Research Articles

by Dr Peter Harrop

10 Mar 2022

Grid Storage: Constant Change Ahead

The US Department of Energy's paper, "Grid Operational Impacts of Widespread Storage Deployment" analyzes requirements to 2050. It variously calculates 1.3 TWh required to just over 6.0 TWh in its 94% renewable electricity, Zero Carbon scenario. Earlier, other researchers calculated 80% wind and solar will require 5.4 TWh of energy storage so it is obvious that huge amounts of storage are needed. Even that is with massive over-production and therefore curtailment - electricity only being generated 10% to 20% of the time on average. Polluting peaker plants only have 11% capacity factor so, on that model, bad replaces bad in that respect.
23 Feb 2022

Hydrogels get Magical

Just jelly-like materials? Well, there is a new one that supports an elephant but goes squishy when it jumps off. The new IDTechEx reports, "Self-Healing Materials Markets 2022-2042" and "Hydrogel Markets in Agriculture, Industry, Energy, Electronics, Electrical, Consumer 2022-2042" have the big picture.
16 Feb 2022

Stationary Energy Storage Misunderstood

In our surreal world, we continue to subsidize fossil fuels. We rarely subsidize the huge missing link on the way to 100% renewables, which is providing massive amounts of delayed electricity. People misunderstand. They think we do. Uniquely, the IDTechEx report "Future Stationary Energy Storage: Hydrogen, Batteries, Gravity, Gas, Other 2022-2042" looks at all the proliferating needs and technologies on the essential 20-year timescale ahead. It finds that the problems are largely solved of very brief fluctuations previously avoided by the momentum of rotating machines used in fossil fuel plants.
03 Feb 2022

Smart Cities Pivot to Hydrogen and Other Priorities

Smart cities face new, exceptional challenges with new exceptional technologies. Those starting from scratch have seen a shakeout for reasons varying from push-back against people control to failing to raise the money. In contrast, work has begun on the NEOM smart city in Saudi Arabia and the more modest Toyota Woven City at the base of Mount Fuji in Japan that is, in some ways, more advanced. The IDTechEx report, "Smart City Materials, Systems, Markets 2022-2042" has the analysis and forecasts.
01 Feb 2022

New Hydrogel Types, Applications, Opportunities

Gymnast of chemicals, the awesome hydrogel is a 3D network of hydrophilic polymers like a giant molecule that can swell in water and hold at least 10% of water while maintaining a well-defined structure. Medical hydrogels currently dominate hydrogel publicity, patents, and research but the rest will become a larger business 2022-2042.
13 Dec 2021

Self-Healing Materials can now Create Billion-Dollar Businesses

Self-healing materials are a new megatrend. The need is massive, from saving trillions of dollars lost yearly by collapsing buildings and bridges to bionic man and woman living better and longer. In saving the planet and preserving resources, long life from self-healing beats recycling any day.
08 Dec 2021

The Big Picture of Mining Electrification

In the big picture, mining is a very large, growing business. Top mining companies net around $660 billion yearly. In this article IDTechEx analyzes how mining is being electrified, relocated and redefined.
23 Nov 2021

Smart Cities: Paradise or Punishment?

The massive new challenges of desertification, rising sea levels, starvation, increasingly violent weather, dysfunctional national governments and the accelerating move to cities can be tackled on a human scale.
10 Nov 2021

Mining and Concrete Industries Central to New Massive Energy Storage

The new need for massive amounts of delayed electricity will provide major new business for the mining and cement industries while helping them to clean up their act and generate new earning streams.
27 Oct 2021

New Passive Cooling for Buildings

With global warming kicking in and rising sea levels displacing millions to arid regions, there needs to be much more cooling of buildings. Two new passive options need to be welcomed that use readily available, non-toxic substances - metamaterials and unprecedentedly white paint reflecting maximum sunlight away from a building.
21 Oct 2021

Who Is Winning at 6G?

Several billion dollars have been put on the table for 6G Communication so far. The IDTechEx report "6G Communications Market, Devices, Materials 2021-2041" reveals how Europe, North America, and East Asia are all strongly committed to this dream. So who is ahead in the race to mass deployment maybe in 2030?
14 Oct 2021

Rethinking Smart Cities: Setbacks and How to Move Forward

Ideas have moved on from a smart city being a dystopian world of sensors everywhere and people control by artificial intelligence - smart cities are primarily about progressing to water, food, and power independence and minimal transport. How to make smart cities in both deserts and the sea must be figured out.