PHES Technology – The Answer To Large Scale Electricity Storage On The Grid?

The Answer To Large Scale Electricity Storage On The Grid?
The Answer To Large Scale Electricity Storage On The Grid?

Large Scale Electricity Storage On The Grid Is The Holy Grail For Utility Scale Renewable Energy Adoption.

At Solar Thermal Magazine we are interested in all forms of clean energy, most of which originate with the power from the sun. Equally as important to both us and our readers as these clean technologies is the field of energy storage.

If we are to move quickly away from fossil fuels, which action to climate change demands ,we will need energy storage. There is a limit to how much utility scale solar and wind power we can put on the electric grid without having some form of non-intermittant energy source to back it up. However by using utility scale energy storage systems that are cost effective we could freely add more intermittant renewable power to the grid.

Here is one solution to the problem of utility scale electricity storage that looks very promising.

It is called Isentropic Pumped Heat Electricity Storage of PHES for short. It is being developed by a company named Isentropic Limited based out of the U.K..

The company is developing what they consider to be one of the best forms of grid scale electricity storage in the world.

This video shows how Isentropic Pumped Heat Electricity Storage (PHES) works. The science is compelling as it works by storing electricity in the form of hot and cold temperature differential. It is reversible with the flick of a switch and in only one second you are producing electricity from storage.

The system is scalable with sizes ranging from 3 to 5 Mwatts allowing for 8 hours of storage.  It has roughly the same efficiency as pumped storage which is very good. The costs are not disclosed but for sure it is cheaper that batteries so far.

So, do you think that this PHES technology will change the world?

About Gordon Smith
Gordon's expertise in the area of industrial energy efficiency and alternative energy. He is an experienced electrical engineer with a Masters degree in Alternative Energy technology. He is the co-founder of several renewable energy media sites including Solar Thermal Magazine.

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