Stories tagged electricity storage

Using his head: On his recent trip to Africa, Presudent Obama tried out the new SOCCKET soccer ball.
Using his head: On his recent trip to Africa, Presudent Obama tried out the new SOCCKET soccer ball.Courtesy AP
Kids' soccer games in Third World nations can help provide needed power to electricity-lacking villages through this new invention of two college student. The SOCCKET puts a gyroscope inside a soccer ball, capturing kinetic energy generated by the ball's motion. That energy is stored in a battery in the ball. A cap can be popped off the ball at night exposing a socket to the battery. Thirty minutes of kids' soccer action can power a LED light for three hours. Here's we're you can learn more and see the ball in action.

http://unchartedplay.com/soccket/

Jul
05
2010

One oft-cited reason for the relatively small percentage of renewable energy produced in the U.S. (just 7% of our energy is renewable) is that when you have a fluctuating energy source such as sunlight or wind, you need a giant battery to store the excess for use during times of scarcity. Here's one example discussing wind. Perusing Popular Mechanics this afternoon, I came across two innovative new battery designs that could bring us much closer to wider use of renewable energies.

The first design wins points for style--Beacon Power, of Massachusetts, has been testing a battery made of flywheels that store energy as they spin.

The second battery isn't quite as sexy, but it's no less useful--Donald Sadoway at MIT is working on an all-liquid metal battery that could absorb electrical currents up to 10 times as strong as today's hi-tech batteries.

Pretty exciting stuff!