Saturday, August 15, 2015

How a Century-Old Technology Could Help Save the World

Demand Energy battery storage (Credit: nexusmedia) Click to Enlarge.
In the basement garage of a high-end apartment building in the middle of New York City, a few electricians are quietly installing a century-old product that is now poised to revolutionize an industry — and maybe lead the United States into a carbon-neutral future.

Taking up about two parking spaces is a wall of boxes.  They are simple lead-acid batteries, similar to what keeps the lights on in your car.  But these batteries are linked together, connected to the building’s electricity system, and monitored in real time by a Washington-state based company, Demand Energy.  Demand’s installation at the Paramount Building in midtown Manhattan is going to lower the building electricity bills and reduce its carbon footprint, even while it doesn’t reduce a single watt of use.

Every night, the batteries charge up.  Every day, they run down, providing a small portion of the building’s energy and reducing the amount of power it takes off the grid.  This cycle of charging during low-use times and discharging during high use times helps level out the Paramount’s electricity use.

Read more at How a Century-Old Technology Could Save the World

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