Energy Transition Research

Thunder Said Energy is a research firm, focused on economic opportunities in the energy transition. Our work spans new energies, conventional energies and decarbonizing industries. You can search for keywords below. Or view our research by category, across Wind, Solar, Batteries, Vehicles, Biofuels, CCS, Coal, CO2 Intensity, Digital, Downstream, Energy Demand, Energy Efficiency, Hydrogen, LNG, Metals, Materials, Natural Gas, Nature-based solutions, Nuclear, Oil, Plastics, Power Grids, Shale and Novel Technologies.

Written Insights

Energy Market Models

Economic Models

Technology Screens

Patent Analysis

Technology Breakthroughs?

CO2 Screening

Further Data Downloads

Shorter Insights

The Top Technologies in Energy

What are the top technologies to transform the global energy industry and the world? This data-file ties all our work together, summarising where we have a differentiated viewpoint, across all of our energy transition research to-date. For each technology, we summarise the opportunity, then we score its Economic Impact and Technology Readiness Level (TRL). The output is a “ranking” of the top technologies in energy, available here. The top public companies for the energy transition are screened here. The top private companies for the energy transition are also screened here.

Energy Transition Research — Notes and Background

Our energy transition research aims to help decision-makers find opportunities that can drive decarbonization of the world’s energy and industrial system. This page presents all of our recent research, in chronological order, in an array of different carousels. Our latest research is also sent out daily to subscribers on our distribution list.

Written Insights. Every Monday, we publish a 10-20 page, thematic research report. Each report tackles a specific technology or controversy, usually with the same concise structure: what is it? why does it matter? what does it cost? what are the technical challenges? which companies are leading in this theme, both public and private. We are not trying to write ‘war and peace’ in our research. Just to help decision-makers get to helpful, interesting answers, in a way that maximizes their ‘return on time’ spent reading.

Energy market models. All of our work links together into a mega-model for decarbonizing the world. In other words, we need to grasp how it will be possible to satisfy 100,000 TWH pa of human energy demand in 2050, while emitting no net CO2. Our different energy market models capture how much of each commodity and component we would need along the way, from wind/solar capacity installations, conventional energy sources such as oil and natural gas (combined with carbon capture and carbon removals), to long-distance power transmission, to all metals and materials. These are simple and useful models which can be flexed, in order to ballpark numbers and identify bottlenecks.

Economic models. What are the costs of different technologies in the energy transition? We construct economic models in order to capture costs, compare costs, and stress-test sensitivities. All of our models are in the same format. They calculate the marginal cost of product needed to achieve a 10% IRR, underlying capex, operating costs, energy costs (kWh/ton) and CO2 intensity (ton/ton).

Technology Screens and Patent Analysis. These screens aim to give a summary of the different companies in a particular supply chain, with useful data and summaries. This will either be based on breaking down the market by size, or by facility, or by screening patents.

Technology Breakthroughs. We have developed a five-point framework, for assessing the patents of different companies in the energy transition. The purpose of the framework is to assess which companies/technologies can more readily be de-risked in our roadmap to net zero, and which technologies may still have more risk attached to them (for more on the development of this framework, please see our video on evaluating risks in patents).

CO2 screening. Our carbon intensity research quantifies how much CO2e is released per unit of production, across materials, transportation, manufactured goods and energy itself. To do this, we aggregate data from technical papers, public data sources. In some cases, we have been able to build up industry “CO2 curves”, using publicly available data from sources such as EPA FLIGHT.

Further Data Downloads. Some of our data-files simply contain useful industrial data, which we have spent time aggregating, cleaning and evaluating. We publish all the data behind our research, to help decision-makers save time, and to subtantiate our published conclusions. Every exhibit or chart in a Thunder Said Energy research report will contain a link to an underlying data-file, which is published somewhere on our website.

If we can help you, or answer any questions on any aspects of our research, or our research philosophy, then please do contact us any time.