West. What communities haven’t siphoned directly from the waterways, they’ve drawn from aquifers. Both contribute to pathetic stream flows

Barry Anthony
Reply to  ATheoK
February 25, 2022 6:28 am

>>Are you claiming that these alleged scientists studied the geology, hydrology, earthquake histories, people living in the valley and simultaneously ensure downstream communities are not endangered?<< I’m claiming that you clearly didn’t read the article. ; )

ATheoK
Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 28, 2022 7:43 pm

Wrong, again!

MarkW
Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 24, 2022 6:59 pm

Has your BS detector been permanently sidelined?
How big are these so called sites? Do any of them have nearby sources of water? Are any of them close enough to population centers to make the interconnections affordable? Have you ever had an independent thought in your head?

Barry Anthony
Reply to  MarkW
February 25, 2022 6:30 am

>>Has your BS detector been permanently sidelined?
How big are these so called sites? Do any of them have nearby sources of water?<< Read the article and find out.

Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 24, 2022 10:51 pm

Cant see why you got negative score. The report is correct in that pumped storage systems have different site requirements than hydro dams and may be much easier to find good sites.

A hydro dam needs a river which means all sorts of environmental problems. Pumped storage doesnt need additional water once filled.

The report may be overly optimistic but it does point to an alternative that has been unfairly overlooked.

My $600 bike battery that stores the energy equivaled of less than 3 ounces of gasoline tells me lipo batteries have a long ways to go.

Barry Anthony
Reply to  ferdberple
February 25, 2022 6:33 am

>>My $600 bike battery that stores the energy equivaled of less than 3 ounces of gasoline tells me lipo batteries have a long ways to go.<< You’re referring to total energy, not energy to the wheels as a measure of systemic efficiency. EVs have an efficiency of roughly 65%. ICEVs are around 21%. This is why the dominance of the former is inevitable.

Last edited 5 months ago by Barry Anthony
Doonman
Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 25, 2022 9:57 am

And yet when the battery is dead the efficiency is zero. Same with an empty tank.

What are the efficiencies of refueling? The total system is the total system, a fact people who push EV’s always ignore.

Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 25, 2022 11:27 am

Time is money. EV refuling is 1200 times slower than IC. Far fron efficient.

And then there is the problem of massively increasing the number of EV charging stations. Friends with EVs end up having to park at a charging station and take a cab to come visit.

Barry Anthony
Reply to  ferdberple
February 26, 2022 9:12 am

>>Time is money. EV refuling is 1200 times slower than IC. Far fron efficient.<< Charging overnight at home is quite efficient, actually.

Paul Penrose
Reply to  ferdberple
February 25, 2022 10:37 am

ferdberple,
Pumped storage needs continual replenishment of the water that evaporates off the surface. This varies by the surface area, location, etc., but you can’t fill it once and go.

Reply to  Paul Penrose
February 25, 2022 11:30 am

Only in a desert does evaporation exceed precipitation. California is a desert but no one in their right mind lives their.

menace
Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 25, 2022 9:45 pm

I checked the “best” two sites in Arkansas. One requires damming the beloved Buffalo National River so that’s never gonna happen. The other requires flooding part of a state nature preserve for the lower reservoir and 3 square miles of a lush farming valley for the upper reservoir. Two local highways will be flooded. Oddly the height of the upper reservoir at over 1900′ is about 100′ higher than the highest terrain for which it is located and the illustrated shape of the reservoir does not match the topographic contour lines at all. Possibly the idea is this 3 square mile reservoir will have to be walled in by miles of levees up to 100 ft high? The creek the upper reservoir is built on does not have enough watershed to maintain it so it would have to be filled from the lower reservoir.

Smart Rock
Reply to  Rud Istvan
February 24, 2022 5:27 pm

China is planning a massive new dam on the Brahmaputra River, they claim will produce 60GW. Big dam, huge reservoir, seismically active area. Downstream, India and Bangladesh are worried.
https://www.opindia.com/2021/04/china-plans-super-dam-on-brahmaputra-river-three-gorges-tibet-and-india/

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Smart Rock
February 25, 2022 6:26 am

“Brahmaputra River”

That doesn’t sound like a Chinese name.

Reply to  Rud Istvan
February 24, 2022 10:27 pm

A hydro dam needs a river to supply water. Gravity storage does not need water except the initial fill.

A hydro dam has no need for a reservoir at the base. Gravity storage does. A hydro fam typically stores months worth of grid power. Gravity storage need only store 1 week.

Thus it is a mistakr to dismiss gravity storage on the basis of hydro dams because the site requirements are quite different.

MarkW
Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 24, 2022 7:00 pm

When you find a meaningless article, you pump it over and over again. Are you paid by the cite?

Reply to  Eric Worrall
February 25, 2022 11:34 am

You would need a huge expensive battery ro power a 2kw heater for a day. Then you have the lifetine problem. Batteries wear out quickly when cycled. Pump storage does nor.

Reply to  Eric Worrall
February 25, 2022 11:40 am

Not to mention the huge array of solar panels you need to generate 2kw for 24 hours. Realistically you need 8kw of panels minimum and a sunny location.

Batteries, panels, location. It all adds up and without location it isn’t even an option. Add in the lifetime factor and the low cost of power from fossil fuels very hard to break even

alastair gray
February 24, 2022 3:49 pm

Compressed air storage
According to google a 5 litre bottle pressurised to 200 bar (about 2800psi ) contains 530 KJ of compressed air energy = 0.1429 KW hr
So to get a GWhr of storage we need 30,000 5 litre containers ( think of 30000 gallon containers or 10000 15 litre scuba tanks.
the storage efficiency is about 50%. so to back up a single 10MW turbine for 100 hours
we need about 20000 scuba tanks at about $300 each. That is $6 million. Our UK grid at the moment is 40 GW so to back it up we need 80 million Scuba tanks costing $24 Billion
Now multiply that figure by 3 when in halcyon net zero days we need 120 GW of power
That is a lot of scuba tanks- about 3 per person for all UK citizens

Last edited 5 months ago by alastair gray
Robert W Turner
February 24, 2022 3:50 pm

I think CAES has a chance in natural dry gas reservoirs. The gas is kept at a higher temperature in the reservoir and the decompression could simply take place at multiple outlets. Still have no clue about the economics, probably have a lot to do with the price difference in electricity buying/selling.

alastair gray
February 24, 2022 3:51 pm

Compressed air energy-storage technology would realise “engineering applications” in units with 100 megawatts of capacity, according to the government’s plan

Chinese hacks are just as ignorant as western ones. Battery capacity is measured in Megawatt Hours not megawatts so the above statement is meaningless

John Bell
February 24, 2022 3:54 pm

I worked on hydraulic hybrid trucks, where high pressure oil is fed in to an accumulator and so the storage of energy is a confined compressed gas, nitrogen. Never caught on because too heavy, noisy, expensive and lack of subsidies. That was an EPA boondoggle, million$ wasted.

DMacKenzie
Reply to  John Bell
February 25, 2022 9:37 am

…million$ wasted….
You dont understand government monetary theory (/s)….that money that you say was wasted went to pay peoples’ salaries, mortgage payments and groceries. Only just one economic layer removed from the positive returns expected by businessmen and banks…Big gov’t is very at ease with this concept, for example military spending on expensive hardware that they don’t really want to ever use, but in the meantime is a job creation program for workers, wealth creation for corporations and investors…..

John Bell
February 24, 2022 3:56 pm

One more thing, remember that little plastic French car a few years back which was to run on compressed air? Seemed crazy at the time…still does.

February 24, 2022 4:06 pm

I can get 30% cheaper things before, during, and after every Christmas season.

Last edited 5 months ago by Curious George
Barry Anthony
February 24, 2022 4:10 pm

Wind, solar, and storage are already more cost-effective than thermal electricity generation. And with prices still dropping, the deployment rate of those energy sources will only increase. https://reneweconomy.com.au/wind-solar-and-storage-still-cheapest-by-far-latest-csiro-gencost-report-says-34929/?fbclid=IwAR0LGyg083nnfzTCznrIp6mFIcEobWti-Lpoh-KjBboUSfAnoYXnfRsQ9n0

Last edited 5 months ago by Barry Anthony
markl
Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 24, 2022 5:30 pm

If they are so cost effective how come the more wind and solar we add the more electricity rates increase?

Barry Anthony
Reply to  markl
February 24, 2022 5:56 pm

>>If they are so cost effective how come the more wind and solar we add the more electricity rates increase?<<

Here are the four states in the US with the most wind power (over 35%), and their kWh cost:
 
Iowa: 8.97 (57% wind)
Kansas: 10.38 (43% wind)
Oklahoma: 7.63 (31% wind)
Texas: 8.36 (24% wind)

The US average is now 10.59. (And the recent spike in gas and coal prices are going to drive the US average up even more, to be sure.)

You were saying?

Drake
Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 24, 2022 6:56 pm

All plains states with a population density in the bottom 50% of the US.

When New Jersey has more than 10% Wind and Solar, get back to us.

As has been discussed here at WUWT, the EASY wind and solar have the greatest returns. The wind in these states is the EASY, was installed early in the process and was the most heavily federally subsidized.

Also, ALL have easy access to natural gas so can use that to fill out for the unreliable output of wind and solar.

Since they were early, and you seem to know so much about wind Barry, when do these states need to begin replacing their earliest installations, and how much is that going to cost?

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Drake
February 25, 2022 6:34 am

I know Oklahoma stopped subsidizing future windmills last year. The legislators said if they continued to do so, it would bankrupt the State.

And all these States with large numbers of windmills had a lot of problems supplying electricity to their citizens in February 2021 arctic blast.

Those rolling blackouts turned out to be very expensive.

Barry Anthony
Reply to  Drake
February 25, 2022 6:36 am
MarkW
Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 24, 2022 7:06 pm

Why am I not surprised to find out that Barry doesn’t know the difference between output and face plate power. It’s almost as if he specializes in not knowing what he’s talking about.

AndyHce
Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 24, 2022 8:17 pm

Last time I looked at Iowa’s official website, the actual wind capacity factor meant that less than 10% of their electricity came from wind. Therefore the actual 80% from coal had little trouble keeping their grid stable (the six warmer months of the year averaged 16% wind capacity factor) Iowa may well have more wind power installed now but I doubt that 10% actual has grown to 57%.

Barry Anthony
Reply to  AndyHce
February 25, 2022 6:37 am

>>Last time I looked at Iowa’s official website, the actual wind capacity factor meant that less than 10% of their electricity came from wind.<< Post an official link that makes this claim. We’ll wait, patiently. https://iub.iowa.gov/iowas-electric-profile

Last edited 5 months ago by Barry Anthony
Bill Toland
Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 25, 2022 12:49 am

This study shows that the more solar and wind capacity a country has, the higher its cost of electricity.

https://media4.manhattan-institute.org/sites/default/files/R-0319-MM.pdf

Last edited 5 months ago by Bill Toland
Bill Toland
Reply to  Bill Toland
February 25, 2022 9:18 am

This is the conclusion to the above study.

Hydrocarbons—oil, natural gas, and coal—are the world’s principal energy resource today and will continue to be so in the foreseeable future. Wind turbines, solar arrays, and batteries, meanwhile, constitute a small source of energy, and physics dictates that they will remain so. Meanwhile, there is simply no possibility that the world is undergoing—or can undergo—a near-term transition to a “new energy economy”.

Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 24, 2022 5:48 pm

I am with you. Wind, solar, and storage don’t need subsidies anymore.

Barry Anthony
Reply to  Curious George
February 24, 2022 5:58 pm

It’s always good for a chuckle when fossil fuel shills pretend to be offended by the subsidies renewables receive, all the while pulling down trillions in subsidies around the world each year. https://e360.yale.edu/digest/fossil-fuels-received-5-9-trillion-in-subsidies-in-2020-report-finds#:~:text=Fossil%20Fuels%20Received%20%245.9%20Trillion%20In%20Subsidies%20in%202020%2C%20Report%20Finds,-An%20open%2Dpit&text=Coal%2C%20oil%2C%20and%20natural%20gas,8%20percent%20of%20the%20total.

Lil-Mike
Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 24, 2022 10:10 pm

The subsidies fossil fuel receives are direct payments to the poor for utility bills.

Tax deduction for exploration expenses.

That’s not subsidy.

MarkW
Reply to  Barry Anthony
February 24, 2022 7:04 pm

Wow, is there any lie you won’t repeat?
Even without considering backup, renewables are many times more expensive than thermal electricity generation, and prices are rising, not dropping. Every time the subsidies are stopped, people not only stop deploying renewables, but usually abandon the ones already deployed.

Barry Anthony
Reply to  MarkW
February 25, 2022 6:50 am

>>Wow, is there any lie you won’t repeat?<< Is there any long-debunked old trope you won’t attempt? Here’s the latest Lazard Levelized Cost of Energy report. This is considered to be the industry’s most accurate and objective. Check page 8. https://www.lazard.com/media/451881/lazards-levelized-cost-of-energy-version-150-vf.pdf

And an easily accessible real-world reference can be seen at this link, a current snapshot of South Australia’s energy market generation and pricing. Food for thought? https://opennem.org.au/energy/sa1/?range=30d&interval=1d

Craig from Oz
February 24, 2022 4:35 pm

When you decompress the gas, to withdraw energy from your storage unit, the gas sucks heat out of the environment. Ice starts rapidly forming around the decompression system.

Has China just invented refrigeration?

John Bell
February 24, 2022 4:55 pm

On you tube recently, I love old films like this, lots of power and energy in action! (Periscope films)
1947 WARNER BROTHERS PATRIOTIC FILM “POWER BEHIND THE NATION” INDUSTRY & RAILROADS 72042

Tom.1
February 24, 2022 5:03 pm

Compressed air storage could easily work from a technical standpoint. The economics are another matter.

n.n
February 24, 2022 5:08 pm

Environmental and labor arbitrage? Shared responsbility? Prices are easy.

Brad-DXT
February 24, 2022 5:18 pm

The production cost of large chemicals-based systems will be cut by 30 per cent by 2025″

They are obviously going to make batteries that utilize the thermal properties of burning batteries.
Everyone thought those burning hulks were bugs in design. They were just prototypes with a new feature. 😉

ATheoK
February 24, 2022 5:41 pm

“Compressed air energy storage suffers a fatal thermodynamic flaw.

When you compress a gas, the gas heats up.”

Sure. Compressed gas is used to power tools everywhere…

First thing we learn is that when compressed gas cools, the water in the air condenses out.
Water traps are installed in compressed air lines and we workers were required to drain the water before using attached tools.
Gasses compress, water does not, comparatively.

Most compressed gas users have motors installed to keep the air pressure up.
Units running solely on compressed gas lose energy as compressed air becomes less compressed.

When I worked at US Steel, a couple of times per year us smaller laborers had to climb inside large compressed air storage tanks and sandblast the interiors free of rust.

Afterwards, we had to carry special paint inside the tanks and paint the insides. At least until we started fainting.

It was such a fun job, that I etched into the inside metal ‘IHTFP’ with the sandblaster. If you don’t know what that means, perhaps it’s best that way.

Of course, fate took a hand and the head foreman for our area picked a tank and climbed in the tank to check our work… Where my etched acronym could be clearly seen. My foreman was mortified, or so he said between laughs.

Steel tanks work excellently. Since they’re kept in one place, there is no need for aluminum.

Last edited 5 months ago by ATheoK
Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7
Reply to  ATheoK
February 25, 2022 6:43 am

It was such a fun job, that I etched into the inside metal ‘IHTFP’ with the sandblaster. If you don’t know what that means, perhaps it’s best that way.

“I Have Truly Found Paradise”? At least that’s what you tell the supervisor who catches you doing it.

Shoki Kaneda
February 24, 2022 7:34 pm

Is this the new CCP five year plan? But we’ll have fusion energy by then, right? Fifteen years ago, pundits said fusion would be generating, cheap, clean power in twenty years.

Kevin
February 24, 2022 7:59 pm

Have they stolen the technology from the West to do this or are they going to develop it themselves?

February 24, 2022 9:57 pm

I believe gravity storage can be done without a hydro dam.
Hydro dams need a supply of water. But a gravity battery only needs to fill once then allow for evaporation.

Hydro dams allow you to store months worth of baseline power. Something beyond the wildest dream for batterys. Gravity storage can be much smaller than a hydro dam.

It would seem anywhere with a cliff a couple of hundred feet high could be suitable. A reservoir top and bottom with a penstock between with a pump/turbine at the base. In most climates rainfall exceeds evaporation.

The size of the reservoir would determine how many days power could be stored. These could be simple poly line earthworks.

Batteries are mobile but why do you need that for grid storage. It would seem that you dont need a dam site to make a gravity storage system.

All the tech already rxists to build these gravity storage systems today.

Auto
Reply to  ferdberple
February 25, 2022 3:00 am

Fredberple,
Thanks.
Not sure why the downvotes.
However, these ideas seem to attract local opposition – NIMBY might be alive n well.
And, of course, the watermelons will oppose anything that works (even if not very economically).
The Coulsdon suggestion, at Rickman Hill, seems to be an epitome.
The use of half the Recreation Ground, @Rickman Hill Park, is anecdotally opposed by many of those living facing the park. This despite potentially having an area of perhaps a hectare, with a head of about 50-60 metres (perhaps more if an artificial upwards extension is added).
London is substantially surrounded by hills.
It may be possible to find other potential sites around London.
Economically – ahh . . .
Possibly a more difficult questions.

Auto.

griff
Reply to  ferdberple
February 25, 2022 7:34 am

absolutely…

This project uses two old mining pits for the upper and lower reservoirs…

World-first Australian project repurposing mine pits for pumped hydro – Genex Power

Reply to  griff
February 25, 2022 11:52 am

Yikes! Griff and I agree. Don’t cancel me climate gods. I will wear the hair shirt.

Roger Clague
February 24, 2022 10:45 pm

“When you compress a gas, the gas heats up“.

pv = nRT is a statement of the physical mechanism that pressure is caused by the motion of molecules.
That is T causes p Gay- Lussac Law
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1pVVZGOBIVg

p does not cause T

Can you link to a lab demo of p causes T ?

kzb
Reply to  Roger Clague
February 25, 2022 4:59 am

The lab demo is the simple bicycle tyre pump ! Yes it is a thermodynamically naive statement to say p “causes” T, but most people won’t understand thermodynamics.
It’s certainly true that compressing air makes it hotter and releasing it into the atmosphere makes it colder, and that is all that most people need to know.

Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7
Reply to  Roger Clague
February 25, 2022 7:23 am

Would you accept the operation of a diesel engine as a lab demo? A compression ratio of roughly 24:1 is sufficient to generate enough heat to ignite the fuel-air mixture.

When scuba tanks are filled from a compressor, they should be immersed in water to cool the heated air inside. Otherwise you get a “short fill” when the tank eventually cools and the pressure drops.

Reply to  Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7
February 25, 2022 11:47 am

Also scuba tanks suffer from thermal stress while charging, especially when charged quickly from a storage bank.

This is from many years ago but there was a story that an alloy/alu tank had failed explosively as a result.

We never charged tanks without cooling afterwards.

griff
February 25, 2022 12:17 am

The UK govt yesterday announced £6.7 million for 24 long term storage pilot projects… including a second stage of the existing compressed air pilot already operating on a small scale.

Not just the Chinese pushing into long term storage…

Disputin
Reply to  griff
February 25, 2022 2:45 am

No, there is a ready supply of fools.

Dave Andrews
Reply to  griff
February 25, 2022 6:48 am

At c£280,000 per project I woudn’t call that “pushing long term storage”

dodgy geezer
February 25, 2022 1:25 am

Do NOT store energy! Stored energy is ALWAYS dangerous, and large amounts of stored energy are disasters waiting to happen….

dk_
February 25, 2022 2:29 am

Hmm…
Did anyone else notice the lack of mention of lithium? Or the absence of the term “energy density?”

Lead-acid and Carbon-foam-acid batteries are already less than 1/3 the price of lithium. If one was to avoid bio-hazardous material and pollution costs, they could be much less expensive.

“Chemical energy storage” is can also describe methanol and syngas. Also petroleum, natural gas and coal.

Just ought to mention that a couple ways to make a commodity 30% cheaper might be to use slave labor or to force pricing via a cartel or oligopoly. A price reduction of 30% might not make much of a difference if there’s more than 10% inflation.

Did anyone notice that they didn’t mention export?

Last edited 5 months ago by dk_
Serge Wright
February 25, 2022 3:17 am

After seeing the mess unravel in Europe, can anyone suggest why it’s a good idea to remove your own energy independence and become 100% dependent on RE products from China ?

kzb
February 25, 2022 4:54 am

Thin news day today ??
Don’t you think some clever engineers would solve the ice problem in a modern large scale energy storage plant ?!
In any case, the idea is to store the compression heat (e.g. in rocks) and use it to heat up the decompressing air. This also increases the cycle efficiency, which would be around 50% without it. With the re-heating stage it could be 70-80% efficient.

vboring
February 25, 2022 7:13 am

The power system doesn’t have a valuable use for energy storage.

Storage does two jobs. 1) It prevents curtailment of RE. 2) It provides capacity*

Getting paid to prevent curtailments means that your storage system is ready to consume energy when others aren’t. This somewhat impedes your ability to do your other job. You want to be fully charged to provide capacity. You want to be at partial charge to prevent curtailment. If you get either one wrong, there are substantial performance penalties – and sometimes people die in the cold.

You provide capacity – but only until you are out of charge. If the maximum capacity event is a week long – like many winter storms are – then you need to be at least a week long battery. If there’s the slightest chance that two of these storms hit in a row, then you need to be a two weeks battery. In real life, the solution is to have a battery and a generator. The battery reduces the number of times per year that the generator starts.

Starts determine maintenance costs, so this job is worth something. Fuel costs aren’t a significant driver of economics for this type of plant.

griff
February 25, 2022 7:38 am

This Canadian firm is already working on compressed air energy storage projects in Canada and Australia – and look who invested…

Goldman Sachs invests $250m in Hydrostor compressed air energy storage – DCD (datacenterdynamics.com)

Coach Springer
February 25, 2022 7:49 am

Maybe they’ll burn the ice off with coal.

DMacKenzie
Reply to  Coach Springer
February 25, 2022 9:47 am

Most of them use natural gas to heat the air before expanding the air through a turbine/generator. This does not endear them to greenies but does improve their load levelling performance.

Interestingly, the best way to load-level always works out to NOT buy electricity at the low price, and generate electricity with a natural gas driver at high-price time….hahaha….

Last edited 5 months ago by DMacKenzie
DrTorch
February 25, 2022 7:56 am

Actually, in hot climes, having the compressed air cool down could be a benefit.

https://www.downtoearth.org.in/blog/air/compressed-air-vehicles-can-be-a-potential-mode-of-urban-transport-in-india-62987

Ann Banisher
February 25, 2022 9:49 am

I think the Chinese may be technically correct in saying that prices will be 30% less in 2030… they just left off ‘based on the Yuan’. If measuring in dollars, it will be twice as much.

Nik
February 26, 2022 3:16 am

Reads like one of those Five Year Plans (1920s-1991) or a Great Leap Forward plan (1950s-60s) that were popular in the USSR and Red China. These plans were so successful that the 13th soviet plan lasted only 1 year due to the economic collapse of the USSR in 1991.

February 26, 2022 4:49 am

Accordingbto this source: https://news.energysage.com/tesla-powerwall-battery-complete-review/

A Tesla powerwall costs about $14k for 14kwh installed. So, to run a 2kw heater for 24 hours you need about $50 thousand worth of vatteries.

$50 thousand to run a heater for a day!! Now a 500 ton weight might seem like a lot. It is a cube of water less than 4 meters on edge.

Or you can buy a 2kw genwrator for $500 and fuel it with less than $20 worth of gas and also run the heater for 24 hours.

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