Smarter energy storage for solar and wind power

November 26, 2007
Smarter energy storage for solar and wind power
Image credit – CSIRO

Development of the first hybrid battery suitable for storing electricity from renewable energy sources such as solar and wind is now a step closer.

CSIRO and Cleantech Ventures have invested in technology start-up Smart Storage Pty Ltd to develop and commercialise battery-based storage solutions.

Director of the CSIRO Energy Transformed National Research Flagship Dr John Wright said the Smart Storage battery technology aims to deliver a low cost, high performance, high power stationary energy storage solution suitable for grid-connected and remote applications.

“Cost effective, high performance energy storage has been the missing link for renewable energy,” he said.

Current battery storage solutions undergo frequent deep discharging and are unable to meet high power demands. They are also considered expensive due to high initial cost and short battery life.

“The Smart Storage technology is based on CSIRO’s ‘Ultrabattery’ which has been successfully trialled in hybrid vehicles,” Dr Wright said.

Extensive technology development is now underway to produce a low cost and easily manufactured deep-cycle stationary battery that meets demanding variable operating conditions.

The Smart Storage technology is a hybrid battery which combines an asymmetric ‘supercapacitor’ electrode and a lead-acid battery in a single unit cell. Advanced materials used for the electrodes and current management absorb and release charge rapidly and at efficiencies well above conventional battery types.

It is expected that the discharge and charge power of the Smart Storage battery will be 50 per cent higher and its cycle-life at least three times longer than that of the conventional lead-acid counterpart.

“Most importantly, our technology development path is directed towards manufacturing in existing lead-acid battery plants,” said Andrew Pickering, a Principal at Cleantech Ventures.

“Too often new technologies simply aren’t affordable and that significantly retards market uptake.

“Investments in energy storage technologies have excellent potential for strong returns given the growing market demand and the lack of viable solutions. We now have investments in two energy storage technology companies, V-Fuel which targets grid-scale renewable energy storage applications and now Smart Storage for smaller renewable energy systems.”

Source: CSIRO

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not rated yet Nov 26, 2007
Vulvox has a battery design on the drawing board that can store 4200 mW/Hr/kg. a world record. We have started research on it already.
not rated yet Nov 27, 2007
Energy Storage is the #1 problem with most technologies today.

Utilizing renewable resources, Robotics, CellPhones, mobile computers, Vehicles...

These all suffer the same problem...
5 / 5 (1) Nov 27, 2007
What's wrong with storing energy pneumatically? 400psi air may be stored relatively easily and safely in large quantities, at a considerably lesser cost for comparable energy density. Pneumatic motors require little lubrication, and achieve greater than 90% efficiency even in the 'lower-priced' commercial models... why is this route never considered? Is there a sound technological disadvantage?
not rated yet Nov 27, 2007

Hey docatomic ... air is now on the move!

After fourteen years of research and development, Guy Negre has developed an engine that could become one of the biggest technological advances of this century. Its application to Compressed Air Technology(CAT) vehicles gives them significant economical and environmental advantages. With the incorporation of bi-energy (compressed air fuel) the CAT Vehicles have increased their driving range to close to 2000 km with zero pollution in cities and considerably reduced pollution outside urban areas.
The application of the MDI engine in other areas, outside the automotive sector, opens a multitude of possibilities in nautical fields, co-generation, auxiliary engines, electric generators groups, etc. Compressed air is a new viable form of power that allows the accumulation and transport of energy. MDI is very close to initiating the production of a series of engines and vehicles. The company is financed by the sale of manufacturing licenses and patents all over the world. drhall / bearcreekresearch
not rated yet Nov 27, 2007
Forgot to include
Compressed Air Technology info Link at
includes pictures of working vehicle, schemes
and license options

1 / 5 (1) Mar 28, 2008
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