The Birmingham Centre for Energy Storage would like to congratulate Highview Power on being awarded the 2019 Ashden Award for Energy Innovation for their research in cryogenic energy storage.
Mitigation of the climate crisis requires an urgent shift from fossil fuels to renewable sources, but the varying amount of energy production from these sources makes the grid unstable. Highview Power’s CRYOBattery™ technology is able to stabilise the grid as they can store excess solar and wind energy until it is required.
The batteries offer large-scale energy storage at the lowest levelized cost of storage for large-scale applications, but uses only benign materials and emits zero emissions versus lithium batteries, which have both environmental and fire safety concerns. CRYOBatteries are, long-lasting and easy to manufacture and install.
This ground-breaking CRYOBattery™ technology compresses and cools air until it becomes liquid, at ~-196ᵒC and then stores the liquefied air in an insulated tank until energy generation is needed. When required, the liquefied air is pumped and evaporated to drive a turbine and generator as it warms up and expands – one litre of liquefied air expands to ~700 litres of normal air. CRYOBatteries can also efficiently utilise the waste cold and heat created during the process and from external sources to enhance performance.
Highview Power has spent over a decade researching and developing the CRYOBattery™ since the technology was invented with Professor Yulong Ding ~14 years ago. Over the years, Highview Power and their sponsored Royal Academy of Engineering Chair, Professor Ding, have continued to innovate and developed liquid air based combined cooling, heating, and water and power technologies for applications at community and city scales.
Highview Power ran a 350 kW pilot CRYOBattery™ (currently at the University of Birmingham) from 2011 to 2014 before building a 5 megawatt (MW) / 15 MWh commercial demonstration plant near Manchester.