Could the sand battery make renewable energy more dependable?

Jul 29, 2022
A start-up in Finland unveils the world’s first commercial heat storage system using sand to solve the problem of the variability of solar and wind power.
The sand battery at Kankaanpaa in southwest Finland.
Courtesy Polar Night Energy

The price of lithium is way up. And right now, electric cars depend on it.

Jan 26, 2022
The metal is a key ingredient in the batteries that power all those electric cars.
The price of lithium, used in the batteries of electric vehicles, has increased by more than 40% in the past year.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

California's battery-supported grid off to a slow start

Jul 13, 2021
California’s grid operator hoped new battery storage could prevent rolling blackouts. Installation has been delayed.
The sun shines over towers carrying electical lines in South San Francisco, California.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Critical minerals for green energy may become scarce, new report warns

May 5, 2021
It's not just a mining issue. China leads in processing and purifying the minerals, but the United States lags in that industrial sector.
The world’s need for lithium for batteries may surge 75-fold in the next three decades.
David McNew/AFP via Getty Images

Is lithium-ion the best way to power a renewable energy future?

Jan 1, 2021
Researchers are looking for alternative technologies that could offer safer, greener solutions.
Right now, the U.S. is dependent on imports for most batteries. But many of those metals, including lithium and cobalt, are available here in the U.S. What would owning the production of those metals look like?
David Becker/Getty Images

Will the U.S. invent the next generation of batteries?

Dec 8, 2017
A potential lack of government funding could help other countries pull ahead.
GERARD JULIEN/AFP/GettyImages

Lithium-ion batteries are about as good as they can get

Dec 7, 2017
But it's just a matter of time before the problem is solved, a UC Berkeley engineer says.
To make lithium-ion batteries better, you have to invent new materials, says Kristin Persson of UC Berkeley.
David Becker/Getty Images

For public good, not for profit.

How Samsung's phone design caused battery problems

Oct 13, 2016
A lesson in the perils of the race to thinner, more energy-packed devices.
A South Korean employee works to provide replacement Samsung Galaxy Note7 smartphones at a telecommunications shop in Seoul.
JUNG YEON-JE/AFP/Getty Images

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