New Molten Silicon Battery to Blow Lithium out of the Water

The latest technology that could thrust renewable energy out onto the power grid like never before.

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The Australian Financial Review (10/02/17) reports on the new Molten Silicon Battery currently under development in Adelaide that claims will  ‘Blow lithium out of the water’ in that the new technology could soon make Lithium batteries obsolete for many power storage applications.

This technology was also under separate development in Madrid, Spain.

AFR article 10/02/2017

Above photo: Chairman of company ‘1414’ Kevin Moriarty and executive director and chief technical officer Matthew Johnson with battery prototype, (AFR).

A second report popped up 3 days later in the magazine in relation to the AFR report stating that the Adelaide manufacturer has developed this molten silicon battery that will cost a tenth as much as a lithium ion battery to store the same energy. The company is currently testing this at the Tonsley Innovation Hub in Adelaide. The technology is based on patented CSIRO research.

1414 Degrees says its battery prototype can store 500 kilowatt hours of energy in a 70-centimetre cube of molten silicon. This storage is 36 times the capacity of the Tesla’s 14KWh Powerwall 2 lithium ion home storage battery in about the same storage space.
The company’s chairman Ken Moriarty claimed that the battery storage is a significant technology improvement that has the potential to make lithium obsolete for many applications.
“There’s no comparison. Except for a few specialised circumstances, it will make them totally uneconomic frankly,” Moriarty said.  “I don’t think it’s dawned on the market yet and it won’t until we get them into a real-world situation.”

1414 Degrees has raised A$500,000 of $2 million seed capital issue that it hopes to complete by the end of March 2017. It is negotiating with a hydroponic herb farm and wind farm suppliers about pilot commercial scale trials of its technology. It is also planning a $10 million public share issue to fund construction of the first two 200 megawatt hour units.

Silicon is cheap and readily available.

This could be the silver bullet we needed to make renewables simply outgun the heavily polluting coal fired power stations across Australia and elsewhere. We are already seeing coal fired power stations closing within Australia as renewables such as wind, but especially solar take up an ever increasing chunk of electricity generation across the country.

Storing power rather than feeding it into the grid is a bone of contention, but now with this new development renewables could be on the fastest in-road ever. Homes and businesses going ‘off grid’ across the country by being able to access cheap on site storage of electrical power from their own roof top solar is just one example.

It is only a matter of time before all coal fired power stations across Australia are a thing of the past and we need to embrace this new reality. This will help to lower our planets Co2 laden atmosphere which is the main contributer of climate change such as warmer ocean temperatures that causes coral bleaching, annual record breaking heatwaves, massive polar ice depletion etc. (The ever increasing carbon in the atmosphere is a result of burning fossil fuels that causes the ‘greenhouse effect’ because carbon absorbs heat from the sun).

It’s no wonder this new technology is raising eyebrows across the science energy world.  Madrid    Adelaide

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