As the transition away from fossil fuels continues to gather pace with corporate Australia and the energy sector busily installing solar panels and wind turbines, there is an increasing need for scalable energy storage systems that have long lifespans, are eco-friendly and can deliver a low cost of power.
Lithium-ion batteries are the go-to products for this type of energy storage. However, an award winning technology recently introduced by Essential Water and Energy Services may challenge Lithium-ion's dominant energy storage position. This technology is Compressed Air Energy Storage (CAES) or Air Battery as it is also known.
CAES systems are not new, the first such system was a 290MW plant at Huntorf, Germany that began operating in 1978 and is still operational.
In 1988 the Alabama Electric Cooperative began operating a 110MW CAES plant in North America. These large scale systems made use of disused mines to store the huge volume of compressed air that was needed.
With today's technological advances and some insightful design, Leaper Innovate Green Energies have developed and patented the LiGE Air Battery. A zero-emissions CAES system that can be hooked up to the electricity grid or to renewable energy sources to provide clean energy as well as clean water.
With a working life of 30 years the air battery ranks among the most environmentally friendly of all energy storage technologies, the only by-products produced are clean air and clean water.
A 1MWh air battery can produce up to 5,000 litres of water a day in humid conditions. The amount of water produced varies depending on the humidity of the air, also no rare earth metals are used and all parts can be recycled.
LiGE Air Batteries range in energy storage capacity from 40kWh up to 50MWh and are containerised for ease of transport and security. When large energy storage capacity is required multiple systems can work together with all performance parameters remotely monitored.