The Anonymous Widower

Highview Power Introduces Revolutionary Cryogenic Energy Storage Technology To The African Market

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

This is the first paragraph.

Javier Cavada, CEO and President of Highview Power spoke to African Review about the company’s cryogenic (air liquefaction) battery storage solutions and why they are a perfect fit for the continent

It appears to me, that the story, which started in a garage in Bishops Stortford, is going to have a happy ending for the world.

The article is a must read and I particularly liked this paragraph.

Cavada also noted how cryogenic technology complemented this transition. He added, “The main energy companies call our technology ‘pumped hydro in a box’ and that is how we have been making it. You can deploy over 1GWh without geographical constraints. There is no combustion, no emissions and no rare materials needed. All it comprises is some piping work, compressors and a generator, so it is pretty simple. Our mission is to enable a world that is grid powered by solar and wind, not fossil fuels, and this technology will help us achieve this.”

This is the brightest shade of green!

March 18, 2021 Posted by | Energy Storage | , | Leave a comment

Malta Inc Energy Storage Explained

Malta Inc first came to my notice in 2018 and I wrote Gates Among Billionaires Backing Alphabet Energy Spinoff.

But I couldn’t find much information at the time, but they now have a web site that gives a good explanation.

This page on the web site is entitled Our Solution.

This infographic from the web page, lays out the key features.

This sentence outlines the method of operation.

The Malta energy storage system takes electricity, converts and stores that electricity as heat, and then converts it back to electricity to be redistributed on the electric grid. In charge mode, the system operates as a heat pump, storing electricity as heat in molten salt. In discharge mode, the system operates as a heat engine, using the stored heat to produce electricity.

The operation is explained in five stages.

  1. Collects – Energy is gathered from wind, solar, or fossil generators on the grid as electrical energy and sent to Malta’s energy storage system.
  2. Converts – The electricity drives a heat pump, which converts electrical energy into thermal energy by creating a temperature difference.
  3. Stores – The heat is then stored in molten salt, while the cold is stored in a chilled liquid.
  4. Reconverts – The temperature difference is converted back to electrical energy with a heat engine.
  5. Distributes – Electricity is sent back to the grid when it is needed.

Note.

  1. The operation of the system is based on well-understood thermodynamic principles.
  2. Entergy is stored as both heat and cold.
  3. It provides several hours of energy storage.
  4. Systems are built using standard components, that are readily available.

In some ways the Malta Inc PHES is based on similar principles to Highview Power’s CRYOBattery and Siemens Gamesa’s ETES.

Conclusion

This is a company to watch, as they seem to have got the technology right.

February 25, 2021 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , | 2 Comments

Highview Power Begins 2021 With 4 GWh Of CRYOBattery Storage In Global Pipeline

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

Read the article to find out how Highview Power are progressing with partners, offices and projects all over the world.

Not bad for an idea, that was invented in a garage in Bishops Stortford.

The article points to this video produced by the BBC.

If there’s one new venture, I wish I’d have a share of, it is this one.

  • One of the projects, I worked on at ICI was optimising the size of a new plant to make plastic granules. I learned a great deal about how process plants can be scaled and their mathematics and economics.
  • I believe that Highview Power’s CRYOBaterries fit with everything I know and are just world-class process engineering arranged in a unique way, which means they can be built in any country, where modern process plant technology is available and can be run and serviced by skilled engineers and technologists.
  • Their partnership with the likes of Sumitomo Heavy Industries means, Highview Power, probably has access to the best technology, for some of the components needed.

After reading the article in Solar Builder, I now feel that Highview Power are on their way!

One of the first places, I shall visit after lockdown ends is Carrington near Manchester, to take pictures of the site of Highview Power’s 50 MW/250 MWh system, that is being built at Carrington.

February 19, 2021 Posted by | Energy Storage | , , , | Leave a comment

SSE Goes Global To Reap The Wind

The title of this article on This Is Money is Renewable Energy Giant SSE Launches Plan To Become Britain’s First Global Windfarm Business As it Invests Up To £15bn Over Next Decade.

The title is a good summary of their plans to build wind farms in Continental Europe, Denmark, Japan and the US, in addition to the UK and Ireland.

I can also see the company developing more integrated energy clusters using the following technologies.

  • Wind farms that generate hydrogen rather than electricity using integrated electrolysers and wind turbines, developed by companies like ITM Power and Ørsted.
  • Reusing of worked out gasfields and redundant gas pipelines.
  • Zero-carbon CCGT power stations running on Hydrogen.
  • Lots of Energy storage.

I talked about this type of integration in Batteries Could Save £195m Annually By Providing Reserve Finds National Grid ESO Trial.

In the related post, I talked about the Keadby cluster of gas-fired power stations, which are in large part owned by SSE.

Conclusion

I think that SSE could be going the way of Equinor and Ørsted and becoming a global energy company.

It is also interesting the BP and Shell are investing in renewable energy to match the two Scandinavian companies.

Big Oil seems to be transforming itself into Big Wind.

All these companies seem to lack grid-scale energy storage, although hydrogen can be generated and stored in worked-out gas fields.

So I would expect that some of the up-and-coming energy storage companies like Gravitricity, Highview Power and RheEnergise could soon have connections with some of these Big Wind companies.

 

 

February 14, 2021 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage, Hydrogen | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Afruca: Highview Power Raises $70million For Renewable Energy Storage

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Afrik21.

This is the introductory paragraph.

Highview Power, a company specialising in electricity storage, has just raised 70 million dollars to distribute its solutions in Africa. The funds were raised from Janus Capital, the subsidiary of Janus Continental Group (JCG); Sumitomo Heavy Industries (SHI) and the Spanish group TSK.

It then says that Highview Power is launching the conquest of Africa. In Spanish Govt Approves Energy Storage Strategy, Sees 20 GW In 2030, I said this.

Highview Power’s liquid air systems would be another possibility, but I doubt, they’d perform as well in the heat of Spain, as a system based on hot rocks.

It would appear that Highview Power believe their system can work in the heat of Africa.

  • Air is reasonably plentiful in Africa.
  • Perhaps, the sun is an ideal low-grade heat source needed to warm up the liquid air, when the power is recovered.
  • Highview’s CRYOBattery doesn’t seem to use many exotic difficult-to-source materials.

So it looks like I was wrong to doubt their performance in hot countries.

These last two paragraph say more about Highview’s plans.

According to the company, its system is capable of storing from 20 MW/80 MWh to more than 200 MW/1.2 GWh of electricity generated from renewable sources. This is a real asset for clean energy plants whose operation depends on variations in climatic conditions. JCG believes that its investment will enable the deployment of this solution on the African continent, particularly in the Great Lakes region where large solar and wind energy projects are currently being developed.

“JCG believes in a diversified energy solution for Africa, and technology such as Highview Power’s will facilitate increased use of renewable energy, reducing regional dependence on fossil fuels and bringing accessible energy to underserved communities,” says the conglomerate of companies investing in the energy, hospitality and real estate sectors.

Hopefully by the next time, I get to Manchester, there will be something to see of the 50 MW/250 MWh plant at Carrington.

February 12, 2021 Posted by | Energy Storage | , | Leave a comment

Spanish Govt Approves Energy Storage Strategy, Sees 20 GW In 2030

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

This is the introductory paragraph.

The Spanish government on Tuesday approved the energy storage strategy, targeting some 20 GW of storage capacity in 2030 and reaching 30 GW by 2050 from today’s 8.3 GW.

How will Spain increase their storage capacity?

Pumped Storage Systems

Spain already has a couple of large pumped storage systems.

The La Muela II Pumped Storage Power Station

The La Muela II Pumped Storage power station is based on the Cortes-La Muela Reservoir

This Google Map shows the dam.

In terms of generating capacity, it is about the same size as Dinorwig power station in Snowdonia., which is the UK’s largest pumped storage power station.

The Aldeadávila Dam

The Aldeadávila Dam is a 1243 MW hydro-electric power station with a pumped storage addition on the River Douro between Spain and Portugal.

This Google Map shows the dam.

It certainly looks like a place to visit.

Both these pumped storage station seem to have been converted from earlier hydro-electric power stations.

I wouldn’t be surprised to learn, that the Spaniards, were going to increase their number of pumped storage power stations.

  • Spain certainly has the mountains, with big rivers running through!
  • Bolarque dam already uses pumped-storage techniques.

Are there any other existing hydro-electric power stations in Spain, that can be converted to pumped storage or be upgraded?

Concentrated Solar Power

Spain has around thirty concentrated solar power or CSP power stations, either in operation, under construction or planned.

Some also store electricity as heat.

Spain is not short of sun.

Spain is considered a world leader in this technology.

This Google Map shows the Andasol solar power station.

The specification includes.

  • It uses technology called a parabolic trough.
  • A nameplate capacity of 149.7 MW
  • A capacity factor of 37.7 %
  • Annual net output of 495 GWh
  • a storage capacity of 1.123 GWh
  • The energy storage is based on a mixture of potassium and sodium nitrates.
  • The power station takes up an area of six square kilometres.

Will Spain build more of these CSP power stations or add energy storage to some of the existing stations?

Batteries

The article has this sentence.

the government wants to add large-scale batteries, behind-the-metre batteries — minimum 400 MW in 2030 — and make the most of the vehicle-to-grid technology, according to the document.

It should be noted that Spain has installed capacity of over 25 GW of wind power, according to this article on Wikipedia, which is entitled Wind Power In Spain.

These are some points from the article.

  • Spain has a lot of indigenous wind turbine manufacture.
  • The Spanish wind-power industry employs upwards of 60,000 people.
  • A central control centre for Spanish wind power needs to be developed.
  • There is little opposition to onshore wind, although perhaps somewhat surprisingly, there is some opposition to offshore wind.

After reading what Wikipedia had to say, it appears to me, that Spain needs a ;pt of batteries to support all these wind turbines.

The world’s second largest wind-turbine manufacturer is Siemens Gamesa, who are Spanish-based.

Siemens Gamesa have an innovation storage battery based on hot volcanic rock, which I wrote about in Siemens Gamesa Begins Operation Of Its Innovative Electrothermal Energy Storage System.

This gives a brief description of the pilot plant.

The heat storage facility, which was ceremonially opened today in Hamburg-Altenwerder, contains around 1,000 tonnes of volcanic rock as an energy storage medium. It is fed with electrical energy converted into hot air by means of a resistance heater and a blower that heats the rock to 750°C. When demand peaks, ETES uses a steam turbine for the re-electrification of the stored energy. The ETES pilot plant can thus store up to 130 MWh of thermal energy for a week. In addition, the storage capacity of the system remains constant throughout the charging cycles.

It was taken from this press release from Siemens Gamesa.

This page on the Siemens web site gives the nominal output of the system as 30 MW.

So it would need just over a dozen systems like these to perhaps be strategically-placed near large wind farms to meet Spain’s target of 400 MW of energy storage.

Highview Power’s liquid air systems would be another possibility, but I doubt, they’d perform as well in the heat of Spain, as a system based on hot rocks.

Conclusion

Spain’s plan seems achievable and could create a lot of employment.

It also seems to me, that their natural resources of mountains, big rivers and lots of sun are a great help.

 

 

 

February 11, 2021 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , , , , | 3 Comments

Crown Estate’s Auction Of Seabed For Wind Farms Attracts Sky-High Bids

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

This is the opening paragraph.

An auction of seabed rights to build offshore wind farms around England and Wales has attracted frenzied bidding that could be worth hundreds of millions of pounds a year to the Treasury and the Queen.

I don’t find this surprising.

Bigger Seems Better Offshore

Wind turbine technology is getting better and much larger. It also seems that the new larger floating turbines are much more efficient and generate power for a greater proportion of the day.

My project management software helped to harvest North Sea Oil and I have been told by many in the industry, that North Sea Oil really took off when platforms and the equipment like cranes used to build them got truly enormous.

I feel, we could be seeing the same size effect happening as we harvest the wind!

Hydrogen And Wind Power

The latest development is not to generate electricity, but to use it in the turbine to generate hydrogen, which is then piped to the shore.

  • The UK Government is funding this technology in part with a grant to ITM Power.
  • I wrote about the technology in ITM Power and Ørsted: Wind Turbine Electrolyser Integration.
  • Existing gas networks can be reconfigured to bring the hydrogen to the shore.
  • Piping hydrogen costs less than cabling electricity.
  • Hydrogen networks are being built at several places in the UK, to fuel homes, power stations and industry like steel-making and petrochemicals.

Could all this explain Big Oil’s involvement?

Do they want to exchange fossil fuels for green hydrogen?

They certainly know how to distribute it.

Energy Storage

For my own investments, I’m looking at energy storage, where the UK has at least three promising new ideas, all of whom have had Government grants.

  • Gravitricity
  • Highview Power
  • ReEnergise

The Government has also indirectly-backed Cornish Lithium

 

February 6, 2021 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage, Hydrogen | , , , , , | 5 Comments

Meet The British Inventor Who Came Up With A Green Way Of Generating Electricity From Air – In His Shed

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on inews, which is written by the respected BBC journalist; Tom Heap.

This is the first  two paragraphs.

In 25 years of reporting on the environment, I’ve become unshakably convinced in the seriousness and urgency of tackling climate change, but also rather dismayed that our successes in reducing greenhouse gases and promising scientific breakthroughs go largely unreported.

I’ve seen super plants that improve photo-synthesis, cows that belch less methane and next-gen solar panels. But there is one individual who deserves to be as famous in green-tech as Elon Musk for how his invention could help stop global warming.

The man is Peter Dearman from Bishops Stortford and his invention is the technology behind Highview Power, that is building a 250 MWh liquid air battery at Carrington, near Manchester.

 

January 12, 2021 Posted by | Energy Storage | , | 1 Comment

Work Begins On New Substation For World’s Longest Electricity Cable Between Denmark and Lincolnshire

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

This is the sub-title.

Britain and Denmark will be able to share enough clean energy to power 1.5 million homes.

The Viking Link is a 1400 MW at 525 KV electricity interconnector between Bicker Fen in Lincolnshire and Revsing in Jutland, Denmark.

This Google Map, shows the location of Bicker Fen, about halfway between Boston and Sleaford.

This second map shows an enlarged view of the Bicker Fen area.

Note.

  1. The village of Bicker in the South-East corner of the map.
  2. In the North-West corner of the map is Bicker Fen Wind Farm.

This third map shows the wind farm.

Note the thirteen wind turbines between the two sub-stations full of wo electrical gubbins.

This sentence from the Wikipedia entry for Bicker, gives more details of the wind farm and the future plans for the area.

North of the main line of 400 kV pylons is the Bicker Fen windfarm consisting of 13 turbines producing 26 MW (2 MW each), enough for 14,000 homes. The construction of the windfarm met some local objection. The windmills sit north from Poplartree Farm and were built in June 2008 by Wind Prospect for EdF. They are of the type REpower MM82, made in Hamburg. Bicker Fen substation is also the proposed landing site for a 1,400 MW power cable from Denmark called Viking Link, as well as the proposed offshore wind farm Triton Knoll.

Triton Knoll is a big wind farm, with a planned capacity of 857 MW and should start producing electricity in the next couple of years.

Conclusion

The Viking Link and Triton Knoll are obviously a good fit, as the UK will be able to exchange energy as required.

But it would appear that there’s one thing missing from this setup – energy storage.

I wouldn’t be surprised to see a large battery built at Bicker Fen. Something, like one of Highview Power‘s CRYOBatteries might be ideal.

December 3, 2020 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Holy Grail Of Energy Storage Receives Two Grants

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Off Grid Energy Independence.

This is the introductory paragraph.

RheEnergise is one of only a select handful of businesses to have been awarded grants under both the Sustainable Innovation Fund & the Small Business Research Initiative.

So what have RheEnergise developed?

The home page of their web site, is surprisingly detailed, unlike those of some other companies with new ideas, and not just energy storage companies!

This is the first paragraph on their home page.

RheEnergise is bringing innovation to pumped hydro storage. We call our new solution High-Density Hydro ™.

I think that is a good start, as although pumped hydro storage is well proven and the UK has the 1,728 MW Dinorwig Power Station, which has a storage capacity of 9.1 GWh, building new large pumped storage systems is fraught with difficulties and the technology has seen only modest innovation in the last few decades.

The next paragraph on their home page describes their innovation.

HD Hydro ™ uses our proprietary HD Fluid R-19 ™, which has 2.5x the density of water. R-19 gives RheEnergise projects 2.5x the power and 2.5x the energy when compared to water.

This means that for the same size of pumped hydro storage power station, you get 2.5 times the amount of energy storage.

Alongside a diagram of the system, the advantages of their systems is stated.

Projects can be installed on hills 2.5x lower than a project using water and still achieve the same power – for example, there are so many more hills at 150m than at 375m.

2.5x smaller, by volume, meaning dramatically lower construction costs, faster build times, easier reinstatement and easier landscaping – projects can be entirely hidden.

A very simple innovation has greatly increased the possibilities of pumped hydro storage.

The home page also gives a typical capacity.

RheEnergise projects provide 10MW to 50MW power and 2 to 10 hours of storage capacity.

These systems are in the same range as those of Highview Power, who are building a 50 MW system, with a five hour capacity at Carrington near Manchester, that I wrote about in Highview Power Breaks Ground on 250MWh CRYOBattery Long Duration Energy Storage Facility.

Both have the advantage, that they are easily scalable.

With RheEnergise’s HD Hydro ™, the size of the upper reservoir would need to be increased and with Highview Power’s CRYOBattery, more tanks for the liquid air would need to be added.

The Technology

I certainly agree with the principle behind ReEnergise, both mathematically and practically.

My interest scientifically, is what is the fluid they use?

  • Pure water has a specific gravity of one and everything else is measured with respect to this.
  • So aluminium, which has a specific gravity of 2.7, is 2.7 times as heavy as water.
  • Many of us will be familiar with mercury, which is a metal, that is liquid at room temperature.
  • Mercury has a specific gravity of 13.56.

It puzzles me, how someone has created a liquid, almost as heavy as aluminium, that can be pumped and handled like water, as it would need to be, to make a pumped storage system work.

 

 

November 12, 2020 Posted by | Energy, Energy Storage | , , , | Leave a comment