In 2011 a new era in the Swiss or German energy sector started after the political decision to limit the operation time of the remaining nuclear power plants without building new ones. At the same time, in order to prevent increased green house gas emissions from fossil fuels, the focus is put on the implementation of devices converting renewable energy into electricity e.g., solar panels, wind turbines or water reservoirs, respectively. One of the main challenges to be resolved in this context is the encountered mismatch between energy supply and demand on a temporal and regional scale pointing to the need of new developments in the energy and electricity storage sector. For instance, in 2011 only a small part of the installed 29 GW wind power plants in Germany could be effectively used due to this unresolved energy and electricity storage question. Similar issues are known in solar energy harvesting due to day-night and diurnal cycles, respectively. Electrochemistry may play a major role in solving this energy storage issue.
PSI’s Electrochemistry Laboratory will address this subject in its 28th One-Day-Symposium on Actual Topics in Electrochemistry offering six talks with views from international renowned experts in the field of electrochemical energy storage and their possible implementation into the electricity grid. After an introductory overview different approaches such as energy storage via batteries, hydrogen production by electrolysis or photo-electrochemistry will be presented in addition to the discussion on the implications of the respective storage devices on the energy system.
We are looking forward to meeting you again on May 2nd, 2012 at the Paul Scherrer Institut for discussions, sharing viewpoints or simply for own educational purposes on this scientifically and technically important topic.