"From Harvard, a Cheaper Storage Battery"

"WASHINGTON — Researchers at Harvard say they have developed a new battery technology that can store energy at lower cost, a development that Energy Department officials say could pave the way for a new generation of batteries."

"The findings, which were published on Wednesday in the journal Nature, come as utilities are under pressure to overcome one of the major shortcomings of renewable energy: how to make the electricity available even when the sun is not shining or the wind is not blowing.

California recently became the first state to order utilities to install storage.

The breakthrough came in the type of materials used to store the energy. The Harvard researchers reported using a carbon-based molecule found in crude oil and other substances as the material to hold the electric charge. Most battery chemistry in use today uses metals, including the familiar nickel metal-hydride and lithium-ion, which are more costly."

Matthew L. Wald reports for the New York Times January 8, 2014.

Source: NY Times, 01/10/2014