The Anonymous Widower

SSE Renewables Launches 1.5GW Coire Glas Construction Tender

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on

These are the first two paragraphs.

Hydro construction companies have been invited to submit tenders for construction of SSE Renewables’ proposed 1500MW pumped hydro storage scheme at Coire Glas, in Scotland.

Coire Glas, on the shores of Loch Lochy near Invergarry, would be the first large-scale pumped hydro storage scheme to be built in the United Kingdom for more than 30 years.

There appears to be global interest and six shortlisted bidders.

  • The ANDRITZ HYDRO and Voith Hydro partnership
  • The Bechtel, Acciona Construcción and Webuild S.p.A consortium
  • The BAM Nuttall, Eiffage Génie Civil and Marti Tunnel consortium
  • The Dragados and BeMo Tunnelling UK consortium
  • GE Hydro France

Bidders like these probably wouldn’t bother to get involved unless they knew that funding of the project was in place and it was pretty certain that the project will be constructed.

In World’s Largest Wind Farm Attracts Huge Backing From Insurance Giant, I talk about how Aviva are funding the Hornsea wind farm.

I believe, that insurance and pension companies like abrdn, Aviva and L & G could find a way of financing a scheme like Coire Glas.


It looks to me, that it’s almost certain that Scotland will get a 1.5GW/30 GWh pumped-storage system at Coire Glas.

Coire Glas could supply slightly more power than Sizewell B nuclear power station for twenty hours.

Now that’s what I call backup!

February 5, 2022 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage, Finance | , , , , , | 3 Comments

Electrified Regional Air Mobility Will Be Disruptive & Mature Rapidly In Coming Years

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Clean Technica.

It is very much a must-read article, where the author analyses technology and how it will affect regional aviation.

He comes to the conclusion, that electric aircraft will develop much quicker than autonomous systems and full digital air traffic control.

He feels that we’ll see rapid development of electric aircraft flying traditionally with a pilot in charge, who talks to air traffic controllers.

Effectively, this is the system that was in operation, when I used to fly my Cessna 340 all round the UK and Western Europe thirty years ago.

Adding in electric aircraft to this system, is very similar to adding a car with a certified alternative power source  to the traffic of the UK.

I think this means, that electric aircraft need to have a pilot on board to be certified, as any certification involving passenger will have to be as risk-free as possible.

The article mentions Electron Aviation. The author describes their operational model like this.

Electron Aviation, for example, sees that a 4-seater, one-pilot plane can become the workhorse of a regional short-haul leisure and business travel on-demand flight service in the second half of this decade, with planes coming to a small airport near customers, who are delivered by electric Ubers at either end. The economics work out with electric airplanes where they don’t with current internal combustion planes.

As Electron’s UK address is in Mildenhall in Suffolk, which is close to the UK horseracing centre of Newmarket, I know from my past experience that their model of four-seat air-taxis certainly works in the racing industry.

The specification for their aircraft looks impressive.

  • Very aerodynamic with a high aspect ratio wing.
  • Tricycle retractable undercarriage.
  • Twin-pusher propellers.
  • 186 mph cruise at 10,000 feet.
  • 466 mile range.
  • Low noise.
  • Zero emissions.

Looking at the visualisation on the home page of their web site, I suspect that the battery is at the centre of lift in the middle of the plane to give excellent flying characteristics.

I also think, that their concept is scalable and that a larger aircraft could be built to a similar layout.


I am happy to agree with the author’s conclusion, that electric aircraft will revolutionise regional aviation in a short space of time.



February 5, 2022 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , | Leave a comment

Aberdeen’s Hydrogen Buses Taken Off The Road Due To Technical Issue

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on the BBC.

This is the introductory paragraph.

Aberdeen’s fleet of hydrogen buses has been taken off the road due to a “technical issue”.

The technical issue appears not to be hydrogen-related, but with a mounting bracket.

Strange coming after CAF had bracket trouble with their trams and Hitachi had a similar problem with their trains.

Wrightbus, CAF and Hitachi haven’t been using the save dodgy Chinese supplier called El Cheapo Brackets have they?

February 5, 2022 Posted by | Hydrogen, Transport/Travel | , , , , , | 6 Comments

Greater Manchester Clean Air Zone Plans Put On Hold

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on the BBC.

These are the first four paragraphs.

The controversial rollout of Greater Manchester’s Clean Air Zone (CAZ) has been delayed.

The scheme, which would see some high-emission vehicles face daily charges, had been due to begin at the end of May. Private cars would be exempt.

The government said the pause would allow for consultation and a revised plan was due in July.

Regional mayor Andy Burnham had earlier asked the government to delay the scheme.

If Manchester don’t bring the pollution levels down, Client Earth are threatening legal action.

But to me, as a pedestrian, I do find Manchester City Centre a difficult place to walk, compared to say Birmingham or Liverpool, as the traffic seems to move about at a fast pace.

But then I blame Harold Wilson, who cancelled the Picc-Vic tunnel.

Liverpool and Newcastle received their beneficial cross-city tunnels, but Harold Wilson said that everyone would have their own cars, so we won’t need railways.

February 5, 2022 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , | 4 Comments