Viewing a single comment thread. View all comments

WhileNotLurking t1_iwiazyj wrote

It's important in context as well.

If I have the same energy source and in storage and retrieval I lose 50% then yes that's horrible.

But if I'm grounding wind and solar in the day because I just make so much that I don't need it. And at night burn coal because the sun goes away. Storing energy, even at a 50% loss is a huge win.


Josvan135 t1_iwjx1o6 wrote

Efficiency is important as it relates to cost.

A battery that's 98% efficient at a cost of $350 per kWh is less cost-effective at scale than a battery that has 70% efficiency at a cost of $50 per kWh.

You also have to consider real world factors unrelated to direct efficiency such as scalability, supply chain, and complexity of manufacturing.

An extremely efficient battery that requires the most advanced manufacturing facilities in the world, using materials from a dozen different mines spread across 3 continents, is going to be much more difficult to scale than an average efficiency energy storage solution that uses (relative to industrial projects) ubiquitous off the shelf components.

In our current situation perfect is very much the enemy of good enough.


Yrrebnot t1_iwkdki1 wrote

Also efficiency is largely irrelevant if system cost is low and we are talking about storing renewable energy. Pumped hydro is considered viable and it’s far less efficient than 70% but it uses already existing technology and can use existing infrastructure as well (pumping water uphill into a reservoir to later be put through an already existing hydro plant for example).