Chemical engineering research at Aalto University works to solve bottlenecks in electrification
The EU and Finland aim to sharply increase the production of emission-free electricity and to electrify everything that can be electrified: most transport, industry, and heating. Indeed, electrification is seen as one of the most important ways to mitigate climate change.
Electrification alone is no miracle cure for climate change. Availability of the required metals will soon become an obstacle without more versatile and innovative ways to use materials and to produce energy. More mines will certainly be needed. However, the need can be reduced through circular economy, by saving energy, and by setting priorities for the uses of the critical raw materials involved.
Shortages, especially of minerals required by wind energy and electric cars, threaten to emerge in the near future, because supply cannot keep up with demand. The situation is further exacerbated by the fact that the same minerals are used in consumer electronics and modern arms technology, for example. Digitalisation and, for example, the Internet of Things are also boosting overall demand for energy. Aalto University produces information aimed at solving the sustainability crisis.