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Wind energy: a sustainable long term debate develops

Storage of intermittent power supply is a goal that would greatly increase the usefulness of wind power.
Hydrogen cells are well tested technology, water is in abundance in vast areas of the world. This can be purified by various processes and by electrolysis produce this gas. It is already done in small ways in the manufacture of specialist chips and laser products.

During my time in the petrochemical industry I advocated this together with a few other far sighted colleagues. At the time oil and gas were plentiful and the capital cost of plant to make this process economic could not compete so the oil companies were not interested. I believe that there is now serious research being undertaken by these companies in its production, handling and storage.

Cells to be able to supply the Grid would of course need to be enormous, but smaller cells can be economic for industrial and commercial uses and so relieve some of the demand on the Grid. It would also have the added advantage to meet the Government's carbon reduction target.

P.DEREK EMES (M), derek@headshill.org

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