Friday, April 21, 2017

Everything you need to know about batteries: In 600 words or less.

Last week a person I know wanted to learn more about batteries.  I was a bit surprised that this person was not already leaning on, what I consider, the ultimate resource for all things batteries: TWiB.  

Upon further reflection and some much-needed soothing of my bruised ego, I have had an epiphany.  After more than 50 posts and 42,000 words*, covering topics ranging from potato batteries, to the rules that govern batteries, to the state of the battery market, I can see why one would be confused.  I guess it is like trying to figure out where in the Mahabharata one encounters ethical dilemma’s (hint: There are way too many to just look up in any one page).  What we need is a cheat sheet: a Douglas Adams synthesis of the vastness of the universe, if you will. 

So, I decided to make it simple and guide you thru my numerous blog posts.  Hopefully this guide will help you realize that TWiB has everything you need to know about batteries, and a few things you did not even know you need to know. 

Want to know about the history of batteries, the many kinds of batteries, and how we innovate in batteries?  Check out my posts on the History of Batteries.  Read both Part 1 and Part 2.  Frankly, even if you think you know a lot about batteries, you can read these two posts. 

Want to know how to maintain your car battery, your old Roomba, and/or your laptop?  Did you know each of those devices have a different kind of battery?  Learn more. 

Have you always wondered what the highest energy density battery ever made was?  Or the one with the longest cycle life? If you have, you really do need to get out more.  If that is not an option, you could check out my posts of the Hero Batteries, both Part 1 and Part 2. 

Did you just find out about a new breakthrough in batteries in some website that promises to increase the energy density by a factor of 10 with some sort of alien tech?  Are you wondering when that will hit the EV in your dealership?  Wondering when the next alien tech will hit the battery community?  Check out my guide to battery breakthroughs. 

Are you one of those who can’t read the book but is happy to watch Peter Jackson’s movie adaptation of the Lord of the Rings?  Are you in the mood for a quick 1h, easy to digest overview of the status of batteries, how far we can get with future advances, and what is stopping us from getting there, all recited in a charming Indian accent?  Check out my presentation at Princeton here.

Finally, wondering why there is all this sudden talk about how one can create jobs in energy technologies in the US? All in the last 3 months? (Hint: Check the news).  Wondering why TWiB is not jumping on this bandwagon?  Because I said it 3 years ago: long before it was fashionable!  And I said it in the aforementioned charming Indian accent.  Check out this video in the Fremont Cleantech Open.

There you have it.  One easy to digest post that tells you all you need to know about batteries. 

Can I just say that when I go back and read some of these old posts, I’m amazed at how smart I used to be.  I’m sure all seven of my regular readers can attest to the decreasing quality over time. 


* Methodology used to determine total number of written words:  Copy paste post from site to MS Word; check word count; repeat…two more times; get bored; think about taking average word count per post times number of posts; get a headache thinking of the complexity of the math; pull 42,000 number out of you-know-where paying homage to Hitchhikers Guide.

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