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August 12, 2017
Google joins the race to save the world from the catastrophic consequences of global warming with a technology that unleashes the power of salt.
Fossil fuels supply about 80 per cent of the world’s energy and 60 per cent of our overall electrical generation.
This in spite of the fact that quite a number of countries have been seriously shifting to renewable energy.
Nevertheless, the world needs more action based on current data.
According to the United Nations, public policies are one of the hurdles in the pursuit to make renewable energy a more popular alternative energy source.
Another challenge is energy storage.
Currently, solar and wind energies are among the most widely-used alternatives to fossil fuels. But these sources, unlike the traditional, can be harnessed only on certain times. You get solar only during daylight, while windy days are more difficult to rely on.
However, each renewable energy has its peak and, if those energies could be efficiently stored, then the world could benefit a lot more. It could also bring the price of renewable energy further down, thereby accelerating the global transition to cleaner and sustainable energy.
Another giant corporation that’s meeting that challenge in order to help save the planet is Google’s parent company, Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ : GOOG, GOOGL).
Through its project codenamed Malta, technologies are being developed to store electricity in molten salt and antifreeze. The objective is to meet electrical grid demands to be able to serve more communities. The project is based on the theory formulated by Nobel Prize winner Robert Laughlin.
Based on the Laughlin theory, energy can be stored through a pumped thermal energy storage system. The system functions like a heat pump or refrigerator, using heat storage fluids.
According to the team working on the Malta project, the following are some of the benefits to be gained by storing energy with the use of salt and antifreeze:
After two years of working intensively on design, Alphabet Inc. is now looking forward to the construction of a prototype plant which can soon help provide the world with a more efficient, more affordable, and more environment-friendly energy storage solution. This is certainly a positive development in the face of overwhelming scientific evidence suggesting that climate change poses a serious, if not catastrophic threat to our very existence.