The Anonymous Widower

Australian Mining Billionaire Touts A Green Revolution In U.S. Coal Country — With Skepticism Trailing Close Behind

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

It is a definite must-read about Andrew ‘Twiggy’ Forrest, making one of the most difficult hydrogen pitches in the world, to coal miners in West Virginia.

Perhaps we need Mr Forrest to convince the RMT, that their views are wrong and so nineteenth century.

June 22, 2022 Posted by | Hydrogen, Energy | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Disused Coal Mine Could Host Gravity Energy Storage Project

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Power Engineering International.

It does seem that Gravitricity has made a breakthrough, with the announcement of a full-size demonstration project in the Czech Republic.

  • The project is based at the mothballed Staříč coal-mine in the Moravian Silesian region.
  • They have backing from the European Investment Bank.
  • This project will be delivered through the European Commission’s Project Development Assistance scheme.
  • The Czech Republic seem to have carried out checks, with their own consultants.

It looks to me, that Gravitricity have passed the due diligence procedures of some high-powered agencies.

But this paragraph from the article must be important.

Gravitricity estimates there are around 14,000 mines worldwide which could be suitable for gravity energy storage.

If they can successfully store energy in one mine in the Czech Republic, how many of the 14,000 will be suitable for use?

I doubt it will be a small number, as mining engineers tend to be a conservative bunch and most of those mines will have been built to similar rules by similar machines and techniques.

A search of the Internet indicates that Staříč coal-mine has a depth of over a kilometre.

Using Omni’s Potential energy calculator, 12,000 tonnes and a kilometre give a figure of 32.69 MWh.

32 MWh may seem a small amount, but it would power one of these 4 MW Class 90 locomotives for eight hours.

At their typical operating speed of 100 mph, whilst hauling eight coaches, they’d travel a distance of eight hundred miles or from London to Edinburgh and back!

February 3, 2022 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Edinburgh Energy Storage Firm Gravitricity Hooks Up To European Backing

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

This is the first paragraph.

Gravitricity, the Edinburgh-based company looking to build an energy storage project in a disused mineshaft, has secured support from the European Investment Bank (EIB).

It’s all to support a project at the recently mothballed Staric coal mine in the Moravian Silesian region of Czechia.

January 24, 2022 Posted by | Energy Storage | , , | 3 Comments

How Defunct Coal Mines Could Heat UK Homes

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

This is the introductory paragraph.

In a country with no operational coal mines, the UK Coal Authority has proposed to once again turn these operations to heating homes and businesses. But this time, they will not provide coal for burning. The plan, to take warm water from flooded mines, would turn an environmental problem into a community solution, and the idea is spreading.

The reason, I’m posting this is two-fold.

There was a report on this edition of Countryfile, which should be available until the end of 2022. The relevant section starts at 38.5 minutes into the program.

Charlotte Adams is featured in this report and the Countryfile program. I first came across Charlotte and her fascinating work at a lecture in 2018, which I wrote about in Can Abandoned Mines Heat Our Future?

 

January 23, 2022 Posted by | Energy | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Anglo American And Aurizon Look To Hydrogen-Powered Trains

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

This is the first paragraph.

Australia’s largest rail freight operator, Aurizon, and leading global mining company, Anglo American, have agreed to work together on a feasibility study to assess the introduction of hydrogen-powered trains for bulk freight in Queensland.

I find it interesting and very ironic, that this partnership has been formed, partly to transport the product, with the most polluting of end uses; coal.

The article also says this about Anglo American’s policy on decarbonisation of their mines.

As part of its commitment to carbon neutral mines by 2040, Anglo American has taken a global lead in the development of green hydrogen solutions for its ultra-class 290 t payload mine haul trucking fleet. Anglo American’s unique combination of powertrain technologies, designed to operate safely and effectively in real-world mine conditions, will displace the use of the majority of diesel at its mining operations, with an advanced trial of the prototype truck at its Mogalakwena platinum group metals mine in South Africa.

It does appear that the partnership are starting from a proven base of hydrogen technology.

Conclusion

This looks like a sound real-world project to produce a hydrogen-powered zero-carbon locomotive.

December 22, 2021 Posted by | Hydrogen, Transport/Travel | , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Andrew Forrest, AGL Partner To Explore Hydrogen Option For Hunter Valley Coal Plants

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

This is the first paragraph.

Mining billionaire Andrew Forrest said hydrogen would eventually “dwarf” the coal industry as he announced plans to develop a green hydrogen hub in the New South Wales Hunter Valley.

I wish Forrest well with this venture, because if he makes a success of it, it could form a model for lots of other places in the world.

He’s certainly a man on a mission.

December 8, 2021 Posted by | Energy, Hydrogen | , , , | Leave a comment

Gravitricity Explores Czech Coal Mine For MW-Scale Storage

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

This is the first paragraph.

Scottish energy storage outfit Gravitricity is exploring the potential to transform a former Czech coal mine into an energy storage plant with a capacity of up to 8MW.

It all sounds like a good use for a disused coal mine.

According to the article, future systems with multiple weights could store up to 25 MWh.

 

November 16, 2021 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , | 2 Comments

Bio-Coal Trials Show Promise

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

These were the first two paragraphs.

Norfolk’s Bure Valley Railway (BVR) has held an extensive trial of bio-coal as the heritage rail sector looks towards a carbon-free future.

The event, which took place in June, was the result of cooperation between members of the Advanced Steam Traction Trust (ASTT), Bure and the Heritage Railway Association.

It probably makes sense to experiment with steam locomotives and fuels that create less carbon dioxide emissions.

September 29, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , | 2 Comments

Whisky Galore!

The Levenmouth Rail Link has carried freight in the past.

Mainly in the past, it was coal to the now-demolished Methil power station.

But it has been known to carry whisky for Diageo.

This Google map shows the area.

Note.

  1. The blue dot marking Sainsbury’s by the bew Leven station, by the mouth of the River Leven.
  2. The railway follows the river with Cameron Bridge station to the East of the A915 and the two Camero Bridge distilleries.
  3. The silver warehouses at the North side of the map are labelled Diageo Global Supply.

I wonder, if a siding can be provided for the distribution of products stored in the warehouses?

Companies are looking to lower their carbon-footprint and I wouldn’t be surprised, if Diageo were looking at rail distribution.

Modern Rail Freight Distribution

Companies are converting redundant electric multiple units into fast parcel delivery trains to replace diesel trucks.

  • Typically, four-car trains are used.
  • Trains have a 100 mph capability and can be 240 metres in length.
  • Eversholt Rail Group are proposing adding battery power. This would be ideal to reach Cameron Bridge over the Forth Bridge.

These trains would be ideal for the delivery of Scotch Whisky.

They might even be capable of exporting product through the Channel Tunnel.

I don’t think the capacity of the Levenmouth Rail Link would be a problem, as it is a double-track railway, that can probably handle over four trains per hour and there is plenty of capacity for a number of freight trains.

Conclusion

I think freight will play a use in the future of the Levenmouth Rail Link.

Related Posts

The New Leven Station On The Levenmouth Rail Link

The New Cameron Bridge Station On The Levenmouth Rail Link

North From Thornton Junction

Service Provision On The Levenmouth Rail Link

Trains On The Levenmouth Rail Link

July 29, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , | 7 Comments

How Siemens Gamesa Could Give Coal Plants a Second Life

This article on Greentech Media is a must-read as it makes you think. This is the sub-title.

The ETES thermal battery can offer coal plants a new life as heat and power storage hubs. The first customer for a full-size version could be on-board as early as next year.

It talks about the philosophy of reusing coal-fired power station sites and some of their equipment like turbines.

It is an idea much more applicable to countries like the US and Germany rather than the UK, as they still have lots of operational coal-fired power stations and and we only have a few.

I first came across this idea, when Highview Power were talking about their 50/MW/400 MWh installation in Vermont, which was to be built on the site of a demolished coal-fired power station. The utility company and Highview were in that case just reusing the grid connection.

But then I’ve heard of other energy storage systems using old power station sites.

And not to forget that Highview Power’s installation at Carrington is close to a gas-fired power station.

 

May 22, 2021 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , , | Leave a comment