Here’s an interesting article from the MIT supply chain blog. Are large simple batteries a solution to the problem of energy storage for peak periods?
Well, who knows? I don’t see any calculations here. For instance, how many of these shipping container sized battery packs would it take to hold enough power for my apartment community (100 homes) for a rainy day when our solar panels (assuming we had them) would not work? One apartment’s worth? Two? A dozen?
For instance at the US Cold warehouse in Wilmington IL, we need to have power 100% of the time for refrigerated products that constantly arrive, are stored, and move out to retailers. How big a parking lot would we need for the containers full of batteries, in addition to the space we have for our inbound and outbound trucks? I can see how a power company might use some to support their solar or wind power efforts, perhaps securing a few sections in the Arizona desert to place the batteries next to the giant solar farm or wind farm deployed there.
It’s certainly a good idea to make batteries out of materials that are not too hazardous. And I think we are in a materials revolution right now that will change how we think about lots of problems.