Friday, March 23, 2012

Vanadium Batteries Could Benefit Solar, Wind

Rare Earth-Renewable Energy Breakthrough
Could Cut Coal Use for Generating Electricity

It's all about base load requirement--the minimum level of demand on an electrical supply system over 24 hours. Base load power plants are the foundation of a sound electrical system.

A rare earth metal called vanadium could provide an energy storage solution for some of the challenges renewable energy sources face. The intermittent nature of wind and solar power can make these distributed sources difficult for utilities to manage within the electrical grid. Vanadium flow batteries can accommodate renewable energy by storing massive amounts of electricity and releasing it into the grid as needed when demand increases.