Storage is the word of the moment in the energy industry. Since Tesla unveiled its Powerwall, politicians, commentators and industry have hyped storage – and particularly batteries – as the solution for getting more renewable energy into electricity grids and reducing our reliance on fossil fuels.
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The Senate inquiry’s report into the planned closure of coal-fired power stations will no doubt shed light on the compelling health reasons to close them.
Coal-fired stations are a health hazard to their local communities and beyond due to the pollutants they emit. The resulting illnesses are a significant cost to health budgets. Climate change caused by burning fossil fuels brings its own health burdens.
Researchers at Ghent University have hit on a method of harvesting energy from raw sewage that treats the wastewater without using external electricity. It's all thanks to starving bacteria. Although this method is still in its lab testing stage, industry leaders are already interested in utilising it.
It took "one of the most significant severe thunderstorm outbreaks in recent decades", with seven tornadoes and a storm producing phenomenally damaging wind speeds, to bring down South Australia's power grid and cause a blackout in late September. Although the national electricity market operator and conservative commentators were quick to blame renewable energy, it's now clear that the entire network was at risk — and the blackout could have been lessened had precautionary steps been taken.
Yesterday evening, South Australia suffered through a massive state-wide blackout. If you were caught in it, you might have been caught unawares — without a light source, batteries, and a way of keeping your phone charged. Here are five things you can do to make sure you and your property are ready for the next blackout that happens.
To an audiophile, there's no such thing as 'too expensive' if it means an upgrade to their setup could improve their listening experience. And in Japan, some acoustic connoisseurs are now installing their own utility poles, with custom transformers, to ensure all of their audio gear is getting the purest power possible.
Video: Can you really consider finding a source of power to charge your smartphone a survival skill? For some people, not having a working phone is more dire than not having clean drinking water. So if you find yourself in the great outdoors without an outlet, a little ingenuity can turn random junk into a working hydro-electric generator.
Smartphones and tablets are being used more frequently in the battlefield, and that means that battery power is more important than ever. Soldiers often carry spare battery chargers in the 40kg combat packs they carry into war zones, but the batteries are often lost or broken. BAE Systems wants to help lighten the load with its new system that lets soldiers plug electronics directly into their clothing.
Just because you're stuck raising a kid until they turn 18 doesn't mean you have to live with a dead phone. 4moms' new Moxi stroller has a killer feature for parents who are balancing raising a kid while posting endless baby photos to Instagram — generators built into the rear wheels that feed power to a USB port in the handle.
A tangled mess of cords on your desk is certainly an annoyance, but on a construction site it can be a genuine safety hazard. Limits in battery technology have meant that larger tools still need to get their power from an AC outlet, but Dewalt has finally found a way to make almost every tool cordless.
Video: This is definitely what you don't want to see at a kid's birthday party: A jumping castle flying away straight into the power lines after being swept up in the air by a big gust of wind. You can actually see it first fly away from the power lines but then suddenly make a quick U-turn straight into the transmission tower. After it makes contact, sparks fly and a mini-explosion could even be heard. Scary.
Over the last few years, Venezuelans have suffered from the devastating impacts of a crumbling economy. Now severe drought has incapacitated its biggest hydroelectric plant, leading to daily blackouts. Earlier this month, the country mandated a three-day weekend as part of energy rationing. Now the situation has gotten worse, and yesterday President Nicolas Maduro shortened that work week to just two days.
The average smartphone's battery provides around 2500mAh of power — usually enough to get you through the day. Anker's new PowerHouse, which is about the size of a concrete block, boasts 120,600mAh. You can use it to recharge your phone for up to 40 days straight if for some reason your power has gone out.