The future of renewable energy depends on the search for an effective and low-cost energy storage solution.
The world needs a sustainable energy storage system that can store energy and ensure a regular flow at peak times even when demand exceeds generation.
Swiss start-up Energy Vault is providing a solution by storing extra energy as potential energy in concrete blocks.
Their innovative energy storage technology consists of a combination of 35 tons solid concrete blocks and a tall tower. The 120-meter (nearly 400-foot) tall, six-armed crane lifts the blocks 35 stories high into the air when there is surplus energy. These blocks are lowered down when additional power is required. When lowered, their weight spins the turbines to produce electricity.
The concrete blocks have a storage capacity of up to 80 megawatt-hours and can continuously provide 4 to 8 megawatts for 8 to 16 hours.
Energy Vault has been operating in stealth mode for the last couple of years. Though, Energy Vault doesn’t even have its full-scale prototype ready yet. But it’s much closer to deploying the technology. It has recently received a major investment from the Japanese holding company, Softbank.