In an effort to bring reliable electricity supplies to emerging regions and remote island communities, Panasonic has developed an expandable, portable, self-contained photovoltaic system. The "Power Supply Container" comes equipped with 12 of Panasonic's HIT240 solar modules on the roof and generates approximately 3 kW of electricity, with 24 lead-acid batteries capable of storing 17.2 kWh of energy used to store excess electricity.
Six years ago, Chris Hoffmann's 13-year-old daughter Lauren said, “Daddy, I’ve been thinking about this one-wheeled motorcycle I saw in a video game. Could you actually build something like that?” What happened next changed his life. In the next few months, Chris' new company begins shipping the Ryno
, a self-balancing, one-wheeled US$5250 personal mobility device that has caused tidal waves of interest across the globe. This is Chris Hoffmann’s story of what happened in the intervening six years, in his own words, and that's 20-year-old Lauren with daddy's one-wheeled motorcycle.
As Tesla’s Supercharger network expands
and Model S
sales continue to grow, so too does the company’s need to find a more economical battery solution. A proposed technology amalgamation in the form of the Gigafactory could theoretically reduce per kWh and lithium-ion costs by over 30 percent by 2020.
Lichtenstein-based start-up NanoFlowcell will reveal a working prototype it calls the Quant e-Sportlimousine at next week's Geneva Motor Show. More than just a concept car or styling exercise, the car showcases "an entirely new energy storage system."
Increasing the range of electric vehicles and improving the storage of renewable energy systems are two examples of the benefits offered by lithium-sulfur batteries
. Though they can hold four times the energy per mass of the lithium-ion batteries used today, their considerably shorter lifespan has proven something of a roadblock. Researchers from the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) have now designed a lithium-sulfur battery with four times the longevity, bringing the technology that little bit closer to maturity.
In order to better understand and protect wild stocks of salmon, it's necessary to track their whereabouts using implanted acoustic tags. Needless to say, the longer that those tags are able to transmit a signal, the greater the amount of data that can be gathered. Scientists at Washington state's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) are helping make that happen, by developing batteries that have both a smaller size and higher energy density than conventional fish tag batteries.
Though the use of silicon in lithium-ion batteries
promises a whole new world of energy storage
, it also poses several problems to a battery's durability and overall performance. A new electrode design inspired by clusters of pomegranate seeds and developed by researchers at the Department of Energy's National Accelerator Laboratory (SLAC) and Stanford University, overcomes some of these obstacles, bringing lighter and more powerful batteries closer to reality.
Just as hydrogen fuel cell vehicles – big
– start heading to the road, researchers at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia, have come up with the concept of a proton flow battery that could expand the reach of hydrogen-based electrical energy systems as well as provide a potential alternative to lithium ion batteries.
Last year, lithium-ion battery fires became a hot topic, pardon the inescapable pun, with both a Tesla automobile
and the Boeing 787 Dreamliner
succumbing to fires. In cross-disciplinary research at the University of North Carolina (UNC), a compound being studied to prevent marine life from sticking to ships may also be the solvent (and the solution) to keep lithium ion batteries from catching alight when they overheat.
Although high-capacity lithium batteries make many of today's mobile electronics possible, they do have one flaw – they occasionally catch fire
. This can happen when they overheat, and their liquid acid electrolyte ignites and leaks out. Now, however, scientists at Washington State University have created a gummy electrolyte material that could make such fires a thing of the past.