Alphabet Sees Power in Molten Salt, a New Moonshot

Wall Street Journal

Google parent Alphabet Inc. GOOGL 0.58% is pitching an idea to store power from renewable energy in tanks of molten salt and cold liquid, an example of the tech giant trying to marry its far-reaching ambitions with business demand. Alphabet's research lab, dubbed X, said Monday that it has developed plans to store electricity generated from solar panels or wind turbines as thermal energy in hot salt and cold liquids, such as antifreeze. The lab is seeking partners in the energy industry, including power-plant developers and utilities, to build a prototype to plug into the electrical grid. X says its system works by sending electrical power from solar panels or wind turbines through a heat pump that converts the power to thermal energy, splitting it between hot and cold, which is then stored in tanks of molten salt or a cold liquid, such as antifreeze.