You might have noticed that Elon Musk has been in the news lately, and it’s not necessarily because he’s been doing things related to space exploration or electric cars like his company Tesla Motors.
Last week, he announced his plan to save the world from impending doom, but can his plan really save us? Let’s dig into the details and see why Elon Musk says Tesla’s batteries will save the world!
Elon Musk Tesla battery
A lot of folks have been wondering why Elon Musk is so gung-ho about developing and producing electric vehicles, even if they aren’t necessarily profitable. After all, building a car factory doesn’t sound like something that should be a CEO’s top priority – especially when there are more immediate concerns to deal with, such as whether or not an IPO might be possible. However, it seems that once you start peeling back those layers of surface thought, it becomes clear that everything makes sense in a certain sort of way. Part of what inspires Elon Musk is his desire to help save humanity from some pretty scary circumstances – namely climate change and resource depletion.
So what’s Musk’s solution? Well, he believes that electricity is key to our future – not just because it’s clean, but because it can be much more efficient and less wasteful than petroleum. Therefore, his new Gigafactory should be able to produce a ton of batteries for Tesla vehicles. If that wasn’t enough, he wants those batteries to eventually be used by solar power plants that are all over the world – so that people can enjoy cleaner energy from their vehicles. Of course, there are other reasons as well why we should continue producing EVs – like curbing emissions and helping fight back against volatile oil prices.
What are the challenges with solar power?
One challenge with solar power is its variability. The energy produced by a solar panel depends on how much sunlight falls on it during a certain time, making it less reliable than conventional forms of energy. Solar panels can also only be used for as long as their internal components are functional, which puts constraints on them when compared to conventional forms of energy production. Additionally, solar technology currently lacks storage capability: Even if solar panels were able to produce enough energy to meet world demand, they still wouldn’t be able to do so consistently across all locations and times of day or year. These limitations may restrict the large-scale deployment of solar panels and other types of renewable technologies for use in powering modern civilization
Despite these limitations, people like Elon Musk remain optimistic that solar power will eventually be a viable alternative to fossil fuels and other conventional forms of energy production. In an interview with Vox Media, for example, he explained that batteries would play a crucial role in advancing renewable technology: To have sustainable energy, you need sustainable energy storage, he said. You need enough batteries to store all of that excess capacity to get through the night, so it’s really quite tricky…but at some point, I think we will figure out clean, renewable energy generation. He went on to explain how lithium-ion batteries —the type currently used in many consumer electronics—are not well suited for use in storing large amounts of electricity over long periods.
He went on to explain how lithium-ion batteries —the type currently used in many consumer electronics—are not well suited for use in storing large amounts of electricity over long periods. They degrade and wear out and have a finite life…they’re great for your cell phone, but they’re not great for you to know transmitting large amounts of energy. He also said that graphene is promising because it can store energy over long periods and could potentially be used as an anode in place of metal oxides. An anode is one of two electrodes through which electricity passes into a battery or other device during charging or discharging.
How do batteries help?
Our cars are filled with batteries, ranging from big battery banks in our houses to small lithium-ion cells in our mobile phones. However, these batteries use resources and spew chemicals into our air and water. With Tesla’s batteries, you can run your house with solar energy during daylight hours or even help solve power shortages in impoverished areas. When one of Tesla’s Powerpacks is activated at an industrial facility, it can lower fossil fuel consumption by 10 to 30 per cent—an astonishing feat for a single battery system. This technology has major implications for people all over the world who live without reliable electricity and are forced to rely on fossil fuels for energy. As Elon Musk said: This would be like lighting 20 million homes with solar panels—it’s huge!
Tesla’s battery systems are poised to change how we use energy. But they have an added benefit—they can be easily recycled, unlike our current lithium-ion batteries that just continue to pile up in landfills. Elon Musk is well aware of his company’s potential, which is why he believes that when all of these power cells are connected, they will fundamentally change the nature of electricity and save us from our dependence on fossil fuels and centralized power generation. This is good news for people all over who have yet to make a switch to renewable energy sources or haven’t had reliable access to electricity at all because it could allow them to escape their reliance on fossil fuels and gain more control over their energy source.
What could go wrong?
Let’s be honest. Charging a car is always going to be slower than filling up at a gas station. And getting in and out of a car isn’t always as convenient as stopping at an ATM machine. But if you’re looking for something that can provide some real, no-gas-required utility in your life, battery cars are better bets than ever before. According to Dr Max Baumhefner, who studies electric vehicles at UC Berkeley: In order to make it work on a large scale, we need to produce more batteries. We need many gigafactories like [Tesla’s]…The only way we can get there is with mass production. It won’t happen without it.
So far, companies have made just small steps toward improving our overall energy supply, but technology keeps making progress. This progress has given us reason to believe that our power supply could one day be much cleaner—and maybe even free. While solar panels are starting to pop up everywhere (even on top of gas stations), their widespread use would require improvements in how they store energy and transfer it back into our homes and offices. And while it’s unclear whether or not people will take advantage of these opportunities, investors seem willing to bet on a future where everyone uses clean energy sources over fossil fuels.
In general, energy storage for solar and wind energy remains cost-prohibitive. But with companies like Tesla leading the way in battery technology, things are changing fast. Within five years or so, if you want to go off-grid (even on a smaller scale), you’ll have options. This will disrupt an industry, of course. So while it might not save our planet, it could very well change it—and that’s good enough for us!
On another note, if you’re investing in solar energy for your home and want to go off-grid, it’s important to consider how you’ll be paying for these high-cost batteries. If you own your home, one option is to take out a loan or mortgage against your property. Another option is to consider creating a business that allows you to deduct all of these expenses (including interest payments on a loan) so they can be included as tax deductions. This works best if you have other income sources beyond selling power back to an energy company and will allow you more options later on down the road when taking care of large battery systems comes with added complexities.
That’s all for now! If you enjoyed today’s post, don’t forget to leave us a comment below. And if you’re looking for more info on energy storage or thinking of investing in solar panels for your home, let us know and we can get back to you with further information or help connect you with a local energy specialist. We at Viva Energy are always happy to help out! For now, enjoy an energised day!
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