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Mon Apr 15, 2019, 08:20 PM

Three Large-Scale Energy Storage Technologies That May Hold the Keys to Unleashing an All-Out Renewa

https://solarmagazine.com/three-large-scale-energy-storage-technologies-all-out-renewable-energy-transition/
Three Large-Scale Energy Storage Technologies That May Hold the Keys to Unleashing an All-Out Renewable Energy Transition

By Andrew Burger - Apr 15, 2019

Recent developments to do with pumped hydro, liquid air and kinetic energy storage technology hold out the promise of inexpensive, widely available energy storage. If realized, deployments could be the catalyst that fuels growth of solar, wind and other emissions-free, renewable energy capacity to new, significantly higher, heights, proponents say.

Pumping and storing water from lower to higher elevations and then releasing it to drive turbine generators is one of the oldest, most efficient and widely used means of generating baseload electricity known. An Australian National University (ANU) research team found no less than 530,000 potential short-term, off-river pumped-hydro energy storage sites worldwide that could be used to support low-cost, renewable energy zones and power grids. “Pumped hydro accounts for 97 percent of energy storage worldwide, has a typical lifetime of 50 years and is the lowest cost large-scale energy-storage technology available,” pointed out Bin Lu, a project team member and PhD candidate at the ANU Research School of Electrical, Energy and Materials Engineering (RSEEME).

Another promising large-scale energy storage technology recently emerged in news reports, one that, akin to pumped hydro, is based on fundamental principles of Newtonian physics taught to undergraduate college students. About an hour’s drive south of Milan, Italy, Energy Vault intends to use cranes to lift 35-metric ton bricks from ground level to build a tower, then release the stored potential energy by lowering them again to drive turbine generators.

In a third instance, Highview Power is out to prove that its liquid air energy storage systems (LAES) can provide gigawatt-hours (GWh) worth of cheap, highly efficient energy storage for five-10 hours per day. “At giga-scale, energy storage resources paired with renewables are equivalent in performance to—and could replace—thermal and nuclear baseload in addition to supporting the electricity transmission and distribution systems while providing additional security of supply,” according to the company.

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Reply Three Large-Scale Energy Storage Technologies That May Hold the Keys to Unleashing an All-Out Renewa (Original post)
OKIsItJustMe Apr 2019 OP
eppur_se_muova Apr 2019 #1
OKIsItJustMe Apr 2019 #2

Response to OKIsItJustMe (Original post)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 09:06 AM

1. Don't raise bricks, raise a chain of heavy links.

The energy stored is proportional to the length of chain raised, so it goes up as the square of the height of the top of the chain.

Since this could be done with gears and pulleys, it has always seemed to me a promising approach to storing wind energy -- imagine a fat base in each tower, with heavy (water- or sand-filled, for ease of installation and removal) slab-like links that could be hoisted by the end of the chain when wind was strong, and lowered back when wind was idle, driving the same generator as the wind.

The idea was inspired by cuckoo clocks.

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Response to eppur_se_muova (Reply #1)

Tue Apr 16, 2019, 09:40 AM

2. It seems to me that metal chain links would be more expensive than masonry bricks

I immediately thought of a clock when you started your description.

Here’s an approach which may appeal to you: https://www.aresnorthamerica.com/

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