Exploring the World Unplugged:
The Secret Life of Energy Storage
An energy storage virtual field trip series that will uncover the sometimes surprising role energy storage plays in the world around us.
Energy storage plays an essential, yet often invisible role in enabling energy resilience and catalyzing decarbonization, with major implications for electrifying mobility and accelerating renewable energy deployment on the grid and beyond.
Join us for a virtual field trips which are free and open to all.
- What: You’ll be taken on a tour that showcases a real-world application of energy storage, from the International Space Station to medical devices to increasing community resilience. The tour will be accompanied by a discussion focused on related science and technology research and an engaging live Q&A.
- Why: Together we will learn more about how energy storage plays a pivotal and often hidden role across sectors and delve into on-going innovative energy storage research.
- Where: Each virtual field trip will be between 60 and 90 minutes and will be hosted over zoom webinar.
Are you curious about
what technology would be needed to electrify airplanes?
Have you ever wondered
how implantable medical devices, like pacemakers, stay powered in the body?
Are you a researcher
looking to be inspired by real-world challenges that can be solved through innovations in energy storage?
Are you a student
interested in energy and wanting to learn about why energy storage is an exciting area to work in?
THIS SERIES IS FOR YOU!
The virtual series aims to educate on the importance of energy storage, galvanize the next generation of energy storage innovators, build community, and bridge the gap between research and real-world manufacturing, deployment, and application of energy storage science and technology.
Check back soon for future Field Trips!
View the Previous Virtual Field Trip Recordings
Pumped Storage Hydropower!
We explored the landscape of pumped storage hydropower (PSH) in the U.S. and how it supports long duration energy storage goals. We toured New York Power Authority’s (NYPA) Blenheim-Gilboa Pumped Storage Power Project which uses energy to pump water from one large reservoir to another at a higher altitude, and then releases the water to flow through turbines via gravity to generate electricity when needed, therefore acting as a giant rechargeable battery! We also heard about PSH cutting-edge research, diving deep into ways this energy storage technology can serve as a grid transmission asset and more.
Decarbonizing the Steel Industry!
To fully decarbonize the economy, we need to focus on hard-to-decarbonize sectors like manufacturing! For this field trip, we educated ourselves on the energy needs of the steel industry and novel ways energy storage can enable the decarbonization of one of the largest energy consumers in the manufacturing sector.
We started with a tour of the U. S. Steel’s Big River Steel site where we saw first hand the day-to-day activities at the plant, the energy flow, and what’s included in their current sustainability plans. We then heard from researchers about the potential for energy storage solutions like high-temperature thermal energy storage and hydrogen storage as potential solutions to accelerate clean energy deployment in the manufacturing space.
Net-Zero Carbon Houses!
We explored how energy storage can help us reach zero CO2 (carbon dioxide) emissions from our houses. First, we toured a net-zero carbon single-family home equipped with state-of-the-art technologies. We then hear from researchers about how they plan to scale up net-zero carbon houses to the community level and about what the future may look like in buildings with a new generation of conventional energy storage technologies like thermal energy storage.
The second stop on our virtual field trip series explored how energy storage increases community resilience. First, we toured the Bad River Band Reservation’s deployed microgrid, which hosts the largest lithium battery project in Wisconsin and boosts local site and tribal resilience. Then we took a deep dive into how researchers are leveraging energy storage to mitigate uncertainty associated with extreme events and how it can reduce uncertainty and risk in the clean energy transition.
Energy Storage in Space!
During the field trip we talked to astronaut Kayla Barron about the realities of living and working in space and the recently completed battery upgrade missions. We also discussed how the International Space Station has been and continues to be a driver for research that focuses on novel advancements in energy solutions and advanced manufacturing in space.