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Old 20th September 2019, 02:17 PM   #1
crescent
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Energy Storage (Renewable Energy)

Getting to 100% renewables requires cheap energy storage. But how cheap?

Quote:
One of the most heated and interesting debates in the energy world today has to do with how far the US can get on carbon-free renewable energy alone.

One faction believes that renewables can supply 100 percent of US energy, with sufficient help from cheap energy storage and savvy management of demand.

Another faction believes that renewables will ultimately fall short and need assistance from nuclear power and natural gas or biomass with carbon capture and storage.

This war is largely being waged behind the scenes in competing academic papers, but it is highly relevant to current events as a whole host of states and cities are passing laws targeting “100 percent clean energy.” Some, like Hawaii, specifically target 100 percent renewables. Some, like Washington state, target 100 percent “clean,” allowing room for non-renewable sources.

Which target is more realistic and prudent? Just how far can renewables get?


Good article, it addresses one of the bigger sticking points with renewable energy. Many of the arguments for maintaining or expanding nuclear power deal with the variability inherent in wind and solar. The study referenced in the article looked into that variability at four locations with different climates over the course of 20 years, and compared that with the cost of storing energy in batteries (many different types) or other storage mediums as a means to address the low points in wind and solar.

Which is necessary to look at because that appears to be one of the biggest weaknesses with renewable. Land use density is also an issue (a wind farm takes up quite a bit more space than the equivalent amount of energy harvest from a nuke or hydrocarbon plant, and the roads and infrastructure needed to build and maintain the wind farm have significant impacts to the wildlands where these farms are usually built). Solar thermal plants can be built with a molten salt energy storage component, but still have an even larger land-use impact (compared to wind) and are also less energy-compact than nukes or hyrdocarbon.

But with better electric storage, rooftop and other photo-voltaic solar power systems start to come into their own. Less land-use impacts, put them on roofs, use them to shade parking lots, lots of urban places to put them with no harm, allowing more of the wild open spaces outside the cities to stay wild and open.



ETA: A link to the study itself, although it is not free: Storage Requirements and Costs of Shaping Renewable Energy Toward Grid Decarbonization

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Old 20th September 2019, 10:11 PM   #2
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A recent study found that it would be easy in most places in the world, especially the US, to set up energy storage via small hydrodams.

https://www.sciencealert.com/scienti...e-energy-needs
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Old 21st September 2019, 07:34 AM   #3
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The problem with hydro, whether pumped or not, is that you have to flood something. That's no longer really acceptable in the USA, and isn't going to happen without a huge fight.
Here in Washington State we've actually removed some dams lately.
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Old 21st September 2019, 07:46 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
The problem with hydro, whether pumped or not, is that you have to flood something. That's no longer really acceptable in the USA, and isn't going to happen without a huge fight.
Here in Washington State we've actually removed some dams lately.

The difference with small-scale pumped hydro for energy storage is, in theory you don't need to dam an existing waterway (affecting all its wildlife). You can create two new reservoirs at different elevations, and a sluice or pipe between them.
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Old 21st September 2019, 08:58 AM   #5
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There are lots of energy storage methopdologies; pumped storage, flysheels, hydrogen electrolysis, molten salt, battery banks et cetera. It needs planning and scaling.

One of the new buildings in Dublin incorporates lareg flywheels in addition to PVCs and micro-turbines.
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Old 21st September 2019, 08:59 AM   #6
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Wouldn't it be better to do something like make hydrogen with the excess power and then burn that when more power is required?

It's not very efficient but in a way efficiency isn't the issue as excess power is wasted otherwise.
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Old 21st September 2019, 09:00 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Wouldn't it be better to do something like make hydrogen with the excess power and then burn that when more power is required?

It's not very efficient but in a way efficiency isn't the issue as excess power is wasted otherwise.
Possibly, but there are issues. You've mentioned the poor efficiency (~40%) but there is the problem of storing the hydrogen (and perhaps oxygen). This isn't particularly easy and has hazards.

IIRR there's a pilot project in the Shetlands.

ETA: Oops, it's on Orkney. The Shetlands are only planning theirs.
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Old 21st September 2019, 09:10 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
The difference with small-scale pumped hydro for energy storage is, in theory you don't need to dam an existing waterway (affecting all its wildlife). You can create two new reservoirs at different elevations, and a sluice or pipe between them.
That's still some pretty heavy-duty engineering, two dams, two flooded areas, sluice or pipe in between, plus all the roads and crane pads needed to built and maintain them. You are still going to have a pretty noticeable impact, even if off-channel.

The paper The Great Zaganza cited said they ruled out National Parks as sites, but National Parks make up less than 10% of the undeveloped Federal Land in the U.S. Proposals to build dams and reservoirs in the National Forests or BLM managed lands would meet with fierce opposition (as seen already with local opposition to some wind and solar farm proposals). Building in anything currently designated as Wilderness or Roadless (an official designation of the Forest Service) would require changes at the lawmaking level.

Building on Private Land would probably require the use of eminent domain. That's unpopular and starts to get very, very expensive. Pumped hydro can totally be part of the solution, but the Great Zaganza's paper greatly over-simplifies the details.
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Old 21st September 2019, 09:50 AM   #9
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Pumped hydro, according to the paper, is far and away the biggest part of the solution today. In less environmentally conscious countries it can still increase but I don't think it'll happen in the USA.
Grand Coulee Dam, in my state, was designed with pumped hydro as part of the project. I don't think they get much out of that any more as most of the water pumped into Banks Lake gets used to irrigate the central Washington desert.
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Old 21st September 2019, 10:23 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by crescent View Post
That's still some pretty heavy-duty engineering, two dams, two flooded areas, sluice or pipe in between, plus all the roads and crane pads needed to built and maintain them. You are still going to have a pretty noticeable impact, even if off-channel.

The paper The Great Zaganza cited said they ruled out National Parks as sites, but National Parks make up less than 10% of the undeveloped Federal Land in the U.S. Proposals to build dams and reservoirs in the National Forests or BLM managed lands would meet with fierce opposition (as seen already with local opposition to some wind and solar farm proposals). Building in anything currently designated as Wilderness or Roadless (an official designation of the Forest Service) would require changes at the lawmaking level.

Building on Private Land would probably require the use of eminent domain. That's unpopular and starts to get very, very expensive. Pumped hydro can totally be part of the solution, but the Great Zaganza's paper greatly over-simplifies the details.

Hmm. In light of those issues, I suppose my idea of increasing the capacity of an off-channel system thirteen-fold by using mercury instead of water wouldn't go over very well.
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Old 21st September 2019, 10:53 AM   #11
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Pumped hydro needs very specific geographic conditions. And the only pumped hydro powerplant we have here in Czech Republic, actually just burns power more than 50% of the time, without storing it, because there is negative price in the network during windy and sunny days.
Sure, if it could store more, it would.

But this is interesting. Similar concept. Current technology. Also requires specific geographic conditions, but much more common ones.

Just lift some weights !

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=itbwXMMkBQw
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Old 21st September 2019, 06:39 PM   #12
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I am skeptical about the hydro storage efficiencies claimed by some and can't find some detailed specific information about it. The whole cycle looks like this:

- Electrical energy is used to drive an electric motor that drives a pump that delivers water to a high location.

- The potential energy of the elevated water becomes kinetic energy as it falls and drives a turbine which in turn drives an alternator to generate electricity.

Here are the places energy may be lost due to inefficiency in the cycle:

- Cable losses transmitting electricity to hydro site.
- Electric motor inefficiency losses.
- Pump efficiency losses.
- Friction losses in pipes to storage dam.
- Friction losses in pipes to turbine.
- Turbine efficiency losses.
- Alternator efficiency losses.
- Cable losses transmitting electricity back to grid.

As an engineer I have some idea how high some of these losses can be so am skeptical when I hear efficiencies of 85 - 90% being claimed. I think some creative methods are being used to come up with these figures.

I would be grateful if someone could direct me toward a detailed study.
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Old 21st September 2019, 06:59 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
I am skeptical about the hydro storage efficiencies claimed by some and can't find some detailed specific information about it. The whole cycle looks like this:

- Electrical energy is used to drive an electric motor that drives a pump that delivers water to a high location.

- The potential energy of the elevated water becomes kinetic energy as it falls and drives a turbine which in turn drives an alternator to generate electricity.

Here are the places energy may be lost due to inefficiency in the cycle:

- Cable losses transmitting electricity to hydro site.
- Electric motor inefficiency losses.
- Pump efficiency losses.
- Friction losses in pipes to storage dam.
- Friction losses in pipes to turbine.
- Turbine efficiency losses.
- Alternator efficiency losses.
- Cable losses transmitting electricity back to grid.

As an engineer I have some idea how high some of these losses can be so am skeptical when I hear efficiencies of 85 - 90% being claimed. I think some creative methods are being used to come up with these figures.

I would be grateful if someone could direct me toward a detailed study.
Don't have a detailed study or efficiency, sorry. In the case of the Grand Coulee pumped storage system, the generators and motors are one and the same, as are the pumps and turbines. That probably reduces their energy efficiency, but reduces complexity and initial cost. Cable losses are minimal as the pumped system is immediately next to the main power plant and switching system.
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Old 21st September 2019, 10:36 PM   #14
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Efficiency isn't really that much of an issue, since a grid fueled by Renewabales needs to have its power drained somehow, and the moment of peak production is most likely not the time of peak consumption. A power grid based on green energy would net produce quite a bit more than is being consumed, so perfect efficiency really isn't that critical.

Concerning hydro-storage: you can achieve the same capacity by two large reservoirs for a short elevation difference, or two small ones over a large one. Heck, you can just drill a whole in the ground into a cavern.
It's a very mature technology.
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Old 22nd September 2019, 02:09 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
Efficiency isn't really that much of an issue, since a grid fueled by Renewabales needs to have its power drained somehow, and the moment of peak production is most likely not the time of peak consumption. A power grid based on green energy would net produce quite a bit more than is being consumed, so perfect efficiency really isn't that critical.

Concerning hydro-storage: you can achieve the same capacity by two large reservoirs for a short elevation difference, or two small ones over a large one. Heck, you can just drill a whole in the ground into a cavern.
It's a very mature technology.

Well yes in a way but it is an issue if you are comparing it to other more efficient means of energy storage. Also the more you get back the less you need to use the coal fired facilities.
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Old 22nd September 2019, 02:51 PM   #16
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Indeed. As I said, at least here we burn energy when it's not needed. Without no use at all. We convert it into heat. Anything you can get back is free in such situation. Even if you had 50% efficiency, if it's cheap enough to build, it will be useful.
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Old 22nd September 2019, 02:56 PM   #17
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There seemed to be some hypothetical promise in the idea of generating energy from the oxidation of aluminum, then using excess energy to essentially re-smelt the oxide back into aluminum. I guess no one's come up with a practical cell for the former part of the process yet.
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Old 23rd September 2019, 01:12 AM   #18
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I would say KISS, we have plenty of well researched and understood methods of energy storage, build around those rather than banking on some future technology thstbwill be "better". We simply don't have the time to add yet more known unknowns, we need to be doing all this now.
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Old 23rd September 2019, 03:59 AM   #19
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We won't. Nothing will be done untill millions die. And it will be too late when that happens.
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Old 23rd September 2019, 04:35 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
The problem with hydro, whether pumped or not, is that you have to flood something. That's no longer really acceptable in the USA, and isn't going to happen without a huge fight.
Yeah, that's one of the advantages of living on the Canadian shield, although I wish they did cut down the trees before flooding the area. It'd prevent issues with rotting, and provide with some extra wood.
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Old 23rd September 2019, 08:18 AM   #21
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The article mentions using discarded electric vehicle batteries as grid storage. But "non-discared" EV batteries are also being used for grid storage.

Newer EVs have bidirectional charging connections allowing them to feed electricity back to the grid. The idea is to allow the grid to draw electricity from parked cars during peak demand periods and give it back when demands are lower. This would help avoid brownouts and the need to build new power plants just to handle peak demand periods.
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Old 23rd September 2019, 05:36 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by jadebox View Post
The article mentions using discarded electric vehicle batteries as grid storage. But "non-discared" EV batteries are also being used for grid storage.

Newer EVs have bidirectional charging connections allowing them to feed electricity back to the grid. The idea is to allow the grid to draw electricity from parked cars during peak demand periods and give it back when demands are lower. This would help avoid brownouts and the need to build new power plants just to handle peak demand periods.
Yeah. I liked that idea when I first heard it. But here on the left coast the maximum usage is during afternoon rush hour. They tell us to conserve between 4:00 to 9:00. Maybe Momma's Grocery Getter would help out.
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Old 23rd September 2019, 05:48 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by jadebox View Post
The article mentions using discarded electric vehicle batteries as grid storage. But "non-discared" EV batteries are also being used for grid storage.

Newer EVs have bidirectional charging connections allowing them to feed electricity back to the grid. The idea is to allow the grid to draw electricity from parked cars during peak demand periods and give it back when demands are lower. This would help avoid brownouts and the need to build new power plants just to handle peak demand periods.
If I were an EV owner, I would not like this one bit. Discharging and recharging puts wear on the battery, which shortens its life. And EV batteries are extremely expensive to replace. Unless they find a way to pay me for using my battery (and a fair rate would be what it would cost to buy and run a bank of such batteries directly), then I would try to avoid letting the grid draw from my battery,
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Old 23rd September 2019, 06:19 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
I am skeptical about the hydro storage efficiencies claimed by some and can't find some detailed specific information about it.

...

I would be grateful if someone could direct me toward a detailed study.
Grand Coulee study is 76%, but that is just for the facility, not for transport into or out of.

http://www.internationalskeptics.com...8&postcount=11
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Old 23rd September 2019, 11:02 PM   #25
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Seriously, this idea of pumping water back uphill, while not completely barmy, is a pipe dream in terms of providing reliable backup power for our energy needs. There simply is just not enough water, and not enough places to store it. Hydro-electric power currently provides only 6.1% of our energy needs. The idea that it can provide 100% or so (as it would need to on cloudy, windless days) is delusional.
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Old 23rd September 2019, 11:16 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Brainster View Post
Seriously, this idea of pumping water back uphill, while not completely barmy, is a pipe dream in terms of providing reliable backup power for our energy needs. There simply is just not enough water, and not enough places to store it. Hydro-electric power currently provides only 6.1% of our energy needs. The idea that it can provide 100% or so (as it would need to on cloudy, windless days) is delusional.
that is demonstrably false.
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Old 23rd September 2019, 11:25 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
If I were an EV owner, I would not like this one bit. Discharging and recharging puts wear on the battery, which shortens its life. And EV batteries are extremely expensive to replace. Unless they find a way to pay me for using my battery (and a fair rate would be what it would cost to buy and run a bank of such batteries directly), then I would try to avoid letting the grid draw from my battery,
I suggest that for every Joule they take out they should put back three Joules.
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Old 23rd September 2019, 11:25 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
that is demonstrably false.
Which part? As far as I can see, it is false only if you have nuclear power or coal power as a backup. Or if you are willing to go without electricity for periods of time.
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Old 23rd September 2019, 11:55 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by crescent View Post
Getting to 100% renewables requires cheap energy storage. But how cheap?

Good article, it addresses one of the bigger sticking points with renewable energy. Many of the arguments for maintaining or expanding nuclear power deal with the variability inherent in wind and solar. The study referenced in the article looked into that variability at four locations with different climates over the course of 20 years, and compared that with the cost of storing energy in batteries (many different types) or other storage mediums as a means to address the low points in wind and solar.

Which is necessary to look at because that appears to be one of the biggest weaknesses with renewable. Land use density is also an issue (a wind farm takes up quite a bit more space than the equivalent amount of energy harvest from a nuke or hydrocarbon plant, and the roads and infrastructure needed to build and maintain the wind farm have significant impacts to the wildlands where these farms are usually built). Solar thermal plants can be built with a molten salt energy storage component, but still have an even larger land-use impact (compared to wind) and are also less energy-compact than nukes or hyrdocarbon.

But with better electric storage, rooftop and other photo-voltaic solar power systems start to come into their own. Less land-use impacts, put them on roofs, use them to shade parking lots, lots of urban places to put them with no harm, allowing more of the wild open spaces outside the cities to stay wild and open.

ETA: A link to the study itself, although it is not free: Storage Requirements and Costs of Shaping Renewable Energy Toward Grid Decarbonization
There are just two fesiable methods for grid-level storage and I use the world "fesiable" quite liberarily.

The first is pumped-storage hydroelectric. In a sci-fi scenario it may be possible to build storage lakes at hilltop level, close to the sea perhaps and use salt water. The high elevation enables you to store far more energy per kilogram of water, seawater is also denser than freshwater.

Problems abound, corrosion and leakage are the big two. Still, these issues are technological in nature and may be solvable by engineering.

The second method is using the excess electricity to store the energy by reducing simple molecules in a more energy dense form. Plants do that from carbon dioxide and water to form glucose, we'd probably use methanol or something similar instead. The fuel can be then used in an ICE or a fuel cell to produce power when needed.

The main problem is the ineffeciency. Plants were at it for billions of years and manage to be ~8% efficient in theroy, 3% is best known example, average is 1% or less. This is economically unfesiable for us, yet the problem might also be solved by technology.

The largest problem to both - by far - is economic. There is no way either of these two approaches will ever be cheaper than just digging for coal or pumping oil. Both are easy enough to store for extended periods of time.

So I propose we switch to nuclear before going fully renewable. It should at least solve a good deal of the climate change problems, plus it's politically easier to regulate nuclear power into economic ruin than coal or oil, if it turns out that wasn't a great idea in the long run.

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Old 24th September 2019, 12:31 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by Brainster View Post
Which part? As far as I can see, it is false only if you have nuclear power or coal power as a backup. Or if you are willing to go without electricity for periods of time.
your claim that hydro-electric storage is only feasible in few places is false.

And you are talking apples and oranges when equating power generation and power storage.
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Old 24th September 2019, 12:46 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
your claim that hydro-electric storage is only feasible in few places is false.

And you are talking apples and oranges when equating power generation and power storage.
Australia could easily use pumped hydro storage. See below for links


Quote:
Lead researcher Professor Andrew Blakers said the short-term off-river pumped hydro energy storage (STORES) sites combined had a potential storage capacity of 67,000 Gigawatt-hours (GWh) – much more than the capacity required for a zero-emissions grid.

“Australia needs only a tiny fraction of these sites for pumped hydro storage – about 450 GWh of storage – to support a 100 per cent renewable electricity system,” said Professor Blakers from the ANU Research School of Engineering
https://energy.anu.edu.au/research/h...ites-australia

Research out of ANU indicates pumped hydro storage projects already on the board are “more than enough to back up the grid”.
https://www.solarquotes.com.au/blog/...ro-anu-mb0988/
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Old 24th September 2019, 12:46 AM   #32
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https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...035-study-says

Quote:
Natural gas-fired power plants, which have crushed the economics of coal, are on the path to being undercut themselves by renewable power and big batteries, a study found.

By 2035, it will be more expensive to run 90% of gas plants being proposed in the U.S. than it will be to build new wind and solar farms equipped with storage systems, according to the report Monday from the Rocky Mountain Institute. It will happen so quickly that gas plants now on the drawing boards will become uneconomical before their owners finish paying for them, the study said.
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Old 24th September 2019, 01:16 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
your claim that hydro-electric storage is only feasible in few places is false.
By definition, it is only feasible upstream from a hydro-electric dam.

Quote:
And you are talking apples and oranges when equating power generation and power storage.
The whole point of power storage is to get over the problem that with renewables you have problems generating electricity on cloudy, windless days. But the power you could generate by having water pumped upstream during times of peak generation from wind and solar isn't nearly enough and it isn't reliable.

And let's face it, the whole purpose of this exercise is to try like hell to pretend there's no need to build nuclear power plants.
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Last edited by Brainster; 24th September 2019 at 01:17 AM.
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Old 24th September 2019, 01:22 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by Brainster View Post
By definition, it is only feasible upstream from a hydro-electric dam.
are you ignoring the possibility of building new dams?
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Old 24th September 2019, 01:24 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by Brainster View Post

And let's face it, the whole purpose of this exercise is to try like hell to pretend there's no need to build nuclear power plants.
It's a strawman to claim that pro-renewables is automatically anti-nuclear.

No one invests in new nuclear power plants, simply because they currently make no economic sense, not because of ideological reasons.
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Old 24th September 2019, 01:31 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by Brainster View Post
By definition, it is only feasible upstream from a hydro-electric dam.
As I understand (and as the Great Zangaza mentions) the point of the OP was that small dams could be built to serve the need.


Quote:
The whole point of power storage is to get over the problem that with renewables you have problems generating electricity on cloudy, windless days. But the power you could generate by having water pumped upstream during times of peak generation from wind and solar isn't nearly enough and it isn't reliable.
The highlighted assertion is the question that's up for debate. You can't support this idea by asserting it.

Quote:
And let's face it, the whole purpose of this exercise is to try like hell to pretend there's no need to build nuclear power plants.
Was it? I'm personally very pro nuclear, but also think that solar/wind + storage is a good idea and something worth pursuing.
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Old 24th September 2019, 05:24 AM   #37
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Originally Posted by casebro View Post
Yeah. I liked that idea when I first heard it. But here on the left coast the maximum usage is during afternoon rush hour. They tell us to conserve between 4:00 to 9:00. Maybe Momma's Grocery Getter would help out.
I am sure there are a lot of parked cars during that period (including fleet vehicles). Plus, not everyone is on the road at the same time (though I have driven in LA when if feels like they are).

Originally Posted by Ziggurat View Post
If I were an EV owner, I would not like this one bit. Discharging and recharging puts wear on the battery, which shortens its life. And EV batteries are extremely expensive to replace. Unless they find a way to pay me for using my battery (and a fair rate would be what it would cost to buy and run a bank of such batteries directly), then I would try to avoid letting the grid draw from my battery,
You would be rewarded by having easier access to a charging station and, most likely, a reduced rate for the electricity. By having easier access to charging stations at work and other places you visit, you wouldn't need as large a battery in your car. So, it could also reduce the cost of your vehicle.

And, while it is true that discharging and recharging cycles can reduce the life of the battery, it isn't going to be like your battery is fully discharged and recharged multiple times a day. While driving an EV, power is pulled from the battery as you speed up and put back in it as you slow down. EVs are designed for that and sharing power with the grid wouldn't be much different.

Some people here in Florida, BTW, have such a bidirectional system in place between their cars and their homes so that their car battery can power the house if the grid goes down after a tropical storm.
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Old 24th September 2019, 10:20 AM   #38
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
As I understand (and as the Great Zangaza mentions) the point of the OP was that small dams could be built to serve the need.



The highlighted assertion is the question that's up for debate. You can't support this idea by asserting it.



Was it? I'm personally very pro nuclear, but also think that solar/wind + storage is a good idea and something worth pursuing.
I have nothing against solar and wind and the storage idea. But the notion that renewables are going to provide 100+% (keep in mind that you need excess capacity to pump the water back uphill and still provide power) of our energy needs is completely fantasy.

We can build new dams says Zaganza. Well, yes, we can. But the trend of late has been to get rid of old dams. The US actually generates less energy in megawatts from hydroelectric power today than it did 20 years ago.

Quote:
Though removing a dam from a river can be a costly and intricate process, it’s not as unusual as you might think. The non-profit group American Rivers notes that almost 850 dams have been removed in the past 20 years. 51 of those were taken down in 2013. Last year, California began its largest dam removal process, starting work on the removal of the 106-foot-high San Clemente Dam on the Carmel river.
That article is pretty celebratory about the dams coming down.
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Old 24th September 2019, 10:31 AM   #39
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It's also a complete fantasy to build new reactors - the necessary engineering and skill just isn't there. All recent attempts to build a new reactor have run into ridiculous cost and time overruns.
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Old 24th September 2019, 10:32 AM   #40
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Originally Posted by jadebox View Post
You would be rewarded by having easier access to a charging station and, most likely, a reduced rate for the electricity. By having easier access to charging stations at work and other places you visit, you wouldn't need as large a battery in your car. So, it could also reduce the cost of your vehicle.
If I'm going to buy an electric vehicle, I want its range to be a lot farther than my commute, because I want to be able to do more than commute with it. My commute distance is less than what I consider the minimum acceptable range for my car. So charging stations at work aren't going to incentivize me to buy a smaller battery. If the electricity rate is lower, than might be enough incentive, but again, it would have to be enough lower to offset the wear it puts on my battery. In other words, it has to pay for as much of my battery as it uses. And at that point, are the electricity providers really better off subsidizing my battery rather than buying one of their own? I'm not sure they are.

Quote:
And, while it is true that discharging and recharging cycles can reduce the life of the battery, it isn't going to be like your battery is fully discharged and recharged multiple times a day. While driving an EV, power is pulled from the battery as you speed up and put back in it as you slow down. EVs are designed for that and sharing power with the grid wouldn't be much different.
Of course it's the same. But driving puts wear on the battery just like it puts wear on the mechanical components. I get something in return for that wear (ie, transportation), and that's why people buy cars in the first place. But I wouldn't be willing to charge and discharge my battery for nothing in return.

Quote:
Some people here in Florida, BTW, have such a bidirectional system in place between their cars and their homes so that their car battery can power the house if the grid goes down after a tropical storm.
That's considerably different in that the car owner is the direct beneficiary of the discharge.
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