How Mature are Renewable Energy Technologies?

Technology Readiness Levels Explained

Rosemary Barnes
Digital Diplomacy

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Airbus’ hydrogen aircraft concept — looks ready but how long should we expect to wait?

This is something that annoys me about the way that energy technology is covered in the media:

A scientific or technical advance is reported, the reporter tells us all about the problems with existing alternative technologies and the amazing potential of the new technology.

I feel like I see a lot of this.

And we rarely hear about how much risk there is that it won’t work as expected, or how long it might take until it becomes available to use. The reporter might mention that “development is needed” or “it needs to be scaled”, or even describe the technology as “mature”, but the details of technology maturity are omitted. The reader has no way to determine how likely the new technology is to succeed or how long it might take to get there.

The reason this annoys me is that I feel bombarded with stories of new energy technologies that purport to be the solution to all of the challenges of the green energy transition. And if this new and perfect solution is coming up, why would we bother persevering with today’s non-perfect solutions? When we don’t specifically focus on technology maturity, it can…

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Rosemary Barnes
Digital Diplomacy

Clean technology development consultant | “Engineering with Rosie” on YouTube bit.ly/3hVkrLb