The Future Of Energy Storage Beyond Lithium Ion

Over the past decade, prices for solar panels and wind farms have reached all-time lows. However, the price for lithium ion batteries, the leading energy storage technology, has remained too high. So researchers are exploring other alternatives, including flow batteries, thermal batteries, and gravity-based systems.

CORRECTION (March 14, 2020): At 12:53 we incorrectly identify the size of the energy storage market. Overall, the energy storage market is predicted to attract $620 billion dollars in investments by 2040.

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The Future Of Energy Storage Beyond Lithium Ion


  1. Hersh C on August 17, 2020 at 2:35 pm

    Good summary

  2. Aftab Alam on August 17, 2020 at 2:36 pm

    The energy vault is just a scam

  3. Biswajeet Sahu on August 17, 2020 at 2:38 pm
  4. Leon Nelen on August 17, 2020 at 2:39 pm

    Wat de kinderlijke fantasie van ‘waterstof in poedervorm’ (het wasmiddel Natriumboorhydride) van h2-fuel opbrengt: Een subsidie van € 3.400.000. Namelijk voor het produceren van een boot op ‘groene waterstof’ voor het havenbedrijf Amsterdam. @t. TU-Delft heeft H2-fuel gevraagd haar site aan te passen "om geen ongefundeerde verwachtingen te scheppen" (waaronder dus een waterstofelektriciteitscentrale die haar eigen brandstof (waterstof) produceert). Aanpassing is niet gebeurd en ze hebben zogenaamd niet door dat ze opgelicht worden.

  5. Srila Ramanujam on August 17, 2020 at 2:39 pm

    ..sitting close to the equator is warm and good – thermal n solar can stretch so much more…but what happens to all the oil $, might loose a bit of its charm indeed

  6. FB Kensar HD on August 17, 2020 at 2:39 pm

    Pass the additional energy into perpetual cooling fans to cool the batteries and the panels for increased efficiency.

  7. pipaliya kishor Ramjibhai on August 17, 2020 at 2:41 pm
  8. Meg Gwmr on August 17, 2020 at 2:42 pm

    The only safe mass storage battery is Vanadium flow battery. No thermal runaway as is made mainly of water so can’t catch fire or blow up unlike lithium. 100% recyclable and last for 25 years plus and don’t degrade. Safety is going to be an issue with lithium batteries. No one will put them near any city

  9. David Dapaah on August 17, 2020 at 2:43 pm

    This guy is doing small awesome things in his small corner of the world

  10. Steven Oliver on August 17, 2020 at 2:44 pm

    Or you could just ditch these boondoggles and use the latest nuclear technology for carbon free, 24/7 uninterruptible power.

  11. Beacon of Wierd on August 17, 2020 at 2:47 pm

    Everyone is thinking about this upside down.
    Instead of trying to make batteries cheaper so that you can have fewer solar panels and wind farms, just use more cheap solar panels so that even on cloudy days/winter time you produce enough electricity. What do you do with the excess energy that you can’t store during sunny/summer days?

    I remember hearing something about the earth having a CO2 problem, so maybe instead of coal burning peaker plants, let’s do the exact opposite, have "coal sucking" plants which only run on the excess power.

    I personally live in "the North" where we get very little sun in the winter times and I wanted to know what I would need to produce my own power. First naive solution was just to see how much energy I would need to collect over a year, then how the sunlight is distributed over the year and what size of a battery I would need to store sunlight from the summer to power through the winter. Total cost for the hardware of such a system was around 140 000 dollars. Then I tried to simply increase the amount of solar panels to find the minimum cost without constraining myself to not overproducing energy. If I instead just buy a lot of more solar panels to get me through the winter too it would be cheaper than a giant battery. The optimal point using commercially available products was to have a small battery (21 kWh) and use enough solar panels to get power even in the winter, total cost for the hardware came out to be around 23 252 dollars, which is a lot more affordable.

    In practice though you might want a little bit bigger battery, since 21 kWh would only cover around 2.5 days of my energy consumption which is a bit on the low side. You would also need to take into account daily variances and such, but the point is still the same, just use more solar, you still get power even on cloudy days, just less of it.

  12. smokyislay on August 17, 2020 at 2:47 pm

    Why they use concrete blocks and cranes and not just build a water tower instead? I mean the difference in density is only triple. Is anyone using water towers for this purpose? I mean pumping it full during daytime and running a turbine at nights and cloudy days? I guess if there’s some industries on the area that needs clean water in their processes but it doesn’t need to come with high pressure then with little planning you could use water tower for both purposes.

  13. Nebosvod gonzalez on August 17, 2020 at 2:47 pm

    But they need to generate energy with permanent magnet generators. A permanent magnet puts offquantum radiation that has extreme amounts of energy. That can move things create rotation and you’ve got yourself electricity.

  14. cornel stamate on August 17, 2020 at 2:48 pm

    instead of a 70-75 kw battery and a weight of 600 kg it is better to divide the battery in two. one of 10-15 kw and 100 kg permanent with a range of 100 km that would be enough for the city and a standard battery of 60 kw and 500 kg detachable to rent when you leave the town. instead of stopping at the peco to fill up for the road you can go to an electric charging point in your city and mount a standard 60 kw battery from there and on the way to replace it at another electric charging point with one loaded. the first advantage is that it would save a lot of batteries in the world, especially since the 2 million km batteries will appear, which practically do not wear out and must be fully exploited. if a car is lighter by 500 kg, I think it will have a significantly greater autonomy in the city. this would be the second advantage. a short recharge time of up to 5 minutes to change the battery would be another advantage. the price of electric cars would drop by half. lazy people who do not want to charge the car every night or people who have range anxiety can use both batteries permanently with the asumation of costs. I’m waiting for opinions

  15. Abhinav Singh on August 17, 2020 at 2:48 pm

    long live TATA.

  16. jamie cartwright on August 17, 2020 at 2:49 pm

    @thunderf00t 9:30

  17. Maurice Ukaegbu on August 17, 2020 at 2:49 pm

    This is what I love about the United States of America! A country that takes the lead in innovative research. I hope this technology becomes cheaper in near future. It will indeed free my country from the incessant power failures and poor energy infrastructure.

    Thank you America. More power to the scientist.

  18. David Triana on August 17, 2020 at 2:50 pm

    Why not just use dilithium crystals? I hear Start Fleet uses them to power all their ships.

  19. Jeb Broham on August 17, 2020 at 2:52 pm

    The tower idea has gotta be a joke xD

  20. WICKEDLEE LOOPY on August 17, 2020 at 2:54 pm

    Using solar or wind to pump water up hill for a hydro electric system is the most logical & most effective system . But it is essentially a gravity generator. You can lift anything with a motor. Even a heavy weight.

  21. Israel Arteaga on August 17, 2020 at 2:55 pm

    So funny, "beyond lithium" and the USA just did a coup in bolivia, which has the worlds largest source of lithium.

  22. JayBe Faulky on August 17, 2020 at 2:56 pm

    it seems exciting now but when we finally get true solid-state batteries right all these companies will be struggling and will need to specialize in whatever..which is just the way of things anyway so all good

  23. Will Robertson on August 17, 2020 at 2:59 pm

    The oldest cool storage was a pile of old crushed old cars driving a cable setup to run a dynomotive power to make power in to an old auto shop ..raise lift make electric and air way a head of its time

  24. Sam on August 17, 2020 at 3:00 pm

    Lol stacking stones. That’s kinda cool

  25. Adapala Sambasiva rao on August 17, 2020 at 3:03 pm

    We must build a nation with good education ,good health,good ethicks,and ethical working in all fields.ours is a country has different culture,different working environment ment with ethicks.but now we have lost all and running behind money.thats the problem.we have to rebuilt it without any short cuts.

  26. Luis Hernandez on August 17, 2020 at 3:04 pm

    look up Bloom Energy to mitigate the main issues

  27. Benny Ceca on August 17, 2020 at 3:05 pm

    Gravitricity sounds much better than Energy Vault as it’s a hole in the ground, idea is the same, but instead of bricks, it’s one heavy piece, and it can be enclosed in a building so it doesn’t become an eye sore!

  28. Marco Zorzi on August 17, 2020 at 3:05 pm

    There are a lot of things that do not make sense in this video. There is too much misinformation going on in regards to energy storage. It is not possible to talk about energy storage without mentioning hydrogen. Hydrogen is the way to store energy. It’s specific energy of about 39.9kWh/kg is unmatched by any of the energy storage solutions mentioned in this video. Furthermore a Solid Hydrogen Carriers storage module made of metal hydrides, can store up to 150 kgH2 in just 1 cube meter of volume, equivalent to 6MWh of energy stored. That’s very impressive.
    Metal hydrides are already a commercially viable alternative to compressed or liquid hydrogen and can safely store the gas at low pressure (2bars to 40 bars) in a small space. In the past few years multiple industries have begun using hydrogen stored in metal hydrides to run submarines, stationary power devices and portable electronics, among other things.

  29. curiousguy on August 17, 2020 at 3:07 pm

    Believe me the solution is either or water. Anything else will not be sustainable.

  30. Theo Borsche on August 17, 2020 at 3:08 pm

    Yet another energy storage clip that completely ignores 98.5% of existing storage capacity: hydro power – pumped or conventional. Batteries are not and will never be economical for long term or seasonal storage. The battery in Australia is mainly used for stabilization of the power grid in the short term, something we implemented in my PhD in the early 2010s, something that was done in West Berlin in the 1980s or in Alaska and Chile. For long term storage, other solutions exist and are already being used. The reason we do not see more investment in storage is that it is simply not needed yet. This may change over the coming decade if we increase the share of renewables. It is also not an renewables issue: nuclear power plants are only economical if they run at full load all the time. Demand peaks during the day and declined at night. Hence we used demand flexibility (mainly heating up water for use in households) to balance the load and better utilize the nuclear plants. This was done in Finland, Switzerland and France as early as the 1960s, and certainly in many other places.
    Greta is right- the solutions exist, we just need to use them.

  31. Ash j on August 17, 2020 at 3:10 pm

    Im make my own hydrogen now , thanks 💵

  32. Mecha Solar Egypt on August 17, 2020 at 3:10 pm

    Congratulations on this major achievement in the delivery of green energy!
    Thank you for being part of this project.
    Mega Solar Power Plant – Benban Aswan Egypt .

  33. Moshangdar on August 17, 2020 at 3:13 pm


  34. Adapala Sambasiva rao on August 17, 2020 at 3:15 pm

    Energy is the basic requirement for all productivity.

  35. Gaelle Melloul on August 17, 2020 at 3:15 pm

    "I recommend this guide:
    So grateful it exists."

    Η τέλεια μέθοδος για όλους

  36. Peace on August 17, 2020 at 3:15 pm

    Too expensive but Australia found they were cheaper, you can tap into a battery in one second, the fastest fossil fuel generator takes about 15 to 30 minutes to go online. Maybe you are looking at the wrong formula. This is the propaganda of the fossil fuel industry. We should be looking and building a world of the future, not relying on the dirty fuels of the past.

  37. Noob Master on August 17, 2020 at 3:17 pm

    I think lightning Will be the energy of the future
    Check this out 👆👆

  38. Kona The Blarbarian on August 17, 2020 at 3:18 pm

    Folks, this is propaganda, there exists far superior sources and technology for energy, flight, health, food transport, education, etc…than allowed to be known. Its focus is greed rather than the greatest good, which we must change!

  39. Aftab Alam on August 17, 2020 at 3:18 pm

    The thermal storage does nt look promising cause heat is the most raw form of energy and is very easily lost

  40. Sam on August 17, 2020 at 3:19 pm

    Lol seeimg MW gives me factorio feelings

  41. Aftab Alam on August 17, 2020 at 3:20 pm

    Lithium ion, flow batteries, liquid metal batteries these are the real future. The others are just shams and scans

  42. Whit Elfner on August 17, 2020 at 3:24 pm

    "…25 kWhs of energy enough to power 5-7 homes during peak energy use."
    Not in most communities in the US… Sad US is such an energy hog, but even modern homes will have ‘peak use’ above this unless designed for minimal use.

  43. Benjamin Anderson on August 17, 2020 at 3:27 pm

    I can’t wait till Tesla Battery day!

  44. Billy Jiang on August 17, 2020 at 3:28 pm

    The Future of enery storage should be The lithium iron phosphate (LiFePO 4) battery. After years development. the cost is much down and it is suitable for any large system or even for small home system. people can afford it. most of the them can last for more then 10 years. over 5000 times cycle life. Like CMX 3.2v 50ah lifepo4 cell. This is widly apply for vehicles and solar energy storage systems.

  45. Suicide Black on August 17, 2020 at 3:30 pm

    9:27. That is an ingenious way of storing power, cool.

  46. Kingsthrone on August 17, 2020 at 3:31 pm

    Videos like these give a good insight in technologies that one might not yet heard of.

  47. John Gillespie on August 17, 2020 at 3:32 pm

    How about a gravity based energy system based on purified and refined sand. The sand would be sent from the bottom of the tower to the top of the tower through a series of powerful electric shop vacuums. Because of the mass of the sand and the height of the tower, it may take a series of several platforms for the sand to be moved to the top of the tower. Then the sand is allowed to be poured down the tower like it was being poured down a giant hour glass. However, instead of the sand working it’s way down an hour glass, it would work it’s way down a series of mills or turbines in which the sand would pour over. Instead of water pouring over a water wheel that forces the wheel to spin, here it would be sand pouring over a sand wheel forcing the mill or wheel or turbine to spin, generating electricity. Below the sand wheel is a giant funnel that catches all of the sand and below that is another wheel ready to catch the sand in order to turn this second sand wheel or turbine that will generate electricity. Under this second sand mill or wheel or turbine is another giant funnel that catches the sand and below that another sand wheel or turbine, and so on and so on. There could be up to twenty energy producing turbines until the sand finally reaches the ground. There may be virtually unlimited number of sand turbines, depending on how tall the tower is. This sand producing turbines could be added to already existing skyscrapers, one would just need a portion of the building from top to bottom sectioned off for this energy producing function. The important thing is that the electricity shop vacuums are powerful and efficient. So powerful and efficient that the energy produced far exceeds the energy it takes to get the sand back to the top of the tower. This system could be continually running to continually produce electricity. There would be no need for downtime, unless maintenance needed to be provided to the shop vacuums or to the turbines. This is not a perpetual motion machine, but the law of energy effeciency, where through the efficiency of the device, more energy is produced than is required to run the machine. This is the same as with fusion power that scientists are trying to make practical.

  48. CMan W on August 17, 2020 at 3:35 pm

    If thorium worked all these companies would be bankrupt.

  49. chris dowsett on August 17, 2020 at 3:35 pm

    Nuclear where you’re geologically stable, geothermal or tidal where you aren’t……I always hated that wind and solar became the only renewables people ever talk about when they’re 2 of the lease reliable. Unless the moon disappears there will always be tides, if the Earth’s core stops being hot we have bigger problems than electricity, and somehow nuclear has a smaller body count than solar in the official statistics and it’s got 2 massive catastrophes under its belt.

  50. goemon9378 on August 17, 2020 at 3:35 pm

    they could just store all the energy into a giant rubber band

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