George Crabtree (Argonne): The Impact of Next Generation Storage on the Electricity Grid

Seminar Series featuring George Crabtree
: "The Impact of Next Generation Storage on the Electricity Grid"

Location: Saieh Hall 021
Cost: Free

Widespread deployment of energy storage on the electricity grid presents a game-changing opportunity to break one of the grid's most constraining operating principles: that instantaneous electricity generation must be adjusted to meet instantaneous demand. Breaking this operating principle has the potential to enable the widespread deployment of variable wind and solar electricity generation, reduce the need for new generation and transmission infrastructure, make the smart grid smarter by enabling time shifting generation and demand in place of simply turning them on or off, and enabling microgrids that tailor service to customer needs by coordinating four elements: electricity from the conventional grid, local generation (such as a solar panel on the roof), local storage, and local use.  The primary barrier to achieving these outcomes is cost: storing electricity for later release is about five times more expensive than simply generating electricity when needed.  The prospects for cost and impact of storage on the electricity grid will be discussed.

About the Speaker

George Crabtree is a Senior Scientist, Distinguished Fellow and Associate Division Director in the Materials Science Division at Argonne National Laboratory. He has won numerous awards for his research, most recently the Kammerlingh Onnes Prize in 2003 for his work on the physics of vortices in high temperature superconductors. This prestigious prize is awarded once every three years; Dr. Crabtree is its second recipient. He has won the University of Chicago Award for Distinguished Performance at Argonne twice, and the U.S. Department of Energy's Award for Outstanding Scientific Accomplishment in Solid State Physics four times, a notable accomplishment. He has an R&D 100 Award for his pioneering development of Magnetic Flux Imaging Systems. He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society, a charter member of ISI's Highly Cited Researchers in Physics, and a Member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences.

Dr. Crabtree has served as Chairman of the Division of Condensed Matter of the American Physical Society, as a Founding Editor of the scientific journal Physica C, as Divisional Associate Editor of Physical Review Letters, as Chair of the Advisory Committee for the National Magnet Laboratory in Tallahassee, Florida, and as Editor of several review issues of Physica C devoted to superconductivity. He has published more than 350 papers in leading scientific journals, has collected over 14,000 career citations, and has given approximately 100 invited talks at national and international scientific conferences. His research interests include materials science, sustainable energy, nanoscale superconductors and magnets, vortex matter in superconductors, highly correlated electrons in metals. He has led workshops for the Department of Energy on hydrogen, solar energy, superconductivity, and materials under extreme environments, co-chaired the Undersecretary of Energy's assessment of DOE's Applied Energy Programs. He has testified before the U.S. Congress on the hydrogen economy and on meeting sustainable energy challenges.