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Does energy storage in liquid air technology pass the laugh test?

  1. May 18, 2012 #1
    a UK company got $10M to build it, see here http://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/liquid-air-for-utility-scale-energy-storage/ . Can this be at least hypothetically feasible or is it more like pure quackery for stupid investors?

    ETA: to clarify, I don't doubt that it would "work" the same way as thermoelectric generator "works". The question is about the reasonableness of this kind of thermal machine as an efficient energy storage. Are air liquefaction machines sufficiently efficient nowadays that you can lose some energy on liquefaction, then lose some more energy on the limitations of the heat engine and still output big enough percentage of energy input to make it a meaningful grid storage technology?
    Last edited: May 18, 2012
  2. jcsd
  3. May 18, 2012 #2
    All large energy storage systems are expensive. This one may be competitive, especially if they team up with one of the companies currently developing very efficient high volume high pressure compressors for carbon sequestration. They could combine this with any number of co-gen applications. This liquid nitrogen might even be made largely as a byproduct of another highly profitable commodity.
  4. May 20, 2012 #3
    This air liquification should be most efficient in cold climate areas with their cold and dry air, by which heat rejected can be utilized for other needs.
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