As part of its program providing up to $325 million to accelerate the development of long-duration energy storage technologies, the Energy Department has selected Westinghouse Electric Co.’s project to deploy a 1.2 GWh utility-scale long-duration energy system in Healy, Alaska in support of planned wind power.
The project represents the largest, planned single installation of long-duration energy storage in the United States and will demonstrate how the technology can firm intermittent renewable power at grid scale while providing local and regional grid resiliency.
Golden Valley Electric Association, Echogen Power Systems, ASRC Energy Services, the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) and Shell Global Solutions U.S. are partners in the venture with Westinghouse.
“Having an effective and affordable way to store energy has been the choke point for renewable energy technology,” says Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy. “By providing long-duration energy storage, this project will help enable us to better utilize the renewable resources that are abundant in Alaska.”
Westinghouse has been advancing long-duration thermal energy storage technology for several years in collaboration with Echogen, a supplier of supercritical carbon dioxide (sCO2) based technologies.
Pumped thermal energy storage from Westinghouse solves many of the challenges associated with other long-duration energy storage applications, such as lithium-ion batteries, providing 10 or more hours of reliable energy storage with a simple, safe, cost-effective design in a compact footprint, delivering the lowest levelized cost of storage when paired with wind or solar. The system leverages readily available and inexpensive locally sourced materials, such as carbon steel, water and concrete, to enable rapid deployment anywhere around the globe.