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Did You Know? November 2022

Did you know that if you could dig a hole deep enough, you could unlock enough thermal energy to power the world? According to the UK Independent newspaper, a US based company, Quaise Energy, is developing a drilling rig that it hopes will reach 10 miles beneath the earth’s surface in order to tap “inexhaustible clean energy” from geothermal heat in the crust. This may sound like science fiction at this point in time but so was man walking on the moon back in the 1950’s.

Did you that Alessandro Blasi, a respected Special Advisor to the International Energy Agency, is somewhat down on the wind energy industry? He states that “these should be magnificent times for the wind industry, but in the middle of an energy crisis, a clean and mature technology struggles to be profitable.” He cites that Vestas, one of the largest providers, showed a loss of US $150 million in Q3 of 2022, Siemens Gamesa registered a loss of almost $1 billion, and GE anticipates a loss of $2 billion. The full article is on LinkedIn. What will it take for the industry to become profitable?

Did you know that the U.S. Army has chosen lead acid batteries to “deploy resilient, safe, and reliable Energy Storage systems”? Three members of the Consortium for Battery Innovation (CBI), Advanced Battery Concepts, East Penn Manufacturing, and EnerSys are involved in this project. In a statement issued by Dr. Matt Raiford, Senior Technical Manager at CBI, “Lead batteries have been chosen for this important project based on their reliability, consistent performance at all temperatures, and unrivalled safety record. This will set a benchmark for smaller microgrids providing essential power and security in a range of settings from remote rural areas to larger military installations.”

Did you know a recent article published in E-Mobility in November, states that “a utility company has run the numbers and warns that the U.S. grid can’t provide the charging power for all the electric trucks like the Tesla Semi that will be released on December 1? The electrification of a typical gas station would demand the amount needed for a sports stadium, while a regular truck stop would need the electricity of a small town.

Did you know in 2021, according to Bloomberg NEF, the cost of an average lithium-ion battery in Euros was €90 per kWh? Breaking down the cost, materials are 65%, utilities and indirect are 30%, with labor amounting for the remaining 5%. So, if costs are to be driven down, then the cost savings must occur in materials. However, with a looming scarcity of lithium and cobalt along with supply chain issues, is this achievable? The lithium-ion industry awaits, and one would guess, pretty nervously!

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