A Finnish Company, Polar Night Energy, has developed what is being called a “sand battery”. However, it does not store electricity, it stores heat.
According to the developers, the idea is to use electricity, when it is cheap, to heat up a silo full of sand. The heat can be released at a later time to heat water and homes. They claim the sand can be heated to 1100 degrees Fahrenheit and that the sand can stay hot for months.
It is an interesting concept. It is not a battery per-se, but it could be a way to utilize electricity when electricity demand is low and electricity availability is high. Meaning the cost is cheap.
The design reminds us of a geothermal heating and cooling system. In these systems, pipes are run underground for heat exchange. Underground temperatures are more constant than those above ground. In the case of the sand battery, pipes are run through the sand.
Innovations in energy and energy storage seem to be happening every day.
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