The Anonymous Widower

Gresham House Energy Storage Sets GBP80 Million Fundraise

Gresham House Energy Storage Fund must be doing something right, as similar headlines are used in half-a-dozen places on the Internet and they regularly seem to be raising more money.

But then, as a Graduate Control Engineer and a previous owner of half a finance company, I’ve always thought raising money to build batteries was a good idea.

My only niggle with Gresham House, is that I would have thought by now, they would have put some money into building one of the excellent new technology batteries that are coming through.

The storage fund or some of its employees, may of course have contributed to some of the crowdfunding for these new technologies, all of which I feel have a good chance of being a success.


  1. Energy Dome is Italian and all the others are at least fifty percent British.
  2. Most of the British batteries have had backing from the UK government.
  3. All these batteries are environmentally-friendly.
  4. None of these batteries use large quantities of rare and expensive materials.
  5. Energy Dome even uses carbon dioxide as the energy storage medium.

In addition, in Scotland, there is traditional pumped storage hydro-electricity.

Project Iliad

This article on has a slightly different headline of Gresham House To Raise £80m For US Battery Buildout.

This is the first two paragraphs.

Gresham House Energy Storage Fund is seeking to raise £80m through a share placing.

The new equity raised will primarily be used to finance 160MW of solar with co-located four-hour battery projects in California, US, known as Project Iliad.

The article then gives a lot of financial details of Project Iliad and Gresham House.

Will Gresham House be backing co-located solar/battery projects in the UK?

  • In Cleve Hill Solar Park, I write about a co-located solar/battery project in Kent.
  • This press release from National Grid is entitled UK’s First Transmission-Connected Solar Farm Goes Live, which also describes a co-located solar/battery project, being built near Bristol.

These two projects are certainly serious and could be pathfinders for a whole host of co-located solar/battery projects.

WillGresham House back some of this new generation?


May 18, 2023 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage, Finance | , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Boralex Commissions BESS At Wind Farm In France In EU-Supported Demonstration Project

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Energy Storage News.

These two paragraphs outline the project.

Canada-based renewable energy firm Boralex has turned on a 3.3MWh battery storage unit attached to a wind farm in France.

The battery storage project has been installed at the site of the Plouguin wind farm, an 8MW generating facility in the Finistere department of Brittany, northwest France.


  1. The project was co-financed by the European Union through its European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
  2. The project was launched to demonstrate the technical feasibility of a hybrid wind-plus-storage project.
  3. Boralex added in its announcement that the project will contribute to the stability of the French electricity grid.

There will be a lot of projects like this in the future.

This paragraph makes an interesting point about using batteries with solar and wind power.

Wind farms are less frequently hybridised with energy storage than solar PV because of the larger minimum project size and less predictable variability, with sharper peaks meaning heavier battery cycling and potentially faster degradation.

My control engineering knowledge and experience says that larger power sources and those that are highly variable will need batteries with more capacity for the same stability and quality of power output.

This sounds to me like a very good reason for developing larger and more affordable batteries, like those of Cheesecake Energy, Energy Dome, Gravitricity and Highview Power.

It also probably means that to stabilise several gigawatts of wind power, you need a very large amount of storage, that can only be provided by pumped storage hydroelectricity.


A very large amount energy storage is going to be needed.

Projects like these are essential to make sure we use them to their full possibilities.

May 2, 2023 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gravity-Based Green Energy Storage Tech Pioneer Eyes US Mineshafts

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

This is the sub-heading.

Gravitricity and IEA Infrastructure Construction to seek funding under government scheme for projects at ex-mining sites.

These are the first two paragraphs.

A pioneer in gravity-based energy storage technology aims to make its US debut after linking with a major American construction group.

Gravitricity, which uses giant weights hung in deep shafts to store energy, will partner with IEA Infrastructure Construction to jointly seek US funding for projects at former mines.

I wonder how many other companies will go chasing the money, that President Biden has put on offer in the US?

April 21, 2023 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , , | Leave a comment

Gravity Energy Storage For Cleaner Power Grids!

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Energy Live News.

This is the sub-heading.

Scotland’s Gravitricity has teamed up with a Czech electricity flexibility company to bring their gravity storage technology to market

These two paragraphs introduce the article.

Scottish firm Gravitricity has partnered with Czech energy flexibility aggregator Nano Energies to commercialize their gravity storage technology.

The partnership plans to convert an old mine shaft in the Czech Republic into a gravity energy store, which can rapidly respond to grid fluctuations and could be a pioneer for European projects.

Gravitricity seems to be on its way.

March 27, 2023 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , | Leave a comment

Hydro-Storage Options To Be Studied For Grängesberg

The title of this post, is the same as that of this news item from Anglesey Mining.

These are the highlights of the news item.

  • Anglesey Mining plc, together with its 49.75% owned subsidiary Grängesberg Iron AB (“GIAB”) have entered into an MoU with Mine Storage to investigate the potential for the Grängesberg Mine to be converted into a Pumped Hydro-Storage project at the end of the mine’s producing life.
  • Pumped-Hydro Storage is a green-energy storage solution that utilises water and gravity to store electrical energy. An underground mine can provide a closed-loop solution using proven, pumped hydro-power technology. Essentially, the system involves water being gravity fed through pipes down a shaft into the turbines, which produce electricity for supply to the grid and also pump the water back to surface. The mine storage system has a high round-trip efficiency of 75-85% and proven durability.
  • The MoU with Mine Storage could lead to numerous future benefits.

I like this project.

Too often, when mines, quarries or other large operations come to the end of their economic lives, they are just abandoned in the hope that something worthwhile will happen.

But here we have a company planning the end of an iron ore mine in a way that will turn it into a source of future revenue.

I have a few thoughts.

Mine Storage

Mine Storage are a Swedish company with an informative web site.

The web site answered most of my questions.

Mines Are Moving From a Liability To A Resource


  • Gravitricity are using mines to store energy using cables and weights.
  • Charlotte Adams and her team at Durham University are developing the use of the heat in abandoned coal mines.
  • The Global Centre of Rail Excellence is being developed in a disused opencast mine in Wales.
  • RheEnergise are developing their first High Density Hydro system in the Hemerdon Tungsten Mine in Devon.

And now we have this co-operation between Anglesey Mining and Mine Storage working together on pumped storage hydroelectricity.

Where is Grängesberg

This Google Map shows the location of Grängesberg.

It is convenient for storing energy for Stockholm.


March 17, 2023 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Plans To Turn Czech Coal Mine Into Storage, Hydrogen And Solar Hub

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

This is the sub-heading.

Mine is also going to be the site of an experimental greenhouse project called Eden Silesia

This paragraph outlines Eden Silesia.

The site will also be home to an experimental greenhouse project called EDEN Silesia, managed by the Silesian University of Technology and based on the concept of the Eden Project in Cornwall, England.

It does seem that the Czechs are creating a comprehensive facility around a Gravitricity energy store.

This Gravitricity system is only a 4MW/2 MWh system, but there is also this quote from the company.

Future multi-weight systems could have a capacity of 25MWh or more.

If the concept works, this could be imitated in several countries around the world?

February 25, 2023 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , , , | Leave a comment

Gravitricity And Czech Firm DIAMO Announce Plans To Cooperate On Full Scale Gravity Energy Store

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

This is the sub-heading.

A former coal mine in the Czech Republic could become the first full scale gravity energy store in Europe, according to UK energy storage specialist Gravitricity

This paragraph describes the project.

The agreement will see the two companies seek funding to transform the former decommissioned Darkov deep mine – which is located in the Moravian-Silesian region of the Czech Republic – into a 4MW / 2MWh energy store, capable of powering more than 16,000 homes. According to Gravitricity the system will store energy by lowering and raising a single massive weight suspended in the Darkov mine shaft. The company has also signed a memorandum with VSB Technical University of Ostrava, whose specialist mining expertise will support the implementation of the technology.

Hopefully, the finance won’t be too difficult to find, with perhaps some help from the EU.

The article also describes the potential of Gravitricity, where it says.

  • There could be up 14,000 suitable mines around the world.
  • The Coal Authority believes there could be a hundred suitable shafts in the UK.

It appears Gravitricity may be on its way.

February 23, 2023 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , , | Leave a comment

Diversifying A US$200 billion Market: The Alternatives To Li-ion Batteries For Grid-Scale Energy Storage

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Energy Storage News.

This is the introductory paragraph.

The global need for grid-scale energy storage will rise rapidly in the coming years as the transition away from fossil fuels accelerates. Energy storage can help meet the need for reliability and resilience on the grid, but lithium-ion is not the only option, writes Oliver Warren of climate and ESG-focused investment bank and advisory group DAI Magister.

Oliver starts by saying we need to ramp up capacity.

According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), to decarbonise electricity globally the world’s energy storage capacity must increase by a factor of 40x+ by 2030, reaching a total of 700 GW, or around 25% of global electricity usage (23,000TWh per annum). For comparison, this would be like swelling the size of the UK’s land to that of the USA.

Similar to how “nobody ever gets fired for buying IBM”, lithium-ion holds a similar place in grid scale electrical storage today.

And just as IBM did in the last decades of the last century, the builders of lithium-ion will fight back.

He then lists the problems of grid-scale lithium-ion batteries.

  • Shortage of cobalt.
  • Toxic and polluting extraction of some much needed metals and rare earths from unstable countries.
  • Lack of capacity to load follow.
  • Limited lifespan.

He does suggest vehicle-to-grid can provide 7TWh of storage by 2030, but it has similar problems to lithium-ion grid scale batteries.

Finally, he covers these what he considers several viable methods of energy storage in detail.

He introduces them with this paragraph.

No single killer application or technology exists to get the job done. Diversification is key with success dependent on the wide-scale adoption of multiple grid-scale energy storage solutions.


  1. All systems are environmentally-friendly and use readily-available materials like air, water, sea-water, steel and concrete for their systems.
  2. The most exotic materials used are probably in the control computers.
  3. Some systems use readily-available proven turbo-machinery.
  4. Most systems appear to be scalable.
  5. All systems would appear to have a working life measured in decades.
  6. I would expect that most well-educated teenagers could understand how these systems worked.

Only Augwind Energy and Lumenion are new to me.

He finally sums up the economics and the market potential.

Our ability to expand energy storage capacity is one of the most pressing issues that will determine whether this defining ‘transitional’ decade is a success. But we’ll need to invest wisely into the right technologies that get the greatest bang for the buck (in terms of GWh capacity and return on capital) given the limited lifespan of Li-Ion and the decarbonisation of the grid.

At a current capital cost of US$2,000 per kW quoted by the US National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) for 6-hour Li-ion battery storage, the 700GW of capacity needed by 2030 equates to around a US$1.5 trillion market over the coming decade, making it worth nearly US$200 billion a year.

The Energy Storage News article is a comprehensive must read for anyone, who is considering purchasing or investing in energy storage.

I have some further thoughts.

From My Experience Would I Add Any Other Systems?

I would add the following.

  • Form Energy, because its iron-air battery is well-backed financially.
  • Gravitricity, because it can use disused mine shafts to store energy and the world has lots of those.
  • STORE Consortium, because its 3D-printed concrete hemispheres, that store energy using pressurised sea-water can be placed within a wind farm.

I also suspect that someone will come up with an energy storage system based on tidal range.


When we started Metier Management Systems, finance to breakout from the first initial sales was a problem. We solved the problem with good financial planning and an innovative bank manager who believed us all the way.

David, was a rogue, but he was a rogue on the side of the angels. Long after Metier, he even came to my fiftieth birthday party.

David would have found a way to fund any of these systems, as they tick all the boxes of demonstrated, environmentally-friendly, safe and understandable. They are also likely to be bought by companies, governments and organisations with a high net value, a very respectable reputation and/or large amounts of money.

I also think, that just as we did with the original Artemis project management system, some of these systems can be leased to the operators.

Second-Use Of Systems

Several of these systems could be moved on to a new location, if say they were supporting an industry that failed.

That would surely help the financing of systems.

February 23, 2023 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage, Finance | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Gravitricity Makes Hydrogen Play With FlexiStore

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

This is the sub-heading.

Edinburgh-based energy storage firm Gravitricity is looking to green hydrogen, bringing a new underground storage solution to market.

The system is explained with a large graphic, showing an electrolyser, a FlexiStore and a hydrogen filling station, with this paragraph underneath.

Known as FlexiStore, the concept involves purpose-built, steel-lined shafts capable of holding up to 100 tonnes of compressed hydrogen at 220 bar – around 3.33GWh of energy, or enough to refuel over 1,000 HGVs, according to Gravitricity. Unlike naturally occurring underground storage like salt caverns, FlexiStores could be positioned anywhere, with the current plan to co-locate the storage as close as possible to renewable generation. Gravitricity says a single FlexiStore could serve a 460MW wind farm and that 1,000 units could meet the UK’s predicted hydrogen storage needs in 2050.


  1. The concept certainly solves the problem of storing hydrogen on a country-wide basis.
  2. I suspect, a machine could be designed and built to create the shafts.
  3. A 3.33 GWh store could supply 460 MW for nearly 33 hours. As a Control Engineer, that sounds a good balance for backing up a wind farm!

As ARUP has been involved in a feasibility study, I suspect there’s a fair chance that FlexiStores can be built.

January 5, 2023 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage, Hydrogen | , , | 2 Comments

Groundbreaking Green Energy Hub Planned For Former Thorpe Marsh Power Station Site

The title of this post, is the same as that of this press release from the Banks Group.

This is the introductory paragraph.

Outline plans are set to be revealed for the creation of a groundbreaking green energy hub at the former Thorpe Marsh power station site near Doncaster.

Other details include.

  • The 1 GW Thorpe March coal-fired power station closed in 1994 and was demolished in 2012.
  • The project would take advantage of the site’s existing 1,450MW connection to the National Grid.
  • The storage capacity will be 2.8 GWh.
  • The site is a a 65-hectare area of land to the west of the village of Barnby Dun.

It is thought to be the largest battery energy storage system currently being planned in the UK, and one of the largest anywhere in the world.

T have a few thoughts.

The Site At Barnby Dun

This Google Map shows the site to the West of Barnby Dun.


  1. The power station site is indicated by the six cooling towers.
  2. The Doncaster and Hull railway line runs across the map to the North of the cooling towers.
  3. The cooling towers were demolished in 2012, according to Wikipedia.
  4. More recent images on the web show a cleared site, with six concrete circles, where the towers once stood.
  5. There is a sub-station to the South of the former power station.
  6. The River Don runs North-South on the map.
  7. Barnby Dun is the village to the East of the River Don.

Because of the towers, I’m unsure of the date of the map. Are Google’s maps ten years old?

The site certainly has the three most important things; location, location and location.

I suspect too, that large pieces of equipment could be floated in by barge.

The Type Of Storage

The press release just talks of a 2.8 GWh battery, but what type is it?


This section in Wikipedia gives details of the world’s largest lithium-ion grid batteries.

  • At 2.8 GWh the Thorpe Marsh battery would be bigger than any lithium-ion batteries, that are currently in operation, anywhere in the world.
  • It would also be the third largest lithium-ion battery in the world, under development.
  • It’s up there with a smaller-scale pumped storage hydro-electric power station like Ffestiniog power station.

I suspect that this battery might not be lithium-ion but one of the newer technologies.


I suspect that a Gravitricity battery would be too small.

Highview Power

On the Projects page of the Highview Power web site, there is a list of their UK projects.

One project is headlined Yorkshire, UK and it is described like this.

Highview Power’s second commercial renewable energy power station in the UK is a 200MW/2.5GWh facility in Yorkshire. This is the first of 18 sites for UK wide deployment strategically located to benefit from the existing transmission infrastructure.

Could this 2.5 GWh project be the 2.8 GWh battery planned for Thorpe Marsh?

300 MWh is not a big difference between friends.

A Meeting About The Power Station

This article on the Doncaster Free Press is entitled Plans For Former Thorpe Marsh Power Station To Be Turned Into Green Energy Hub.

The article gives a lot of useful information and says this about the meeting.

The launch of the plan will take place with a surgery in Barnby Dun Parish Hall, Wednesday 2 November, 2pm-7:30pm.

I shall be going to have a look on the 2nd. Would anybody care to join me?

The article does have an artists’s impression of the battery, but it is a stock image of a series of lithium-ion batteries, that came from the Banks Group press release.


October 19, 2022 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , , , | 2 Comments