A hot-water bottle is easy to make and stays warm for hours.
Now, inspired by the heating wires of toasters, a startup from California hopes to create a new type of storage that stores surplus energy in the form of heat.
The team discovered that carbon blocks were best suited to the purpose thanks to their high energy density. What’s more, they’re cheaper than lithium batteries.
The blocks, which can be heated to 1500C, will be the size of fridges. The infrared light and radiation heat can be re-converted into electricity using thermophotovoltaics.
Another startup from the USA is aiming to launch a similar concept using conductive ceramic blocks heated to 2,000C to power turbines through heat.