Gravity-based renewable energy storage tower for grid-scale operations

Good News Notes:

Energy Vault, maker of the EVx gravitational energy storage tower, has secured $100 million in series C funding. The investment was led by Prime Movers Lab, with additional participation from SoftBank, Saudi Aramco, Helena, and Idealab X.

The company said capital raised will support plans to ramp up deployments of the EVx platform for customers in the U.S., Middle East, Europe, and Australia. The first U.S. deployments are slated to begin fourth quarter 2021, with a broader global ramp-up throughout 2022, said Energy Vault.

The EVx platform is a six-arm crane tower designed to be charged by grid-scale renewable energy. It lifts large bricks using electric motors, thereby creating gravitational energy. When power needs to be discharged back to the grid, the bricks are lowered, harvesting the kinetic energy.

There is zero degradation in the storage capacity of the raised composite blocks, which can remain in the raised position for unlimited periods of time, said Energy Vault.

Energy Vault said the composite blocks are made of local soils, as well as materials otherwise destined for landfills or incinerators, including recycled coal ash, waste tailings from mining operations, and wind turbine blades.

In 2020, Energy Vault had the first commercial-scale deployment of its energy storage system and launched the new EVx platform this past April.

The company said the EVx tower features 80-85% round-trip efficiency and over 35 years of technical life. It has a scalable modular design up to multiple gigawatt-hours in storage capacity….”

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