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Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Discussions of conventional and alternative energy production technologies.

Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby Graeme » Thu 24 Apr 2014, 19:00:32

17 Emerging Energy Technologies That Will Change The World

Below are technologies related to energy under three key areas of accelerating change: Storage, Smart grid and Electricity generation. Energy storage involves new, cost-effective ways of storing energy, either in improved batteries, as new fuels or other ways. A smart grid is a set of technologies that pairs information with moving electricity around, enabling more efficient generation and use of energy. Electricity generation is characterised by technologies that generate power from unused sources and that more efficiently produce electric power or fuels from sources in use today.

We have included predictions based on consultation with experts of when each technology will be scientifically viable (the kind of stuff that Google, governments, and universities develop), mainstream (when VCs and startups widely invest in it), and financially viable (when the technology is generally available on Kickstarter).

Storage
Fuel cells: Unlike batteries, fuel cells require a constant source of fuel and oxygen to run, but they can produce electricity continually for as long as these inputs are supplied. They inherently displace the need for natural gas turbines, and are ideally used for stationary power generation or large passenger vehicles such as buses (especially at energy-dense future iterations of the technology).

Scientifically viable in 2013; mainstream in 2015; and financially viable in 2016.

Lithium-air batteries: Advances in materials technology is enabling the advance of high energy Li-air batteries which promise an energy density that rivals gasoline, offering a five-fold increase compared to traditional Li-Ion batteries. By using atmospheric oxygen instead of an internal oxidizer, these batteries could dramatically extend electric vehicle range.

Scientifically viable in 2017; mainstream in 2018; and financially viable in 2020.

Hydrogen energy storage & transport: Hypothetical evolution of existing power grids, transporting and storing hydrogen instead of electricity. Could be used in combination with various kinds of energy transformation methods, minimising loss and maximizing storage capacity.

Scientifically viable in 2019; mainstream in 2021; and financially viable in 2022.

Thermal storage: Often accumulated from active solar collector or from combined heat and power plants, and transferred to insulated repositories for use later in various applications, such as space heating, domestic or process water heating.

Scientifically viable in 2022; mainstream in 2024; and financially viable in 2027.

Smart Grid
First-generation smart grid: Electrical meters that record consumption of electric energy in real time while communicating the information back to the utility for monitoring and billing purposes. Can be used for remote load-balancing such as disabling non-essential devices at peak usage

Scientifically viable in 2014; mainstream in 2015; and financially viable in 2016.

Distributed generation: Generates electricity from many small energy sources instead of large centralized facilities. Centralized power plants offer economies of scale, but waste power during transmission, and are inefficient in rapidly adapting to grid needs.

Scientifically viable in 2017; mainstream in 2021; and financially viable in 2022.

Smart energy network: Speculative global energy & power infrastructure and set of standards which can be used interchangeably. Could theoretically mimic characteristics of the Internet in channeling heat, energy, natural gas (and conceivably hydrogen) from local and distant sources depending on global demand.

Scientifically viable in 2019; mainstream and financially viable in 2020.

Electricity Generation
Tidal turbines: A form of hydropower that converts tidal energy into electricity. Currently used in small scale, with the potential for great expansion.

Scientifically viable in 2015; mainstream and financially viable in 2017.

Micro stirling engines: Micrometer sized power generators that transform energy into compression and expansion strokes. Could hypothetically be 3D-printed on the fly and cover entire heat-generating surfaces in order to generate power.

Scientifically viable in 2020; mainstream in 2026; and financially viable in 2027.

Solar panel positioning robots: Small-scale robots able to re-position solar panels depending on weather conditions. More efficient than attaching each panel to motorised tracking assemblies.

Scientifically viable in 2014; mainstream in 2016; and financially viable in 2017.

Second-generation biofuels: New biofuel technologies, such as cellulosic ethanol and biodiesel from microalgae, promise to produce conventional fuel-compatible energy at low or zero greenhouse gas emissions.

Scientifically viable in 2016; mainstream in 2017; and financially viable in 2021.

Photovoltaic transparent glass: Glass with integrated solar cells which converts IR and some visible light into electricity. This means that the power for an entire building can be supplemented using the roof and façade areas.

Scientifically viable in 2017; mainstream in 2020; and financially viable in 2021.

Third-generation biofuels: Moving beyond today’s organisms, 3rd generation biofuels involve genetic modification of organisms to produce new fuels by unconventional means. Examples include direct production of hydrogen from highly efficient algae, and production of energy-dense furans for automotive use.

Scientifically viable in 2022; mainstream in 2024; and financially viable in 2025.

Space-based solar power: Collecting solar power in space, beamed back as microwaves to the surface. A projected benefit of such a system is much higher collection rates than what is possible on earth. In space, transmission of solar energy is unaffected by the filtering effects of atmospheric gasses.

Scientifically viable in 2025; mainstream in 2027; and financially viable in 2028+.

Micro-nuclear reactors: A small, sealed version of a nuclear reactor (approximately a few tens of meters in length) capable of being shipped or flown to a site. Currently able to provide 10 MW of power, plans are for 50 MW capacity in the near future.

Scientifically viable in 2022; mainstream and financially viable in 2023.

Inertial confinement fusion (break-even): An approach to fusion that relies on the inertia of the fuel mass to provide confinement. To achieve conditions under which inertial confinement is sufficient for efficient thermonuclear burn, a capsule (generally a spherical shell) containing thermonuclear fuel is compressed in an implosion process to conditions of high density and temperature.

Scientifically viable in 2013; mainstream and financially viable in 2021.

Thorium Reactor: Thorium can be used as fuel in a nuclear reactor, allowing it to be used to produce nuclear fuel in a breeder reactor. Some benefits are that thorium produces 10 to 10,000 times less long-lived radioactive waste and comes out of the ground as a 100% pure, usable isotope, which does not require enrichment.

Scientifically viable in 2025; mainstream in 2026; and financially viable in 2027.


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Re: Future Energy Technology News

Unread postby kublikhan » Thu 24 Apr 2014, 19:19:55

What the heck is with this list? Fuel cells were not scientifically viable until 2013? NASA was using fuel cells back in the 60s. Smart meters won't be financially viable until 2016? Millions of these things are being installed everywhere today.
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Re: Future Energy Technology News

Unread postby Graeme » Thu 24 Apr 2014, 19:34:27

The authors have consulted experts. Perhaps they mean when these techs will accelerate change as mentioned in the first paragraph.
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Re: Future Energy Technology News

Unread postby Graeme » Wed 30 Apr 2014, 20:11:21

What It Will Take to Farm Sunlight from Space

With the advent of silicon-based photovoltaic solar panels—the kind that directly convert solar energy to electrical current—some 60 years ago, researchers immediately looked to the skies as the ideal place to collect solar energy. Up there, you don't have miles and miles of atmosphere and clouds absorbing, scattering, or blocking out the sun's incoming rays. That means photovoltaic panels should, conceivably, be able to operate at (or very near) their theoretical efficiency limits. Plus, if you position a solar power satellite (SPS) properly over the equator, it will only reside in the Earth's shadow for a few hours every year and thereby provide nearly non-stop energy.

The idea of space-based solar power (SBSP) was formalized in the seminal 1968 report, Power from the Sun: Its Future, by American aerospace engineer Peter Glaser. The paper set forth a conceptual system for collecting unhampered solar energy from massive extra-atmospheric arrays of photovoltaic cells set in geosynchronous orbit above the equator, and transmitting it wirelessly back to Earth where it would be used by terrestrial power grids. In theory, with enough orbiting "solar farms," the energy needs of not just the U.S. but the entire world could be met.

In his paper, Glaser argued that while building, launching, and operating such a power plant was currently beyond the reach of scientific knowledge at the time, those technological advances would be within our grasp in the coming years and decades. So, are we any closer to freeing the entire world from its energy woes with orbiting solar farms than we were at the start of the Space Age? Sure, but we've still got some work to do before that actually happens. Specifically, there are a number aspects that we need to iron out before something like this actually comes to fruition.


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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby Graeme » Thu 08 May 2014, 17:32:32

Citi: These 10 Technologies Will Utterly Transform The World

Electric Vehicles
Description: Citi’s interesting suggestion, from analyst Itay Michaeli, for wider market goes like this: “The consumer purchases a new EV at a much lower price ($11-13k depending on size/ cost) and does so worry free of any residual value risk tied to future battery technology advancements. The operator would own the batteries, bill customers and operate battery switching stations that allow consumers to quickly (and robotically) switch batteries when desired or when taking very long drives.”

Insane stat: Tesla plans to offer a Gen-3 model priced at $US35,000. “A $US35k price point is historically what’s required to begin the path towards achieving sizeable volume of over 100k units (typically 2-3 years after launch), in theory enough to crown Tesla as the 1st mover in the affordable pure EV market.”

Relevant graphic: This cost comparison table

Electric vehicles citi
Energy Storage
Here is the clearest justification for energy storage we’ve yet seen, from Citi’s Jason Channell: Solar generates its electricity when most households are empty, or have limited demand. Saving that electricity for later would dramatically offset consumption prices. He continues: “The potentially greater value is in terms of avoided capacity payments, and the grid stability which storage could provide. If storage could be combined with smart metering and demand response, we could conceivably move to a situation where load is managed (i.e., by dishwashers etc. being turned on automatically when demand was lowest and vice versa) and supply is being managed by storage. This could significantly reduce the amount of stranded capacity and hence wasted cost on an electricity system, as well as improve its reliability.

Insane stat: In the first quarter of 2014, solar and wind combined generated 28% of German electricity.

Relevant graphic: Here is the breakdown of the potential market size for different storage technologies


Image

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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Thu 08 May 2014, 19:54:54

Finally a practical way to save the Ukraine from Russian NG...ship them Bakken LNG: North Dakota LNG, LLC has joined North Dakota Governor Jack Dalrymple and other state officials at an event to announce the arrival of an LNG production facility. Located in Tioga, North Dakota, the plant will be the first-to-market in the state to produce 10,000 gallons per day (GPD) starting in Summer 2014. A phase two facility is scheduled to be operational in the fourth quarter of 2014 and capable of producing 66,000 GPD. NDLNG targets the drilling, fracking and transportation sectors of the unconventional oil and gas industry and will help meet the need for a cost-effective power source by converting natural gas feedstock into value-added liquid fuels. - See more at: http://www.rigzone.com/news/oil_gas/a/1 ... ppqN7.dpuf
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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby Graeme » Thu 08 May 2014, 23:16:01

Your post has nothing to do with future energy tech! It's last century tech.
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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Fri 09 May 2014, 04:57:05

Graeme - No one the planet has every developed small scale LNG capabilities before during the last century or even during this century until now. That makes the technology developed to capture the NG that is being flared for lack of pipelines brand spanking new technology. Many here have been pissing and moaning about the ND NG flares for years. This "new" technology should please them.

I suppose you and I have different definitions of "new".
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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby Graeme » Fri 09 May 2014, 07:23:50

The LNG industry developed slowly during the second half of the last century because most LNG plants are located in remote areas not served by pipelines, and because of the large costs to treat and transport LNG. Constructing an LNG plant costs at least $1.5 billion per 1 mmtpa capacity, a receiving terminal costs $1 billion per 1 bcf/day throughput capacity and LNG vessels cost $200 million–$300 million.


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Re: Future Energy Technology News

Unread postby pstarr » Fri 09 May 2014, 15:54:08

kublikhan wrote:What the heck is with this list? Fuel cells were not scientifically viable until 2013? NASA was using fuel cells back in the 60s. Smart meters won't be financially viable until 2016? Millions of these things are being installed everywhere today.
I know what you mean, Kub.

Thermal storage: Often accumulated from active solar collector or from combined heat and power plants, and transferred to insulated repositories for use later in various applications, such as space heating, domestic or process water heating.

Scientifically viable in 2022; mainstream in 2024; and financially viable in 2027.

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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby Graeme » Fri 09 May 2014, 17:44:17

A Plug That Can Reduce Your Energy Bill by Half

The Parce One smart plug works by measuring and controlling the energy usage of your electronic devices. The plug is Wi-Fi enabled, so it also gives users access to detailed reports and even suggestions on how to reduce energy use. The makers of the Parce One smart plug have recently run a successful IndieGoGo campaign and the funds they raised will go towards the further development of the plug with a view towards mass production in the near future.


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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby pstarr » Fri 09 May 2014, 23:48:06

Does the Parce One smart plug actually turn off the TV and grant said consumer a real life? That would work wonders.
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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby Graeme » Sat 24 May 2014, 18:09:20

Scientists discover how to turn light into matter after 80-year quest

Imperial College London physicists have discovered how to create matter from light - a feat thought impossible when the idea was first theorised 80 years ago.

In just one day over several cups of coffee in a tiny office in Imperial's Blackett Physics Laboratory, three physicists worked out a relatively simple way to physically prove a theory first devised by scientists Breit and Wheeler in 1934.

Breit and Wheeler suggested that it should be possible to turn light into matter by smashing together only two particles of light (photons), to create an electron and a positron – the simplest method of turning light into matter ever predicted. The calculation was found to be theoretically sound but Breit and Wheeler said that they never expected anybody to physically demonstrate their prediction. It has never been observed in the laboratory and past experiments to test it have required the addition of massive high-energy particles.

The new research, published in Nature Photonics, shows for the first time how Breit and Wheeler's theory could be proven in practice. This 'photon-photon collider', which would convert light directly into matter using technology that is already available, would be a new type of high-energy physics experiment. This experiment would recreate a process that was important in the first 100 seconds of the universe and that is also seen in gamma ray bursts, which are the biggest explosions in the universe and one of physics' greatest unsolved mysteries.

The scientists had been investigating unrelated problems in fusion energy when they realised what they were working on could be applied to the Breit-Wheeler theory. The breakthrough was achieved in collaboration with a fellow theoretical physicist from the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics, who happened to be visiting Imperial.


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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby Graeme » Mon 30 Jun 2014, 19:39:59

10 Innovations Analysts Predict Will Change The World By 2025

Here are their predictions for innovations that will emerge by 2025:

1. The onset of dementia, Alzheimer’s and other neuro-degenerative diseases will decline as more funds are directed toward afflictions Baby Boomers could encounter in their 80s, and studies continue isolating specific chromosomes that cause different forms of the diseases.

2. Solar power will move from environmentalists to the masses as the largest source of electricity in the world, heating buildings, water and powering homes and offices, stores and manufacturing facilities. The sun’s rays will be harvested, stored and converted more efficiently through new materials and methods.

3. Type 1 diabetes will become preventable through a human genome engineering platform that’s paving the way for the modification of disease-causing genes and helping prevent metabolic conditions. As the science advances, patents of organisms and partial DNA segments will arise, complicating who owns which rights to what and blurring the line between nature and commerce.

4. Food shortages and food price fluctuations will cease to exist as genetically modified crops will be grown rapidly indoors with 24/7 light that matches wavelengths to crops, and crops will be bred to resist diseases.

5. Electric-powered airplanes and cars will be more light-weight, travel farther and store more energy with lithium-ion batteries, reversible hydrogen storage options and nanomaterials in fuel cells. As micro-commercial airplanes become feasible for short journeys and small landing spaces, getting a pilot’s license could become the new right-of-passage to adulthood.

6. More things will be connected to the Internet than people as the digital world extends to nearly everything, everywhere. So-called “smart” cars, homes and appliances will be digitally directed and connected across the globe as wireless communications improve.

7. Petroleum-based packaging (think plastics) will be replaced by fully biodegradable cellulose, a type of psedo-plastic derived from forms of plant matter.


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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby Keith_McClary » Thu 03 Jul 2014, 18:57:29

"I could go on, but let’s veer off in another direction instead."

– The Archdruid
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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby dissident » Thu 03 Jul 2014, 23:11:38

Keith_McClary wrote:Japan at cutting edge of turning black coal more green
Image
"Better than LNG"


If we take coal as being primarily carbon with little or no hydrogen, which is normal, then this Rube Goldberg process is converting H2O into H2 at some stage. This is an energy sink even with catalysts. So the above schematic is some sort of marketing-like BS (it clearly lacks vital steps). The best use for coal aside from leaving it in the ground is to burn it directly to produce CO2 without any of these sparkles in the eyes "green" energy waste diversions. If they could figure out how to chemically trap CO2 into some mineral, then that would be something to write home about. They could use calcium but it takes lots of energy to produce it from calcium carbonate and CO2 is released in the process.
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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby Subjectivist » Fri 04 Jul 2014, 05:29:56

Typical coal has a ratio of 0.5:1 hydrogen to carbon or 1:2 which ever way you prefer to state it. Being one third Hydrogen by number of hydrogen and two thirds carbon is not what I would call "little or no hydrogen"
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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby evilgenius » Fri 04 Jul 2014, 11:39:04

ROCKMAN wrote:Graeme - No one the planet has every developed small scale LNG capabilities before during the last century or even during this century until now. That makes the technology developed to capture the NG that is being flared for lack of pipelines brand spanking new technology. Many here have been pissing and moaning about the ND NG flares for years. This "new" technology should please them.

I suppose you and I have different definitions of "new".


Good point!
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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby dissident » Fri 04 Jul 2014, 16:01:31

Subjectivist wrote:Typical coal has a ratio of 0.5:1 hydrogen to carbon or 1:2 which ever way you prefer to state it. Being one third Hydrogen by number of hydrogen and two thirds carbon is not what I would call "little or no hydrogen"


Do you know what syngas is? When the discussion is about H2 from coal it is from the following reaction

C + O2 + H2O --> H2 + CO2 (via a step involving CO formation).

The hydrogen in coal is a total sideshow even if its 3.5% of it by weight for anthracite. You make it sound like coal hydrogen is a commercially relevant resource. It isn't.
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Re: Future Energy Technology News Pt 2

Unread postby Subjectivist » Fri 04 Jul 2014, 17:49:25

dissident wrote:
Subjectivist wrote:Typical coal has a ratio of 0.5:1 hydrogen to carbon or 1:2 which ever way you prefer to state it. Being one third Hydrogen by number of hydrogen and two thirds carbon is not what I would call "little or no hydrogen"


Do you know what syngas is? When the discussion is about H2 from coal it is from the following reaction

C + O2 + H2O --> H2 + CO2 (via a step involving CO formation).

The hydrogen in coal is a total sideshow even if its 3.5% of it by weight for anthracite. You make it sound like coal hydrogen is a commercially relevant resource. It isn't.


First the vast majority of coal world wide is sub-bitumous or lignite, anthracite is only slghtly more common than natural graphite.

Secondly up until World War II in the USA the majority of Haber-Bosch fertilizer process plants used soft coal or lignite as their hydrogen source, not methane as is common today, nor electrolysis sourced as was done in Norway.

Just because we do not do it that way any longer does not mean it is irrelevent.
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