Researchers at PNNL have come up with a novel way to use silicon as an energy storage ingredient, replacing the graphite in electrodes. Silicon can hold 10 times the electrical charge per gram, but it comes with problems of its own.
At PNNL, subsurface science inhabits two separate but interlocking worlds. One looks at basic science, the other at applied science and engineering. Both are funded by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).
With the help of a diagnostic tool called the Salish Sea Model, researchers found that toxic contaminant hotspots in the Puget Sound are tied to localized lack of water circulation and cumulative effects from multiple sources.
The Energy Storage System Safety and Reliability Forum at PNNL brought together more than 120 energy storage experts from the U.S. Department of Energy, the national laboratories, utilities, industry and academia.
Pumped-storage hydropower offers the most cost-effective storage option for shifting large volumes of energy. A PNNL-led team wrote a report comparing cost and performance factors for 10 storage technologies.
Scientists have uncovered a root cause of the growth of needle-like structures—known as dendrites and whiskers—that plague lithium batteries, sometimes causing a short circuit, failure, or even a fire.
Energy storage is slowly shifting utility planning practices from the current paradigm, which ensures grid reliability by building reserve generation resources, to ensuring grid reliability by optimizing grid services.
PNNL researchers demonstrate how the excitation of oxygen atoms that contributes to better performance of a lithium-ion battery also triggers a process that leads to damage, explaining a phenomenon that has been a mystery to scientists.
"It's sort of like using infrared goggles to see heat signatures in the dark, except this is underground." PNNL and CHPRC implemented a state-of-the-art approach to monitor the process of remediating residual uranium at Hanford's 300 Area.
A recent study pinpointed the reaction front where lithium (Li) dendrites can come into contact with cathode materials. It also detailed the Li propagation pathway and reaction steps that lead to cathode failure.