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In the absence of more efficient and less costly storage solutions, the amount of electricity that can be fed to the grid by renewable energy sources, even at much more appealing prices than today, continues to be limited. Historically speaking, renewable energies such as wind and solar struggle to completely replace the energy derived from fossil fuels, due to its unpredictable and intermittent production, which depends on variable factors such as wind and sunlight.
Inspired by pumped-storage hydroelectric power stations that rely on the force of gravity and movement of water to accumulate and discharge electricity, a new project was born based on the essential principles of physics and mechanical engineering. The water was replaced by composite bricks, produced ad hoc using innovative low-cost materials and materials science. The system, patented by a leading producer of these types of materials, consists in a newly developed 6-arm crane, which, using electronic processing software, is able to move particularly heavy blocks. The patented software autonomously controls the energy storage tower, and based on a series of algorithms that take various factors into account, including the volatility of the energy demand/supply, grid stability, atmospheric conditions and other variables, determines the loading and unloading of the bricks. The principle is the same as for a large-scale pumped-storage hydroelectric power station: the potential energy transformed into kinetic energy is transformed into electrical energy, but at a distinctly lower cost, with greater efficiency of the loading-unloading cycle. This energy production plant doesn’t require any specific topographic conditions and doesn’t create any negative impacts on the environment: these are the characteristics distinguishing this new construction, highlighting its exceptional nature.
GBE participated with great enthusiasm in the construction of the first transformers that will be installed on the tower to feed the energy produced into the grid. The transformers are 1600 kVA hermetic oil-filled for outdoor installation, with electrical and mechanical measures to ensure total satisfaction of the technical requirements and specifications of the project.
We are excited and honoured to be a part of such a cutting-edge project that is revolutionising the concept of renewable energy, while at the same time helping to mend the environment.