Sun in a Box: The Liquid That Stores Solar Energy for Two Decades

Sun in a Box: The Liquid That Stores Solar Energy for Two Decades

Solar power is considered one of the most promising alternatives to fossil fuel. However, in order to embrace this sustainable energy entirely, there are still challenges we need to overcome — one of which is the long-term storage of solar energy. Storage is vital to ensuring we have access to power even when the sun isn’t shining. A series of research papers offer hope though, as they outline a novel approach to storing the sun’s energy . Liquid acts like an efficient battery In 2018, scientists in Sweden developed "solar thermal fuel," a specialized fluid that can reportedly store energy captured from the sun for up to 18 years . "A solar thermal fuel is like a rechargeable battery, but instead of electricity, you put sunlight in and get heat out, triggered on demand," Jeffrey Grossman, an engineer who works with these materials at MIT explained to NBC News . The fluid has been in development for more than a year by scientists from Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden. The solar thermal collector named MOST (Molecular Solar Thermal Energy Storage System) works in a circular manner. A pump cycles the solar thermal fuel through transparent tubes. When sunlight […]

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