Energy Vault, a grid-scale energy storage solutions developer known for its gravity storage technology, has commissioned what they claim will be the world’s first grid-scale gravity energy storage system (GESS).
Commissioning was announced alongside renewables developer Atlas Renewable and telcomm company China Tianying (CNTY).
Located outside of Shanghai in Rudong, Jiangsu Province, China, the 25MW/100MWh EVx GESS is built adjacent to a wind farm and a national grid interconnection site in the hopes of balancing the country’s national energy grid through long duration storage of renewable energy.
Commissioning began in June on the power electronics and what the company calls “new ultra-efficient ‘ribbon’ lifting systems”, they stated in a press release announcing the commissioning.
The system is expected to be fully grid interconnected in Q4 2023 as planned with local state grid authorities, which Energy Vault states will make EVx the world’s first commercial, utility scale non-pumped hydro GESS.
“Happy to share our continued progress and a critical milestone achieved with our partners Atlas Renewable and China Tianying related to commencement of commissioning activities of the world’s first EVx gravity energy storage system,” said Robert Piconi, chairman and chief executive officer of Energy Vault.
Added Eric Fang, CEO of Atlas Renewable: “We remain focused on an efficient system commissioning process in order to begin storing and dispatching renewable energy to China’s national grid in full alignment with local and state grid authorities.
“This first deployment of Energy Vault’s EVx technology will serve as a model for global decarbonisation technology partnerships, and as we have previously announced, are already working on multi-GWh deployments of Energy Vault’s gravity technology in China to support and ideally accelerate China’s current 30-60 net carbon neutral plans.”
The announcement follows recognition of Energy Vault’s GESS within the National Energy Administration of China’s roster of significant technical equipment projects scheduled for 2023 within the energy sector.
Stated CNTY in a press release on the Administration’s roster: “With the continuous increase in the proportion of new energy installed capacity (…) the high proportion of renewable energy connected to the grid has put forward higher requirements for the power grid’s peak regulation, frequency regulation and consumption capabilities.
“China Tianying’s ‘100MWh complete set of gravity energy storage equipment’ is currently the world’s largest complete set of gravity energy storage equipment. Its basic technical route is to use new energy such as wind and solar power or grid valley and flat power to raise the gravity block to a certain height, so as to convert the electric energy into potential energy for storage.”
According to Energy Vault, the EVx system is expected to have round trip efficiency (RTE) above 80%.