- Clean Energy Charging uses only low-carbon electricity to charge your iPhone.
- It is enabled by default in iOS 16.1.
- If you add up the hundreds of millions of iPhones around the world, that can be huge.
With iOS 16.1, iPhone users in the US can choose to charge their phones using only “green” power.
Apple’s clean energy charging By accessing carbon emissions projections from your local energy grid, then charging only when those emissions are low. That sounds like an esoteric change, except for two factors: it’s enabled by default on all iPhones running iOS 16.1, and there are hundreds of millions of iPhones in use around the world, all of which require charging.
“There are 16 billion mobile devices in the world that need to be charged every day, and the average consumption of these devices may exceed the average consumption of countries such as Denmark,” Aimee Howardis a renewable energy power electronics expert with 28 years of experience in the aerospace industry developing power electronics for sustainable manufacturing, he told Lifewire via email.
When I saw this feature, the first thought was, “Why doesn’t the grid store its own low-carbon electricity and use it to replace more polluting energy sources?” But, of course, the answer is more complicated.
grid were able Storing electricity, the way it manages to do this is bizarre and worth a look here. This is especially important when using renewable energy sources such as solar, wind or wave power, which generate electricity on their own schedules, not necessarily at peak demand.
What Apple is doing is making it easier for iPhone users to realize their role in reducing carbon emissions.
Batteries may be the first option that comes to your mind, but they have the same drawbacks as the batteries in our gadgets. For example, they often use expensive lithium-ion batteries, which can be harmful to the environment if not disposed of properly. Electricity does not have to be stored in the form of electricity. It can be converted into other forms of energy.
For example, using excess electricity to pump water back into a reservoir stores electricity as potential energy, which can be released by letting the water flow back and using it to generate electricity. It can also be stored in the flywheel as kinetic energy. According to the EPAthese flywheels can spin up to 60,000 RPM and spin on magnetic bearings in a vacuum to reduce drag and energy loss.
Electricity can also be stored in compressed air and ice.
The problem with all of these is that they are inefficient. Energy is converted and wasted as heat. This is where clean energy charging comes in.
clean energy charging
By waiting for the lower carbon emissions time, you can use the excess energy directly instead of storing it. This is great for devices you charge because they store energy until it’s needed. It can also work in some domestic situations; some countries offer cheaper electricity during off-peak hours, so you can choose to leave the dishwasher running overnight.
The time requirements for other tasks are higher. For example, you have to make dinner at dinner time unless you really, really, really like cold cuts and leftovers.
Apple’s move to clean energy charging may not have much of an impact on you personally, but with such a large installed base of iPhones, the impact is just as big.
“[S]Adjustments to the mall will increase over time. What Apple is doing is making it easier for iPhone users to realize their role in reducing carbon emissions,” Sarah Jameson or green building elements Tell Lifewire via email. “It’s a reminder of the importance of reducing carbon emissions, and that even the most mundane activities, like charging your phone when the grid is unconstrained and more clean energy capacity is available, is important in the grand scheme of things.”
This feature may raise awareness of how the grid works and how we can save resources and money in other areas, not just when charging phones.
For now, this is only available for iPhones and the US, but if successful and energy forecast data is available, there’s no reason not to expect it to roll out to Macs, iPads, and Apple Watches. In this case, the impact could be huge.