IBM, yes, the computer company is fed up with the lagging green economy. That is why they have decided to build the boldest battery yet that will put lithium ion to shame.
The next generation battery by IBM is said to be able to store 10X the power that today’s top lithium ions can handle. Now, some may scratch their heads as to why a computer company would want to build next generation batteries.
They may even liken it to Exxon building hybrid car enabling technology. But the pot of the gold at the end of the rainbow for IBM may be smart grid technology. The aging electrical grid, if converted to smart grid technology will need new software and hardware for its infrastructure.
I’ve talked about smart metering as one way for computer software, hardware and infrastructure companies to make money. Smart grid technology is similar.
The new IBM batteries will help solve the problem of intermittent energy from wind and solar power. Some advocates want to store this power as hydrogen or molten salt or many other methods. Storing the power in batteries and then using it when the wind isn’t blowing or the sun isn’t shining solves the problem and is a potential money magnet.
In addition if the same battery technology can be used in hybrid, plug-in hybrid and battery electric cars, (along with software and hardware controllers) then this could mean a cash windfall for Big Blue (IBM) as well.
As Big Blue goes green, this may just be the change for which we’ve all been waiting.