There are few candidate battery types that are suitable for storing energy on large scales – within an electrical power grid, for example.
Given that electricity is generally not stored, the grid has to carefully balance consumer demand for electricity with the amount being supplied by generators.
Grid-scale energy storage – sequestering electricity and then releasing it on demand – would be highly desirable. But any technology designed for such a purpose would have to deal with daunting amounts of power, be very cheap and have a long service lifetime.
Prof Donald Sadoway, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge, US, has been working on one technology designed to fulfil these requirements – liquid metal batteries.
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