Thursday August 22, 2019

‘Power paper’ to store electricity soon

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London: Researchers at Linkoping University in Sweden have developed a ‘power paper’ that can store energy. The material consists of nanocellulose and a conductive polymer.

Unlike the batteries and capacitors currently on the market, power paper is produced from simple materials like renewable cellulose and an easily available polymer.

It is light in weight, requires no dangerous chemicals or heavy metals and it is waterproof.

One sheet of this new material, 15 cm in diameter and a few tenths of a millimetre thick, can store as much as 1F, which is similar to the supercapacitors currently on the market.

The material can be recharged hundreds of times and each charge only takes a few seconds.

“Thin films that function as capacitors have existed for some time. What we have done is to produce the material in three dimensions. We can produce thick sheets,” said study co-author professor Xavier Crispin.

The material, power paper, looks and feels like a slightly plastic paper.

The structural foundation of the material is nanocellulose, which is cellulose fibres which, using high-pressure water, are broken down into fibres as thin as 20 nm in diametre.

With the cellulose fibres in a solution of water, an electrically charged polymer, also in a water solution, is added. The polymer then forms a thin coating around the fibres.

“The covered fibres are in tangles, where the liquid in the spaces between them functions as an electrolyte,” explained researcher Jesper Edberg.

The new cellulose-polymer material has set a new world record in simultaneous conductivity for ions and electrons, which explains its exceptional capacity for energy storage.

The study was published in the journal Advanced Science.(ians)

(picture credit:cdn.ndtv.com)

 

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Coal-Fired Power to Remain Main Source of Energy Despite Push for Renewables

The capacity of coal based generation would increase from the current about 195 gigawatt (GW) to 238 GW by March, 2027

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coal fired power, renewables
The capacity of coal based generation would increase from the current about 195 gigawatt (GW) to 238 GW by March, 2027. Pixabay

Even as the government continues its push for renewables, coal-fired power is expected to remain the main source of energy for the next decade or so, Power and New and Renewable Energy Minister R.K. Singh said on Tuesday.

The capacity of coal based generation would increase from the current about 195 gigawatt (GW) to 238 GW by March, 2027. “Accordingly, the total coal requirement would increase from 698 MT for 2019-20 to 877 MT during 2026-27,” Singh said in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha.

As there is a already shortage in coal supply, the government needs to raise production to meet the needs of thermal power plants. “Besides meeting the present deficit in coal supply to power sector, Coal India Limited (CIL) may enhance its production to meet the growing requirement of the power sector,” the Minister said.

coal-fired power
Cars pass the Shanghai Waigaoqiao Power Generator Company coal power plant in Shanghai, March 22, 2016. VOA

As per the National Electricity Plan (2018), the share of electricity generated from coal-based power plants is likely to be 64 per cent at the end of 2021-22. Its share is projected to further come down to 58 per cent by 2026-27 from the current level of 72 per cent.

“The reduction of share of coal-based generation in the total generation over the period would be mainly due to addition of renewable energy,” the Power Minister said.

ALSO READ: UN Organizations Announce “Clean Air Initiative”; Urge Governments Participation

The government has taken a slew of measures to expand installed capacity through renewable energy sources. They include waiver of inter-state transmission system (ISTS) charges and losses for inter-state sale of solar and wind power for projects to be commissioned up to March 2022.

Foreign direct investment (FDI) up to 100 per cent under the automatic route has also been allowed. The Centre has set a target of installing 175 GW of renewable energy capacity by March, 2022. (IANS)