It is vacation time, at least in Italy, and so why not relax and take a look at some nice pictures of our planet taken from the sky by the NASA Earth Observatory?
I stumble onto these photos as I was looking at the present status and future challenges for batteries as EV are expected to increase exponentially throughout this and the next decade to basically replace all ICE in 2040. That will mean manufacturing batteries for some 50-60 million vehicles every year. To put this into perspective the current EV battery production worldwide is around 50 GWh, the expected demand in 2040 is around 1,200 GWh, that is 60 times as much. For more details you may want to look at an interesting report by McKinsey, published in 2019 with an outlook to 2040.
As far as we can tell today, battery technology will keep improving (mostly in terms of number of useful cycles -lengthening the life cycle of the battery- and in terms of recharging time -shortening it- not so much in terms of energy density…) but will remain based on lithium-ion for EV application.
Lithium is not that abundant, and most of it is being extracted from salt brine in the Chilean Salar the Acatama. That is why I stumbled on the photos above. Along with that there were 9 other nice images of our world from above that you may like as well.
You can get many more images, and up to date ones (like the one showing the status of fires in Greece) from the NASA website.