Keeping wind and also solar with brand-new gravity-based system

May 12, 2020 01:41 PM ET
  • Scottish start-up Gravitricity is preparing a project to shop excess power from renewables at Port of Leith. A 250 kW, grid-connected model center will certainly have its capacity to support the network checked. The system entails a 16m gear over a 150-1500m shaft.
Keeping wind and also solar with brand-new gravity-based system
Image: Gravitricity

Scottish start-up Gravitricity has actually created a gravity power storage space system it states is excellent for saving solar as well as wind power.

A 16m-high gear utilizes the tidy power to increase a mass in a 150-1500m shaft and also releases the electrical energy therefore 'kept' by launching the mass to revolve an electrical generator.

Gravitricity stated the mass utilized can vary from 500 to 5,000 lots and also the power released can power 30,000 neighboring houses for 2 hrs.

The start-up asserted innovative winches and also a control system can decrease the mass extremely promptly, making it flexible adequate to maintain power networks at 50Hz and also making sure the set up can reply to full power need in less than a 2nd. "Our innovation has the rapid reaction time of lithium-ion batteries," the firm claimed.

The Edinburgh-based firm claimed the system provides 25-year solution without loss of efficiency or intermittent deterioration and also can be sited anywhere, consisting of in town hall. The developer indicated obsolete mine shafts as optimal areas, nonetheless.


Gravitricity will certainly start building of a ₤ 1 million (EUR1.14 million) pilot project in October on a commercial website at Port of Leith, Scotland's biggest confined deep-water port.

With conclusion set up for December, the 250 kW model will certainly be attached to the port's power network and also have its rate of feedback for grid stablizing examined. "The demonstrator at the Port of Leith will certainly enable the modern technology to be trialed on a much smaller sized range, making use of an above ground framework," the business stated.

The pilot system will certainly utilize 2 25-tonne weights put on hold by steel wires. "This two-month examination program will certainly validate our modeling as well as provide us important information for our initial full-blown, 4 MW project, which will certainly start in 2021," claimed Gravitricity lead designer Miles Franklin.

The latticework tower for the Port of Leith center will certainly be provided by U.K. designer Kelvin Power and also the winches as well as control system will certainly originate from Huisman, a Dutch supplier of hefty training, exploration, pipeline laying as well as anchoring systems.

The project is being backed by federal government company Innovate UK with a ₤ 640,000 give.

Gravity storage space

UNITED STATE firm Energy Vault introduced gravity-based storage space modern technology relying upon a crane and also 35-ton concrete blocks a year earlier. That system was claimed to appraise volatility in power supply and also need, weather and also inertia, according to its developer, and also was backed by a $110 million (EUR102 million) financial investment from Japanese lending institution SoftBank in August. "Energy Vault will certainly be showing the initial 35 MWh storage space tower, in the north of Italy in 2019," the Japanese corporation revealed at the time.

Austrian research study company the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) in 2014 recommended gravitational power storage space for low-energy-demand places. Because circumstances, the innovation advanced included double cranes on a hill cliff-edge attached to a power storage space website at the base of the decline plus an electrical motor on a top storage space website to carry a strong mass of sand or crushed rock. IIASA researchers claimed such a system could be incorporated with various other types of power storage space and also renewables, would certainly set you back $50-100 per megawatt-hour of kept power as well as $1-2 million per megawatt of set up storage space ability to create.

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