The Danes have an enduring relationship with wind. This is symbolized by the big, honking wind turbine that looms like a bird of prey over the parking lot outside the Bella Center, the venue for the U.N. Climate Change Conference Denmark is hosting in December.
It was a Dane, physicist H.C. Oersted, who discovered electrical induction, the principle at work inside wind and other electric generators. Danish farmers brag they were the first in the world to generate electricity from wind.
The Danes are now hard at work cracking one of the great challenges of wind power: the fact that the wind blows when it darn well pleases. Sometimes it blows hard when there isn’t much need for the resulting electricity. Sometimes the air is becalmed when electricity is needed the most.
Wouldn’t it be nice if households in Denmark had nice batteries to store the wind power coming off the country’s wind farms?
Denmark’s plan is to get those batteries into households using a Trojan horse strategy. The batteries will be mounted on four tires. If lots of Danish people switch from gasoline cars to all-electric plug in cars, each of those cars wil... Read more