Here's why convenience stores are not rushing to install EV chargers

Ogre

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I was thinking "where should we put all the excess energy produced by wind and solar? We should probably start building up a reserve."
I’m not sure I follow your goal here. Why would we want or need to store massive amounts of power?
 

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Why would you compare oil to hydrogen (or batteries)?

-Crissa
There was confusion that hydrogen had to be used in ICE. I brought up fuel cells, and the conversation spiraled from there.
 


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I’m not sure I follow your goal here. Why would we want or need to store massive amounts of power?
It was a tangent. I thought I understood something about hydrogen energy density, but when I started to compare it to oil it is nowere even close. I'm hearing constant bellyaching about fuel prices, but frankly they are quite stable compared to what will happen when we don't have oil to back us up. That stability was achieved in part by using the strategic oil reserve. I just realized we have no electricity equivalent of that. A large part of the stability of the electric grid is because we can fire up and throttle down oil, coal, and gas generators as needed to meet demand. Solar, and wind cannot do that. Hydropower has limited control to throttle, but not much. If fossil generators and nuke go away, and it gets hotter, we need some other large reserve to fill gaps.

It wasn't really on topic at all. It just became a bit more real to me after crunching the numbers myself.
 

Crissa

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It wasn't really on topic at all. It just became a bit more real to me after crunching the numbers myself.
Yeah, but now we know where you were going, and it's kinda important. Batteries can give us some of that, but a diverse portfolio is best.

-Crissa
 

Ogre

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...Because the wind doesn't blow all day and the sun doesn't shine the same amount all year?

-Crissa
Batteries should get us there quicker because of efficiency. If you waste energy on storage you have to generate that much more.
 

slomobile

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Batteries should get us there quicker because of efficiency. If you waste energy on storage you have to generate that much more.
True, but... I think we need both. Sorry to continue off topic.

Around 5,000,000kwh of Megapacks are currently installed according to https://www.tesla.com/megapack. It would require multiplying the entire worldwide installed base of Megapacks 242,760 times to equal the 1,213,800,000,000kwh capacity of one country's oil reserve.

Batteries are getting us there slowly. But limited battery production should go toward immediate needs at point of use rather than strategic long term storage.

As long term bulk storage, particularly when used to capture solar and wind production that can't be immediately used, the inefficiencies of hydrogen become immaterial. Capturing only 70% of the energy generated, in hydrogen is 70% better than capturing 0% in the battery plant that does not exist yet. If we build hydrogen storage now, while we still have the economy to support such endeavors, what is the downside? AFAIK hydrogen infrastructure is much more durable long term than batteries. Will any battery produced today still be functional in 50 years?

The oil reserve isn't actually full of oil any more, but it was designed that size for a reason. Someone thought the US needed to store up that much oil. If we can build up stores of hydrogen to relieve the power demand on oil, we might be able to refill the oil reserve and save it for the time when oil production is scarce enough to impact production of plastics and other critical materials made from oil and nothing else.
 

Ogre

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Batteries are getting us there slowly. But limited battery production should go toward immediate needs at point of use rather than strategic long term storage.
Right now production of grid level fuel cell energy storage is 100% lower than grid level battery production. Battery production for grid storage is increasing.

So… while battery production will take a long time, fuel cell storage will take forever at the current rate.

I suspect efficiency is at the heart of this. If you use battery storage, the cost of stored solar is cheap. If you increase the cost by 40%, it’s barely competitive with natural gas. Power companies are looking for ways to save money not to break even.
 


Crissa

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Batteries should get us there quicker because of efficiency. If you waste energy on storage you have to generate that much more.
Batteries are limited by supply. Hydrogen tanks are not.

...Doesn't explain why so much money is said to be thrown at hydrogen and yet no such storage has been built yet, tho. Which is the bigger problem, honestly.

-Crissa
 

Ogre

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Batteries are limited by supply. Hydrogen tanks are not.

...Doesn't explain why so much money is said to be thrown at hydrogen and yet no such storage has been built yet, tho. Which is the bigger problem, honestly.

-Crissa
Well I was wrong.

There are actually existing fuel cell based grid energy storage installations.

I guess time will tell whether it makes sense in the long term
 

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I suspect efficiency is at the heart of this. If you use battery storage, the cost of stored solar is cheap. If you increase the cost by 40%, it’s barely competitive with natural gas. Power companies are looking for ways to save money not to break even.
Touche. Absolutely correct.
Power companies do not have the mandate to protect the citizens of the United States. The Federal government does. Primary investment in non oil bulk energy storage would need to come from a National security imperative in order to overcome profit motive. The same would hold for any of the worlds governments.

I've not seen any electric tanks, fighter planes, or war ships. That is just an observation. I am not advocating for those things at all. The electrification of the Federal road fleet was rather anemic. That indicates oil remains the actual strategic priority, despite any lip service to the contrary. That is unlikely to change until oil actually runs out.
A strategic energy reserve(battery, hydrogen, protection of renewable sources), coupled with electrification of government road fleets could be lobbied as a reduction of demand on the oil reserve. That could explain the otherwise inexplicable money thrown at hydrogen, and why progress is not widely known. Strategic secrets?

I'll open a new thread if anyone shows interest in continuing this discussion. It risks triggering politics moderation. I'm curious if people believe a strategic energy reserve(not petroleum) is a worthwhile use of government resources. If so, what tech is appropriate for long term energy storage?
 

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Probably the other hit against fuel cells is maintenance. Lots of pumps, valves, and equipment pushing high volumes of explosive materials around requires lots and lots of safety checks.
 

Crissa

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Well I was wrong.

There are actually existing fuel cell based grid energy storage installations.

I guess time will tell whether it makes sense in the long term
It doesn't exist yet, tho. They were supposed to build one at Moss Landing a decade ago but they never got past drawings and announcements and consuming the money for the initial grants.

-Crissa
Sponsored

 
 




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