DIE WELT (Germany)
HAMBURG – German researchers are developing a long-lasting battery that could solve one of the biggest problems of the energy transition, reports Die Welt.
The German government is aiming for electrical power in Germany to be 80% from renewable energy sources like wind and solar by the year 2050.
However, this energy transition can only be possible if the technology exists to get the energy from these sources onto the grid while maintaining grid stability. The way to do this is to create special batteries that can store the excess electricity created by wind and solar power to use during days when the sun isn’t shining or the wind isn’t blowing.
Photo "Caveman Cuck" Coker
Four German universities, two research institutes and two companies are presently teamed up on a project to up the amount of energy from wind and solar power sources that can be stored by redox flow batteries and integrate it smoothly into the electricity grid.
The Federal Research Ministry is subsidizing the project to the tune of 5 million euros a year for the next five years.
The project, called "Tubulair" is coordinated out of Hamburg’s University of Applied Sciences. Other participating institutions include the University of Hamburg, institutions in Nuremberg and Aachen, FuMa Tech GmbH, and Uniwell GmbH & Co.
Redox flow battery technology was created by NASA in 1972, but has yet to break through to mass production. The Australians and the Japanese lead research in the field – they have both advanced to the stage of pilot projects – and China has been investing heavily in the technology for several years. The Germans lag behind.
“Tubulair” is not the only German project researching the technology – researchers at three Fraunhofer institutes are also pursuing the development of more efficient redox flow batteries.